REPURPOSE LIFE - REPURPOSE - equipping community groups in estates to reuse more, clear fly tipping and improve their local environment.

LIFE13 ENV/UK/000493

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Contact details:

Contact person: Mike WEBSTER
Tel: 442073244702
Fax: 2073244700
Email: mike@lcrn.org.uk

Project description:


The United Kingdom, in common with all other EU states, has placed the responsibility for collection and management of waste on local and regional government. Over the last 20 years or so, this role has moved from one of simple waste collection to the introduction of recycling services and, latterly, an increased focus on re-use and waste prevention. This has been delivered with varying degrees of success, with one particularly challenging area being the provision of such services in high- and low-rise housing estates. In such urban estates, re-use levels of key household products, such as clothes and electrical equipment, are currently very low. High levels of illegal dumping also occur in urban areas in the UK, which contributes to the low levels of environmental quality in many of these areas.


The RE-PURPOSE LIFE project was developed in response to the flagship initiative “A resource-efficient Europe” under the EU 2020 strategy, and translates its commitments into a transferable approach for establishing locally-developed, enterprise-led solutions for re-use in social housing contexts. The project aims to support community groups who wish to create their own social enterprises for turning redundant spaces into re-use hubs for the collection, storage and repair of bulky re-use items, which provide an alternative to illegal dumping. This will be complemented by an in-depth engagement and behaviour-change programme to tackle the root causes of illegal dumping and encourage positive environmental action.

The project’s specific objectives are as follows:

  • To increase re-use in target estates by building links with local community re-use organisations, tenants and residents associations; training community groups on how to collect, repair and re-use bulky waste items; building community collection, repair and re-use hubs in unused spaces within estates; and offering empty flat clearance services in agreement with local re-use organisations;
  • To reduce incidences of illegal dumping on target estates by enabling community groups to clear bulky waste themselves and identify suitable items for re-use; by raising awareness of illegal dumping among community groups in estates; and by enabling communities to identify problem areas and individuals; and
  • To increase skills and income for community groups on target estates by establishing re-use depots or repair centres; training community groups in repair skills; linking re-use and recycling project activities with accredited training; setting up outlets to derive income and to supply affordable goods; and offering a repair service for household goods.
  • Expected results:

  • Increased re-use in target estates by 25%;
  • Reduced incidences of illegal dumping on target estates by 25%;
  • Increased skills and income for community groups on target estates;
  • The creation of at least five appropriate re-use depots/repair centres on estates using redundant space;
  • Agreeing a partnership with existing London Re-use Network member community re- users/repairers to train community groups in repair skills;
  • Supporting the creation of at least three financially sustainable pop-up shops or other outlets for community groups to derive income and to supply affordable goods to incoming tenants;
  • Ensuring that accredited training sessions linking re-use and recycling are set up and freely available; and
  • Creating a repair service for household goods in at least one estate.



Environmental issues addressed:


Information - Governance - Environmental training - Capacity building
Waste - Waste use
Waste - Municipal waste (including household and commercial)


environmentally responsible behaviour‚  waste management‚  urban area‚  waste recycling‚  environmental training‚  repair business

Natura 2000 sites

Not applicable



Coordinator Groundwork London
Type of organisation NGO-Foundation
Description Groundwork London (GWL) is an environmental regeneration charity that has been operating in London for nearly 20 years. GWL currently delivers over 600 projects each year, the majority in the Capital’s most disadvantaged communities, spanning across our three thematic areas:
  • Improving people’s prospects – delivering support to increase the confidence, skills, well-being and employability of those furthest removed from the labour market, in particular young people
  • Promoting greener living and working – helping people and businesses learn more about their environmental impact and act responsibly to reduce natural resource use and improve their health; and
  • Creating better places – supporting people to work collectively to make their surroundings greener, safer and healthier and be actively involved in the way decisions are made about services in their area.
  • Partners London Community Resource Network (LCRN), United Kingdom Middlesex University, United Kingdom


    Project reference LIFE13 ENV/UK/000493
    Duration 21-JUL-2014 to 30-SEP -2017
    Total budget 1,122,721.00 €
    EU contribution 534,642.00 €
    Project location South East (UK)(United Kingdom)


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    Project description   Environmental issues   Beneficiaries   Administrative data   Read more   Print   PDF version