If you work in Manchester you’ve probably heard about Federation House or been there for one of the regular show and tells. But for those who haven’t, we wanted to give you a preview before it’s officially launched tomorrow by Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham.
Preserving a bit of Co-op history
Federation House is a former Co-op building (a drapers) that we now co-own with NOMA, the scheme to redevelop the area around Victoria station. It’s been unused for ages because of issues with damp and the layout, but we’ve now refurbished it, so it’s great to see life being breathed back into this historic building.
At the moment some of the Digital team is based on the top two floors of Federation, but it’s much more than just a Co-op office – it’s a co-working space where social enterprises and community businesses can come together and co-operate with us, and each other. Other tenants that share the building include NorthCoders, Big Lottery Fund, Thoughtworks and Foodinate.
A space for colleagues to use
Federation has meeting rooms, a cafe and a 200 capacity event space that Co-op colleagues and community organisations can use, for much cheaper than hiring external venues. It also has an auditorium where we host ‘show and tells’ that are open to all Co-op colleagues. You can find out about all our events and news in the Co-op Digital newsletter here on Tumblr.
A digital hub for the community
It’s early days yet, but we also have lots of big ideas for how the building can bring local community groups together and support and grow the northern tech industry. The Northern Powerhouse could bring lots of opportunities for growth and jobs in tech, and we want to put Manchester on the map as a place for digital innovation using co-operative principles. We’ll talk a lot more about these opportunities as they come up.
Thanks to everyone who has helped get Federation House up and running.
For now, here’s a sneak peek inside Federation: