Exploring Rochester: Dragon Coworking

Inside Dragon coworking space

Exploring Rochester: Dragon Coworking

As remote working becomes more popular across a range of industries enabling people to lead a more balanced lifestyle and reduce commuting time, we caught up with Roland Stanley, the founder of Dragon Coworking in Rochester, a short walk from our development, Rochester Riverside.

What inspired you to set up a coworking space business in Rochester?

I’ve lived in Medway my whole life, and it’s always been a great place to do business. Dragon Coworking launched in 2017, and at the time there was nothing like that in Rochester, which I found puzzling considering how many entrepreneurs and commuters there are. Rochester has always been very lively but it’s working community was crying for something creative, which is why I headed to London to explore the office space scene there and get some inspiration.

Could you tell us a little bit about Dragon Coworking?

Dragon Coworking is based within the St George Hotel in New Road Avenue, Rochester. It overlooks the River Medway, and you can even see Rochester Riverside!
Our office is equipped with AstroTurf flooring, bean bags, stand-up desks, whiteboards for collaborative brainstorming sessions, and members can enjoy barista-style coffees, teas and beer on tap. We offer open-plan desk spaces, as well as 24 separate offices and meeting rooms, and of course, access to high-speed wifi.

Who are your customers?

We work with a lot of people from the digital creative space and a range of start-ups across different sectors.

Why would someone want to work at Dragon Coworking?

It’s all about being a part of a community and working somewhere with creative energy. Interaction with other people is a very important element of coworking, and we offer a lot of activities to facilitate that. For example, Friday drinks, rock climbing, mixology classes. Our members come from all over Kent, not just Rochester, which makes Dragon Coworking a great place to meet like-minded people from further out.

How do you keep the community spirit going during lockdown?

We rely on virtual events. We had a series of Christmas events, for example, to keep the community together, which involved Zoom calls with X-Factor celebrities – it was a lot of fun.

What’s the best thing about working in Rochester?

It’s very vibrant. There is plenty of history, some lovely restaurants and independent shops, so you can always head to the high street for a little stroll during your lunch break. The quality of some of the local cafes is very impressive; one of my favourite coffee and brunch spots is No.64 – they make the best brownies in Rochester!
We’re very fortunate to be located close to both the high street and Medway Intra – Rochester’s arts hotspot with creative events, activities and studios, where artists and craftspeople come together to work on exciting projects. Being at the intersection of old and new is fascinating – Rochester really is transforming and I look forward to working here for many more years to come.