Shrewsbury Jelly – Work, chat, collaborate….

Shrewsbury Jelly – Work, chat, collaborate….

For the many people in Shropshire who are self-employed, those who have an office at home, or who work alone a lot of the time, Jelly co-working days offer a chance to get out and work alongside other people for a change.

It’s good to have somewhere to go, a reason to get up on time and get dressed properly (PJs are often much too comfortable if you’re home alone – as long as you’re not expecting a delivery!)  Co-working is an opportunity to discuss what’s happening in the world over coffee and cake – it’s nice to choose lunch from the menu and have something delicious made for you.

I’ve met all sorts of people at Jelly days – people new to the area, or just starting their own business, who have recently become ‘outsourced’ – instead of working in a busy office – artists, architects, engineers, consultants – people who are employed by a London office but work remotely most of the time.

Shrewsbury is an amazing town, get the bus or train in and walk along the river; I noticed today how tall some of the houses are – and how the town stands on a hill with the castle guarding the station, watching over the river as it bends protectively around the town.

Shrewsbury Jelly meets on the second Thursday of the month either at the Loopy Shrew or The Alb. Both have excellent coffee, a choice of afternoon teas, delicious cakes and scrumptious lunches.  All you need is a laptop.

For more information and to book visit www.eventbrite.co.uk and search for Shrewsbury Jelly.

To book for Shrewsbury Jelly at The Alb on 8th November, 2018 12.00 noon – 5.00 pm  go to:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/shrewsbury-jelly-and-chris-smith-2997493599

Published in the November edition of the Whitchurch Gossip

Jelly co-working spaces are great places to meet other people

Jelly co-working spaces are great places to meet other people

Shropshire is such a friendly place, wherever you are, there’s usually someone to talk to – shopping, walking, sitting in a café – and Shropshire Jelly co-working days provide an opportunity to meet people whilst you are working.

There are lots of people who work from home in Shropshire, some are self-employed, some work for big companies but work remotely from home most of the time – and there are authors, students, actors, consultants, who don’t go to work in an office with other people every day.

Jelly co-working spaces are great places to meet other people, but still get on with some work.  Have a chat over coffee, share current news over lunch and find out a bit more about the county we live in and what’s going on where.

Jelly days are regular events – Shrewsbury Jelly is held on the second Thursday of the month and alternates between The Alb and the Loopy Shrew.  Whitchurch Jelly is held on the first Tuesday of the month at Holly Farm Garden Centre.  All Jelly spaces have free wi-fi. The Coffee Barn at Holly Farm Garden Centre has excellent (Aroma) coffee and tea, delicious lunches (including Maynards ham) and locally home-made cakes.

Your environment can have a big impact on your work – I have always thought that florists have a lovely time always working with flowers.  At Whitchurch Jelly you are surrounded by plants – nature’s natural essence envelopes you when you walk into an area full of flowers, it’s not just the heady mixture of the mingling scents of the flowers, the plants themselves have a greenness that radiates tranquillity and calm.

Holly Farm has many beautiful and interesting plants, shrubs and trees – deliciously-scented roses, and an endless variety of colourful perennials like penstemons – beautiful cottage garden plants, with lots of different shades to choose from – as well as being simple to grow – plant in a sheltered spot and you will be rewarded with a long lasting show of flowers for years to come.

Just browsing in a garden centre can be very therapeutic – discovering unusual plants and imagining them in your garden, finding lots of ideas for brightening up the garden.   There’s something satisfying about strolling along rows and rows of plants -properly watered and cared for.  It’s also a great opportunity to ask Jonathan Allen any gardening questions – like why my hanging baskets were looking a bit tired – regular watering and feeding is the answer.

The Coffee Barn is a great location for Whitchurch Jelly – if you have recently moved to Shropshire, it’s a good place to find out what’s on locally and where to find things.  Holly Farm sponsor Blackberry Fair every year (first Saturday in October).  Jelly days are a mine of information.  The next Whitchurch Jelly is on Tuesday, 5th September, 10.00 am – 3.00 pm but you don’t have to stay all day, call in for a coffee and see what co-working is like.  Jelly co-working days are free to attend.

Published in the August editions of the Whitchurch Gossip and Drayton Gossip

Do you work yourself? Is your business based at home? Jelly Coworking could be for you.

Do you work yourself? Is your business based at home?  Have you ever thought about having a day working alongside other homeworkers?  Chance for a chat over coffee and lunch – and still catch up with emails and paperwork? 

Jelly co-working days provide an opportunity for homeworkers – and indeed anyone who fancies a change of scenery – to work alongside other people, in a comfortable, friendly, informal place, with free Wi-Fi and tea, coffee and lunch made for you.

Whitchurch Jelly meets at the Coffee Barn at Holly Farm Garden Centre on the first Tuesday of every month.  Shrewsbury Jelly meets on the second Thursday of the month and alternates between The Alb and The Loopy Shrew.

June is strawberry season – long summer evenings, sipping wine or elderflower champagne (for recipe visit www.barbararainford.co.uk), home-made scones with strawberries and cream in the sunshine, serenaded by songbirds, busy bees buzzing diligently from flower to flower, roses and honeysuckle mingling with the scent of newly mown grass – and Holly Farm Garden centre has everything to make your little patch of Shropshire full of life – vibrant colours and heavenly scents – and a haven for wild birds and insects.  Take time out browsing the wide selection of basket and bedding plants, herbs, lavenders, roses and perennials and take some colour home for your garden – and don’t forget to pick some fruit before you leave – strawberries, raspberries, redcurrants and gooseberries – they all make delicious jams and country wines.

Jelly days provide an opportunity to discuss the tennis, the recent election results (by the time you read this we will probably have some different MPs in The House of Commons), local events like The Party in The Park in Whitchurch – and preparations for Blackberry Fair www.blackberryfair.co.uk.  If you have recently moved to Shropshire, Jelly days are a mine of information, jelly organisers usually have an excellent knowledge of the local area, what’s going on in Shropshire and local helpful people from chimney sweeps to piano tuners.

Jelly days are promoted on Twitter and you can find updates on @JellyShropshire on www.twitter.com along with information on local events and breaking news stories.

The next Whitchurch Jelly is on Tuesday, 4th July – Independence Day.  Whitchurch Jelly is 10.00 am – 3.00 pm but you don’t have to stay all day, call in for a coffee and see what co-working is like.  Jelly co-working days are free to attend.  For further information visit:

Published in the June edition of the Whitchurch Gossip magazine

Shropshire Jelly – Work, Chat, Collaborate

Shropshire Jelly – Work, chat, collaborate….


Shropshire Jelly was started by Jan Minihane with help from Judi Heminsley (who was instrumental in bringing Jelly – an American idea – to the UK).  Jelly organisers run co-working days all over the world in cafés, restaurants and community rooms – sometimes living rooms – where people who usually work alone can work alongside other people for a change.

Shrewsbury Jelly meets on the second Thursday of the month and currently alternates between the Loopy Shrew and The Alb. It’s organised by Chris Smith @envoid and is free to attend but it is reasonable to expect that you will buy some food and drink if you are sitting in a café using free wi-fi and free electricity for your laptop.

All sorts of people attend Jelly days – accountants, solicitors, business coaches, training providers, software developers, marketing consultants, IT experts, geeks, and lots of self-employed people making soaps, jewellery, candles – and service providers helping people with health issues, dyslexia, hearing loss  – the variety of people you can meet co-working is endless.

At last month’s Shrewsbury Jelly I asked attendees why they left the comfort of their own home to travel to Shrewsbury and attend Jelly.  Most of the people worked alone most of the time, occasionally meeting colleagues in London once a quarter or in Skype meetings.  They all said that:  “Sometimes you need to speak to people face to face,” and: “It’s a good idea to get out of the house occasionally,” or they “Need a change of scene – in different situations you meet different people – and you see things differently.”  @danielclarkfca attending Shrewsbury Jelly for the first time said:  “It’s good to meet different people, discuss things, share views.”

The budget was high on the agenda at the last Jelly (it was the day after Budget Day) and there were varying opinions on the NI increase for the self-employed.  It was also the day after International Women’s Day and all agreed that we are very lucky living in Britain to have so many professional women helping the economy along – with the freedom and respect to do it.

If you have recently moved to Shropshire, Jelly days are a mine of information, jelly organisers usually have an excellent knowledge of the local area, what’s going on in Shropshire and who to ask for help with anything from computers to networking – and there’s usually an IT expert there who can help solve that niggling technical problem or explain things like ‘how to use Twitter’.

Jelly co-working days are free to attend but you do need to book. Go to www.shropshirejelly.co.uk for more information.

Published in the April edition of the Whitchurch Gossip