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The Repair Shop, 24 April 2024, BBC One, “Series 13 Episode 2”

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The Repair Shop Repairers

The Repair Shop returns with another fascinating episode, shining a light on the wonderful treasures found in homes across the country.

In this instalment, airing on BBC One on Wednesday 24 April, there is the restoration of a variety of cherished items, each with its own unique story and significance.

First to arrive at the barn is Hannah Smart, who presents a moss-covered garden gate, which is essentially a pile of sticks. This gate holds a remarkable history, as it once stood at the entrance of the cottage where renowned author Roald Dahl’s mother lived. After Dahl returned from his service in World War II, he lived at the cottage with his mother, and this gate is even referenced in his autobiography, “Going Solo,” marking a significant moment in his life. Wood specialist Will Kirk takes on the challenging task of restoring the gate, which has had all its joints rot away. Kirk must carefully devise a strategy to preserve as much of the original structure as possible.

Next, David Burville and Glaswegian Jon Keogh bring in a homemade model of a prawn trawler crafted by Keogh’s father, John. The model is a replica of a boat owned by his father, who worked in the Clyde shipyards. When the fishing industry declined, John took up fishing to fulfil his dream of making a living from the sea. Unfortunately, he too faced challenges as the fishing industry declined, and he eventually sold his trawler. To cope with the loss, John decided to build an exact replica of his beloved boat from memory. David Burville, an organ restorer and toy repairer, discovers that the model is in a poor state, with broken lights, a deteriorating hull, and snapped-off rigging. As he begins the restoration, he finds more problems than anticipated, including leaked batteries.

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Mayassa Reip then arrives with a family heirloom that has played a part in generations of weddings. It is an ornately decorated silver-framed mirror from Iraq, dating back to the early 20th century. Mayassa’s grandmother used this mirror on her wedding day, as it was customary for the bride and groom to see each other’s reflection in the mirror before the marriage could take place. The mirror has been passed down through the female line and has been present at all the family’s subsequent weddings. Silversmith Brenton West is tasked with repairing the mirror, which has sharp edges, a tarnished frame, and major splits in the silver decoration.

Finally, mother and daughter Mona Roddy and Dearbhla Lennon enter the barn with a miniature Irish dancing dress. The dress holds special significance as it was worn by Dearbhla when she was just two years old and has since been passed down through the family. The dress features a traditional lace collar and cuffs, which were originally made for Mona when she was a child learning to dance in the 1950s. The lace has been carefully unpicked and resewn onto all the family’s dancing costumes over the years. With an internationally successful dance career in shows like Riverdance and Lord of the Dance, Dearbhla and Mona share a close connection to the lace and this cherished dress. Textile conservator Rebecca Bissonnet is faced with the challenge of restoring the dress, which is stained, and the 70-year-old lace, which is tattered and coming undone.

As these items undergo restoration, the experts at The Repair Shop carefully preserve not only the objects but also the poignant memories and stories attached to them.

The Repair Shop airs on BBC One at 8.00 pm on Wednesday 24 April 2024.

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Isabelle aka Izzy Jacobs is the UK previews specialist at memorabletv.com. Isabelle is particularly drawn to crime dramas, but she also has a not so secret love for all things reality TV. In addition to her work at memorabletv.com, Isabelle is also an avid traveler and a devoted foodie.

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