• Rob Butterfield


40 years old and still smashing it!

My 40 year old DM's. Photo by Rob Butterfield.

Was there ever a more iconic boot than the Dr Marten? Growing up in the 70’s they were the must-have footwear for every teenager. I owned two pairs in my teens; a pair of brown eight-holes when I was 14 and then the black ten-holes pictured above when I was 16. I’ve still got the black one’s today, they still fit and they still look effortlessly cool. The picture on this blog was taken only a few months ago and I think you’ll agree, they’re a classic!

Known affectionately as Docs or just plain and simply DM’s, the boots have been the choice of footwear among various groups in British culture such as skinheads, punks and goths. Today they remain a firm favourite as both a fashion item and sturdy work boot being both super durable and super comfortable with their patented ‘Air Wair’ bouncing sole. The Dr Marten brand is probably cooler and more iconic now than it’s ever been with many special edition styles and designs entering the market.

If you want to know the full history of the iconic DM check out the official website:, it’s a fascinating story of a German WW2 design ending up as the world’s most iconic boot with it’s headquarters in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire.

Despite my love for these boots both as a teenager and now in my 50’s there was always a downside. The DM is hardly a quick boot to put on! “Hang on, I’m just lacing up my boots!” was an all too familiar shout out as your mates headed outside to play ‘knock-down Ginger’ or some other teen activity. Or those moments after playing in deep snow trying to unravel the sodden laces with freezing hands. Then standing them under the radiator stuffed with newspaper to dry out… happy days, happy memories!

Today, although my ‘vintage’ boots still fit me they’re rarely worn. I guess I prefer the ease of a comfy slip-on these days. But on the odd occasion when I do find the time to lace them up properly, I still feel like wearing a sign around my neck saying, “look at these beauties, over 40 years old and still smashing it!”

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