Day 19: Black To The ’80s

The 365-day trainers charity challenge goes retro. Sort of…

Jan 19 main

I was fibbing yesterday when I said that I didn’t own a pair of Green Flash. I do, but there’s a catch. There’s no green anywhere on them. Can’t see these being allowed on a Wimbledon Court.


Blake’s… erm, Avon’s Seven… erm, five? Six? Four? Who are we counting?

Yeah, you have to hand it to Green Flash creators Dunlop who, back in the early ’80s, managed to establish a brand so strong, that eventually they could release the style in all sorts of different colours and still call them all Green Flash. Then again, we’re talking the ’80s when a show called Blake’s Seven didn’t need to have Blake in it… or a team of seven. For a while they did call them Blue Flash, Gold Flash, Yellow Flash or whatever but eventually, all shades simply became known as Green. The matte black version is a later addition to the range – introduced mid-noughties, I believe. That’s certainly when I got my first pair.

Dunlop also managed to turn a cheap plimsoll into a bit of a cool, design classic. This even predatesd the resurrection of the Green Flash in the last ’90s as a retro classic beloved of students and indie band bass players (though perhaps their most ardent supporter was Keane keyboard player Tim Rice-Oxley, until he swapped allegiances and started wearing the most garish Adidas imaginable, as if he’d taken on a bet.) I remember one of the cool kids at my school (who could afford expensive Nikes and Adidas) explaining that he had more respect for “poor” kids who wore Dunlop rather than Hi-Tech, because it proved they still had enough sense of style not to wear Hi-Tech. To this day Hi-Tech still seems to be the brand for people who don’t really care what they’re seen in. They invariably own Crocs as well.

Oh, and in case you were wondering, yes, that’s a ZX Spectrum bag in the background. Had to talk about one icon of the ’80s in the presence of another.

Jan 19 main 2

Massive day on the blog yesterday – most views, most visitors yet – but no new sponsors. Come on guys, even a pound or two will be gratefully received! The challenge is getting greater now as I can see the end of my collection in sight, so make the embarrassment of having to beg trainers off of other people worth my – and Alzheimer’s Research UK’s – while!

Usual sign off:

Current total: £300 (no new donations yesterday… come on guys! £1 will fund three minutes of research and every second counts!)

• Remember this is all for charity, so any pennies or pounds you can spare PLEASE DONATE BY CLICKING HERE.

• Follow me on Twitter to make sure you see what trainers I’m wearing each day.

• If you have any trainers you could donate (either on loan or old pairs you’re getting rid of) which are size 9 (ish) contact me at so we can arrange collection.

• Please, please, please leave comments below! I’m after ideas for mini-challenges, future photoshoots and how I can find enough pairs of trainers!

Dave G


One thought on “Day 19: Black To The ’80s

  1. Pingback: Day 210: Flash Of The Titans | The Sole Of Sci-Fi

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