BG Futures, the new business start-up centre at Bishop Grosseteste University College Lincoln, was officially opened on Wednesday 14th March by Ursula Lidbetter MBE, Chief Executive of the Lincolnshire Co-operative.
The £1.8 million business centre has only been operating for a few months and already 11 of the 15 office units are let to start-up businesses and entrepreneurs.
Futures has also been shortlisted for an RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) Regional Award in the Community Building category. RICS judges will visit the building on 27th March.
BG Futures differs from other incubation centres by emphasising BG’s values of equality and diversity, said Mark Bowen, Enterprise Development Manager at the university college.
“Our aim is to develop our ethos by valuing individuals no matter where they come from and give everyone an equal chance in life,” he said.
“To that end we welcome applications from all sections of the community and from people from disadvantaged backgrounds of all kinds.
“BG Futures aims to break down barriers and show people that they can be successful in business no matter who they are or where they come from.”
The official opening ceremony was followed by a second ceremony by ceramic artist Pete Moss to unveil the unique feature wall in the business centre foyer.
Working with a group of art students from BG, Pete took 96 raw clay bricks donated by Ibstock Brick in Wakefield and hand-carved mediaeval symbols onto them before putting them together to create a spectacular feature wall.
The work, called Past into Futures, celebrates the link between the modern BG Futures building and the site on which it sits, which was once home to a mediaeval settlement. Each symbol replicates those found in typical mediaeval buildings such as churches, halls and more well-to-do homes.