FAQs

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The Shop

Like a library of books, a Library of Things (LoT) lends various physical items to its members in the local community.
Category: The Shop

You can find Share Frome at 3A the Bridge, Market Place, Frome BA11 1AR, opposite the Blue House. We are open; Monday, Wednesday and Friday 10.00 am to 4.00 pm and Saturday 10.00 am to 12 noon.

Category: The Shop

There are various differences between a hire shop and a Library of Things, specifically one set up like SHARE Frome:
– Our Library of Things is non-profit and aims to be a community action group, rather than a commercial enterprise;
– It contains a wide range of things, including many that a hire shop would not have;
– It aims to loan items out more cheaply than a hire shop would and thus to be affordable for anyone;
– We aim to be part of a change in economic behaviour that will reduce waste, through the Library itself and being involved in wider networks of events, campaigns and activities.

Category: The Shop

SHARE Frome is a social initiative by Edventure:Frome in association with Frome Town Council and the Cheese and Grain. The set-up of the shop was undertaken by a group of eight young people in just two months, as part of specialist training in community entrepreneurship, run by Edventure. Much help was given by the local community in the form of advice, expertise, time, donations, opinions and enthusiasm! In 2017, a new team of 6 Edventure students undertook the challenge of taking SHARE to the next level. With a revamp of the shop’s layout, appearance and storage space, as well as the introduction of a new volunteer scheme and social referral programme, the students turned SHARE into an even more impactful community enterprise in Frome. The shop is now under the management of Aliss and Sam, two Frome locals, and a team of hard-working volunteers.

Category: The Shop

Inventory

We have a wide range of items which can be useful and practical, but also fun and entertaining. These are our 10 categories:

  • Arts and Crafts– from sewing machines to glue guns
  • Baby and Children – from pushchairs to baby mobiles
  • Events – from projector screens to bunting
  • DIY – from drills to ladders
  • Gardening tools – from lawnmowers to hedge trimmers
  • Household and Garden – from vacuum cleaners to hammocks
  • Kitchen Equipment – from blenders to dehydrators
  • Leisure and Camping – from tents to metal detectors
  • Music, Media and Audio/Visual – from guitars to speakers
  • Sports and Games – from golf clubs to roller blades

View our full list of Things here: https://sharefrome.org/things/

Category: Inventory

We have a criteria for deciding what things we stock. However, if you are looking to declutter, we can take most items and put them in a sale to raise funds:

YES

  • Items that are clean, undamaged and in good working order
  • Useful items on our system that need replacing regularly (eg sanders)
  • Spares for our DIY items such as jigsaw blades and sandpaper

NO

  • Car seats and helmets 
  • Items that require a large amount of maintenance

SALE ONLY

  • Gas and petrol items
  • Duplicates of less popular items

If you are unsure as to whether we would like your donation, please give us a call or email. For items that we are specifically looking for, see our Wish List.

Category: Inventory

We source our Things from local donations, which means we are using what may otherwise be lying around not being used, or possibly even thrown away. This way, we can make the most of the lives of items, by using less things for longer periods, rather than more things for shorter periods. This helps reduce individual consumption, which not only helps the planet but also helps to develop the strength of the community. Sometimes these items come broken, but we try as hard as we can to fix them with our great team of repairers.

Occasionally we will also use the funds raised from your membership and borrowing, local business sponsorship, donations and sales profit to buy brand new or more expensive second hand items that we think will be useful to the community. Examples of these might be carpet cleaners, bell tents, gazebos, PA systems and more.

Category: Inventory
  • If you think Share Shop would benefit from it, have a look at our criteria above.
  • Repair it! We have a regular Repair Cafe, where you can bring your broken things. Keep a look on our website for the next event.
  • You can also post in a local Facebook group to ask for a repair expert.
  • Sell it or give it away online on sites like FreeCycle, Freegle, Gumtree, Ebay or local Facebook groups.
  • Give it to a charity shop
  • Recycle it – Look up your closest recycling centre. Check out what materials they accept, and any other restrictions before you make the trip.
Category: Inventory

Yes! If we think the item will be popular and borrowed often, we’ll either add to our wish list to see if anyone has one they can donate, or we will use our funds to buy a new or second hand one.

Category: Inventory

We consider the value of the item by it’s condition, how new it is, how much it cost to buy and how long someone might need to borrow it. We then decide on a ‘suggested minimum donation’ per borrow that allows members to save a substantial amount of money by borrowing instead of buying. Occasionally we will ask for a deposit ranging from £20-£60, to ensure higher value items are kept in good condition and to insure against misuse or theft. ‘Suggested minimum donation’ is the minimum donation we require to remain financially sustainable.

Category: Inventory

We ask borrowers to flag any damage they notice as soon as possible. This kicks off the repair process and also ensures the next borrower is not let down. To do small repairs like unblocking the pressure washer or replacing the jig saw blades, our small team of local volunteer fixers will try to do simple fixes. When an item is beyond a quick fix, we decide whether it is more efficient to have it professionally mended or simply to donate/sell or recycle it. We understand that items will break eventually and we don’t charge members for these types of breakages. However we do reserve the right to withhold funds if items are deemed to have been broken by serious misuse or neglect.

Category: Inventory

All electrical items are PAT-tested before they go out. In addition, as far as possible we test items to see if they work before they ‘go live’ on the catalogue. We ask previous borrowers if items are still in good working order when they return them. We loan all items in good faith believing that they work as intended. That said, things do sometimes fail, we sometimes may not spot an imperfection, and so on. In this case we would of course apologise and offer to refund the credit to your account. Please let us know of all the details so that we can deal with the problem as best we can.

Category: Inventory

Membership

You can either create your account online or by popping in to the shop and signing up manually.

Category: Membership

See our membership plans at https://sharefrome.org/membership/

Category: Membership

To borrow from Library of Things, you need to:

  • Be 18 or over.
  • Have an email, so we can send you receipts and important information about your borrow.
  • Sign the Liability Waiver included in the sign-up process.
  • Display a form of ID when you first use us.
Category: Membership

Nope – you can come from as far as you like! Sometimes its cheaper than buying a new item!

Category: Membership

Borrowing

We want to make borrowing fair, friendly and fun – without hidden catches and sneaky small print. That’s why it’s important that all our borrowers agree to these 5 simple rules of borrowing:

  • Bring the item back clean and tidy.
  • Bring the item back on time so the next borrower isn’t kept waiting, and to avoid late fees!
  • Make sure you know how to use the item properly by following the instructions (often displayed on the item’s listing in the online inventory, or by asking one of our volunteers for help in the shop).
  • Tell us about any damages immediately here so we can fix or replace in time for the next borrower.
  • Share your feedback, stories & ideas here so we can keep improving Library of Things for future borrowers – We love it when people post reviews online e.g. Facebook.
Category: Borrowing

You can make a reservation online by going into the inventory, signing in and clicking ‘Reserve’ on the item that you want. You can then select the dates on a calendar. If you want to add more items to this reservation, simply keep pressing ‘Reserve’ on the items you want and they will be put in a Reservation Cart in the top right corner. To complete the reservation, hover over the cart and click ‘Complete Reservation’. Alternatively, you can phone or drop into the Share Shop during opening hours to make a reservation or if you are having any issues reserving online and need us to complete it manually.

Category: Borrowing

Normally you will need to ‘borrow’ the consumables along with your item, but this is a small extra ‘suggested minimum donation’. See the item descriptions to see what is required.

Category: Borrowing

The default time for most items is two days. However, for the same amount you can request the borrow to last up to a week. There is no maximum borrowing time, so if you wanted an item for 3 weeks for example, you’d pay 3 times the suggested minimum donation. There are some items which have different loan lengths set e.g. Plant Propagators or Reusable Nappies are set at one month as nobody would borrow these for any shorter amount of time.

Category: Borrowing

The prices displayed next to each item on our inventory are our ‘suggested minimum donation’. All borrows from SHARE are essentially done via donation. The suggested minimum donation is the minimum amount we realistically need to be able to receive in order to be financially sustainable.

Category: Borrowing

There is no set limit to how many items you may borrow at one time.

Category: Borrowing

Log in to your account online, and click on your username in the top right corner. Click on ‘Reservations’. You can then find the reservation and click ‘Cancel’. If you are unsure, drop us a message via email or Facebook, or give us a call during our opening hours.

Category: Borrowing

Need to extend your loan? First, check nobody else has reserved it after you. If your item is available, you can select the days you need it for. If your item is booked, you’ll have to return it at the time you planned. If not, we will charge a daily late fee. We do this to encourage the items to be ready for other borrowers, who can see via the inventory when an item is due in.

Category: Borrowing

Our objective is to make borrowing fair, friendly and fun. We know damages happen, and that 99% of the time these aren’t intentional. We simply ask that borrowers are honest and let us know about any damages.

Category: Borrowing

As mentioned above, it is not always the borrowers fault and mistakes happen, but we ask that you are honest about what has happened so we can start looking for a replacement or fix. For higher value items that require a deposit, we reserve the right to keep this in order to replace the item.

Category: Borrowing

The first time you borrow from you will need to bring proof of who you are and of your address, e.g. a driving licence or passport. If you have neither of these and no other photographic proof of address we can accept two non-photographic forms of ID e.g. utility bills.

Category: Borrowing

Money

You can pay for your membership and make your borrowing donations via cash or card. Deposits must be taken in cash. For card payments we use a payment processing provider called Stripe. Stripe is a PCI Service Provider Level 1, which is the highest grade of payment processing security. If you are having difficulty making a payment, please contact us at [email protected] or 07983639611.

Category: Money

Public book libraries are free at the point of borrowing but they are paid for in your Council Tax. The Library of Things needs to cover its expenses.

Category: Money

Support Us

As well as the most obvious thing of becoming a member (Subscriber membership is the best way to support us) and borrowing from us, there are a few other things you can to support us:

  • You can volunteer with us, whether that’s in the shop or at one of our repair cafes. 
  • Spread the word about us and encourage others to sign up! Share us on social media and tell people about your borrowing experience.
Category: Support Us

We are in favour of attempts to waste less, move towards “zero waste” and develop the sharing economy. Beyond using the Library you can support our mission in your own life by making efforts to consume fewer things and waste less. Here are some ideas:

  • Share more things with neighbours/ friends/family 
  • Be more mindful about what you really need to buy .
  • Buy second-hand.
  • Buy good-quality things from ethical suppliers that will last longer than cheap alternatives.
  • Extend the life of your things by repairing them. If you don’t know how come along to one of our repair cafes and learn or have it done for you.
  • Don’t throw away your unwanted things if they could be reused or repurposed (try selling them, giving to us or to charity shops, or putting them on Freecycle).
  • You might encourage your workplace or other organisations you’re involved with to adopt some of these ideas as well.
Category: Support Us

Set Up Your Own LoT

Together with the London Library of Things and SHARE Oxford we set up ShareFest – an annual conference for Libraries of Things. Register your interest with us to attend the next one for us to be able to help you start up and continue the expansion of the network. We also have a ToolKit which answers many of the questions new Libraries of Things ask and outlines many of the pitfalls to avoid as well as things you can do to succeed. Please contact us to request this and we’ll ask for a donation on our Just Giving page in return.

Click & Collect

  1. Please do not enter the shop until there are no other customers in front of you. (If somebody is in front of you please form a queue along the pavement leaving 2 meters between each person.)
  2. Get the attention of SHARE staff and confirm your name and pick up slot.
  3. Wait for SHARE staff to process the check out on our computer system.
  4. Stand back while SHARE staff place your item(s) on the table and push them towards you.
  5. Allow SHARE staff to step back before retrieving your item(s) from the table.
  6. SHARE staff have handled the item(s) wearing appropriate PPE. If you would like to take extra caution, we have provided paper towels, wipes and hand sanitiser on the shelf to the left of the table.
  7. Take care as you leave the shop with your item(s).
Find out why we use Peertube instead of Youtube
Category: Click & Collect
  1. Please do not enter the shop until there are no other customers in front of you. (If somebody is in front of you please form a queue along the pavement leaving 2 meters between each person.)
  2. Ensure you have gained the attention of the SHARE member of staff before placing your item(s) on the table.
  3. Place your item(s) on the table and push them in to the centre before stepping back.
  4. If you would like to take extra caution, we have provided paper towels, wipes and hand sanitiser on the shelf to the left of the table.
  5. Allow SHARE staff to safely remove the item(s) from the table before placing any more on.
  6. Wait for SHARE staff to process the check in on our computer system.Once SHARE staff have verified all is checked in take care as you leave the shop.
  7. Once SHARE staff have verified all is checked in take care as you leave the shop.
Find out why we use Peertube instead of Youtube
Category: Click & Collect
  1. Please do not enter the shop until there are no other customers in front of you. (If somebody is in front of you please form a queue along the pavement leaving 2 meters between each person.)
  2. Ensure you have gained the attention of the SHARE member of staff before placing your donation(s) on the table.
  3. Let SHARE staff know what you are hoping to donate. We cannot take everything so SHARE staff will make a decision as to whether or not we can accept it.
  4. If we can accept the donation please place it on the table and push them in to the centre before stepping back.
  5. If you would like to take extra caution, we have provided paper towels, wipes and hand sanitiser on the shelf to the left of the table.
  6. Allow SHARE staff to safely remove the item(s) from the table before placing any more on.
  7. Take care as you leave the shop.
Category: Click & Collect
  • Maximum one person/household entry at any time.
  • If somebody is already being served in front of you please form a queue along the pavement leaving 2 meters between each person as well as ample space for the person being served to leave safely.
  • If a member of the public walks past while you are waiting for your turn outside please turn to face the building enabling them to safely pass by without risk of infection.
  • Please only visit the shop if you are doing one of the following: Checking-out pre-reserved item(s), checking-in item(s), donating item(s).
  • We are sorry that we cannot accept on-the-spot borrowing at present.
Category: Click & Collect

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic we’ve had to adapt our model in order to make sharing as safe as possible for all concerned. It is for this reason we have taken the following measures:

  1. Only opening two days per week. This allows us to place items in to quarantine for 72 hours before they are next allowed to be borrowed, minimising chance of cross-contamination.
  2. Working on a slightly reduced catalogue to begin while we all get used to the new system, steadily build it up as our capacity increases.
  3. No shop browsing. Both to reduce chance of infection and to allow us to create a safe quarantine area we’ve had to cordon off the shop so that only a small area inside the door is available for users. Only one person/household may enter at any one time.

Category: Click & Collect

Yes. Instructions on how to donate are above.

Category: Click & Collect

Previously Subscriber members received £5 credit every month. We had to process this manually, taking too much time and paperwork. By switching to a system that gives our Subscriber members a direct 25% off everything, all of the time, the discount can be automatically applied by our system. This saves us time and means regular borrowers will save more money! NB: The prices displayed are the full price. If you are a subscriber member the price you pay will be 25% cheaper than what is displayed.

Category: Click & Collect

In order to make the service as smoothly as possible for all members, any item(s) not returned on time will be charged at double the loan rate for every open day that the item(s) are not returned. It is therefore very important that you contact us if you feel you won’t be able to get your item(s) back on time. You can either call us during open hours on 07983639611 or email us outside of open hours on [email protected]

Late fee processing example:
You have borrowed a tape measure for 50p. It was due back on a Friday but not returned on that Friday. You will be charged £1 for it to now be returned on our next open day (the following Monday). If it is still not returned on Monday you will then be charged another £1 for it’s return our next open day (the following Friday). And so on until it is returned.

Category: Click & Collect

If for any reason you do not come and collect your item at your arranged time you will still be charged for the loan. This is because by reserving the item you will have made it unavailable for any other member to reserve during that time. If for any reason you envisage that you will not be able to make your collection slot please let us know in good time in order that we can rearrange or release the item back to the catalogue for others. You can either call us during open hours on 07983639611 or email us outside of open hours on [email protected]

Category: Click & Collect

Rest assured, it’s extremely rare that items come back not cleaned or damaged/lost. Whenever it does happen we aim to resolve the matter in the best interest of all involved. Our policies are in place to ensure a smooth and well-oiled system is maintained for the benefit of all users.

Cleaning Fees
We are unable to provide a cleaning service due to lack of facilities so we are relying on each borrower bringing the item back as clean as possible. If an item is deemed to have been returned in an unsatisfactory state you will be asked to take it back home and clean it before returning it later the same day. Otherwise we will have to issue a minimum fee of £5.

Loss & Damage Fees
We ask borrowers to flag any damage they notice as soon as possible. This kicks off the repair process and also ensures the next borrower is not let down. To do small repairs like unblocking the pressure washer or replacing the jig saw blades, our small team of local volunteer fixers will try to do simple fixes. When an item is beyond a quick fix, we decide whether it is more efficient to have it professionally mended or simply to donate/sell or recycle it. We understand that items will break eventually and we don’t charge members for these types of breakages. However, we do reserve the right to charge for items that are deemed to have been broken by serious misuse or neglect. If this is the case and the item is beyond repair the member will be asked to either buy a replacement or pay the replacement cost.

Category: Click & Collect

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