New ‘Makerspace’ in Portsmouth allows community to collaborate

Maker's Guild's Gavin Hodson, Sam Asiri and Ming Wu     Picture: Habibur Rahman
Maker's Guild's Gavin Hodson, Sam Asiri and Ming Wu Picture: Habibur Rahman
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THREE friends have launched a new space in which people can break, build, bend and destroy.

The Maker’s Guild is a not-for-profit organisation known as a ‘Makerspace’ created by Gavin Hodson, Sam Asiri and Ming Wu.

Gavin is an ex-art teacher, Sam an expert in interior design and Ming a budding businessman and industrial designer.

Ming said: ‘Andy Grays, the CEO of Portsmouth Guildhall, heard about our idea and loved it. He said we could have a space inside the hall and it’s worked out perfectly.’

The studio is open to the public, allowing them to make anything from plastic or woodwork structures to paintings.

It offers flexible workstations and various tools and machinery including 3D printing and laser cutting.

It provides materials, a space to discuss ideas and somewhere to exhibit items.

Ming said: ‘We have everything you’d find in a well-equipped garage or design tech workshop.

‘Pillar drills, chop saws, you name it. I’ve been replicating items made by Nasa using our 3D printers.’

There are only 3,000 Makerspace sites in the world and 200 of these are in the UK. Before The Maker’s Guild opened, there were only two in Hampshire.

Access to the facility is on a membership basis, with options including full access membership, hot-desking and day passes. A mix of bright yellow and chalk-painted walls line the room, on which inventors and builders scribble their ideas.

Coloured pens are used on the windows, where words like ‘design’ and ‘giant robot’ appear.

Sam said: ‘We opened in February and have met so many people with different skill sets. We introduce them to each other if one hits a wall with a project. It’s one, big, collaborative experience.’