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Fix-it TV – which is your favourite?

As a new restoration (or, to be more accurate, re-purposing) programme – Saved and Remade – comes to BBC2, UKMSA Trustee Chris Lee reviews four mainstays from the lockdown daytime TV schedules.

Of the four in the frame – The Repair Shop and Money for Nothing (both BBC), Find It, Fix It, Flog It and Mend it for Money (both Channel 4) – The Repair Shop stands alone in never mentioning that dirty word, money. But I tend to feel all four undervalue the time and skill that goes into each restoration job. These are top craftspeople and I suspect the owners would think twice if they had to pay the market rate for their time (in fact, they pay nothing).

Personally, I’m interested in the waste-reducing potential of reclaiming, repairing and restoring items. While Money for Nothing and Find It, Fix It, Flog It both have an underlying one-person’s-waste-is-another’s-treasure theme, none of the four programmes are explicit about our wasteful consumer lifestyles. This is probably too big an issue to address on daytime TV; a theme for a different kind of repair programme maybe?

I’m interested in the waste-reducing potential of reclaiming, repairing and restoring items

I enjoy all four programmes and aim to get a few project ideas from each, as well as learning a bit about techniques such as upholstery, smithing, and leatherwork. In this respect, I think The Repair Shop does this best, but I acknowledge it has the luxury of a full 60-minutes, without ad breaks, to do so.          

My personal favourite is Mend it for Money, mainly because I played a small part in the start-up of the furniture restoration business of one of the regular repairers.  That said, I commend them all for promoting the value of creatively keeping items in use for longer.

For a two-part review of the four TV programmes, go to https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2021/03/26/repair-restore-review-part-1

Chris Lee.