Council invests £1.45m into Europe’s largest climate-friendly workspace

A council has invested £1.45million into the company behind Europe’s largest climate-friendly workspace.

Sustainable Ventures, a company which provides advice and financial support to green technology businesses, received the funding from Lambeth council’s Future Workspace Fund. 

The cash injection underpinned the development of a 40,000 sq ft shared workspace at County Hall, opposite the Houses of Parliament.

The workspace hosts more than 100 climate-focused organisations – including Earthshot Prize 2023 finalist ENSO, which makes electric vehicle car tyres.   

Waste beetroot and orange peel bar facade beneath plants in the workspace which was opened in July, 2023 (Picture: Sustainable Ventures)

The new workspace has been created using sustainable materials, including the use of lampshades made from discarded coffee cups, panels made from waste beetroot and orange peel and felt phone booths made from reengineered flight attendant uniforms .

Having only opened in July 2023, the workspace at County Hall is already at 97 per cent capacity. Sustainable Ventures said the workspace has now become the largest group of climate organisations working under one roof in Europe.

The five-floor building was visited by the Prince of Wales, in October last year, who called it “amazing”.

Felt phone booths made from reengineered flight attendant uniforms (Picture: Sustainable Ventures)

Lambeth also helps Sustainable Ventures to run support programmes for businesses in the borough through its Economic Resilience Fund. 

One of these programmes, the Innovation Challenge connects businesses in the borough – including the National Theatre and Kings College Hospital – with members of Sustainable Ventures who support the companies on issues like waste.

Dr Jacqui Dyer, Lambeth councillor, said: “The partnership between Lambeth council and Sustainable Ventures has created lots of opportunities in the borough and really highlights Lambeth’s commitment to fostering climate tech innovation and sustainable solutions. 

Original, exposed wall makes up part of the new facility which has been created using sustainable materials (Picture: Sustainable Ventures)

“Through our support we greatly increase the opportunity for growth of these startups – and as a result bring more investment and job opportunities into the borough.”

Andrew Wordsworth, Managing Partner at Sustainable Ventures, is now urging other London council’s to follow Lambeth’s lead and invest in green start-ups

The council has set itself several goals as it aims to become a ‘net zero compatible’ organisation by 2030. This includes 100 per cent of the energy consumed by council-owned and operated buildings to be generated from renewable sources.

Pictured top: The Prince of Wales and Andrew Wordsworth, Managing Partner, visiting the facility in October last year (Picture: Sustainable Ventures)

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