The Rotary Club of Thame asked the public to check their sheds and lofts and bring their old tools in the main car park of Thame near the Market House on Saturday morning 30th May between 10:00 and 13:00.

A van full of tools has been taken to TFSR near Southampton by a team of 3 Rotarians: Erroll Bateman, Bob Livings and Linda Emery.

Every year the Rotary Club of Thame runs a collection point for unwanted tools. These are then taken to 'Tools for Self Reliance' at Netley Marsh near . The latter are a charity which refurbishes them and sends them to NGO's in . The NGO's then distributes them FREE to men and women which helps them to obtain work. 

Rotarian Erroll Bateman said: "The Rotary Club of Thame would like to encourage everyone to check their garages and lofts and bring their unwanted items to us to give the craftsmen in Africa a chance to put their skills to good use for the benefit of their community as we believe it is a worthy cause."

Here are a few examples of items which were collected:

  • good quality Singer round-bobbin hand machines because spare parts are easily available in the UK and all over Africa for these old but solidly-built machines
  • electrical sewing machines. These need to be in good working order and be capable of zig-zag stitching and embroidery. A foot controller and instruction manual, though preferable, are not essential

      plumbing tools especially heavy duty floor-standing pipe benders

  • arc welders (240V, stick type) plus accessories
  • carpentry tools especially large carpenters vices, metal jack planes, tri-planes and drawknives
  • building tools, especially builders squares and corner trowels
  • engineering and metalworking tools especially HSS twist drills, metric taps & dies and hand-operated bench grinders
  • bicycle repair tools especially spoke spanners
  • shoe repair tools especially skiving knives
  • auto-mechanics tools especially heavy duty foot-pumps, tyre pressure gauges and piston ring compressors
  • electrical repair tools especially multi-meters and desoldering equipment
  • industrial/professional quality power tools especially heavy duty drills and bench grinders
  • blacksmiths tools especially anvils and leg vices
  • overlockers

These collected items were taken to the very well equipped TFSR depot at Netley Marsh where they are to be refurbished by a group of retired engineers before being packed into containers for shipment to African countries. From the port of arrival they are to be taken by members of the organisation to villages to help the people become more self-reliant. 

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