Stratford tech centre snubbed by Shoreditch ‘snobs’

Here East is located in heart of the Olympic Park in Stratford.

Here East is located in heart of the Olympic Park in Stratford. - Credit: PA Archive/Press Association Ima

Stratford’s new tech centre, Here East, may soon be racing into first place as the UK’s biggest.

But Shoreditch’s resident techies, rather than embracing the competition, are turning their noses up at a project that’s “out in the sticks”.

“If you ask anyone they’re like ‘eugh, Stratford’,” Helena Parker, 22, who works for a health tech start-up Network Locum, said. “People are definitely a bit snobbish about it.”

She said tech companies need to be able to network and that “the point of being in Shoreditch is that you are at the centre of everything. You go wherever your connections are.”

She added: “I can see big companies going [to Stratford]. They can house their massive staff there. But at start-ups you’ve got to meet people and you need to meet your clients. My company is not going anywhere.”

Grace Regan, co-founder of audio news company Clippet, admits that high rents are a “massive problem” for her company.

Gavin Poole, CEO of Here East, hit back claiming the site is 40 per cent “pre-let” ahead of its 2016 launch.

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“We’re seeing a lot of enthusiasm from tech companies based in the UK and around the world,” he said.

“We are spending a lot of time ensuring we create exactly that kind of community – like-minded people from across many areas of the tech and creative industries, co-located and collaborating.

“As the tech scene expands across London, we are seeing huge demand for increased capacity, more competitive rents and access to state-of-the-art infrastructure. That is exactly what Here East has to offer.”

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