I don’t mean where to have a nap. Although that too would be lovely.
In this post, I talk about the venues I have sought out when needing somewhere to work in central London, along with top tips. I love having the option to work from home and I do this regularly but it is also nice to have the option to get out of the house and work in a different location.
Sometimes I’m in between meetings and I just need to get my head down with my laptop open, have access to the internet, a powerpoint and do some work.
Below are a list of my favourite spots.
When I reference opening times, this relates to Monday – Friday. Many of the locations are also open at the weekends with varying opening times.
This has a central location but it is also very, very busy. Lovely opening times though – 8am – 7pm.
The British Library is by far my favourite place to work. You’re met with a wall full of old and interesting books. It’s a busy, fascinating place. It is also the home of the Business and IP Centre which holds excellent resources for when you’re starting up and affordable courses for businesses, however long they’ve been established.
The British Library doesn’t open it’s doors until 09:30am and there is always a lengthy queue to enter (it does move fast though), a quick bag check and you’re in. Work spaces range from ‘prime’ locations to places you have to squeeze into and then there are places you’re guaranteed a space. Those areas however, are a little tricker to access. They’re within the reader rooms and you have to prove you’re there to use the research facilities, rather than just work using the internet. It’s also a little more of a hassle because you have to go to the cloakroom, find £1 for the locker, put only your laptop, your reader room pass, notepad and pencil, into a clear bag and lock everything else away. Even then you’ll be asked at the door of the reader room to open your laptop lid to prove you’re not taking pages of books in or out. A little more effort required to work in those spaces but it’s worth it for a free place to work, within a nice building. No taking calls in the reader room though – so that may not suit everyone. The British Library is open until 8pm so if you’re someone who likes to work later into the evening, this is perfect for you.
The downstairs is a cafe and workspace. It opens from 9am which is nice if you want to get started with your working day a little earlier. The cafe is open until 5:30pm but it does get very busy by mid-morning and I’ve heard vicious rumours that on some days there are queues to get in before the doors have opened. The great benefit of Google Campus is that once you’re a member (easy enough process) you also get access to many great and more importantly, free, events. I popped into one the other day that started bang on 6pm, finished bang on 7:30pm, had free food and drink and a live band to boot. Perfect. Thanks Google.
Yes. Odd hey. I have started working in some casinos. They’ve been advertised on MeetUp and Eventbrite so I dubiously went along. Sure enough, I have rocked up to the Bayswater and Tottenham Court Road casinos and was encouraged to work there. I was in the Tottenham Court Road casino for 7 hours one day when I had a long stint between meetings. You can often hear the chips being counted and shuffled, there is gentle music playing overhead and just enough power sockets. An unusual workspace location but I am certainly not complaining.
The above places have internet on tap, easy to find, don’t get cross at you if you don’t spend money with them (although you probably will) and make working away from your home that little bit easier.
I’ll add more work locations as I find them.