A Tyneside charity which has supported the North East voluntary sector for more than 90 years has moved into a new base.
Connected Voice, which gives advice and support to organisations and individuals across the region, has relocated its head office to One Strawberry Lane in Gallowgate, Newcastle, one of the first ‘smart office’ spaces to be created in the city.
Built by Home Group, which has relocated its head office from Gosforth into One Strawberry Lane, the £30m development has six floors of co-working space for hire, with a focus on community and diversity, with features including gender neutral toilets, living walls and a prayer room.
Read more: North East’s £30m ‘smartest office’ opens in Newcastle city centre
Lisa Goodwin, chief executive of Connected Voice, said: “This is a great place for us to be based, both for our staff and for our member organisations. It feels good to come into work and into a fully inclusive space which we can be confident will meet the needs of anyone coming to visit. One Strawberry Lane enables voluntary and community organisations to access excellent informal meeting space, innovation space and gives us a home for our extensive events and training programme. It’s very exciting to have such a space in the city centre and we are delighted to call this our new home as we look to the future.
“We have been around for over 90 years, we pre-date the NHS and statutory social services and have worked hard to tackle many inequalities during that time. The voluntary sector really began to flourish in the post war period, and we have been at the heart of developing many organisations that are thriving to this day. The support that the voluntary and community sector provides is needed more than ever these days – and it is great to have an office base which supports workplace wellbeing.
“We support people and organisations to make a difference, and over the years we have evolved from setting up community services ourselves to enabling local organisations and people to do it. Our focus now is on empowerment.
“Being based here is really important in our ongoing development, it’s a space that supports a range of ways of working where our staff and members have the space to think, meet and innovate. We have enjoyed a very good relationship with Home Group throughout and are very grateful they have created such a brilliant development.”
Sam Watts, real estate solicitor at law firm Sintons, acted for Connected Voice in acquiring their new premises. He added: “One Strawberry Lane is a unique office space in Newcastle, having been created specifically to meet the needs of post-pandemic ways of working.
“It also recognises the requirements of small businesses and third sector organisations in offering ad-hoc meeting and working space, while also showing a commitment to diversity, inclusivity and sustainability. This truly is a workspace for modern, progressive businesses, and ideal for a forward-thinking organisation like Connected Voice.”
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