The repair cafe: fixing broken items instead of buying new

We throw away millions of usable items every year. The repair cafe helps people to fix broken things instead of buying something new.

Posted by Channel 4 News on Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Why repair?
A new report on revealed that a staggering 44.7 million metric tonnes e-waste were generated globally in 2016. This is equal in weight to almost nine Great Pyramids of Giza or 4,500 Eiffel Towers!
Experts foresee a further 17% increase to 52.2 million metric tonnes by 2021, making it the fastest growing part of the world’s domestic waste stream.


UN Global E-Waste Monitor Report

Get in touch

Interested in running a Repair Cafe in your area or simply want to find out more? As well as advice by phone and email, those interested in organising a Repair Cafe can come along to our 'How to run a Repair Cafe in your Community' workshops (listed under the events pages on Circular Cambridge). Check out our Cambridgeshire Repair Cafe Network map to find out where your nearest Cafe is and who runs it. Please get in touch, we're very happy to help anyone living or based in the Cambrigeshire area. Contact or

Case Studies

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What is a Repair Cafe?

Repair Cafes are community events that match people who need stuff fixed with people who like fixing things. The international Repair Cafe movement kicked off in Amsterdam and now there are nearly two thousand Cafes around the world, covering most continents. Visit the webpage of the original Repair Cafe Foundation to browse a map of all locations.

Repair Cafes are completely non-commercial. There are no promises and no guarantees, but if something can be saved the repairers will do everything they can. Repairers are always keen to teach visitors how to do the repair themselves and at the very least  watch while they do it. We organise occasional repair skillshares on introducing electrical repairs, upholstery, sewing, bike maintenance etc.

Cambridgeshire is blessed with a huge number of Cafes, with more starting up all the time. In fact, we are probably a global hub with more individual Cafes than anywhere else and in 2017 we set the record for organising the 'World's Biggest Repair Cafe', since broken by groups in Devon. Local villages, towns, community groups, companies and parish council's are being supported to start their own Repair Cafes with the help of the Cambridgeshire Repair Cafe Network (CRCN). CRCN is a partnership between Cambridge Carbon Footprint, Transition Cambridge, South Cambridgeshire District Council and trailblazers Chris Moller of Cottenham Repair Cafe and Chris Lee of Royston Repair Cafe. Our Cafes are brilliantly supported by Mackays and Draper Tools who have supplied us with extensive tools boxes and gear to ensure successful repair rates of around 65%.

Repair Cafés in the Cambridgeshire region

Click on the locations on the map for more details or head to the 'Find your local Repair Café' page to see a list for a quick overview of places and contacts.

Repair Cafés further afield

There are Repair Cafés across the world. Head over to the Repair Café website to see all of the locations.


Please click to expand

Repair Cafes are run by volunteers and you’ll find at least two Cafes happening most months in the Cambridgeshire and Royston region. They usually happen at the weekend and are organised by green groups, charities, enthusiasts, community groups and parish councils. There is no charge for entry or repair but donations are gratefully received to help pay for costs such as room rental. You’ll find a friendly cafe at each event, serving hot drinks and delicious homemade cakes. Each Repair Cafe is listed locally and on the Circular Cambridge website.

  Visit an upcoming Repair Cafe

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Thank you to everyone who helps to make Repair Cafés a reality.

Find out more

Want to run a Repair Cafe?

We'll get you started with all you need to run a Repair Cafe in your local area. Updated version available in Jan 2020.

Get help and support

Keen to learn about repair?

Check out a variety of resources and links on repair organisations and learn how to repair.

Find repair resources

Need to find a repair shop?

Check out our Circular Directory. Cambridge's repair and reuse shops in one place.

Visit the Circular Directory