The Wickes Community Programme: a new type of Library?
Libraries of things are popping up everywhere. The idea originated in the USA, but now there are around 50 libraries of things in the UK. They offer local communities the opportunity to simply ‘borrow’ the items they might need for a project or event and return them when they’re done.
Items could include DIY and gardening tools, camping equipment, sewing machines and even a pizza oven! Items vary depending on the library.
One of the latest libraries is Letchworth Garden Shed, which opened its doors to the community after two years of planning. Watch the video here.
Donations came from local people and businesses like home improvement retailer Wickes, whose community programme donated several electrical tools and equipment, including a Karcher Jet Washer.
Andy McLean, founder of Letchworth Garden Shed said: “We are overwhelmed with the support for the Garden Shed from businesses like Wickes and are so grateful for the products we have received. There’s clearly a need for it in Letchworth, as we have already had 150 people sign up, and we would encourage anyone interested to pop in and see us. We have a strong sustainability goal and have several volunteers on hand to fix broken items, much like the Repair Shop but on a more practical level rather than emotional.”
Daniel Allen, Chair of North Herts District Council said: “We have been really lucky to have companies, like Wickes, make donations to us and supply the items for this Library of Things. In Letchworth, we have a lot of social housing, so this shop will help people get items such as garden equipment, tools, and kitchen equipment, which they can keep using again and again and then bring back to the shop for the rest of the community to use as well.”
The Wickes Community Programme is open to all local community groups seeking help for improvement projects, and any groups interested in applying for a donation should go online or head into their local store to speak to the manager.
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