''You never change things by fighting the existing
reality. To change something, build a new model
that makes the existing model obsolete''
- Buckminster Fuller
This is a story that has its beginnings in Amsterdam where I lived with my family for 7 years. We had a great life there and one of the reasons it was so easy, I think, was because work, my kids’ school and our home were all within a 20-minute bike ride of each other. And we weren’t lucky – this was the norm.
Founder at lifework
Moving back to the UK, during the second Covid lockdown and working from home, like the rest of the population, I started to wonder if I could bring a bit of what we had in Amsterdam, to Somerset. So, I set about creating a space that enables people to work closer to where they live.
This became lifework - a network of co-working communities.
Your local space where life and work are balanced on your terms.
It’s not only about cutting down the time spent commuting, it’s an opportunity for people to spend more time and build connections within their community. To learn more about one another and the space around them. It’s about working towards a better balance for the individuals, for the environment, and for society as a whole.
A home for your community at work.
People at lifework
In the business
Lives in Claverton near Bath, moved from Amsterdam to Bath mid-pandemic (2020) with wife Jo, 2 daughters and 2 dogs.
Life - Love the outdoors, running, cycling, surfing, music, family time.
Work - Founder at lifework. Passionate about helping people and businesses tackle building balance and having a positive impact in what they do.
Grew up in Bath, and has recently moved back to Wiltshire after a long stint in London and a shorter one in New York.
Life - Podcasts (a lot), finding great new food and keeping up with my garden.
Work - Freelance social media.
Started life in South America, Surinam. Moved to the Netherlands, living in the small picturesque city Zwolle with partner and 5 shrimps in their cosy jungle apartment with over 60 plants.
Life - Books, plants, art, exploring nature, photography
Work - Graphic Designer at lifework.
Grew up in the Gloucestershire countryside and moved to London to study and work. Now living in Bristol which is the best of both worlds!
Life - Country walks and eating my way around the best foodie spots in the city.
Work - Founder and interior designer at Studio Rey.
Spent her childhood in Nepal and India and currently lives in the countryside just outside Bath.
Life - Loves being outside, wild swimming (the colder the better), camping and walks with friends and family.
Work - Community Manager at lifework, Mondays – Wednesdays. Also runs her own life coaching and wild swimming businesses.
Moved back to Bath in 2017 after spending 20 years in London studying, working in pharmaceutical publishing and having two babies. Loved London, but Bath is home.
Life - being mum to Eva and Sam and wife to Karim. Loves river swimming in all weathers, running, podcasts and cooking for friends.
Work - a patchwork of being a Community Manager at lifework Thursday and Friday, a PA to a disabled woman in Bath enabling her to live independently, and a breastfeeding peer supporter at the RUH.
Co-founder of lifework and Paul's wife, moved back from Amsterdam mid pandemic with the family.
Life - Keen wild swimmer, loves reading and going to gigs
Work - When she's not working at Lifework helping with marketing and events, Jo works in talent acquisition for Legal & General.
lifework x Hartley Farm partnership
In looking for a partner for lifework, it was important to us to find an organisation who shared our values. We believe remote working offers a huge opportunity for the local community to get to know more about the people and the skills it holds within it and start activating them as a force for good. We were looking for someone equally community-minded and in working with Hartley Farm, we’ve found the perfect partner. There lies an important synergy in how our two organisations operate – striving to build business that balance with the world around them.
Welcome to our first lifework community at Hartley Farm
This membership is suited to those who want their own designated desk at lifework.
At its heart your lifework co-working community is your local space where life and work are balanced on your terms. Somewhere with all the benefits of home but importantly it's not home. At that is why we call it a home for your community at work.
What we’re doing
We can't keep doing what we've always done. Things have to change. The current linear way of living is no longer working for businesses, society or the environment.
There are several different institutions, not-for-profits, foundations, academics, businesses and collaborators out there who are trying to transform the way we live on our planet today.
We want to bring some of these ideas and transformations to local people and communities to help shift towards a more sustainable way of living. We are doing this in a number of ways;
A move towards more circular behaviours and embracing a circular economy. What do we mean by circular? Circularity is based on the principles of designing out waste and pollution, keeping products and materials in use for as long as possible, and regenerating nature. In everyday life this can be done by encouraging repairs, refurbishments, reusing and recycling, and at lifework you will find us using these concepts throughout. The barn that we are located in, although it has been rebuilt, a lot of the old barn has been used as material in the refurbishment.
Other areas of adopting circular principles;
We are renting a lot of our furniture to ensure it gets repaired, refurbished and reused once we have used it.
A lot of what we aren’t renting we are buying from resale platforms to give them another home and extend their life.
And lastly, we will be working to map our energy use, material use and waste to be able to better understand if we or any other business on the Hartley Farm site can use it as a resource.
We are super proud and excited that we have certified as a B Corp! We always had the ambition of becoming a B Corp. The framework pushed us to do better with policies, partnerships, our approach to clients and our focusses for the future. It was a long journey but fast forward to 25th June 2022 and we completed the final step, to sign the B Corporation Agreement. This made us the 4840th B Corp in the world. We're now looking forward to building relationships with other B Corps, learning from them, and continue to challenge what a better impact looks like for ourselves.
Using these frameworks, we are working hard to understand and evolve ways to develop and improve the way our business is run and ensure we are growing the benefits that it bring for workers, environment, communities and customers.
If you want to find out more, or have any questions about the circular economy or about what it means to be a B Corp talk to someone at your lifework community or get in touch via social or email.
We aim to be holding different talks and events to delve a bit deeper into these areas for those that are interested so also keep an eye on our events page.