Monday, November 3, 2014

News: Enterprise Court completely full


Enterprise Court at Manvers, Rotherham is 100% let after it was chosen by a unique charity to provide free office space for twelve months.

Two and a half years ago, this terrace of 14 modern self contained offices was looking very sad with only two of the offices occupied and had an air of depression about it. Despite an aggressive marketing campaign at the time there were few enquiries as no one seemed to want space of this type and in this location.

Today every office is occupied with over 100 people working on site and with a demand for space which can no longer be satisfied.

The Freespace Foundation was established as a business incubator specifically for start up and home based businesses who want to expand. The Freespace Foundation is a charity whose purpose is to assist in creating employment. They took over the various empty offices and let space free of charge for one year to qualifying businesses. The foundation was the brainchild of former Evans Easyspace MD, and previous chair of the Business Centre Association, Tom Stokes.

The space was provided rent and service charge free from the landlords. More importantly, Rotherham Council agreed to grant both the 80% mandatory and 20% discretionary Business Rates relief to the Charity. This enabled the space to be offered free of rent, rates and service charge.

Since it was established, The Freespace Foundation has assisted 32 small businesses, many of whom have moved on elsewhere but ten have established themselves permanently at Enterprise Court.

Tom Stokes, founder of the Freespace Foundation, said: "The activity generated by the occupiers of the incubation centre brought life back to the ailing centre and as a result interest picked up in the larger units and all empty space has now been let since the start of 2014. As a result the work of the Freespace Foundation in Manvers has come to an end as no more space is available."

The latest organisation to take office space at Enterprise Court is the Sheffield Eagles Rugby League team as they prepare to move to the new stadium set to be built at Don Valley.

A spokesperson for Rotherham Investment and Development Office (RiDO), added: "Enterprise Court is a great example what can be achieved when the Council and the business work together. Our work with the Freespace Foundation has helped us find a new way to transform a previously unused and unloved office development into a hive of small business activity, creating jobs for local people and strengthening our economy by supporting the growth of new businesses."

Freespace Foundation

Images: Freespace Foundation


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