UK’s biggest reuse centre hits 50,000 items repaired and resold

Renew hub

The UK’s biggest reuse and repair facility has renovated and resold more than 50,000 items in its first year, which it says has diverted over 500 tonnes of material from going to landfill.

The Renew Hub, based at Trafford Park in Greater Manchester, says it has created 20 new jobs and it is now launching its own non-profit online shop to sell antiques, furniture, and collectables.

The Renew Hub is a 5000m2 operation that brings together mechanics, qualified technicians, specialist tradespeople, charities, and social enterprises to repair, recycle, reuse, and sell preloved items that would have gone to waste across nine of the boroughs of Greater Manchester.

The Hub proves that much of what you think is irreparable can actually be repaired

It says that items are donated or set aside at all of the household waste recycling centres in Greater Manchester and brought to the Hub for refurbishment and resale through an online shop and three shops located at household waste recycling centres in Oldham, Salford, and Trafford.

The online shop includes pieces of furniture and antiques alongside more unusual items. The facility says it is almost ready to welcome visitors to use as a community space, education facility, and event venue in the coming months.

The Renew Hub says that all proceeds from the sale of preloved items go towards the Recycle for Greater Manchester Community Fund and the Greater Manchester Mayor’s Charity, which it says benefits local people and community groups working towards reducing waste, recycling, and reuse.

Among the items sold in the Hub’s first year are 1,984 electronic items, 953 bikes, 745 pieces of soft furniture and 5,287 pieces of hard furniture.

The Renew Hub represents a major opportunity to change the way we reuse, recycle, and cut emissions from waste

The Renew Hub says it has already sold 360 of the 500 tonnes of donated items via the traditional shops and 65 tonnes have gone directly to charities across Greater Manchester to support people on low incomes and in crisis.

The facility says the entire project has provided 20 new jobs in the green sector and is supporting many schemes including apprenticeships and a programme with Recycling Lives – a charity and social enterprise, with an aim of reducing homelessness and reoffending by supporting men and women into stable housing and employment.

GMCA Lead for the Green City-Region and Waste and Recycling, Cllr Martyn Cox, said: “We have a big target to hit in Greater Manchester in terms of going carbon neutral by 2038, and the Renew Hub represents a major opportunity to change the way we reuse, recycle, and cut emissions from waste.

“We need to be thinking about the things we throw away, and the Hub proves that much of what you think is irreparable can actually be repaired. It can be used and loved again with the help of our skilled teams and partners upcycling furniture, repairing bikes and washing machines, and generally seeing the potential in someone else’s unwanted items.

“That ethos of a more circular economy doesn’t just mean cutting waste and reusing items but also making sure that what happens at the Hub benefits people and projects here in Greater Manchester.

“We’re supporting charities and community groups that are rehoming people in need, providing quality goods that actually have a long life left in them, and our shops are offering an alternative to expensive brand new products for local residents to access. It’s our hope that people across the country will see the difference being made here, and think twice the next time they plan to throw something away.”

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