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Dr. Martens boots

998 of 1176 nominations


Dr. Martens boots

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Dr. Martens boots

Doc Martens, Doctor Martens, Docs or DMs may have started life as utility footwear, but they’ve enjoyed cult status among dozens of sub-cultures – from Mods in the sixties, to punk in the seventies, two-tone in the early eighties and grunge in the early nineties. These days though, just about anyone wears them.

The man who started it all wasn’t English at all. Dr. Klaus Maertens was a German who designed a pair of shoes to help his foot recover after a skiing accident in 1945. The soles, made from old tyres, trapped air in separate compartments to cushion his feet and so the air-cushioned sole was born.

He went into production with a friend, Dr. Herbert Funck, but decided in 1959 that they needed a company to make and distribute the shoes. A Northamptonshire family firm that made the boots for the British Army, the R. Griggs Group, stepped in. They produced the first cherry red eight-eyelet workboot in 1960, anglicised the name to Doctor Martens, branded the range AirWair – and the rest, as they say, is history.

Although DMs are now manufactured in China, Griggs (now known as Airwair International Ltd) still has its headquarters and design team in England.


Your comments

Because it expresses the particular english environment of the young generation during the last forty years. Working class stuff related to pop and rock music trough class awareness, welfare state conditions and industrial revolution heritage.

Mauricio Corbalan

I am disabled with above the knee amputation, I have been trying to find the address of the company for information. Having a prosthesis I would like to know the weight of certain boots that I might purchase, for safety and comfort reasons. Can anyone help?
Bill Eassom

Seeing a pair af Dr Martens evokes images of the youth cultures of England and their respective musical forms - Mods, Punk, Skins, New Wave, Ska, Goths and 80's Indie. Has to be the best use of yellow stitching ever. Also available in Cherry Red!
Kai Jeans

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I think the National Gallery is part of the heritage of England