The 1 Mill Street Yearbook 2022
By Charlotte Wilson, Copy Chops Ltd
As this year draws to a close it’s time to celebrate the class of 2022 at 1MS. And what a year it’s been.
I write this in a post-Christmas-party haze, still high from the thumping feel-good sounds of The Chris Wilkinson Band and full of the delicious treats laid out in abundance from the 1MS kitchen. As Dickens would say, it was the best of times, it was the…well simply just the best. But, to move forward to 2023, first we must go back…
On a chilly January morning at the start of 2022 Nigel, Dessie and the team sat down together to decide on what would make this year at 1 Mill Street one to remember – and boy did they deliver.
First on the agenda was opening up the warm embrace of Leamington’s premier coworking space to some friendly, furry companions. That’s right, as of Jan 2022 1MS officially became a dog-friendly space. Man’s best friend was allowed over the threshold and into the hub of activity at Mill Street. No more would people have to leave their lovable canines at home and pooches were welcomed with open arms into the coffeehouse and bar. It’s safe to say, it’s been a big hit.
Next came the international month of luuurve and what better way to mark it than with a little bit of magic. A surprise appearance from Bradford’s finest export, Dynamo had 1MS abuzz thanks to his mind-bending tricks and illusions – leaving members speechless and in awe. Proving that magic really is worth believing in.
March is the month we celebrate women, and with the marking of international Women’s Day, 1 Mill Street hosted the launch of its first female-led networking event in the form of The Bean Over forty women joined, which was not only made up of 1MS members but also guests from Leamington’s wider community. All coming together for a women+ focused coffee club meeting that aims to create a safe, innovative space for women in the area. And if you missed it? You can quell your FOMO by joining these fearless females on the first Tuesday of every month right here at 1MS.
March got even busier with the arrival of the Leamington Business Awards which were hosted in Mill Street’s extensive event’s space. Local entrepreneurs, business leaders and innovators gathered for a night of celebration that recognised the achievements of some of Leamington’s brightest and rising stars. Hat’s off to the winners and nominees – including 1MS who were nominated for Business of the Year – it was quite an extraordinary evening.
It’s a truth universally acknowledged that successful, hardworking business aficionados must be in want of some no-nonsense business advice, right? Which is why in April 1MS launched the The Mill Street exchange, a free, candid resource that allows local business to find the right space, talent, and finance to take their business to the next level. Open to anyone in the area, you can visit the exchange every Thursday from 10am-4pm in the coffeehouse – no appointment necessary, just drop in. Pretty cool huh.
If there’s one thing you can rely on Mill Street for it’s to celebrate the success of its members and network. That’s why in April 2022 Winning On Your Doorstep II returned with resounding success. Speaking to a sell-out crowd of 130, were straight-talking life coach Holly Matthews, premiership footballer and leading pod-caster Ben Foster and Butlin’s CEO John Pickup. Compered by 1MS favourite of Purple Monster fame Alan Heap, the panel sat down to discuss what it takes to succeed, why local community is so important in driving innovation and the real impact of Covid on business growth. As you can imagine, it was one hell of an evening.
By summertime it was time to welcome Leamington Business Buzz into the fold, where local businesses, entrepreneurs and blue-sky thinkers joined to forces to meet, chat, and find new ways to move their projects forward. Always a sell-out event taking place on the first Friday of every month, Leamington Business Buzz became a true highlight of the 1MS 2022 calendar.
Now, 1 Mill Street wouldn’t be the coworking space it is today without a tip of the hat to International Coworking Day. Taking place in August 2022 1MS marked the occasion by running a competition to win a free day pass to the space – it’s safe to say that demand was high. Further proof that 2022 really was a year to celebrate the joy, and exponential benefits, of productive coworking!
By November it was time to do the charitable thing and support a great endeavour – Children in Need. A cause close to so many hearts, the 1MS team showed up and showed out, donning their Pudsey ears, and working overtime to ensure the coffeehouse raised an impressive £1242.06 – an amount matched by Mill Street founders Nigel and Dessie. Ensuring that a little bit of good was spread beyond the confines of the coworking powerhouse and making everyone feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
For final month of the year, 2022 wouldn’t have been complete without the Christmas Party to end all Christmas parties. Think Office Christmas Party mixed with Jay Gatsby’s finest moments. There was live music, Christmas bangers, more festive delights than you could shake a bowl full of jelly at AND a paparazzo on hand to capture all the sequins, showboating and shenanigans of members, friends, and family. Needless to say, there were more than a few sore heads the next day – and a lot of awesome memories made.
All in all, 2022 at 1 Mill Street has been a wild ride, from free fizz Fridays to Peak Masterclasses, volleyball in the park to award-winning podcasts, first-class baked goods and a never-ending supply of support and advice, it’s easy to see why being part of the 1MS community really is all it’s cracked up to be.
Thanks to everyone who’s been part of the story so far and for your support in 2022, we look forward to what 2023 will bring.
Now, go ahead and enjoy the festivities!
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