A warehouse container village which provides innovative workspaces for startups and creative businesses in Birkenhead has expanded.
Located next to the waterfront and the historic Birkenhead Priory, Start-Yard used Town Deal investment to double the space for businesses by introducing 10 new state-of-the-art work pods, as well as a new meeting room called Pow Wow and a café bar called ME+NU.
The building, which was previously used by Cammell Laird as a motor transport depot, also now boasts photography/podcast studios and a green room for video production, to cater to the evolving digital needs of modern businesses.
Founder of Start-Yard Chris Lee said, “Recent studies suggest over 60% of new businesses fail in the first three years and we think it would be great if Wirral could help switch that to 60% succeeding.
“We want to be one of the catalysts of the regeneration of Birkenhead and take away some of the barriers of starting or growing a business.
“Without the funding, we would not be where we are now – helping to contribute to Birkenhead’s renaissance. We would like to attract new companies into the area and help keep local talent, as well as inspiring kids who think they could be entrepreneurs and start their own business.”
One business that is thriving at Start-Yard is Scenegraph Studios. Director David Tully said, “We moved to Start-Yard for multiple reasons, including location and cost. The location is great as it is close to train, tunnel, and motorways and allows us quick access to Liverpool. The cost is a third of similar places in Liverpool – if it was more expensive, we would not have been able to grow as we have.”
The marketing company, which specialises in immersive technology, has grown from a two-person business to four since its move to Start-Yard, helping create jobs for talented local people. The business also outsources to local 3D artists and contractors, keeping money in Wirral and Merseyside.
David continued, “Start-Yard is the place for tech and collaboration… as well as being a pretty chill place to work and thrive!”
Chair of Wirral Council’s Economy, Regeneration and Housing Committee, Councillor Tony Jones, said, “There are a lot of exciting initiatives happening in Birkenhead and the Left Bank, which are helping transform the area. It’s wonderful to see such vibrancy and Start-Yard is the perfect base for small businesses to be part of the town’s resurgence.”
The refurbishment is just one of a series of exciting projects in Birkenhead after Wirral Council secured £25 million from the Government’s Town Deal Fund. Other projects include the Transport Shed, Joy Project, The Waterfront Animation & Connectivity Project, Education Engagement Network, Egerton House, Future Yard, Sustainability Central and The Argyle Street Creative Hub.
Main image: Scenegraph Studios’ Director David Tully