Woodend Creative Workspace is a flagship project in Scarborough which provides purpose-built managed office accommodation for individuals, companies and enterprises, operating in the digital, media and creative sector. In addition, we offer a range of services to external businesses including conference and meeting spaces, a virtual office service and hot-desk facility.
Woodend is operated and managed by Creative Industries Centre Trust Limited, a not-for-profit company that leases the building from Scarborough Borough Council. The Trust is committed to assisting and supporting the growth of the creative industries sector in the area through the provision of quality workspace and programmes that attract and develop new business and jobs in the sector and support cultural regeneration.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF WOODEND
Woodend has a unique and fascinating history. The original site comprises a Grade ll* listed house, built in 1835 for a civil engineer called George Knowles. The house overlooks the English Heritage-registered Valley Gardens below, and onwards to the sea, in Scarborough’s beautiful South Bay.
The Sitwell family bought the house in 1870. Lady Louisa Sitwell added a splendid double-height conservatory and a few years later her son, Sir George Sitwell, added a new wing with a library in the Jacobean style. There is a ‘folly’ tower in the garden which was probably built with the original house, but Lady Louisa had ovens installed so that it could be used as a pottery.
The house was the birthplace of Edith Sitwell in 1887 and played a strong role in the literary lives of Sir George’s children (Osbert, Edith and Sacheverell) until he eventually disposed of it to Scarborough Council in 1934. The Council operated the Wood End Museum of Natural History in the building up until 2006, when it was adopted for the creative workplace development.
Woodend is home to the Sitwell Society
The re-development of Woodend has completely refurbished the listed buildings and incorporated them into a new and distinctive workspace solution of the highest contemporary architectural quality. In the centre of the building for example lies the former Victorian conservatory which has been converted into a unique contemporary Gallery Space. Two new extensions are intended to complement but not copy the historic building and the designs are clearly distinctive and in keeping with the surrounding architecture.
The main three-story extension lies in the footprint of the former walled garden to the rear of Woodend, and is finished in complementary ashlar stone, with zinc bays and brick screen walls. The new workspace includes a roof of flowering sedum which changes colour with the seasons. A further extension of workspaces has been added in the garden between the house and the reconstructed folly, in the manner of a kitchen garden glasshouse, screened from plantation hill by the original garden wall.
OUR MISSION STATEMENT
To deliver Woodend – and any future projects – as acknowledged centres of both creative and artistic excellence, with consistently high occupancy rates and successful tenants whose long term commitment is to Woodend.
To aim for a yearly increase in both visitor and exhibition numbers and in the revenue derived from outside activities.
For Woodend to continue to play an influential part in the economic development of the region and to provide a learning hub for both the people of Scarborough and for developing businesses in the area.
OUR CORE VALUES
- Enterprise is central to our philosophy. Tenants at Woodend need to have a credible business plan and a sustainable business and we will aim for long term relationships with those who share these values.
- Technology is an integral part of Woodend. We’re committed to providing the fastest possible broadband connection and always using the very latest technology.
- Education is also a part of our philosophy. We offer the chance to be educated, informed and inspired.
- Expertise is always available at Woodend – to help tenants build their businesses and as a resource which organisations throughout the UK can consult.
- Collaboration is something we encourage – particularly within our community of creative tenants.
- Showcasing creativity is one of our favourite activities! Woodend supports exhibitions and displays which are ‘edgy’ and thought provoking.
- People matter to us. Woodend is personal – we remember your name.
- Connections are vital. We’re committed to being an integral part of the local business community and to making sure the area’s creative and artistic voices are heard.
- Heritage is central to Woodend. The history and fabric of the building form a key part of today’s business and exhibition space.
- Environment is respected at Woodend. We encourage our tenants to conserve energy, value finite resour