2018 Wortley Hall (or wherever): Planning inside CoTech

Following from the discussions at Wortley Hall and over at these threads:

Facilitating at Wortley Hall in 2018
Thanks everyone! Wortley Hall 2017 was amazing

I wanted to attempt to resurrect the planning for this years event. @chris has recommended that we bring this up in the upcoming community call (See CoTech Community Call - #4 by laura), and I will put an agenda point there.

It’d also be cool to get some feed back here. I’ve no idea how the last event was organised (but some of you do!), so maybe you could weigh in on what we might start doing and we could get a group together. Are there some notes on the Wiki or something?

I know there was the following Loomio decision about shortening the event day too.

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Hi @decentral1se,

Thanks for starting this, I’d be happy to provide input into how we organised the accommodation side of things last year, the challenges we faced and what we could do better next time. I can’t do that now but can do so on the community call next week.

Ahead of that, here is a report of the survey I sent out shortly after WH17- Responses_All_180222.pdf (159.8 KB). I can spend more time making this more easily digestible - it’s currently just an export of all responses (anonymised) from Survey Monkey.
Hope it proves useful!


@polly @chrislowis any good dates for us to meet up? I’m away next week but am around after that and could work from London / Outlandish Towers for a day so can be pretty flexible…

Great. I’m available 12th, 13th or all of w/b 16th. Are we thinking Skype or physical meeting?

@chrislowis @decentral1se What’s happening with this? I’ve got some time next week to do a call or whatnot. You’d of course be very welcome to come here and work for the day if you like.

Sorry, just got back from hols… I can do a call next week - popping down might be tricky but I can see what’s possible depending on others’ availability

Eyo, can join a call or will be in London 25/27th of this month depending (will have Aptivate meeting on the 26th). Could turn up if we organise something?

A call next week works for me too. Can you suggest a time @polly?

How about Monday midday, or 4pm, or Wednesday midday?

Midday on Monday would work for me. How about you @decentral1se @aaron?

Would be free around 3/4ish - I’m on UTC+2.

Shall we say 4pm today?


I’ve made an Appear.In for this to speak at 5.30 London time today. Luke - I just have a riseup email address for you and not sure how often you check that.

You can join us here: https://appear.in/cotechwortley

I just have 30 minutes to go through it but hopefully that’ll be enough.


Heyo - just a heads up I added an update on this to the community call agenda. Feel free to add some notes and I’ll point people to them, but I’m guessing one of you that attended the meeting a couple days ago won’t mind giving a verbal update :slight_smile:

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Over the phone Chris Lowis, Aaron and I discussed the following:

  • Wortley Hall organisation was taken on by Chris and Aaron who spent about 8-9 days in total on the preparation.
  • There are mixed feelings about what should happen next. We all agree it’s great to have an opportunity to meet face to face. However some co-ops, including Outlandish, felt there were fewer solid outcomes than hoped. There’s some difference in feeling about how much emphasis should be on socialising/working/talking
  • Chris suggested that an easier way to manage money would be to work out the total costs and then sell tickets in advance (rather than invoicing people for different amounts after the event, which was time consuming and a headache)
  • An alternative to the 3 day event would be to host a one day AGM somewhere, and have more opportunities to meet and work together through the year (we are already planning some CoTech Hackdays in London, and hoping to host a CoTech party in June, also in London)

I brought this up at the Outlandish Members’ meeting yesterday and the feeling here is that currently we don’t have the resources to play a leading role in organising a Wortley Hall (or similar). However, we would be happy to host people at Space4 in the autumn and can put some time into organising the logistics for that. We haven’t discussed finer details but the rough idea would be to have a couple of days of hacking, discussing and socialising.

…I’ll try to join the community call to discuss this verbally.

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Is this the latest on the 2018 event?

Shall we agree a date and lock down that it’s going to be in Space4?

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If we do want to go to Wortley Hall we need to check availability soon.

I think the issue is that none of the co-ops have the resources available to do the ‘host’ role that Outlandish did the first year and which Agile Collective and Go Free Range did last year.

Sadly I think there’s also an issue of affordability for some of the co-ops. We got a subsidy from SolidFund last year, but somewhat on condition that it was an investment (in getting the co-ops to be solvent) rather than a handout, so I personally wouldn’t feel comfortable asking for another subsidy - especially as the tech sector should be generating funds for the co-op movement rather than consuming them.

I’ve sadly missed all the Wortley Hall action, but I don’t think Space4 is really a suitable alternative to a residential gathering.

How about investigating residentials at more afforable places? Loads of good options here http://exclusive-hire.yha.org.uk/search/all-properties

How many people have come to the last 2 Wortley Hall gatherings?

It’s more the cost/time of organising and the lost earnings than the cost of the accomodation. The cost to Outlandish has been £20k-£30k each time with only about 10% of that being the cost of the accomodation. If we were going to take time out for a residential we’d want to do it somewhere nice. We can always piggyback on Worker Co-op Weekends as John suggested if people want the camp experience.