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World record success for Cambridge 'repair cafe' aiming to reduce landfill

A large variety of 'repairers' were on hand to fix everything from small fridges to broken zips Credit: ITV News Anglia

A pop up 'repair cafe' has broken a world record for the number of repairs carried out in one day.

Repair Cafes encourage people not to throw out broken or damaged products, but to repair them, to avoid our waste going to landfill sites.

They're now a growing movement with a large number of them across the East of England. Starting off in Amsterdam, there are now more than 1,000 around the world, covering most continents.

The Cambridge Repair Cafe broke the world record with 232 successful repairs, beating the existing record of 130.

232
Successful repairs in one day
Engineers gave up their time to help repair items. Credit: ITV News Anglia

"We really want to draw attention to waste and consumerism, waste is a really important issue, it's an issue that people feel really strongly about. Repair cafes are really a growing movement, they've been springing up allover the world, there are over 5,000 repair cafes globally and we've got a real hub of repair cafes in Cambridgeshire."

– Alana Sinclair, Manager, Cambridge Carbon Footprint
The Cambridge Repair Cafe took place at Wesley Methodist Church on Christ's Pieces Credit: ITV News Anglia

"Some people think oh it's no good, just get rid of it and buy something new and that is definitely something we are trying to do the opposite of. I always believe there is always a way to repair something, even if it's not as good as you might think."

– Martina Gilbert, Seamstress
Tara Button promoting 'Buy me once' at the Cambridge Repair Cafe Credit: ITV News Anglia

Tara Button set up a website to promote the concept of buying a product for life, to save waste.

"People don't realise it is one of the easiest things you can do for the environment, so if you can make a T-shirt last two years instead of one year, you save about 24% on your carbon omissions, so if you do that with all the things you buy imagine the impact that has on the world."

– Tara Button, CEO of Buy me Once

Repair cafes are run by volunteers and are non-commercial. They work on the basis that volunteers will do their best to fix them, but there are no guarantees.

Find out more about Repair Cafes.

Watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Emily Knight.