Time for another update on what’s been happening!

We’ve got a specification for fire detection in the space, and a good quote from an approved contractor. It’s a bit expensive, but fire detection is likely to be a necessary thing for the lease. Interestingly, it’s not actually a specified requirement for our insurance. The detection we fit will link up with the overall building fire alarm, so that the sounders in Makespace go off if another part is on fire, and vice versa.

I’ve had some help from one of the computer officers who used to run networks for the IfM in the space, and now have a slightly better idea of where all the various cables run to…  still waiting to work out whether we might be able to use the network, though.

Makespace is now registered with the information commissioner so we can responsibly handle information about members and so on.

There’s been some more discussion around how we’ll handle the registered use of the space from a planning point of view, and another meeting is scheduled next week to finalise the plan for this.

Our insurance policy is pretty much ready to go. We have plenty of cover for public liability and also cover for contents, business interruption, and employer liability (which will cover volunteers and contractors). The use of electronic access control instead of mechanical locks is now approved too. Thanks to S-Tech for being so helpful with this!

As a break from all this admin, Laura went to Develop3D Live at Warwick, which was a really interesting day talking about all kinds of 3D design and manufacture. It was a good chance to see the latest in 3D printers, reverse engineering kit, and milling machinery too – everything from serious printers which can matrix soft and hard substrates to create different textures through the artefact you are printing, to Kinect-based 3D scanners. Plenty of ideas for kit we might invest in later, and also some useful quotes and leads for second hand and refurbished kit.

We’ve been working on the membership agreement and website privacy policy with our friendly solicitor at Taylor Vinters, and had a good discussion about this in our board meeting earlier this week. Hopefully getting towards a final draft of a membership agreement, which is the legal bit; the rules of membership will be separate. The privacy policy will help to get our Paypal account set up again 🙂

We’re refreshing our budget at the moment too, and with the last few bits of work being confirmed should soon have a clearer picture of how our cashflow is going to look in the next month or two.

We’ve had great conversations with the lovely people from DoESLiverpool and MadLab about their experiences setting up spaces of various kinds, and are looking forward to the first UK FabLab Network event in Manchester in early May where we’ll meet existing and potential FabLabs. Laura will be speaking about getting a space like Makespace set up at the Makers Guild at the V&A on 4th May. We’re also starting to get interesting approaches about potential events and hacks for when we launch or soon after – and suggestions for funding for these, which is exciting (but a lower priority than getting the space open!)

So, what are we still waiting on? Clarity over where the water comes into the space so we can get a quote for a kitchenette; some sense of where the electricity connections run to, and whether we’ll get a meter or not; an estimate of how much our share of the university buildings insurance is going to cost; and finally, we’re still waiting on the lease draft. The University’s legal team had hoped to get this to us before Easter but unfortunately didn’t quite manage it despite repeated reminders, and still waiting this week too – I will keep chasing them…


Separately, we’ve been approached by a TV production company who are looking for British inventors – details below if you’re interested.


Objective Productions, the makers of ‘The Cube’ (ITV) and ‘Derren Brown’ (C4) are looking for British inventors to take part in a major new Sky series.

If your invention is struggling to get off the ground, has been languishing at the back of your shed or you feel like you’ve hit a brick wall in how far you can take it, we want to hear from you! We want to give those amazing inventions the platform they so rightfully need. This series is a call to arms for inventors across the land, to inspire innovators to stand up and bring their work to life. We want Britain to get inventing.

If you have an invention that you want the public to know about, get in touch with us at 020 7202 2390 or inventions@objectiveproductions.com

Friday afternoon update

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