To celebrate New Balance’s 100 year anniversary, the brand at the forefront of running shoe design has produced three limited edition trainers to honour three of its longest serving employees. Audrey Stewart, Ian Byers and Victor Dixon have been crafting New Balance footwear between them for over 70 years at the UK factory in Flimby, near the Lake District. The three have been bestowed with the title of ‘Flimby Heroes’ and their portraits will feature on the new designs.
Paying tribute to New Balance’s vintage running past, the three chosen styles, the 1500, the 670 and the 577 have been reintroduced in their original grey/navy colourways resulting in a distinctive retro look. The limited edition footwear will be distributed to fewer than 150 outlets worldwide and only 1906 (the year that New Balance was conceived) pairs will be produced in each style. Available in-store from 1 October 2006, the footwear and packaging celebrate the personalities of Audrey, Ian and Victor.
New Balance adopted an ‘Endorsed by No One’ philosophy in the late 1980s, preferring to invest in research, design and domestic manufacturing rather than paying celebrities to don their product. In typical New Balance style the brand is paying
homage to the real heroes, its employees, and recognising that they have been instrumental to the success of the brand.
The longest serving Flimby Hero, Audrey Stewart has been working in the stitching department of the factory for almost 25 years and in the course of a regular day at work met Prince Charles as part of a Royal visit. She said: "I’ve been handling and making New Balance shoes for a quarter of a century. I never dreamt I would actually appear on them. It’s a great honour to be involved in the centenary celebrations in this way."
Ian Byers started at New Balance in 1982 and has been honing his skills as ‘toe and side laster’ ever since. Whilst Victor Dixon, whose finest moment was crafting Bryan Robson’s football boots, has been with the company since 1982.
Alistair Cameron, General Manager for Europe, Middle East and Africa said: "We wanted to celebrate our centenary year in a traditional New Balance way. As well as honouring domestic manufacturing the Flimby Heroes highlight how valuable our employees are to us - they are the celebrities of the brand itself!"
The launch of the Flimby Heroes range will take place in June in London with a Jubilee style party to mark New Balance’s centenary year.
2011, BW & Colour, 10mins
Young Souls is an exciting, up-tempo spin into the world of the cult 'scene' of Northern Soul. Opening to the iconic 'Cigarette Ashes' track, Young Souls
explodes onto the screen taking us under the skin of the Northern Soul scene. It is morning and a vintage car blasts down motorways, charges across rural landscapes and snakes through British suburban streets. Scully, the film's main protagonist drops his friends home after a night of profound meaning.
Young Souls retraces Scully's 'night before' with epic dance scenes and stylish cast, of real Northern Soul devotees.
DIRECTOR AND PRODUCER Dean Chalkley
CINEMATOGRAPHER Benoit Soler
EDITOR James W. Griffiths
FEATURED CAST Sonny “Scully” Evans, Tommo, Claire Digby, Matt Watson, Oliver Abbott and Elenor Emes
14 July 2011
Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club, London, UK
28 October 2011
Nothing in the World but Youth, Turner Contempory, Margate, UK
12 January 2012
London Short Film Festival 2012, London, UK
1, 6 & 8 March 2012
Cinequest Film Festival 2012, San Jose, California, USA
12 May 2012
Southend Film Festival 2012, Essex, UK
27 May 2012
Seattle International Film Festival 2012, Washington, USA
Creative Review’s Photography Annual: Moving Image Category
Southend Film Festival’s Short Film: Music Category
“The film is very, very, very authentic... ...It ‘s absolutely
beautifully filmed, It’s the kind of thing that I’ll come back to and watch again… …so that I can get all of the nuances of it.”
- Ian Dewhurst DJ (Wigan Casino, Cleethorpes Pier)
“It is really a homage.” - Eddie Piller Acid Jazz Records Co-Founder & DJ (The Modcast, BBC Radio 6 Muisic)
“It was beautifully shot. Dean is a genius
photographer.” - Jonny Owens Actor (Shameless, Wedding Belles, Svengali,
"[The] film... ...is seriously good in terms of the cinematography, sound, aesthetics etc., and (perfectly captured in the still photos) the dancing is so damn cool it hurts."- Bryony Quin It's Nice That
“Great Film” - Don Letts Director (The Punk Rock Movie , Dancehall Queen) & DJ (The Roxy, BBC Radio 6 Music)
22 July 2011 - 04 August 2011
Youth Club Gallery, London, UK
19 January 2012 – 29 March 2012
Hotel Pelirocco, Brightion, UK
Issue #17 Religion 125 MAGAZINE