Black Isle Repair Cafe

July 2024

Job Opportunity - Repair Cafe Co-ordinator

Christian MacLean writes

We have been hoping to appoint someone to start later this summer, to help us develop our work and to help manage the growing amount of organisation (due to the popularity of the Repair Cafe). We're delighted that, thanks to initial support from Transition Black Isle, we're now able to recruit for the post. While it is initially for a year we'll be looking for funding to extend that. The post is home based and ideal for anyone who enjoys working with people, is self-motivated and is committed to different ways of working to address the climate crisis. 

That description fits so many of the Repair Cafe's fantastic volunteers-so please get in touch if you're interested, or mention it to anyone you know who might like this opportunity.

Job description  -  applications by 29 July


Summer break - back in September

After the very successful June event on a glorious sunny afternoon on 1st June, the Repair Cafe is taking a break until September.  The next cafe is likely to be on 7 September at the Academy Theatre, Fortrose, and the possibility of including a swap stall is being considered.


More information will follow nearer the time.

For updates on our events, follow the Transition Black Isle Facebook page.

ALREADY A VOLUNTEER? Scroll to bottom for Volunteer quicklinks!



What is the Black Isle Repair Café?

Save money and the planet by bringing your repairs to our monthly Black Isle Repair Café. The café roams the community spaces of the Black Isle with the aim of making repair and reuse more accessible to residents. So far, we have visited Avoch, Cromarty, Culbokie, Fortrose, North Kessock, Munlochy and Muir of Ord - and we just celebrated our 1st birthday! Read more about what we have acheived in our first year in this article in the Ross-shire Journal.

The café is run by volunteers and operates via donations for both the repairs and the coffee and cakes - and some have said it's the best cup of tea they've ever tasted! 

It is a collaboration between Transition Black Isle and the Black Isle Men's Shed with support from TBI's Project Officer for the Highland Community Waste Partnership.


What type of repairs can be done at the Black Isle Repair Café?

It depends on the volunteers we have available at each event but we usually manage to offer sewing, electrical and digital repairs as well as knife and tool sharpening, general repairs and bike repairs and checks.

As a general rule if you can carry it, we can try to fix it at the repair cafe! We aim to complete repairs in around 20 minutes but can advise on next steps for more complex repairs.

If you would like to help us prepare in advance for your repair or tell you if more complex repairs are possible, you can click here to fill out our (optional) PRE-REGISTRATION FORM.

What to expect when you visit the Black Isle Repair Café

Visitors to the cafe are welcomed in to register their repair (or collect their form if pre-registered) at the 'Triage desk', then they are directed to the appropriate repair station. Volunteer repairers are waiting with their sewing machines and tools but if there is a queue, you can enjoy coffee and cake in the cafe and your repairer will call your name when it is your turn.

But the repair café isn’t just about providing a repair service. A key part of its ethos is to demonstrate how the repair is done. The idea is for visitors to sit and watch how their repairer approaches the problem so visitors will hopefully feel more confident about sourcing components and attempting repairs in the future.

Here's how it works:

✅ All repairers are volunteers

✅ Aim to bring one item for repair (if not too busy more might be possible)

✅ Bring any spare parts if you know what is needed

✅ Do watch, learn & ask questions

✅ Please donate as you see fit

✅ Do watch, learn & ask questions

✅ All repairs carried out by volunteers at the Black Isle Repair Cafe are carried out at the visitors own risk.

Can I volunteer for the Black Isle Repair Cafe?

We would love to welcome more volunteers to our Black Isle Repair Café team. We have a brilliant bunch of folk from across the Black Isle, it's a lovely supportive atmosphere and a good craic.

You don't have to be a repairer to get in on the act, we also need help on the welcome desk (triage), the café (and baking), marketing and publicity.

We hold volunteer social evenings, so far we have had three 'bring and share' suppers and another planned for Autumn. We are supported by the Repair and Share Network (a project of Circular Communities Scotland) and we have access to training for repairs which we hope to take advantage of to enhance our skills offering.

We would like to offer a wider range of repairs or have local enthusiasts on hand to advise on some of the more 'BBC Repair Shop' style repairs, so please get in touch even if you're not sure you could make every cafe.

If you would like to sign up to be a volunteer, we have a form for that! Click here to notify us via Volunteer Sign Up Form (you only need to do this once). If you would rather send us an email you can contact Gillian, Christian and Rose by email at

Once you have joined us, we use a TeamUp calendar to sign up to the individual repair cafes, so we know who is doing what and which repairs we can offer at each event. You just need an email address to register / log-in to TeamUp: **See the VOLUNTEER QUICKLINKS at the bottom of this page for more info.

As part of the Highland Community Waste Partnership, TBI is helping prepare a Highland Repair Directory so please let us know if you would like to be listed there too.

When is the next Black Isle Repair Café?

Saturday 7 September:  1-4pm Fortrose Academy theatre.




For EXISTING VOLUNTEERS - Link to TEAMUP, the platform Black Isle Repair Cafe volunteers can use to sign up for each individual event. event**:

**N.B. If the event is set to allow Signup you'll see an option to sign-up to an event. Depending on using a computer or phone the Signup option may be towards the top or bottom of the page. 

For NEW VOLUNTEERS - Please do get in touch, we'd love to hear from you! You can join the Black Isle Repair Cafe volunteers using this form: Notify your skills - you only need to this once unless you want to update a previously submission.

If you would rather send us an email you can contact Gillian, Christian and Rose by email at


Latest News...

Forthcoming Events…

Saturday 20 July
10:00 Culbokie Community Market
Sunday 21 July
14:00 TBI Open garden Julie Gibson Munlochy
Saturday 27 July
10:00 North Kessock Community market
Saturday 10 August
NA      Black Isle Horticultural Society Summer Show 2024
NA      Cromarty Community Market
Saturday 17 August
NA      Culbokie Community Market
Monday 19 August
NA      Festival of Politics 2024 - to 23 August
Saturday 24 August
10:00 North Kessock Community market

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We are part of the rapidly expanding worldwide Transition Towns movement. The Black Isle is a peninsula of about 100 sq miles ENE of Inverness in Scotland, UK.