Pop-up cafes and gong bath meditation – welcome inside the office space of tomorrow
PUBLISHED: 12:46 19 February 2019
The way people work is in constant flux – so is this the future of the office in Norwich?
Office space used to be functional and boring. But Sarah Daniels and Richard Mills are hoping to re-invent serviced offices after a £500,000 investment.
And it’s not all about offering meeting rooms for men and women in suits.
People already using No 8 Thorpe Road include those holding yoga sessions, a pop up restaurant and an alternative therapist offering a ‘gong bath’ meditation – the use of ‘gong’ sounds to aid healing – session.
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The couple bought the five storey building opposite the railway station in 2014 after they themselves couldn’t find adequate office space to hold their own training sessions and meetings for the health and safety consultancy they run, the Red Cat Partnership Ltd.
“We couldn’t find the kind of office space we were looking for, a creative space, and then we found No 8 Thorpe Road which is right opposite the railway station so ideal for any firms organising a meeting with people who need to come from outside Norwich. They can come on the train and they’re here in seconds,” Sarah said.
They set about transforming the space, using every floor and corner to maximise the potential. So, from the basement right to the top floor under the eaves, you’ve got rooms of all shapes and sizes.
The basement has a fully equipped service kitchen where staff bake their own bread and make business lunches.
There are two rooms on this floor, imaginatively all named incorporating the number 8; so ‘Mini 8’, for hot desking and ‘Smaller 8’ which is large enough for a yoga session and which has a four metre writing wall.
On the next floor up is the ‘Rehydrate’ room where people can enjoy break-out time and enjoy refreshments. In total there are five meeting rooms over five floors with four permanent offices rented on a regular basis by businesses.
But it doesn’t end there. The business strives for energy efficiency and has currently got a carbon neutral silver charter earned from improving the insulation, recycling and have just been granted permission for solar panels to be put on the roof. They were finalists in the EDP Business Awards in the Environment and Sustainability category.