Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership
£Less than £1K
Having been chosen by the Government as the home for a new 5G testbed, and having identified a need for an innovative new tech accelerator at the Malvern Hills Science Park, Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership (WLEP) commissioned One Creative Environments Ltd. (One) to design new, flexible and modern office space that would also be the new base for the WLEP Executive Team.
Launched at Info Security Europe 2018 and opening in Autumn 2018, the BetaDen is a brand-new tech accelerator in the heart of Worcestershire’s Cyber Valley in Malvern Hills Science Park which has been designed by One. It provides the location and environment for both entrepreneurs in residence and technology businesses to develop alongside the Worcestershire 5G pioneers and the WLEP team as they position new and existing companies to be at the forefront of futuretech.
This new office environment, which is in a stunning location with views of the Malvern Hills, has been inspired by Worcestershire and celebrates the County in the way that Lord Mervyn King, the former Governor of the Bank of England, described with the best of both worlds due to the County’s rural/urban mix.
With a green living wall and other links to nature, biophilic design principles have been introduced which evidential research has demonstrated significantly increase productivity in the workplace and lead to a greater feeling of well-being. Juxtaposed with the natural environment, and inspired by urban Worcestershire, are modern elements, for example, the ‘Meeting Pods’. These also reflect the fact that the Worcestershire 5G Consortium is undergoing cutting edge work with the country’s most comprehensive industrial 5G Testbed trial as well as the innovations from the start-up businesses that will access the tech accelerator.
There were a range of challenges for the design, for example, the co-locating of a range of teams, whilst taking into account different working styles and cultures, and gaining buy in for the design by all. The space also needed to be reconfigured effectively so that it provides flexibility, as a range of start-up companies of varying sizes could be there at any one time. Future proofing was, therefore, essential as was creating a design with the right Worcestershire brand message.
The new office space was previously a laboratory that housed machinery and so the space needed to be fully redesigned to include new meeting and pitch space, kitchen and welfare facilities as well as incorporating a fire proofed server room with air conditioning.
This is Worcestershire’s first dedicated tech accelerator for entrepreneurs and scale up tech businesses and if successful, could form the blueprint for other centres across Worcestershire.