Entrepreneurs and businesses will soon benefit from new, high quality office space thanks to a £280,000 investment by the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership and Ashfield District Council.
The redevelopment of the existing Ada Lovelace House in Urban Road, Kirkby-in-Ashfield, named for Lord Byron’s daughter Ada Lovelace, a gifted mathematician and collaborator with inventor Charles Babbage on designs for the first general-purpose computer, the Analytical Engine, will create 1,658 sq ft of space for start-up businesses and SMEs with a view to attracting those in the creative and digital industries.
The project will cost £280,000 in total, half of which will come from the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and half from the Council.
D2N2 LEP has an allocation of £192 million in Local Growth Fund monies from central government which it invests in infrastructure to aid economic growth. D2N2 money for the Ada Lovelace House redevelopment was agreed by the D2N2 Infrastructure and Investment Board.
Ada Lovelace House, currently in a state of disrepair, will be transformed into seven high-quality office spaces, with shared communal space and open-plan meeting areas. Ashfield District Council will be looking to use its links with Nottingham Trent University to particularly attract and support creative and digital businesses and new graduate start-ups to the site. Plans for the works have been approved and the refurbishment could be completed as early as spring of this year.
David Ralph, chief executive of the D2N2 LEP, said: “It is important that all parts of Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire are recognised for the contribution they make to the D2N2 economy. There is a clear appetite for small business space in Ashfield and the Ada Lovelace House redevelopment will be a means to help meet that need”.
Councillor Don Davis, portfolio holder for regeneration at Ashfield District Council, added: “The redevelopment of Ada Lovelace House represents a fantastic addition to Kirkby town centre and to the Ashfield District as a whole. The high-quality office space resulting from this project will greatly help to encourage new business to locate right in the heart of the town – creating jobs and boosting the economy for the people of Kirkby and Ashfield”.