I hoped this day would never come - loosing my workshop.

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doctor Bob

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in 2004 my neighbouring commercial unit caught fire and took us out as well, lost everything. At the time it was devastating and created many nightmares, I didn't sleep for a month and we lost in excess of £35000 due under insured.
The positives to come out of it were
1/ we got through it
2/ we moved to brand new premises
3/ the partnership survived and is still very strong
4/ more space (higher rent but worth it)
5/ better lay out
6/ more flexible space and the ability to take on more connected space

looking back we ended up in a better place overall, both in terms of premises and as a business, at the time you don't realise that.

You could be in a worse position.
 
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giantbeat

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I guess theres more money in redevelopment and classy offices. Certainly the rent will be higher!

Hope u both get on ok. Large shipping containers are a bit tight, but can work.

@giantbeat , do you need a storefront as such?
Have to have a showroom area, my current one is 300sqft before the workshop, but does not have to be a storefront as such, we only meet clients by appointment
 
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giantbeat

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I went through the same ten years ago. Greedy landlord. No where to locate to. I had to go into voluntary liquidation. The machinery was not wanted here. It all went to third world countries. UK doesn't want industry, it thinks it can get along fine with admin and offices and internet. All the people watch tube vids now and think they are skilled. HOWEVER don't despair. Go really small and wfh just like everyone else. Make loads of noise in your garden, lorries turning up every week delivering and collecting. It's great fun and you'll earn more money. I have never been happier or had more money. Be part of the home revolution .....until it all goes to rats!
I wish I could, I started in a borrowed garage, but I have no way to reduce my setup and do what I do to a domestic setting, it’s far too industrial now.

you are right, industry just isn’t wanted
 

Keith 66

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Its happened to me twice. First time i had a 1500 sqft unit on a farm, Well it started as a cowshed on the side of a barn, but it was cheap, served me well for 15 years then the council caught up with us & announced we would be charged business rates. At that point in time we had just had a child & as my wife earnt more than me we decided to swop roles & i did the househusband thing. Business was suffering anyway so i pulled the plug on the place and sold or scrapped everything.
3 years later the rates bills came in backdated to a month after i handed the keys back, so a result really.
Second time 12 years later i rented a remote & derelict scout hut from the council for a one off prototype job. I took it on with a one year licence with option to go for a lease at end of that year. The job went well, i got my mojo back & worked really hard, Specialised part of my previous trade & started to go really well, We started negotiating for the ten year lease and the rent they offered was fair. At last minute a council solicitor decided to up the rent demand to 5x higher & they wouldnt budge. I pulled the plug & had a big bonfire as the district valuer was measuring up for business rates!
I searched & searched for a new place but there was literally nothing affordable, rents down here were / are astronomical & it simply wasnt viable to continue. So a good little business with several spin off opportunities for others got killed off. Note in both instances i never went bust & never owed anyone a penny. I suppose thats something to be proud off at least!
I now work from home. Its smaller & you have to be careful about noise but theres nobody taking all the money of you before you get it.
 

cerro

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A friend of mine owned a small industrial estate, He bought it off Brooks motors its on the A635 just up from the Chestnut tree at Barugh green he makes wood huts or rather his children do now. You would get one there and its next to the M1 strait up to Wakefield.
 

shed9

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Have a word with local businesses with large-ish premises. I've known quite a few in recent years sub-let parts of their storage / warehousing / manufacture space to smaller businesses. It's a bit of an initial nightmare in the paperwork but often there is some symbiosis to it in access to each others services, extra security, more traffic in the area, etc.

I know several companies where this has worked really well. Maybe approach your local Chamber of Commerce to raise this as a concern. You will not be the only one in this position, they will already be aware of that and they have access to those businesses that may be able to help. It would help raise their profile as well.

Worth exploring at the very least.
 

doctor Bob

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I'll be controversial.
If you need business premises, but the rents are too high then one question to be asked is, are the rents too high or is the business not as profitable or as good as it needs to be.
Everyone can make a profit with no overheads.

That's not having a pop at the OP, just a general question which needs to be looked at by all businesses.
 

giantbeat

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A friend of mine owned a small industrial estate, He bought it off Brooks motors its on the A635 just up from the Chestnut tree at Barugh green he makes wood huts or rather his children do now. You would get one there and its next to the M1 strait up to Wakefield.
yes i mentiuoned earler there are loads of units available in south yorkshire, round barnsley etc... but its not viable for me or the rest of our team to travel there each day
 

giantbeat

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Have a word with local businesses with large-ish premises. I've known quite a few in recent years sub-let parts of their storage / warehousing / manufacture space to smaller businesses. It's a bit of an initial nightmare in the paperwork but often there is some symbiosis to it in access to each others services, extra security, more traffic in the area, etc.

I know several companies where this has worked really well. Maybe approach your local Chamber of Commerce to raise this as a concern. You will not be the only one in this position, they will already be aware of that and they have access to those businesses that may be able to help. It would help raise their profile as well.

Worth exploring at the very least.
thats my current task im working on the places that have big old mill buildings & industrial parts to see if they have unused space, its actually how i got my current place & the studio i rent, its just a very long winded process.

good shout on the chamber of commerce.
 

shed9

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thats my current task im working on the places that have big old mill buildings & industrial parts to see if they have unused space, its actually how i got my current place & the studio i rent, its just a very long winded process.

good shout on the chamber of commerce.
If your business is music orientated and you are customer facing have you thought about approaching the music shops in your area? It's possible one of them has space and could benefit from having actual manufacture of instruments added to their brand / marketing. Also you could possibly benefit from each others footfall and customers. The noise aspect has already been addressed by the very nature of their business.

One of those symbiotic moments.
 

giantbeat

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If your business is music orientated and you are customer facing have you thought about approaching the music shops in your area? It's possible one of them has space and could benefit from having actual manufacture of instruments added to their brand / marketing. Also you could possibly benefit from each others footfall and customers. The noise aspect has already been addressed by the very nature of their business.

One of those symbiotic moments.


we are already kind of doing that here... as music shops are dying out, gone are the days of music shops being in every town, my business partner & the staff here are all exlocal music shop owners (leeds bradford etc )... when their business's died with the high street they set up with me here, so we have an internal mail order operation, an appointment only show room/shop & then me in the back manufacturing & repairing & discounting the last 2 years, its thriving.
 

mr rusty

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Have to have a showroom area, my current one is 300sqft before the workshop, but does not have to be a storefront as such, we only meet clients by appointment

If you only meet clients by appointment could you separate the showroom location from production?
 

giantbeat

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Its happened to me twice. First time i had a 1500 sqft unit on a farm, Well it started as a cowshed on the side of a barn, but it was cheap, served me well for 15 years then the council caught up with us & announced we would be charged business rates. At that point in time we had just had a child & as my wife earnt more than me we decided to swop roles & i did the househusband thing. Business was suffering anyway so i pulled the plug on the place and sold or scrapped everything.
3 years later the rates bills came in backdated to a month after i handed the keys back, so a result really.
Second time 12 years later i rented a remote & derelict scout hut from the council for a one off prototype job. I took it on with a one year licence with option to go for a lease at end of that year. The job went well, i got my mojo back & worked really hard, Specialised part of my previous trade & started to go really well, We started negotiating for the ten year lease and the rent they offered was fair. At last minute a council solicitor decided to up the rent demand to 5x higher & they wouldnt budge. I pulled the plug & had a big bonfire as the district valuer was measuring up for business rates!
I searched & searched for a new place but there was literally nothing affordable, rents down here were / are astronomical & it simply wasnt viable to continue. So a good little business with several spin off opportunities for others got killed off. Note in both instances i never went bust & never owed anyone a penny. I suppose thats something to be proud off at least!
I now work from home. Its smaller & you have to be careful about noise but theres nobody taking all the money of you before you get it.


man that sucks, id love to work from home, but it just not viable with what i do, it would never work... far too many industrial processes to making drums.

lots of businesses seem to die out due to sudden rent jumps, my business partner at one time had one of the oldest, biggest & most respected music shops in the country, until the landlord doubled the rate & killed the business... its now a huge costa coffee
 

Richard_C

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I don't know Wakefield very well, but the position close the A1/M62/M1 makes it good for access and distribution so I can see why property is hard to come by.

Economic delevlopment seems to focus on Wakefield First. I had a quick look at their website and under managed workspace you have to scroll a a long way down to find the only non-office space, in South Kirkby which might be too far for you. It does say they have 'creative industries' and you fit that definition. Might be good to give them a call though, they might have contacts.


You have a successful business which you want to continue, I wonder if you said you had a succesful business which you want to expand (whether you do or not) you might be able to get some support and advice from them?

Wakefield has some railway junctiosn etc., I wonder if network rail have anything to rent? Not looked but here is their website. Demonstrating drums under a railway arch - acoustics to die for (or of?).


I can see that 'drums' might put some landlords off, wholly irrational but they might see you as some drug-crazed havy metal rocker. But do you make drums? Maybe you make and restore "Orchestral Percussion and drums". A whole lot more respectable sounding, and who knows you might get some new business. Now, you aren't going to rush out and start making tuned percussion like xylophones and marimbas, and certainly not Timpani, but a lot of "orchestral percussion" is essentially drums. OK, not kits, although some repertoire does need a kit, but snares, toms, field drums and so on. Contemporary percussion ensembles play all sorts. Just one example of orchestral kit, this at the economy end.


So - maybe a potential landlord would be happy to house a business which makes and restores high quality orchestral percussion and drums, while you get on making and selling .... drums. You might even get some new business.
 

giantbeat

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As above, perhaps the bad keyword is "drums".
Why not say you manufacture and repair musical instruments ?
You won't be lying, and it sounds much quieter.
thats actually what we do say.

can't hide that we deal in drums & percussion though, not once they ask for the business name & look us up on the net.
 

giantbeat

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I don't know Wakefield very well, but the position close the A1/M62/M1 makes it good for access and distribution so I can see why property is hard to come by.

Economic delevlopment seems to focus on Wakefield First. I had a quick look at their website and under managed workspace you have to scroll a a long way down to find the only non-office space, in South Kirkby which might be too far for you. It does say they have 'creative industries' and you fit that definition. Might be good to give them a call though, they might have contacts.


You have a successful business which you want to continue, I wonder if you said you had a succesful business which you want to expand (whether you do or not) you might be able to get some support and advice from them?

Wakefield has some railway junctiosn etc., I wonder if network rail have anything to rent? Not looked but here is their website. Demonstrating drums under a railway arch - acoustics to die for (or of?).


I can see that 'drums' might put some landlords off, wholly irrational but they might see you as some drug-crazed havy metal rocker. But do you make drums? Maybe you make and restore "Orchestral Percussion and drums". A whole lot more respectable sounding, and who knows you might get some new business. Now, you aren't going to rush out and start making tuned percussion like xylophones and marimbas, and certainly not Timpani, but a lot of "orchestral percussion" is essentially drums. OK, not kits, although some repertoire does need a kit, but snares, toms, field drums and so on. Contemporary percussion ensembles play all sorts. Just one example of orchestral kit, this at the economy end.


So - maybe a potential landlord would be happy to house a business which makes and restores high quality orchestral percussion and drums, while you get on making and selling .... drums. You might even get some new business.
yes i know who wakefield first are, they are also known as the council... as previously put, we are in touch & they can offer us nothing other than office space.

i already deal in orchestral drums, the business is "drums & percussion"

im not looking for you guys to solve the issue, you can't & you are not suggesting any avenues we have not explored between the crew here.
 

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