As some of you may know, I've been organising coworking days in Horsham for the last 18 months. A coworking day is where freelancers, or anyone who works from a home office, can get together and work alongside other people in a friendly, collaborative environment. It's a great way of meeting other people and breaking away from your normal routine.
We meet every two weeks above an Italian restaurant (or, previously, above a coffee shop) and the days attract between 4 and 12 people each time. I've really enjoyed the days and it's been great to meet, chat and work alongside others. However, I'm now getting to the stage where I'm actively thinking about "the next step" - or whether there needs to be a next step at all!
In this case, the next step would probably be a permanent venue (office space) for coworking in Horsham. I've seen how another Sussex group, Worthing Coworking, grew from a small weekly meet-up above a restaurant/bar into their own space in an office in Worthing - and also heard about some of the challenges that the Worthing group have overcome.... and the challenges ahead.
I know one thing for sure, the financial implications and responsibility of a permanent space are not things I want to take lightly. And I need to consider any knock-on effects of managing a coworking space on my CVW Web Design work.
So, a permanent coworking space in Horsham is a big jump from two days coworking every month. Mind you, I'm not averse to jumping when I want to.
Overall, my thinking at the moment is that I would need 3-4 other people who want, and are prepared to commit to, a permanent space from the outset. With other people, or another company, sharing some of the risks and the work, and given time to develop the space, I think a Horsham coworking venue would work and could become a great community.
I guess this article is part of my thinking process and I'm still in that mode. No decisions have been made yet. I'm sure I will blather on about this again when I've decided where next for Horsham Coworking!