Published on 19th March 2024

Artist impression of finished MX building

News story issued by Plexal: The urban Minster Exchange (MX) , a partnership between Cheltenham Borough Council and Hub8 by Plexal, nears completion

Designed to breathe new life into the historic centre of the town, the MX is set to open in the Spring, providing a safe and trusted environment where the community can come together professionally and socially.

The MX spans 20,000 square feet of innovation facilities, including workspace, The Growth Hub to support business development, café and space for events and education, while the external Minster Gardens area has benefitted from new pathways, seating, lighting, CCTV and greenery.

In line with the MX Innovation Centre’s commitment to secure the town’s future for businesses and residents, Hub8 by Plexal has opened applications for a new Grown in Cheltenham programme. It’s an opportunity for Cheltenham-based founders to fast-track their companies with six months of free, tailored business support.

Interested parties must meet the following criteria: Be an early-stage startup in Cheltenham; Either business must be registered in Cheltenham and/or its impact is significantly felt within the borough; or Not a current member of the Hub8 by Plexal startup community.

Companies will be in the expert hands of Plexal’s innovation team, which work with some of the biggest government departments, enterprises and most exciting startups in the UK, helping them to achieve their innovation and growth goals. Those interested can contact [email protected].

Cllr Rowena Hay, Leader of Cheltenham Borough Council, said: “The MX will establish the area as the heart of the town once again. It will bring together the Wilson Art Gallery and Museum and, with its large performance space, encourage a real café culture. In the surrounding area, we have invested in improved lighting, seating and footpaths to achieve better connectivity between the high street and promenade as part of our town centre investment.

“The MX and space around it can be enjoyed by businesses, residents and community groups and I am delighted that we are nearly at the point of completion of this innovative scheme, which links into Golden Valley and will benefit us now and into the future.’’

Bruce Gregory, Managing Director at Hub8 by Plexal, added: “Plexal’s ultimate ambition is to create economic and social prosperity for communities through innovation. It’s a mission we at Hub8 bought into wholeheartedly, which is what led us to accept Plexal’s majority shareholding offer last year.

“Now in 2024, we’re fast approaching the tangible realisation of this vision, with the MX Innovation Centre forming part of a broader goal to secure our future as Cheltenham looks forward to growing the technology ecosystem alongside the Golden Valley development.”


Plexal is the innovation company solving society's challenges through collaboration with government, startups and industry. The business is closing the gap between organisations – small and large, local and global, private and public – and working towards a common goal: using science and technology to deliver national security and prosperity. It was founded in 2017 as the innovation centre at Here East and is owned by clients of specialist real estate investment advisory company Delancey.

Providing bespoke consultancy services and state-of-the-art workspaces for over 1,000 innovators, Plexal sources the right partners from our ecosystem of 15,000 connections. It supports entrepreneurs, startups and scaleups building emerging technologies and operates across multiple sectors including cyber, healthcare, intelligence and defence, government, public safety, financial services and telecoms.

Expanding on its existing presence in London and Manchester, Plexal acquired a majority shareholding in Hub8 – the Cheltenham network of co-working spaces for cyber-tech, digital and creative startups and SMEs. This is part of an ongoing mission to build the UK’s most connected cyber ecosystem, with GCHQ’s more than 70-year heritage in Cheltenham.

Plexal delivers projects for key government departments and global tech companies including the National Cyber Security Centre, Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, Amazon Web Services and IBM. The NCSC For Startups alumni of over 70 companies has collectively raised over £512m and created over 1,600 jobs, while 72 cyber startups that have gone through Plexal’s LORCA accelerators have collectively raised over £300m, generated more than £68m in revenue and hired over 800 people.