Partnering Speedo with Swim Dem Crew

Swim Dem Crew are an inner-city swim club who believe in the power of community.
Founded in the summer of 2013, its mission has always been to get more people swimming, make the sport more inclusive, less solitary, and a lot more social. Much of what it does is about personal development and self-affirmation, using swimming as a tool to empower people.

The Speedo x Swim Dem Crew partnership is a celebration of both communities; their 90th and 5th birthdays respectively. Swim Dem Crew embody the same values as Speedo when it comes to social swimming, diversity and safety in the water for all.

The partnership sees Swim Dem Crew joining Lewis Pugh on ‘The Long Swim‘, teaching at free community swims at Tinside Lido in Plymouth, celebrating its 5th birthday and warming up for carnival at Shoreditch House and collaborating at a Swim Dem Crew community swim.

Speedo is supporting these activities and is pleased to partner with Swim Dem Crew in its mission.

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Photography by Ollie Trenchard for Swim Dem Crew and Speedo UK

Speedo celebrates 90 years its Waterbaby Forever campaign

The campaign is headlined by a renewed partnership with renowned endurance swimmer, Lewis Pugh, who is aiming to become the first man to swim the length of the English channel on ‘The Long Swim‘.

Lewis, who famously completes his sub-zero challenges wearing only a Speedo brief, cap and goggles, is completing ‘The Long Swim’ to highlight the need to protect oceans and British coastlines.

The partnership ties in with one of the core aims of the Waterbaby Forever campaign to preserve the world’s oceans so in the next 90 years and beyond the new generation of water babies can still enjoy them.

Underlining this commitment, Speedo is partnering with campaign group, Surfers Against Sewage. The group, also a partner of Lewis Pugh on the Long Swim, is working with Speedo to complete five beach clean-ups across the south coast to further highlight the dangers of materials like plastic entering the oceans.

The Speedo x Surfers Against Sewage Beach Cleans will take place at key stops along Lewis Pugh’s journey.

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Photo credits: @kelvintrautman

Available June 30th, New Balance launched the 247 on a world tour inspired by young culture. In the UK, the tour visited the city of Liverpool for an immersive experience. Guests were treated to a traditional ferry trip across the Mersey, stop at Lost Art skate shop, visit to home of Liverpool FC which included a terrace talk by Mundial magazine followed by boardroom dining experience, and finally a special night of music at local supporter’s pub The Solly featuring exciting talent Tom Misch.

For more information about the new 247 and to connect, follow New Balance: @newbalanceuk; @nb_lifestyle; #lifein247;




In 2018, to celebrate the legendary MADE 990, New Balance released 1,500 pairs of the limited edition MADE 990v4 “1982,” which retailed at the original $100, available at pop-up locations in select cities across the globe on Saturday, 14 April. To mark the launch of the 990v4 in the UK, sneaker fans were invited to a New Balance and END. celebration on Ebor Street, London to enjoy a ‘one day only’ 990 exhibition curated by New Balance Gallery. 

#990 #LEGENDS 


Last week New Balance teamed up with renowned British photographer and filmmaker Ewen Spencer to create an original photography exhibition in celebration of the brand’s iconic 574 silhouette – Ewen’s portraits on the night featured up and coming UK music artists, Conducta, Jesse James Salomon and Flohio. DJ sets from Mike Skinner and Star.One

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Photography by: @sophographylondon

#NBGreyDay #NewBalance #NBLifestyle #574



The TRAILROC trail running range has undergone a complete redesign and is now back with a bang this season. The lighter model of the TRAILROC™ series, the TRAILROC 270 mens trail running shoe is perfect for fast running over hard and rocky trails. More protection, more support, more comfort, greater energy return and improved grip. The new TRAILROC 270 & 285 are now better equipped to deal with all hard-packed trails around the world, no matter how rocky. Supreme grip and underfoot protection, with a cushioned midsole and lightweight upper combine to deliver the ultimate shoe for running at speed over hard and rocky trails.


Fit Standard
Drop 4mm
Footbed 6mm
Lug Depth 4mm
Midsole Stack Heel 15.5mm / Forefoot 11.5mm
Product Weight 270g / 9.5oz

Fit Medium
Drop 8mm
Footbed 6mm
Lug Depth 4mm
Midsole Stack Heel 21.5mm / Forefoot 13.5mm
Product Weight 285g / 10oz


OK so having put at least 50 miles in both iterations of this shoe, here is my verdict on the ‘new and improved’ TRAILROC. Disclaimer – I worked extensively with inov-8 on the activation of the shoe over the Summer, so picked up both pairs having worked with the brand. Don’t let that stop you from reading this honest and independent review though!

Personally, I think the 270 is the superior shoe because the slightly lighter weight, narrower fit and lower drop. And that suits my running style better. Would I wear the 285 regularly? Probably not, I’m not 100% convinced on the construction of the shoe and/or the breathability. Not to say it’s bad, it’s just not as good as the 270. On to the review.

I will be wearing the 270 a fair bit over rocky terrain in Chamonix (in a press capacity as I didn’t get a place in the OCC) and in Mammoth Lakes (training at altitude as I couldn’t make it out to Utah for the TNFEC). I think the 270 runs really well over hard-packed rocky technical terrain. The grip is good, but if it were wet I’d probably plump for an X-Talon depending on the mileage I had lined up. Also if the terrain were mixed, ie some road, some grass, dirt, mud, I would 100% choose the ROCLITE 290. That shoe is just a winner and by far the most comfortable, all-terrain trail shoe – of any brand – I have ever worn. You could also wear that shoe over ultra distance (as I chose to for the Peak Trails 50k).

Wait so why are we talking about other inov-8 shoes in a review of the TRAILROC? Because the inov-8 shoe line-up needs a little explaining! Here is a summary of the shoes I own and have run extensively in…

This is of course personal experience and totally dependent on a number of factors – weather, conditioning, mix of terrain etc. But how does the TRAILROC measure up?I have found all of the inov-8 range of trail shoes to be grippy, but the TRAILROC doesn’t do brilliantly when wet so it gets docked points. As for comfort, I’m not sure why, but the X-TALON212, TRAILTALON and ROCLITE are just winners. The shape of the upper and the way it locks-in on the foot is spot on. The TRAILROC is good, but perhaps could be a little roomier in the forefoot, and also the lacing system won’t stop debris getting into the shoe… literal room for improvement.

So in summary, I wouldn’t wear the 285 simply because it’s slightly too much shoe and too higher drop (8mm). Also I find it stiff and not particularly indicative of what inov-8 normally represents in its shoe range – minimalist, flexible, high-sensory footwear with excellent traction. The 285 would probably score a 5 or a 6. The 270 performs really well on rocky hard terrain, but there are a few glitches which means it doesn’t score much higher… it’s still quite stiff, not particularly comfortable to wear over 10 miles let alone north of 30. But the ride is still good, it still feels fast – as most inov-8 shoes do… personally though if I had a mountain ultra I’d run in ROCLITE and if I had a shorter mountain race I might even be tempted to wear X-TALON. Which relegates the TRAILROC 270 to last place in our chart. But still, if it sounds fit for purpose, I advocate trying this technical lightweight mountain runner from inov-8.

*** UPDATE *** Since this article was written I have worn the TRAILROC 270 a lot in the US trails in California. It was superb in these conditions. I had zero problems with fit and the shoe runs really well on dry pack trails, several of which had rocky descents which the shoe performed admirably on. Basically if it’s dry out and you have a trail run scheduled, wear the Trailroc if it’s technical and the Trailtalon if it’s not!

Available now at
Here’s me on Cat Bells in the Lake District, photos thanks to Hilary Matheson.


Skiddaw is a mountain in the Lake District. It stands at almost a kilometre high, way over 3000ft, looming over the sleepy town of Keswick with Derwent Water at its foot. It is the first summit of a Bob Graham Round when undertaken in anti-clockwise direction. A Bob Graham is made up of 42 fell peaks, this being the first. In partnership with inov-8, we came up with the idea of climbing Skiddaw with a team of enthusiastic trail runners that had been invited from all around the world to experience a traditional fell race.

Fell running is hard work for hard men and women. We spent the weekend with inov-8 in Staveley and Keswick, learning about the history of fell running from the team and regaled by stories from fell running legend Kenny Stuart. Kenny holds the record for the Skiddaw Fell Race. In 1984, Kenny managed to get up and down Skiddaw in record time, covering nearly 10 miles of trail, loose rock, scree and summit in a little over an hour (1:02). My personal goal for the weekend was to try to master the basics, navigate my way up and down the mountain and to not come last.

We were fortunate enough to have the help of several inov-8 ambassadors over the weekend. These were hardened runners from Yorkshire, Cumbria, Lancashire; legs of steel, fearless in the face of downhill and uphill struggle. Ben Mounsey and Mary Wilkinson were with us for the weekend and were joined by local phenomenon Ben Abdelnoor to teach us how to run up and down a fell without burning out or taking a tumble. Thanks to their guidance and reassurance, our seven globe-trotters felt ready for whatever the mountain (and the weather) had to throw at us.

Race day upon us, it was time to gear up. inov-8 very kindly kitted us out with a choice of shoe – the newly incarnated TRAILROC (available in August), or the traditional fell running shoe of choice the X-TALON – and of course with all the gear we would need on the day including some awesome light-weight apparel. Disconcertingly there was also a mandatory kit list – emergency food, full waterproof gear, compass, map… Would we really need all that stash for an hour or so run? At the summit of Skiddaw it would become apparent as to why all this outdoor paraphernalia is a must.

A jovial and warm reception from the local Lakeland folk welcomed us at the start of the race in Fitz Park. They gave us a few pointers and knowing nods, before a ‘ready, steady, go’ set off a bolting group of men in short shorts, off the front through the woods to the foot of the ascent of Jenkin Hill. It was at this point I realised what I’d gotten myself into with the start of the steep zig-zag paths and then round the back of Little Man. Straight up. I hiked most of it, feebly transitioning to a momentary shuffle when encountering a spectator or a fellow runner to avoid the embarrassment of not being able to move my feet at any sort of cadence without coughing up a lung. But before I knew it I’d blindly, agonisingly reached the summit plateau, a rough, rocky, cold, unwelcoming place, shrouded in cloud and threateningly exposed. Ahhh, it dawned, this is why all the kit is necessary! And this is why the Keswick local I was following left the path about a mile before me into the cloud to skirt the mountain along the scree, thereby sheltering himself from the wind before rounding the cairn from a different angle. Clever fell runner…

What wasn’t so clever was my descent back down to more temperate climes. Descent is perhaps too technical a term, more like a blind panic with the sole aim of keeping my shoulders above my knees and not plunging to a rocky demise. Somehow I made it. Somehow we all made it. A couple of the magnificent seven took a tumble, but then apparently this is not uncommon. A couple of hardy local club runners had done the same, and were even sporting a splash of claret, although not enough to stop them washing down cups of tea and kendal mint cake at the end of the day!

I can’t thank inov-8 enough for their hospitality over the weekend. You can see from the video above (and the gallery below by James Carnegie) how much we all enjoyed the weekend and how much our guests from around the world threw themselves into it. I personally can’t wait for my next fell. Maybe if I bag a few more peaks by way of reconnaissance, that Bob Graham mightn’t be a pipe-dream? Meet you at Moot Hall?


Having breathed life into a category that had been ignored, taken for granted, looked over, and dismissed, Stance sought a way to show how their socks perform brilliantly whilst looking great. Running events are the ideal way to do that. Combining running with street art perfectly demonstrates the position Stance takes at the intersection of creativity and performance.

The Stance European Street Art Tour visited London, Copenhagen, Paris, Milan and Amsterdam. It has now concluded in Hamburg. Hamburg received the final tour visit of the campaign and running crews were gifted a pair of Stance Performance Run before the half marathon weekend.



Having breathed life into a category that had been ignored, taken for granted, looked over, and dismissed, Stance sought a way to show how their socks perform brilliantly whilst looking great. Running events are the ideal way to do that. Combining running with street art perfectly demonstrates the position Stance takes at the intersection of creativity and performance.

The Stance European Steet Art Tour has already visited London, Copenhagen, Paris, Milan and Amsterdam. It will conclude in Hamburg at the half marathon weekend.




Last week Stance visited Milan to introduce RUN. This is what happened.

Having breathed life into a category that had been ignored, taken for granted, looked over, and dismissed, Stance sought a way to show how their socks perform brilliantly whilst looking great. Running events are the ideal way to do that. Combining running with street art perfectly demonstrates the position Stance takes at the intersection of creativity and performance.

The Stance European Steet Art Tour has already visited London, Copenhagen, Paris, Milan. It will visit Amsterdam in June, before concluding in Hamburg at the half marathon weekend.


This weekend Stance went to the trails to create some content for their Performance Run range. Stance have proved that they work wonders for road running. Think comfortable, supportive, blister free style. Well they also work for trail running. I’ve taken them into the mountains for 7/8 hours at a time and my feet have emerged totally unscathed. Stance want to start showing that off whilst also celebrating the people behind the lens – be that a professional sports photographer or a star of Instagram. And so we created ‘Capture Trails’. 

We partnered up with Runners Need and took runners to the beautiful trails of the Devil’s Punchbowl, a natural wooded amphitheatre and fantastic backdrop. We invited pro-sports photographer James Carnegie  who hosted a fabulous workshop with advanced tips and tricks. We’re talking pro advice that can be applied to an iPhone and the VSCO app to help us do away with the ‘running selfie’ forever! 

Our thanks as well goes to the National Trust  for permitting us to use the Punchbowl for the morning. If you want to learn more about some of the other fantastic trails you can discover on NT land, please do visit their website. 

You can see some of our guests photos here on Instagram.
James also joined us on the trails and took some fantastic shots. A selection of which are below.