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Empty bank branches become coworking spaces

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by Startacus Admin

We have a little surprising fact for you; there's a lot of disused spaces floating around in the UK.

OK, perhaps that's not quite the shocking headline we wish it was, but we have discovered some really interesting and uplifting news about how some of this free space is being utilised in a way that is good for business and's also pretty darn cool.

A charity called 3Space is doing novel things with some of the UK's empty bank branches by transforming them into fantastic little co-working spaces for startups and non profit organizations.  You are no doubt aware that there is a severe shortage of affordable desk space in 3Space empty banks co-workingmost towns and in some there is an abundance of empty bank branches, so the folks at 3Space did the maths and decided to kill 2 proverbial birds with one stone.    

This is just the latest enterprising initiative to come from the folks at 3Space, which is an innovative charity that works to unlock the value of empty commercial properties for community use. The project is called Hatch, and will see a number of under-utilised Barclays bank branches transformed into havens of creativity and community spirit, as they are recommissioned to provide desk space and essential utilities to fledgling businesses / non profits. The idea has its roots in the well publicised benefits of co-working spaces, which help to encourage creativity, passion and innovation in a way which is much harder within the traditional office setting.  

3Space empty banks co-workingThe first such 'Hatch' has recently opened in Oxford and has some great facilities including WiFi ,gallery space, a kitchen, AV equipment, and even a greenhouse! Fancy!  It is also home to an exciting space called the Makervault, which as you've guessed is housed in the old bank vault of the branch. Here, creative startups are given access to a whole range of equipment that is necessary to ensure they can flourish including tools, sewing machines,and even a 3D printer!  

But this is just the beginning. By the end of the year there should be a further 3 such Hatches dotted across the UK providing free workspace and making use of empty spaces in town centres.  But don't worry if there isn'nt one coming to your town, because we have recently discovered a fab platform that lets you crowdsource a coworking space into your very own home! 

Could this be the sign of even greater things to come?  While you mull that over, why not take a little look at 3Space's promo video below:

3Space Co-Working spaces

UK Charity 3Space is aiming to doing novel things with some of the UK's empty banks transforming them into co-working spaces for startups & non profit organizations.

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Published on: 17th February 2015

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