Andy Tran

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What is Borrow Don’t Buy?


Borrow Don’t Buy is Plymouth’s very own Library of Things (LoT). We are a community interest company with the mission of giving you access to the things you need – simultaneously benefitting the earth.

We’re like a normal library, but with things instead of books! What sort of things, you ask? All the things you need…

Perhaps you’re doing some DIY and need a drill? Having friends over and want a projector to watch a film on? Fancy a spot of camping and need equipment? These are just a few of the things you can find at Borrow Don’t Buy!

Why buy a drill when you’ll only ever use it once? Join Borrow Don’t Buy, and for just a few pounds borrow a drill for the week you need it.

With over 420 items in our ever-growing Inventory there’s a good chance we just have what you need!

What do we want?

To help you with the following…

Save Money

Reduce Clutter

Reduce your Carbon Footprint

Share Knowledge and experience

Promote the repair and reuse of equipment instead of throwing it away

Inspire the people of Plymouth to create, innovate and engage in social change

Why do we want that?

Because we LOVE Plymouth and we want to help build the best city we can!  Sounds amazing, right? If you are interested in becoming a borrower or volunteering/helping out, get in touch. Let’s make it happen!


four steps TO BORROWING

ONE – Become a Borrower, join BDB 

You can join Borrow Don’t Buy by just filling our online form. It is free to sign up as an individual and you will just pay-as-you-borrow. 

TWO – Browse and reserve things

Our inventory is available to view online and once you are a member you can reserve things.

THREE – Borrow what you need

Come pick up your reservation from THINQTANQ at Fairbairn House, Higher Ln, PL12AN on a Wednesday or Friday – 9am – 6:30pm 

FOUR – Return your item

After you’ve used the items, simply return it, clean, on time, and ready for the next borrower. 


We are based in



Fairbairn House

Higher Lane, PL1 2AN

Opening Hours:

Wednesdays – 9am – 6:30pm

Fridays – 9am – 6:30pm


By appointment only, no walk-ins



Still not sure how to get to us? Click HERE to see a video on how to get to THINQTANQ from Drake Circus.


We had to temporarily shut Library during the Covid-19 period but we continued to push the sharing agenda in other ways by partnering with Nudge Community Builders to bring upcycled tech to people who really need it. When Wendy Hart from Nudge contacted us to ask if we could help them to get the people of Plymouth online, the answer was of course a resounding yes! This is now an on-going project which is helping to close the digital divide here in Plymouth.



How-To’s & FAQ

Do you still have questions that need answering? We have covered our most asked questions about BDB and how to join it. Have a look and if you still have any queries, just get in contact with us.


We are a community project run by volunteers and we love it!  Find out here the different ways you can collaborate with us (items, money, time, cup of tea or just high-fives)


Do you have things which need some TLC, or are a bit broken and you haven’t had the time or skills to fix them yourself? Don’t throw them away,  Repair Cafés are a great way to learn how to fix them! Find out how we support community repair events in the city.



Send us an e-mail:

Give us a call: 01752 393636 (Please note this number is only monitored during our opening hours)

Sign up to our newsletter HERE

Our Partners and Supporters:

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Proud Finalist Plymouth Live Business Awards 2021
Finalist National Lottery Good Causes Project of the Year Award
Borrow Don't Buy Plymouth