Meet The Menders

Brian Mitchell
An action shot, assisting Merstham’s Repair Café Seamstress, in the repair of a 1930s Singer sewing machine with an electrical conversion. The sewing machine is nearly 100 years old and as good as new.

I trained in electronic engineering, qualifying as a technician in the RAF, progressing to Project, and finally, Asset Management in civvy street. I am now retired and keep myself busy with DIY, tinkering and fixing “stuff”. A satisfaction I never had as a manager – “Pass me the screwdriver”.

I have been a repairer at Merstham Repair Café, in Surrey, for 5 years. Repaired items of note are vacuum cleaners, sewing machines (see above), keyboards, buggies, record players and bicycles. Not all electronic, but I will have a go at fixing just about anything.

Trowbridge has been my home for 2 years, moving in before lockdown and waiting for a Repair Café to pop up and meet the friendly townspeople.

If you have a “dodgy switch”, “it used to move”, “it was faster than this”, “it worked 40 years ago” and it needs some TLC, bring it down the Trowbridge Repair Café, and we will see what we can do.

Scott Dingley
I have been Portable Appliance Testing (PAT) since 1995 in Wiltshire and surrounding counties. The service that I offer is to ensure that appliances are safe and suitable for the purpose for which they are intended as recommended by the Health & Safety Executive and the IET. This also ensures that businesses and organisations comply with The Electricity at Work Regulations, the Health and Safety at Work Act and comply with their public and employee insurance requirements.

Additionally, I can help with replacement of cables and rewiring of appliances, replacement plugs and fuses.

I see far too many appliances discarded due to upgrades and frivolous purchases, (Aldi and Lidl middle aisle is one of the worst culprits for people’s impulse purchasing). So, it would be nice to see wasted appliances get usage as opposed to becoming landfill.

SRD Portable Appliance Testing

07791 123031

Jem Hobbs
I’ve been working self-employed in the world of conservation for 20 years now. I am a trained stone mason and have concentrated predominantly on stone sculpture, but this has also led to repairing plasterwork and ceramic antiquities. Using traditional remodelling techniques, mould making and repairing I hope to be able to help at the Repair Café with:

  •  piecing back together fragments of broken items such as a precious plant pot, bowl, vase, or antique ceramics
  • fixing broken pieces, bases, remodelling lost parts of Sculpture, 3-dimensional figurative art, antique porcelain or stoneware incl. marble, slate, limestone etc
  • and anything in-between!

There’s is usually a way that something precious can be repaired.

I think a repair café is a great idea and hope my skills can come into good use.



Teri Stout
Our grandparents were probably the most ardent advocates of reuse and mend, and I think they knew a thing or two about being thrifty.  In today’s economic climate, we too need to think a little more wisely about our clothing and its cost per wear, how sustainable our clothing is today and its impact on our environment.

We all love a ‘bargain’ from a well-known cheap high street store, but why buy loads of cheap clothing there when all you have to do is pop down to your local charity shop and pick up a bargain? Charity shops are well known for being able to pick up designer names at a fraction of their original price tag, often much of it barely worn.

Over my 50 plus years of sewing, I have been brought clothing from clever shoppers where they might like me to shorten a skirt, dress or trousers, or maybe it’s a little big on the shoulders and could do with a tuck here or there to make the fit perfect? All these things are possible with a little knowhow and a sewing machine.

How many unworn garments do you have in your wardrobe that with the right tweak here or there would become much loved wearable garments again?  Has one of your skirts, dresses, trousers got a split seam? The hem come down? Needs a new zip, perhaps a button has come off and you don’t know how to sew one on?  I will be happy to answer these questions and more, and even maybe fix for your garment while you wait at the upcoming Trowbridge Repair Café!

Liam Breteton
Hi, my name is Liam. I am a local organic Gardener who likes to keep his tools sharp! It is something I have been doing for a few years for myself and I am now offering the service to my existing gardening clients, as well as sharpening tools on site at the Hilperton Garden Centre, ‘The Nursery’. I am also a beginner Beekeeper and keen Re-Wilder!

Adam Leitch
I’m keen to do what I can to help and encourage the local community to use Cycles over Motor Vehicles in and around our town. I’m a keen cyclist and as well as the obvious environmental benefits I am very aware of the huge benefits to both physical and mental health cycling can provide.

A poorly functioning bike can be both an excuse and a limit on realising those benefits.

I will be able to carry out all kinds of checks, adjustments and assements of anything pedal powered (inc E -Bikes) to help people continue cycling. Gear and brake adjustments, safety checks, tightening of loose parts; basically, anything that doesn’t require new parts fitting. If a bike needs more than this, I will advise accordingly and would be happy to provide a no obligation quote.

A2B Cycle Repair

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