Working Space Profile: The Guild

27th August 2014

The Guild - Gradient Symbol (small for screen_transparent bg)For some people, there’s nothing better than the idea of working from home. Typing away in your pyjamas sipping endless cups of tea, ah what bliss. In reality, working at home can not only be unproductive, but also antisocial. So, other than Starbucks, where can startups go to get their heads down while also getting some much needed human interaction?

Having spotted this dilemma, in 2013 Tatjana Humphries and Tom Lewis set up The Guild, a coworking hub aimed specifically at tech and creative companies. Housed within the former technology college at The Guildhall in the centre of Bath, the space covers over 3500 square feet and is made up of communal hot-desking zones, private offices and a number of meeting rooms.

The missing link

When asked about the impetus for starting the hub, Manager Tatjana pointed to the high number of “great startups based here in Bath in both the tech and creative industries” with no place to call home. She also noted The Guild’s particular focus on providing not only a place to work but also to network with like-minded businesses. “The city is full of collaboration,” she says, “but there wasn’t a physical space for this to happen. We hope that The Guild answers this – something of a LinkedIn for the real world!”

“The city is full of collaboration, but there wasn’t a physical space for this to happen. We hope that The Guild answers this – something of a LinkedIn for the real world!”

 

As the saying goes, too many cooks spoil the broth. That is why The Guild maintains a diverse range of members to promote new ideas and collaboration. As Tatjana went on to explain: “our members are either tech or creative, but these are very broad categories and we have people working in a number of different fields including web design, gaming, architecture, social media, programming, amusement games, illustration and writing”.

Aside from the social links, the physical aspect of The Guild’s desk and office spaces are a major selling point. Within the hub all members have access to the main hot-desking area – the ‘Engine Room’ – and the quiet zone known locally as the ‘Lab’, while those who require permanent residence can pay a little extra for their own personal office space or ‘Fixed Abode.’

IMG_1303

Office Space: The Guild features tech-friendly work spaces and a big Lego head

The meeting rooms, of which there are many, also have their own kooky titles such as ‘The Never Bored Room’ and are open for hire by non-members with prices starting from £10 per hour.

To ensure that there is a wide cross section of businesses, The Guild offers a range of flexible price plans with membership starting from £49 per month. For those often on the move, they provide a day pass for £20 as well as a businesses address service for £25, which also gives access to the numerous seminars and events held at the hub.

IMG_0612

Tabling Ideas: The coffee shop offers a communal space to chat and mainline coffee in the morning

And if that wasn’t enough they even chuck in secure bike lockup facilities, shower rooms, and unlimited tea or coffee to keep you looking and feeling fresh (or at least awake).

Happy customers

You’ve heard what the guys at The Guild have to say, but what about those using it? When we spoke to some of the members many were not only quick to praise its central location – Vicky Edwards labelled it “the best in Bath” – but also the unique surroundings. As one member named Tree commented: “It’s beautiful and got real character, and yet still very practical”.

“The people I have met through the Guild, and the people they have introduced me to, have been directly responsible for the success and growth of my business over the last year.”

 

Yet, as with any coworking space, there’s one big question we all need resolving. Is it worth the rent? We put this point to member Michael Youngman, and the response was unequivocal : “My answer has always been a very definite yes. The layout encourages people to talk, mix and chat it’s a fantastic networking venue.

IMG_0566

Pod Future: Individual work pods offer a separate work space 

“The people I have met through the Guild, and the people they have introduced me to, have been directly responsible for the success and growth of my business over the last year.”

It would appear that there really is no need to gild the lily here. So if you fancy finding out more about the services this hot-desking hub has to offer, why not check out The Guild’s website.