As part of Waste Awareness Week, on the 20th October UNDEB Bangor, in association with Repair Café Wales, held Bangor’s first ever ‘Repair Café’ in Room 2 of the Activities Hub. The day saw locals and students alike bringing in a range of items from blenders and bikes through to laptops, electricals and clothing to be repaired by a small group of dedicated volunteers.
Present were UNDEB Bangor representatives, including Nyah Lowe (UNDEB Bangor President), and Sam Dickins (Vice President for Societies and Events), with Dickins calling the event “really funky” and a great opportunity for everyone. The event was run by Repair Café Wales, an organisation which runs pop-up repair shops around Wales for people to come and extend the life of their old items rather than discarding them. Representatives from Keep Wales Tidy and Petha (an organisation from whom you can loan everyday items) were also in attendance, giving people the chance to chat about sustainability, recycling, and making the most out of what they have.
One of the volunteers, Daniel Bates, a local cycle mechanic, was enthusiastic about the event, though when I arrived he’d had little opportunity to put his talents to good use. This quickly changed when a student from the cycling club turned up with their clearly much loved bike in tow. A local lady had brought in a plethora of things, including a quilt and a blender, and she told me that she thought that the event was a fantastic idea. Some of the volunteers, like Elsie Pearce (Vice President for Education), were kept extraordinarily busy. Pearce’s table was piled high with so many coats, jackets and bits of apparel that you could have mistaken it for the cloakroom. This being a café, there was also plenty of coffee, Welsh cakes and biscuits to enjoy whilst people waited for repairs to be completed.
Though not a runaway triumph, there was no Antiques Roadshow style queue stretching out of the doors, the event certainly proved itself a success. Sam Dickins told me that he hoped there would be more such events to come, and I for one share his view.