THE new-look Carriage Works has secured its first tennant.

the historic building, which is part of the old railway works, has been partly refurbished as plans to turn it into a business hub take shape.

The first space to be transformed will be home to a number of businesses operating in a mostly open plan co-working space, not dissimilar from the hot desking facilities and serviced offices popular with start-ups and small firms.

The facility will include 200 work spaces and a number of meeting rooms.

The project is being overseen by the council’s development arm, Forward Swindon. Work on the first 7,000sq ft is expected to be finished in the coming weeks with tennants likely to begin taking up office space in early 2018. A further 6,000sq ft will be completed by next spring.

Until now Forward Swindon had reported high levels of interest in the new facility but that had not translated into any confirmed deals.

Yesterday, it confirmed that Bravedog, a branding and design agency, had become the first organisation to sign on the dotted line.

Bravedog’s managing director Nick Prescott said his company was looking forward to being part of the new development.

“We are delighted to be moving to our new home at the Carriage Works,” he said.

“It’s an amazing building that forges tonnes of heritage with an ultra-smart 21st century environment.

“It’s an ideal space for us that encourages collaboration and promotes a sense of community – we can’t wait to move in.

“Bravedog is committed to helping Forward Swindon to deliver their vision for the Carriage Works to become the centre of tech, creative and innovation in the area.”

Swindon Borough Council will own the business centre but it will not manage it.

An operator is due to be appointed to soon to oversee the facility’s day to day running.

The as yet unnamed firm will be incentivised to deliver targets around generating income for the council and supporting business development.

Garry Perkins, the council’s cabinet member for regeneration with responsibility for the Carriage Works project, said: “It’s great to welcome Bravedog to the new business centre.

“Nick and his team have visited the site on several occasions and seen for themselves that we’re delivering something Swindon will be proud of.

“The council will be setting out the details of future development phases over the next couple of months.”

Paul Chamberlain, Forward Swindon’s director of new development partnerships, said: “We are a step closer to delivering our long-term vision for the Carriage Works – restoring life to the buildings and bringing innovation back to where it belongs.”

Forward Swindon will be hosting an open day for potential tenants of the Carriage Works business centre on Thursday, November 30.

Anyone interested in attending the event or finding out more can visit