What's a Repair Café?

Ever been astonished at the amount of goods that we throw away that have little wrong with them, that with a minor repair could be given a new lease of life. Repair Cafés are free social gathering and they’re all about repairing things together. You can bring your broken items from home to the “Repair Café” where you will find tools, materials and volunteers who will help you make any repairs you need to clothes, furniture, electrical appliances, bicycles, crockery, appliances, toys and more. You’ll find expert volunteers, with repair skills in all kinds of fields to help you repair your treasured broken goods. Even if you have nothing to repair, please come along and lend a hand with someone else’s repair job or enjoy the social occasion with a cup of tea or coffee or some food from the café. Most of all, the Repair Café just wants to show you how much fun repairing things can be, and how easy it often is. Why don’t you give it a go?

Anyone who has visited Salisbury's Household Recycling Centre on Churchfields will have seen the eye-watering amounts of electrical goods, toys and gadgets being discarded. Some have only minor faults and could be given a new lease of life with the application of a little time, skill and tender loving care: a bracket riveted back on here, a brittle solder joint reheated there, a zip replaced, a patch sewn on or a hem or trouser leg taken up...

A Repair Cafe aims to empower consumers by enabling them to explore the possibility of how they can repair a broken item before deciding to throw it away. This has the potential to help them save money, reduce waste, and conserve the resources & energy needed to manufacture new items.

Repair Cafes are run by volunteers with suitable electrical, mechanical, sewing, knitting, dressmaking and materials expertise. You can bring along broken items and the volunteers will, where feasible, work with you to teach you to repair your item. The Repair cafe sessions will bring together people of various ages and backgrounds, and will include further benefits in the terms of learning new skills, aid mental health and social inclusion. When you bring items for repair you will be asked to make a donation, which will contribute to self-funding the repair café. The health and safety of visitors and volunteers as well as safeguarding of those present will be important.

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Want to set up a Repair Café yourself?

Find guidance in How we set up Salisbury Repair Café, with essential policies, processes, forms and signs

Or visit www.repaircafe.org/en/start