Repair Cafe

Fix the toaster at Repair Cafe at The Goodlife Centre

Repair Cafe at the Goodlife Centre in central London

What do you do with a chair when the leg has come loose? With a light that no longer works? Toss it? No way!

You can repair it at the Repair Café.

Repair Cafés are free meeting places and they’re all about repairing things (together). The types of items that can be repaired and reused include clothes, furniture, electrical appliances, bicycles, crockery, appliances and toys.

Why a Repair Café?

We throw away vast amounts of stuff. Even things with almost nothing wrong, and which could get a new lease on life after a simple repair. The trouble is, lots of people have forgotten that they can repair things themselves or they no longer know how. Knowing how to make repairs is a skill quickly lost. Society doesn’t always show much appreciation for the people who still have this practical knowledge.

Repair Café is changing all that! People who might otherwise be sidelined are getting involved again. Valuable practical knowledge can be passed on. Our possessions are being used for longer and don’t have to be thrown away. This reduces the volume of raw materials and energy needed to make new products. It cuts CO2 emissions, for example, because manufacturing new products and recycling old ones causes CO2 to be released.

Repair Café teaches people to see their possessions in a new light. And, once again, to appreciate their value. Repair Café helps change people’s mindset. This is essential to kindle people’s enthusiasm for a sustainable society.

But most of all, Repair Café just wants to show how much fun repairing things can be, and how easy it often is. Why don’t you give it a go?

The Goodlife Centre

The Goodlife Centre’s light and airy workspace in Waterloo is an ideal environment for a Repair Café, which is free to attend. Visitors bring their broken items from home for assessment, and if deemed repairable by the organisers, can start making their repairs in the Repair Café.  Please note, we don’t fix the things – but we advise on the process and give a hand where we can. DIY and electrical experts from The Goodlife Centre will be on stand-by to advise and a selection of tools and materials will be made available for use on the day. It’s an ongoing learning process in a friendly social environment.

The types of items that might be suitable to be repaired and reused include small items of furniture, electrical appliances, bicycles, crockery and toys. In fact, there is very little that cannot be given a new lease of life. We hope that the Repair Café will help Londoners view all of their possessions in a new light and appreciate their lifelong value. By reducing our dependency on throwing away and starting over and instead focusing on repairing and reusing items, we hope to inspire enthusiasm for a sustainable society.  Due to the time limits and the number of volunteer fixperts that are here on the day, we can only help  to fix one item per person.

The Goodlife Centre is about sharing practical knowledge and learning traditional skills for life and this is very much in line with the values of the Repair Café concept. By hosting a regular Repair Café, we hope not only to encourage sustainability in our borough, but to facilitate a community that learns from each other.

The Restart Project

The Restart Project organises communities of self-repair around London through Restart Parties, where volunteers help others in trying to fix their electronic products. Restart joins the Repair Café to try to answer your questions and problems with laptops, mobile phones and more. Don’t despair, just repair! Please accept that due to the time restraints and number of volunteers, we can only help fix one item per person.

London Repair Cafés will take place at The Goodlife Centre (see below for new dates). The Goodlife Centre is just ten minutes from Waterloo, Borough and Southwark tube stations.

For full details of the Repair Café concept that originated in Holland go to http://repaircafe.org/

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Careful owners from Crouch End bring their broken Umbrella to Repair Cafe
dave fixes umbrella at Repair Cafe at The Goodlife Centre
young fixers at The Repair Cafe at The Goodlife CentreA chair is fixed at Repair Cafe at The Goodlife Centrepuncture fixed at Repair Cafe at The Goodlife Centre


Contact the Goodlife Centre today! Call Alison on 0207 760 7613 or email alison@thegoodlifecentre.co.uk