Chris tells us how his first Repair Cafe went: trying to fix electrical items including a TV/DVD player, two toasters, two digital cameras, a light and a vacuum cleaner. It was a useful learning experience, and he's made a list of the tools he brought and might be needed. Who knows what will be brought in next time!
Two Repair Cafés are starting up in Eden District soon: in Penrith on Saturday 22nd April 2017 and at Kirkby Stephen on Wednesday 3 May 2017. If you've got a broken toaster, a jumper with a hole in or a bike thatneeds fixing, please bring it along and hopefully get it fixed for free.
If you are handy with a screwdriver, a spanner, a sewing machine, or anything else and want to share your skills then get in touch with Eden Arts or Kirkby Stephen Community Arts.
The lovely weather brought out a great community spirit on Saturday at the Old Fire Station in Penrith where Freegle and PACT (Penrith Action for Community Transition) laid on an event where where visitors could give away unwanted items to each other and swap seeds, plants, trees and tools.
The day got off to a brisk start with Luka and family picking up a free trampoline before the event had officially opened. Loads more Freegle items, big and small, came and went: everything from Sean the sheep to a child's bike to a sofa – we weren't taking furniture but someone wanted it so it went!
Today, we've launched a page to list all the reuse options in Eden District - if you can't repair or upcycle it! You can give and get items on Freegle - or sell them online, have items collected, give to charity shops or recycle them.
How would you get an item repaired - tell us how to get it done locally, so we can add it to the list.
The Freegle Give and Take at Shap went really well on Saturday, with around 120 people visiting and hundreds of free items received and picked up: sack barrow, DIY brackets, toolbox, blinds, brush, bike pump, three bins, washing up rack, electric fan, microwave, TV, shredder, picnic table, hand drills, airer, stool, slow cooker, duvet, pint glass, books, clothes, tools, jigsaws, more glasses, toys, magazines, santa hat, primus, Trangia, camp pans, seed potatoes, wind breaks, curtains, camp chairs, coffee maker, patio chairs, lamps, fish kettle, book stand, hi-fi, vacuum cleaner, greenhouse heater, clothes airer, kettle, video recorder, kitchen chairs, picture, teapot, rugs, another hoover, garden books, another teapot and plates.
Chris and Caz grow asparagus kale and are giving away free seeds if you send them a Stamped Address Envelope (SAE) to Lake View, Bampton, Penrith CA10 2QU.
Asparagus Kale is the most wonderful of vegetables! The leaves have a more delicate flavour than cabbage or other kales and can be eaten through the winter even when picked frozen solid. It's a bienniel so each plant lasts two years. It has leaves to eat both years - and in late spring of the second year copious quantities of tender shoots appear, similar to sprouting broccoli but with a much more subtle flavour. Keep picking and the plant keeps producing for several months, even beyond midsummer. And then you can save the seed for next year.
Freegle groups in Cumbria have a great partnership with the Waste Prevention Team at Cumbria County Council. They help us run events and we help them by reducing the amount going to waste. Together, we were shortlisted for the partnership award at the LARAC awards 2015.
The council team have supported Freegle in many ways, including helping at many Freegle Give and Take events across Eden District and now spreading further afield to Kendal and Barrow, with one planned for Whitehaven.
Freegle volunteer Chris gives his cardigan a trendy elbow patch - OK he darns a hole as best he can! And out of the blue, has to fix the downstairs loo.
And have a look at a video of many things that have been Freegled during 2016. What can you do to save the world's resources in 2017 - apart from using Freegle of course!