Fully Occupied, the final few residents move into Makespace Oxford

We’ve reached an exciting milestone in the ongoing project to open up truly affordable space in Oxford.

This week, graphic design collective Monchu became the latest organisation to become residents of Makespace Oxford. When we open officially on 1st June, the first ever Makespace Oxford building will be buzzing at capacity, home to a group of social enterprises, small charities, workers’ co-operatives and individuals who are sewing, drawing, roasting, cutting, painting, throwing, weaving, playing, recording, planning, prototyping, building and making in the previously empty building in North Oxford.

We had over fifty applications from community organisations and we’re over the moon to welcome the first fifteen pioneer residents, they are;

  • Transition by Design, an architecture and design collective working on social and environmental justice issues.
  • The Community Action Group Project (CAG) Oxfordshire, a network of groups working on climate change action in Oxfordshire.
  • The Solidarity Economy Association, a co-operative creating an economy that values social and environmental justice.
  • Oxford Alterations, Expert ateliers specialising in clothing alterations, tailoring and formal occasions.
  • The Young Women’s Music Project, an educational charity which creates space for young women aged 14-21 to make music together, learn new skills, express themselves, and grow in confidence.
  • Lisa Made It, an artist, designer, illustrator & maker of snazzy dungarees.
  • New Ground Coffee, a coffee roastery working with people leaving the criminal justice system
  • Oxfordshire Recovery College, a shared learning space for people accessing mental health services
  • The Library of Things, a community swap shop for underused but essential items.
  • Monchu, a creative agency with a focus on purpose
  • East Oxford Fabricators, a high-tech maker-space and membership organisation.
  • And many more including artists, weavers, musicians, potters, hacktivists, campaigners and creators.

 

The opening of the first Makespace Oxford, in a building owned by Wadham College and awaiting redevelopment marks an important milestone in the Makespace Oxford project. Over the past five years, a consortium of local community organisations including Transition by Design, Aspire Oxford, the Community Action Groups (CAG) Oxfordshire and the Broken Spoke Bike Co-op have been working to leverage truly affordable working and making space in Oxford, the UK’s least affordable city.

Makespace Oxford demonstrates what’s possible when a land-owning college, a supportive Local Council and a community work together. Makespace Oxford has secured the lease from Wadham College for a minimum of 2-years and is already in talks to broker more leases on empty and underused properties in the city.

Transition by Design Director and Founding Partner of Makespace Oxford CIC Andy Edwards has been involved from the very beginning and is excited for future collaborations with other land owners and developers; “We live in a city where a small number of landowners dominate the property market.” he said, “Land owning colleges have a responsibility to make sure their properties bring life and opportunity to the city and Makespace Oxford is a working example of how a college owned property can enable collaboration, creativity and innovation in Oxford.”

We’ll be throwing a launch party for Makespace Oxford on Saturday July 14th and everyone is welcome. You can stay up to date with party news and other Makespace Oxford updates via our newsletter or on Facebook or Instagram.

 

Still want to be a part of Makespace Oxford? You’re not too late! We are now open for applications to hot desk at Makespace Oxford. You’ll be a key part of our community and have access to co-working desk with wifi, break-out space and bookable meeting room. Plus be in the know about the exciting and broad spectrum of events and training sessions that are already starting to happen in the space.