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Planet Tool Library

May 28th, 2014 by Chris Hellawell

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One of the wonderful things about establishing the Edinburgh Tool Library has been speaking to the people of Edinburgh about all their hopes and aspirations for the tool library.  Something that I didn’t envisage was the support from overseas.

In October last year I visited friends in Toronto, where I used to live.  Part of my visit was to catch up with my pals, but while I was there I was keen to visit the Toronto Tool Library, which I had been in contact with via email.  I popped in and met Ryan Dyment, who runs the show, and had a fantastic afternoon.  I had a look round, met some customers and got the whole story of the TTL.  It was really inspiring, and gave me the impetus to follow through on what was, until that point, just an idea.

Since my visit, the Toronto Tool Library has gone from just a basement lending out tools, to opening a maker space complete with a second library.  All this happened in six months from opening the initial library.  They have also expanded their services to lend out kitchen-ware and even have a 3D printer!

I’ve recently been in correspondence with the Halifax (Canada!) and Vancouver tool libraries who have been really supportive and encouraging and have very generously offered their advice and expertise.  What is it about Canadians eh?!  I’m hoping to visit a friend in Berlin and while there pop in to the Library of Things, and in August I am holidaying in San Francisco and hopefully visiting the tool library there.  I’m turning into a bit of a tool library bagger!

It all goes to show that, although we are spread across the globe, the tool library community are all pulling in the same direction and it really does make the world seem that little bit smaller.