Some people are Guardian Readers. Some people are Daily Mail Readers. Some are Telegraph Readers. But I can't define myself by any of these newspapers, and increasingly like so many others I seem to get most of my news online. However, there is one exception. I am totally devoted to the North Devon Journal. I read it with fascination. People get into fights in Barnstaple, charities devoted to saving battery chickens hold fundraisers, sporting heroes from Instow bring home trophies from faraway Exeter. Without the North Devon Journal, all of this would happen... and I would not even know about it!
Anyway, I digress. What does this have to do with creative reuse of resources, you may ask? The advertisement pictured here appeared in the last issue, and it sums up what upcycling is all about.
If you happen to live in London, there's a brilliant charity run by Islington Council called Bright Sparks that helps young and unemployed people gain skills in electronics. You can take your broken fan / DVD player / kettle / clock radio to them and for a fiver they'll diagnose the problem. If they can fix your item easily, you don't pay anything more. If more time and materials are required, you cover that cost. Or if you just want to be rid of old electrical stuff, you can donate it to them to refurbish and sell in their shop. They fixed a switch on a metal lamp I inherited from my grandmother, and I feel it was well worth it to give them £5 in exchange for a future free from electric currents running through my body each time I switch the thing on and off.