Ludgate's tenants welcomed with local firms' goodie bags

July 6th, 2016 11:55 AM

By Southern Star Team

Ludgate staff, supporters and new tenants at the get-together evening held recently at Ireland's first rural digital hub.

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BUSINESSES locating in the new digital hub in Skibbereen are receiving ‘goodie bags’ with offers and vouchers from local companies.

Many of Skibbereen’s local businesses have joined forces with the Ludgate Hub to welcome the new tenants to Skibbereen and to showcase what the area has to offer. It was ‘an unexpected treat’ said web developer Fin Pankhurst, who added that it was great to know that local businesses supported the Ludgate initiative. 

The current tenants are the first wave of co-workers in a space that will eventually be home to 80 long-term residents.

Ludgate recently hosted a small evening event at the hub for the tenants and local businesses to mingle and get to know each another. Carina Collins of said the meet-and-greet was a great idea. ‘It got the town and the Ludgate people connected in a relaxed manner. Hopefully, it will lead to connections that will help all our business ventures,’ she said.

Designer Orlagh O’Brien of also attended the event and felt ‘a genuine and deep welcome’ from Skibbereen people. ‘I’ll definitely be using all the coffee vouchers,’ she said. ‘It’s already getting me to think about going into some places I wasn’t aware of. I’ve set up a kayaking adventure with another friend new to the area, and when the time comes to buy some gifts, I’ll consider shopping in Skibbereen rather than defaulting to Cork or Amazon out of habit.’

The goodie bags offer tenants anything from 10% to 30% off products and local services, a free ‘welcome to town’ pint, free coffees and lite bites, and free car washes and beauty treatments.

Jessie Kennedy of The Coffee Shop in Union Hall, was one of the business people who contributed to the idea. ‘Although we run our café business a few minutes’ drive from Skibbereen, in Union Hall, we live in Skibbereen with our family, and feel very strongly about participating in the Ludgate tenant offers. Ludgate is now an exciting hub in Skibbereen, and is making it possible for business people from all over the world to stay in West Cork for longer than they could have before, and to work from here.’

She said that what she admires most about Ludgate is the ‘community-minded spirit’ of the centre, ‘and the fact that it is inclusive of everyone, from students and artists, to musicians and successful IT entrepreneurs’.

‘I, for one, am very proud to operate a business in the same locality as Ludgate,’ Jessie added, ‘and look forward to welcoming many new faces over the coming years as a result of this brilliant initiative.’

Ludgate offers a mix of monthly, co-working and daily hot desks, as well as two high-tech meeting rooms and a workshop training space, aiming to attract innovative start-ups and companies from all over the world to use its 24/7 facility.

Ludgate community manager Gillean Guy said the hub is open to all types of digitally enabled user.  ‘There are three simple ways to use the hub – bring a laptop and book a desk for the day; take a fixed desk from €240 a month, or book a high-tech Google Hangout meeting room, equipped with interactive touch screens, to accommodate 10-50 people.’

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