Published date: 16 November 2018

Upcycling is leading the way in north London

North London Waste Authority (NLWA), in partnership with Groundwork London, are, this Sunday (18 November 2018) hosting London’s only free event dedicated to Upcycling.

Tickets for the third London Upcycling Show have already sold out in advance of the event.  That’s 500 Londoners coming along to learn about - and share their passion for - reuse, repair and upcycling.  This shows that upcycling is capturing people’s imagination as a sustainable, fashionable and creative way to personalise their homes.  

Over 200 Londoners came to last year’s London Upcycling Show - which directly saved 559kg of furniture which would otherwise have been thrown away.  This year attendance is set to more than double that number.  

Whilst we know people recognise the importance of recycling, it is easy to wonder whether reuse, repairing and upcycling is something equally as important. However,42% of people say they’d like to learn the skills to do so, according to research carried out on behalf of NLWA1.  

NLWA see the fact that the event has sold out already as a huge positive.  Councillor Clyde Loakes, Chair of NLWA said,

NLWA works hard at promoting the waste hierarchy which values waste prevention and reuse as the best options for unwanted items and disposal to landfill as the worst. As an Authority we have a proactive waste prevention programme - the London Upcycling Show forms an important part of that.  It’s great to see that the popularly of this event has grown over the last three years that we have been delivering it and I think that this is a good indication of the growing interest in and popularity of upcycling. There is a real desire from people to learn more about reuse, repair and upcycling.  It goes to show that throwing away less is not just what the framework for wastes management advocates, but also what people increasingly want.  Londoners want to learn the skills to enable them to repair and upcycle household items and it is important that those of us with the responsibility for managing waste take a lead in fulfilling these resident’s needs.’

The London Upcycling Show is taking place this year on Sunday 18 November, 11am – 2pm and is returning to the Walthamstow Assembly Hall (E17 4JF).  The event is being run during the European Week for Waste Reduction (17 to 25 November) and is funded by North London Waste Authority and being delivered by environmental and social regeneration charity Groundwork London.

The family-friendly event will showcase upcycling, and includes practical workshops, child friendly activities, interactive demonstrations, a live ‘Create’ upcycling challenge and exhibitions. The show will feature an upcycling competition in which 25 north London residents from Barnet, Camden, Enfield, Hackney, Haringey, Islington and Waltham Forest will display an upcycled item of furniture, rescued from waste.  This competition will be judged by Ground Force star Tommy Walsh, ‘Love your home and garden’ presenter Kunle Barker, ‘The Home Genie’ presenter and blogger Georgina Burnett and ‘Upcycling Hour’ creator Chris Billinghurst.

It is estimated that 10 million household items, from sofas to wardrobes, are thrown away every year, 3 million of which could be re-used. The London Upcycling Show aims to encourage north Londoners to consider upcycling, reusing or repairing furniture before throwing it away; demonstrating that all it takes is a splash of paint and a slice of imagination to give items destined for waste a new lease of life.

It is hoped that we all learn to spread the upcycling, reuse and repair message even further.  If pre-attendance figures for this event are anything to go by, then people want to learn more, and we should be encouraging the sharing of this important waste prevention approach as much we can. 

For further information about the London Upcycling Show visit