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This month, we spoke to Restart’s Shelini Kotecha and Possible’s Dermot Jones about Fixing Factories. We’ve been working with Possible to open up two Fixing Factories this year, gathering lots of interest along the way. The Brent Factory, based in the Abbey Road waste facility opened in April this year and has been a hub for laptop repair and reuse. At the end of October, we were excited to finally open the Camden site, on Queen’s Crescent high street. Queens Crescent Fixing Factory will fix any small electronics and get lots of new people into fixing.
The new Camden Fixing Factory
Dermot tells us about the wonderful celebration that marked the opening of the Camden Fixing Factory. It was a great community showing, with neighbours coming together and sharing homemade food and knowledge with each other.
He also tells us about their plans for making the Fixing Factory self-sustaining, including some creative ways to get artists involved in adding value to repaired items. The opportunities for involvement are seemingly endless and span a wide range of fixing abilities. Dermot also does a shout out for the evening repair club, which provides a fun space for tinkerers who want to get started in their learning or take on more time consuming repairs.
Learning from each other
We’ve learnt an incredible amount over the last months working at the Brent Fixing Factory. Shelini shares with us some of the lessons that have come out of the project. She also highlights the power of our volunteers in shaping what the Fixing Factory has become. Both Shelini and Dermot make it abundantly clear that this is an ever evolving process, and that everyone who is involved is helping mould it into the best version that it can be. The Camden site will be shaped by the months of experimentation already done at the Brent site. But with a different type of location and more opportunities for public engagement, there are also a whole raft of new lessons to be learned.
They share some wonderful stories of how the Fixing Factory project has affected both volunteers and patrons alike. From helping exchange students find inner-confidence to encouraging a member of the public to further advance her education in fixing. It’s stories like these that give us inspiration as the project progresses.
- Fixing Factory
- Read more about the Camden launch
- Restart Radio: Introducing Fixing Factories
- Upcoming events
[Images by Mark A Phillips, licensed under CC BY 2.0.]