IPSE is delighted to announce that DeskLodge in Bristol, Work.Life in London and Manchester’s Ziferblat, Edge Street have been shortlisted for the inaugural Co-working Space of the Year Award.
Freelancing can be an isolating career choice, therefore the need to create a tight-knit and supportive community is imperative. Co-working spaces bring freelancers together and facilitate collaboration, networking and creativity in a diverse and stimulating environment.
The three venues will be judged against a number of criteria including the standard of their facilities and the support and promotion they give local freelancers. The winner will be announced at an awards ceremony which will bring down the curtain on National Freelancers Day 2017.
In a bid to make NFD the biggest and most accessible yet, Ziferblat and Desklodge will host satellite events to support the main event in London.
Situated in the heart of Bristol, DeskLodge provides a space for users to work on an ad-hoc, flexible basis with the option of monthly or pay-as-you-work membership. DeskLodge is home to a diverse range of professions and accommodates fixed desks, hot desks, private offices and meeting rooms. The venue hosts regular events and members receive discount for many local business, cafes, restaurants, gyms and other services.
Jamie Ellis, DeskLodge centre manager, said: “At DeskLodge we want to create a better way of working. We’ve watched start-ups grow, freelancers gain new job opportunities, different companies work together and great people enjoying our space which gives them flexibility and freedom. Being entered into the IPSE Co-working space of the Year gives us a chance to showcase what we do, and demonstrate the great things and support we are providing for freelancers and the self-employed.”
Work.Life operate a portfolio of co-working spaces in London, with over 700 members across three venues in Bermondsey, Camden and London Fields. Work.Life offer ‘Flex’ membership, designed specifically with the self-employed in mind, which is a self-styled combination of “Uber and an Oyster card”. Work.Life aims to create a personal and stimulating atmosphere and believe in the power of face-to-face collaborations and tight-knit communities. 
David Kosky, Work.Life co-founder, commented: “Work.Life offers intimate spaces for happy work days! We really ‘get’ the future of work, and the self-employed play a big role in this. Our ‘Flex’ Membership enables super-flexible working, so members simply tap in when they arrive and tap out when they leave, only paying for the time that they're with us. Being shortlisted for this award is an honour and a great reassurance that we’re achieving what we set out to do.”
Ziferblat is an all-inclusive, eight-pence-per-minute co-working space, in the heart of Manchester’s thriving Northern Quarter. It is predicated on ultimate flexibility and includes a four-hour cap, after which guests can stay and use the facilities at no extra cost. Ziferblat offers a community-centred, “home away from home” which attracts over 10,000 guests every month. The venue hosts many events, including ‘Freelance Friday’, a weekly meetup for freelancers, new and established, to network, socialise and collaborate.
Ben Davies, Ziferblat’s head of marketing, added: “We are delighted to be shortlisted for Co-working Space of the Year. We’re so proud of our team of dedicated hosts who have made it all possible. Manchester’s response to our alternative pay-per-minute model has been overwhelming. The community we’ve grown together is something really special and it continues to evolve. Special thanks to Katy Carlisle who manages one of our key events Freelance Friday, this regular event has been a crucial entry point for guests who are new to freelancing or Ziferblat!"