Our Mission: To build a more resilient future for St Ives

Dec 15, 2022

Behind the façade of a heritage building overlooking St Ives Bay, we’ve been working hard to create one of the most inspiring shared workspaces in the whole of the UK. 

This major new coworking space will open in phases beginning in Spring 2023, and we can’t wait to welcome our community through the doors! 

Spread over four floors, Bayspace will offer a range of flexible membership options, from freelancers seeking an occasional hot desk, to SMEs looking for private office space from which to grow their business.  

Just moments from St Ives’ bus and train stations, we’re proud of our bike and board storage – and indoor and outdoor showers – encouraging low carbon commutes here on the Cornish coast.  

The transformation of our Georgian building on Fernlea Terrace also features breakout areas, disabled access, a café, and meeting rooms bookable by the wider community. A programme of events – including workshops, training, and skills sessions – are designed to ensure Bayspace becomes an asset for the whole town.

The restoration project has been led by architects Studio Skein. The sensitive repurposing of this heritage building into a modern, collaborative, and progressive work hub, combined with its awe-inspiring vantage point overlooking St Ives Bay, makes this a landmark opening for the coworking concept, and for St Ives. 

With work reaching the final stages, we can’t wait to welcome our first residents and begin to host meetings and events. Our mission is to make a positive impact on the local community, supporting year-round jobs, sustainable growth, and nurturing collaboration. 

For updates on our phased opening plans, follow us on social media.

Why does St Ives need a coworking space?

The Bayspace team is busy preparing for a phased opening beginning in spring 2023. We’re also putting in the groundwork for our innovative pilot programme, which will see five sponsored memberships open to applications from local entrepreneurs who meet certain criteria – more on that soon. 

Meanwhile, you might be asking yourself, why does St Ives need a coworking space? To answer that, let us take you back to the project’s inception in 2019.

Bayspace has been nurtured into life by St Ives resident and experienced business consultant, Rowena Swallow, who helped form St Ives Workstation Community Interest Company and is now Director of Programme & Development. Bayspace is the CIC’s first project, with more planned to follow.  

As co-author of St Ives Local Economy Plan and Board Member of the St Ives Town Deal, Rowena is passionate about the town’s sustainable future and mindful of the challenges brought about by the lack of business space, and an economy heavily reliant on tourism and hospitality. 

Rowena explains: “St Ives has long been a magnet for creativity – a testbed for new ideas, be that in the field of culture, environment, sustainability, or food and drink. It’s an inspiring place, but right now that innovative, entrepreneurial spirit doesn’t have a home or room to grow.”

A work hub was identified as a key piece of infrastructure that would help local businesses take root and flourish, enabling the local economy to diversify. “Our vision is for Bayspace to be home to all the amazing ingenuity of this coastal community,” says Rowena. She added: “Looking at the bigger picture, we hope it will be the first of several linked projects here in West Cornwall.”  

Having identified a strong need for a coworking space to allow local businesses to reach their full potential, the CIC was able to secure funding from the Coastal Communities Fund to purchase the building on Fernlea Terrace. 

Bayspace is now poised to become a launchpad for pioneering start-ups and home to growing enterprises across a range of sectors – from renewables to charities, the marine sector and the creative industries. 

Fancy being a part of it? Find out more on our membership page.