Axminster’s first repair cafe declared a smash hit

PUBLISHED: 13:35 20 February 2020 | UPDATED: 13:35 20 February 2020

Axminster Town Clerk Hilary Kirkcaldie with her mended coathanger. Picture: Lynda Powell

Axminster Town Clerk Hilary Kirkcaldie with her mended coathanger. Picture: Lynda Powell


Despite atrocious weather Axminster’s first Repair Café went down a storm.

Kevin Glover (right) fixing a beard trimmer for a customer. Picture: Tom MoranKevin Glover (right) fixing a beard trimmer for a customer. Picture: Tom Moran

Residents braved high winds and the rain of Storm Dennis to take their broken possessions to be fixed at the Guildhall on Saturday (February 15).

Initially planned as a one-off event, it was such a success it will now be repeated every month.

Forty-six items were repaired and more than £200 was raised to help cover the costs of future cafes.

Amongst the broken items were food mixers, lamps, coats, garden tools, hoovers and chairs.

Town Clerk Hilary Kirkcaldie took along a 50-year-old wooden coat hanger from the town's former Dawkins store. Volunteer menders were able to fix its loose hook.

The oldest item repaired was an antique chair dating back more than 100 years.

Dan Powell, Axminster Repair Café co-ordinator, said: "Despite the wild weather, we were delighted to welcome so many residents and help them repair their broken household items.

"After the success of our first event, we have big plans to offer workshops for people to learn new skills as well as getting items repaired by our very skilled volunteers. We will now meet every month."

Axminster Mayor Anni Young, who supported the event with a donation of mayoral cash, said: "I am thrilled that Axminster now has its own Repair Cafe, which despite the weather, was well supported.

"The whole principle of fixing rather than replacing things is one that really fits with the council's declaration of a climate emergency and our desire to reduce waste and our carbon footprint.

"On a personal note my clock was brought back to life and next month hopefully they will revive a beloved lamp."

Axminster Repair Cafe will next meet on Saturday, March 21 at The Guildhall from 11am to 2pm.

In the meantime organisers are looking for volunteer menders. If you have skills in needlework, electrics, woodwork or other areas email them at

Future Axminster Repair Café dates at the Guildhall - all on Saturdays between 11am and 2pm are: April 18, May 16, June 20, July 18, September 12, October 17 and November 14.

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