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Repair culture thrives in the capital due to slower pace of pandemic life

  • New findings show throwaway culture is becoming a thing of the past – 93% of people in the capital repaired something in the past year (compared to 72% in 2020)
  • A quarter of Londoners say a slower lifestyle, enforced by the pandemic, has led them to repair more – with 28% of Londoners saying they’ve taught themselves to repair during this time
  • London’s second Repair Week takes place 14 – 20 March, offering Londoners tips, tutorials and techniques to help repair more themselves – or find local repair businesses to do it for them
  • More than 40 organisations across London are taking part in the week, including sponsors Primark and Currys, as well as more than 20 of London’s councils

Ahead of London’s second Repair Week, new research by London Recycles has shown that the pandemic has accelerated more of a repair culture, with a quarter (25%) of Londoners saying they’re repairing more because of their slower lifestyle enforced by the pandemic.

While repair services may have been more difficult to access during this time, this didn’t stop people in the capital – 28% have used the time to teach themselves how to fix things, a figure that increases to nearly a third (31%) among 25-34-year-olds.

With 75% of Londoners believing we need to repair more to help tackle the climate emergency, findings suggest many are doing just that, with nine in ten people (93%) repairing something in the past year – a significant increase on the 72% figure reported ahead of the capital’s last Repair Week in 2020.

However, findings also indicate that 1 in 5 Londoners don’t feel confident mending a hole in clothing; so the launch of London Recycles’ second Repair Week on 14th-20th March provides the perfect opportunity to help more people learn and grow their confidence.

The week is being sponsored this year by Primark, who are hosting nine ‘Love it for Longer’ repair workshops in their Hammersmith, Oxford Street East and Westfield stores, and Currys, who are offering discounts on their in-store repair service throughout the week. A wide range of other organisations, including TRAID, Crisis and Ted Baker, are supporting Repair Week by running events or sharing tips, tutorials and techniques. With more than 20 of London’s councils already signed up, people will also be offered the chance to find local repair businesses to do their repairing for them.

Lynne Walker, Director of Primark Cares at Primark, said:  

We are delighted to partner with ReLondon for Repair Week and to see so many Londoners, particularly young people, learning how to give their clothes a new lease of life through repair. We’re proud of the quality of our clothes we sell and we work hard to ensure our customers can wear our clothes time and again. These instore repair workshops build on our ambitions to give clothes a longer life and we hope customers will come away with some useful tips and advice on how they can love their clothes for longer.

Dean Kramer, Services Director at Currys, said:  

As the nation’s largest tech retailer, we want to ensure tech is fulfilling its full potential and has a life as long as possible, that’s why it’s important to us that our customers know the options when their tech breaks. We’re excited to be part of London Repair Week and want to use this opportunity to shout about the fact we have 1000s of experts ready to repair and help tech live on, in-store and online. We offer repair services, no matter where the tech was bought. We also have trade-in and recycling services, which means customers old tech can be refurbished and reused should they need to upgrade. Over the coming weeks, we’ll have discounted repair services, as well as recycling and trade-in events running in our stores.

Deputy Mayor for Environment and Energy, Shirley Rodrigues, said:  

In tackling the climate emergency and preserving our precious natural resources, it is vital that we take better care of the things we already own. While it is important that we continue to recycle as much as we can, we must prevent valuable materials from becoming rubbish in the first place.

It’s fantastic to hear that so many Londoners are embracing the art of repair and learning a new skill at the same time. Repair Week will build on this momentum, supporting even more Londoners to learn to repair as well as highlighting all the excellent repair businesses we have across London. This is a hugely positive initiative that contributes towards the Mayor’s ambitions to make London a zero waste city and a net zero carbon city by 2030.

The wide range of activity taking place across Repair Week includes:

  • Bike fixing workshops from Dr Bike, Camden Council and others
  • Zip workshops, denim decorating and upcycling sessions with Primark, Tower Hamlets Council and Crisis
  • Furniture upcycling with Petit Miracles in Shepherds Bush

To find out more about Repair Week, see what’s happening and for more information, visit:


For more information, contact Charlotte Francis: 

Notes to eds:

The survey was conducted by Censuswide with 1,003 respondents in Greater London aged 18+ and took place from 24 to 28 January 2022. The survey also found that:

  • 1 in 5 (22%) Londoner’s say the pandemic has meant they have used household items more and therefore repairing more
  • Three quarters (74%) of Londoners would repair more items including clothing, electricals and furniture if they knew how
  • 61% of Londoner’s would repair more if they knew of local repair shops
  • 63% of Londoner’s don’t know much about how to repair household items and goods and 50% of Londoner’s don’t know where to get household items and goods repaired

London Recycles is London’s recycling campaign, helping people across the capital recycle more and waste less. It is supported by the Mayor of London, delivered to help London boroughs increase their household recycling rates, and designed and run by ReLondon. Find out more at

  • ReLondon is a partnership of the Mayor of London and the London boroughs to improve waste and resource management and transform the city into a leading low carbon circular economy.
  • ReLondon’s team delivers tailored support to government, businesses and citizens. The organisation works to reduce waste, increase recycling and accelerate London’s transition to a low carbon circular economy by:
    • Empowering London’s boroughs and businesses by exploring, testing and proving transformative innovations with them
    • Advocating for policy or regulatory change
    • Encouraging behaviour change at all levels
  • ReLondon was established as a statutory Board under the Greater London Authority Act 2007 as the London Waste and Recycling Board (LWARB)
  • Find out more at:
  • Primark is an international retailer that offers customers fashion, beauty and homeware at great value prices. Founded in Ireland in 1969 under the Penneys name, Primark is in 14 countries across Europe and North America, and is still growing: Today, it has over 400 stores and employs more than 70,000 people.
  • Primark is committed to a better future for people and the planet and is working to become a more sustainable business. This includes joining the United Nations’ Fashion Charter (UNFCCC), supporting the Charter’s net-zero ambition and committing to a 30% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2030. Alongside this, the business has signed up to Textiles 2030, the WRAP initiative to accelerate the fashion and textile industry’s move towards circularity and system change in the UK.
  • Primark continues to expand its Primark Cares label – clothing and other products which are made using recycled or more sustainable materials or manufacturing methods – and which now accounts for more than a quarter of all clothing sold.
  • Currys plc is a leading omnichannel retailer of technology products and services, operating online and through 832 stores in 8 countries. It ‘Helps Everyone Enjoy Amazing Technology’, however they choose to shop. In the UK&I it trades as Currys; in the Nordics under the Elkjøp brand and as Kotsovolos in Greece. In each of these markets it is the market leader, employing 33,000 capable and committed colleagues.
  • Currys’ full range of services and support makes it easy for customers to discover, choose, afford and enjoy the right technology for them, throughout their lives. The Group’s operations are supported by a sourcing office in Hong Kong, state-of-the-art repair facilities and an extensive distribution network, enabling fast and efficient delivery to stores and homes.
  • Currys’ vision, to help everyone enjoy amazing technology, has a powerful social purpose at its heart. The organisation believes in the power of technology to improve lives, help people stay connected, productive, healthy, and entertained.
  • Currys is a leader in giving technology a longer life through repair, recycling and reuse. The business is reducing its impact on the environment in operations and wider value chain and will achieve net zero emissions by 2040. It offers customers products that help them save energy, reduce waste and save water, partners with charitable organisations to bring the benefits of amazing technology to those who might otherwise be excluded.

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