Located close to the Cammell Laird shipyard in Birkenhead, Start-Yard is aimed at early stage and start-up businesses and is already half full just days after opening. Tony McDonough reports
A new Liverpool city region workspace hub aimed at early stage and start-up businesses is already 50% let.
Start-Yard is a ‘work village’ in Birkenhead that is based in a former industrial garage building next door to the historic Birkenhead Priory and Cammell Laird shipyard. It is described by its owner as an “exciting biosphere”.
Aimed at entrepreneurs in the in the early stages of their business development, Start-Yard comprises 16,000 sq ft of space, with the first phase totalling 8,000 sq ft. It offers affordable self-contained work units along with a number of open plan workspace desks.
Many of the building’s original features have been retained including raw brick walls and exposed roof trusses. They sit alongside a series of repurposed shipping containers, work pods and pops of modern colour.
Communal areas include a gallery of contemporary art, and break-out spaces provide a relaxed setting for tenants, while a café bar serves both the venue and surrounding businesses and neighbours, with handmade coffees and healthy lunches.
Available also as an event space and with meeting room hire, the second phase will see the development of Start-Yard Market. This will offer a seasonal year-round calendar of entertainment, live shows, street food and farmer’s markets, art and craft events, as well as seasonal events.
Start-Yard owner Chris Lee, a Wirral entrepreneur, said: “The interest in Start-Yard has been massively encouraging. Many enquiries are coming from the creative and media sectors who are actively looking for a scheme like this.
“It provides clustered working for like-minded business people – we’re really looking forward to see the development of a collaborative culture as more tenants come on board.”
A launch event was held that was attended by business leaders, council officers and elected members as well as the Mayor and Mayoress of Wirral. It is being seen as another important facet in the regeneration of Birkenhead.