Earth Cafe: Setting up a Repair Cafe

Ely Earth Cafe - How to Set up a Repair Cafe event
Nicole Barton Cambridgeshire County Repair Cafe Coordinator
The Earth Cafe packed with people
Learning about the local Time Bank

Repair Cafes – everything you ever wanted to know and more


The Earth Cafe for September 2023 was on the theme of Repair Cafes, and was a great success. It was one of our best attended Earth Cafes ever, and it looks as though it may have kick-started Repair Cafes in Ely and Littleport. Discussions and training are taking places to investigate the possibilities for 2024.

Repair Cafes are community events that match people who need stuff fixed with people who like fixing things. Local, experienced, volunteer repairers repair all sorts of household items such as toasters, laptops, clothes, toys, bikes and more. All repairs are free, but guests are asked to watch the process so they can learn something about it.

We were visited by Nicole Barton of Cambridge Carbon Footprint, who is also the County Repair Cafe Coordinator, and explained the many benefits of Repair Cafes. As well as avoiding enormous amounts of waste, these can bring communities closer together and save people money. The temptation to shell out for a replacement when something breaks is partially because people just don’t have relevant skills or contacts, which is where Repair Cafes can help. 

Any new Repair Cafes will be detailed on this site as well as the Cambridge Carbon Footprint site:

If anyone wishes to set up another repair cafe in another part of East Cambridgeshire, please contact Peter, the area Repair Cafe coordinator ( ).

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