An innovative shared workspace in West Cumbria has created a new facility for its members.

The Vicky, in the 220-year-old Victoria Hall, High Sand Lane, Cockermouth, unveiled its new meeting pod at a networking event.

Dave Bealt, who runs The Vicky with his wife Gill, Sarah Hopkins and Penny Watson, said: “We’re delighted to offer this new facility to our members and the wider business community in Cockermouth.

“It will be a great addition to the open plan workspace at The Vicky. It is suitable for meetings of up to four people and offers privacy. It can be booked by non-members too.”

The Vicky, which is a repurposed Wesleyan Chapel, secured funding from United Utilities and Allerdale Borough Council to improve provision for meetings at the co-working centre.

Ian McCoy, stakeholder manager at United Utilities, said: “We are delighted that United Utilities have been able to support the Cockermouth business community with this new meeting space.

“It is great to see small businesses working together to create a vibrant collaborative space.”

Mark Jenkinson, deputy leader and executive member for economic growth at Allerdale Borough Council, said: “We are pleased to be working in partnership with The Vicky, where this new meeting space will help support our local business community.”

The pod has been named Bertie the Booth, after The Vicky held a naming competition.

It was won by Lizzie Turner, who was awarded a 30-hour free membership package.

The Vicky, which is also used by community groups in the evening, has also teamed up with the Myoffice in Whitehaven, MintWorks in Kendal, Warwick Mill Business Village near Carlisle, and Windermere Works, to offer shared work space for members across the county.

The collaborative venture, Workspace Cumbria, allows members to access desks at any of the five venues.

Dave said: “It’s a fabulous, completely free benefit for all members of the group that allows them to work remotely in a professional environment with like-minded entrepreneurs. There’s a real need for something like this.”