How Welsh communities have saved over £60,000 on just TWO household items

Updated: Jul 21

Benthyg cymru is in the business of borrowing. Our new report shows staggering figures on how just how much money and carbon communities can save by borrowing instead of buying.

Do you ever wonder why you bought that expensive piece of DIY kit that you only used once? Or seen your neighbours out cutting the grass and questioned the wisdom of everyone in the street owning individual lawnmowers?

The team at Benthyg Cymru have been working on a way to help communities share resources by borrowing instead of buying, to save money and reduce their carbon footprint as well as reducing clutter in sheds and cupboards across the country.

This social enterprise has been supporting communities to set up a network of ‘Libraries of Things’ (LoTs) - places where people can donate stuff they own but don’t need and borrow things they need but don’t own. Enthusiasm for this concept has escalated quickly in the last couple of years as people are looking for easy ways to live more sustainably and save money in the process.

With 8 locations now open across the country and a further 10 in the pipeline, Wales’ Library of Things network has recorded 1681 borrows between October 2021 and June 2022.

Benthyg Cymru has calculated that by borrowing the two most popular items – pressure washers and carpet cleaners – local communities have saved over nine tons of carbon and over £60,000.

Pressure washers and carpet cleaners are just the tip of the iceberg - most LoTs have hundreds of items to borrow, and the network is on a mission to make sure communities can get the things they need. Next time you’re hovering over the ‘buy now’ button, remember to search the Benthyg Cymru network to see if you could borrow instead, helping the planet as well as your pocket.

Becky Harford, Benthyg Cymru Director and co-founder said:

“We’re blown away by what the network has achieved, and these figures confirm the difference Libraries of Things are making to peoples’ lives.

One family we spoke to told us that they wouldn’t have been able to go on holiday if they hadn’t been able to borrow camping gear at low cost.

We have ambitious plans to make low-cost borrowing more accessible to everyone in Wales, wherever they are.”