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Repair is essential! Here is how we celebrated International Repair Day

“Repair is Essential” – this is the theme we chose for this year’s International Repair Day. It is essential for repair businesses who have been hard hit by the lockdown and by Covid. It is essential for people who rely on functioning electronics more than ever, at a time when repair is increasingly difficult. And it is essential for communities, who come together in the spirit of fixing and sharing knowledge.

During this year’s Repair Day, we celebrated all these aspects. And we were happy to get some coverage from Huffington Post UK and Times Radio.

In London

This year, Repair Day fell on the last day of the first-ever “Repair Week” promoted by London Waste and Recycling Board (LWARB). The week mobilised businesses, community groups and local authorities. We are proud to have inspired London with our previous editions of Repair Day.

For our own contribution we brought our community together to expand our Repair Directory, where we currently list over 120 reliable repair businesses in 12 boroughs. Online, a team of volunteers mapped repair businesses in London to be considered for inclusion. This group listed 45+ businesses, which we’re currently vetting – many will soon get listed in the Directory.

And we also met in person. In Tooting, Crystal Palace and Shepherds Bush, small groups went on walks and explored the local high streets. It was great to meet passionate repairer professionals and to speak to them about their business and their experience. Repair Day in London was the culmination of the very first Repair Week, an initiative which we’re proud to have inspired. We look forward to see them both grow next year.

Across the UK

Also other cities reached out to repair businesses: Brighton Repair Cafe and Bedford Repair Cafe are collecting information about repair shops in their cities. If you know about a local repair business – let them know!

In some places groups managed to host Covid-safe repair events, like in Bath, Market Harborough and Rugby. Some groups like Reading hosted online events or took part in Fixit Clinic’s “Intergalactic” repair event online. Sadly, repairing together and sharing our skills in person like we used to has become more difficult this year. But we will be back, as soon as it’s safe to!

Repair Cafe Glasgow captures the spirit we all feel these days:

And until we can meet you at events again, we continue to spread the word online and to repair from our own homes.

We enjoyed the post by North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue, reminding us of essential repairs on their fire engines, year round.

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