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The Renew Hub

UK’s biggest reuse centre hits milestone of 50,000 preloved items repaired and resold
Katie Hill - Editor-in-Chief, My Green Pod
The Renew Hub, Manchester

The UK’s biggest reuse and repair facility has renovated and resold more than 50,000 items in its first year – diverting over 500 tonnes of material from landfill.

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

Refurb and resale

The 5000m2 operation 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.

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 unique pieces of furniture and antiques alongside more unusual items for those looking for something different, without the hefty price tag.

‘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.’

GMCA Lead for the Green City-Region and Waste and Recycling

A community space

The facility is almost ready to welcome visitors, who will soon be able to use it as a community space, education facility and striking event venue.

All proceeds from the sale of preloved items go towards the Recycle for Greater Manchester Community Fund and the Greater Manchester Mayor’s Charity, benefiting local people directly 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.

‘At SUEZ we operate a triple bottom line approach to everything we do to ensure that our work benefits people and the planet. Our reuse project in Greater Manchester with the development of the Renew shops and Hub  is a perfect example of this, saving items that would have previously gone to waste and benefiting local people at the same time through the money raised.

‘We’re at a key milestone for this project with the launch of our online shop and the ability for the Hub to be used for education and events. That alongside the sheer volume of preloved items we’re processing – that go to people who really need them in this current economic climate – is a triumph and we can’t thank everybody enough who is partnering with us and sharing their skills to enable this to succeed.’

Regional manager for SUEZ recycling and recovery UK

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

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.

Click here to visit the online shop.

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