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Geekeasy Derby: We eat, drink and share stories Message Board › Is there such a place in Derby?

Is there such a place in Derby?

Derby, GB
Post #: 6
Hi All,

This is not a Meetup, but I hope folks on this group can give me their feedback. I'm hoping some of you will know the area well enough to help me.

The last Geekeasy meetup was in a pub. Nice place, but a once a month meeting leaves a big gap in between.

What I'd like to know is if there is anything similar to Nottingham's Antenna, in the Derby area? I'm new to the city/area and so far I've not found anything. For those of you who don't know, Antenna is a type of hub and meeting place aimed at both new and existing enterprises. Website is­ It tends to have a bias towards technology, media and 'creative' people, but that isn't really a given.

Since moving to Derby I've learned that the city has a rich history in engineering, technology and innovation. That's great and I'm sure there are lots of intelligent people around the city who work in this space. But there doesn't seem to be a place where they all come together, share ideas (and a coffee/beer) and start the seeds of new partnerships and small businesses.

The university might have something, but that seems a closed shop. And I know of Friar Gate Studios, but their cafe is a long way from the environment of Antenna. Plus, it closes at 5pm!

If there is such a place, please point me to it.

If there isn't, please indicate if you think it would be good to have one. There's no point me putting effort into trying to get something going if the demand just isn't there.

Thanks to all and apologies again that it's a bit off-topic for Meetup.

Christine C.
user 75776802
Derby, GB
Post #: 3
Hi Robert,

A good question, one I've been pondering on for a while! I don't know of a local version of Antenna - nor a 'Jelly', which would be another way to do co-working.

I'd love to see something started!

A former member
Post #: 1
I found a list here that might be useful:


I agree about Friar Gate Studios. I've attended a few all day meetings there and find it very hard to do any work in the downtime in between. The 5PM cut off never made much sense.
Daniel L.
user 83236702
Derby, GB
Post #: 1
Rob - there isn't such a place and I do think there is a gap in Derby for one - but it needs to be run in a way that is a little different from other more business oriented networking groups that already exist in Derby (re: BNI, 4-Networking, Derby Hub etc) and other creative networks that have been and gone.

The university does run 'Fry-up-friday' (­, it's a more informal business network every third Friday (again once a month). It's good, and is informal enough to make real connections.

CIN (http://www.creative-c...­) had potential but when the sponsorship money dried up the group running it couldn't get rid of it quickly enough and after a couple of failed attempts to revive the network by other groups it's essentially dead.

I would support the setup of a regular group that doesn't just re-brand the age old business networking that attracts mlm'rs. print brokers, ifa's, business coaches etc...

Hope you can do something!!

Daniel (

Derby, GB
Post #: 7
Thanks for your replies Christine, Daniel, Matthew. It's pretty much what I suspected.

I understand what you say about having a regular networking group, but I think those things can come and go, as you say. That's why I latched on to Antenna, since I'd like to see something much more permanent as a place where people (creative types, techies or otherwise) can get together and do more than have a sandwich.

I'm a great believer in the old saying "Get good people together and good things happen". Indeed, we have built a business on the back of it, which started as a uni spin-out. Though it strikes me that this type of facility (like Antenna) must not be run by the university or college alone, since the engagement should go far beyond students to old farts like me who love to do business, but don't always want to sit in a hotel lobby (or the dreaded Starbucks) to have our meetings.

I've held a few 1 to 1 meetings at Antenna and it has a really nice vibe to it. Invariably, before or after the meeting I'll cross paths with someone I know or just get chatting to like-minded entrepreneurial types. From that sort of thing the seeds of new ideas and businesses flourish. And I'd like to see the same in Derby.

My research suggests that there are a lot of folks in the area who are simply scattered. Some of them come together every so often for stuff like Geekeasy, but in between it's all fragmented. A home is needed! Having a once a month networking, whilst nice to do, just isn't enough.

Watch this space!
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