No… we haven’t gone mad! Exploring and adventuring in the wind and rain is a ton of fun, provided you’re properly prepared for the weather. And, with Granger’s range of aftercare products, you can easily get your kit clean and water-repellent in next to no time! With your gear at its best, all you need then is a good pair of wellies on your feet to go trudging through puddles, traipsing along trails, and stomping through piles of leaves.
To help get you in the mood for some autumn adventuring, we wanted to take a look back at the history of the Wellington Boot – from its origins in the early 19th Century, through to the stylish festival-footwear we enjoy today!
- Wellington Boots take their name from the 1st Duke of Wellington, who first envisioned the boots in the 1800s.
- The Duke instructed his shoemaker to modify the widely worn Hessian boot so that it would be more useful when worn in battle, but smart enough to wear during the evening. The new boot was made of calfskin leather, and had a much closer fit than the Hessian.
- The rubber boot we know and love today originated in the 1850s – after the discovery of vulcanised rubber. A French company, Aigle, began making wellies in this new material, before selling them to farmhands.
- Wellies became massively popular during World War One, when soldiers needed a versatile, waterproof boot that would help them survive the muddy, swampy trenches of Western Europe.
- In recent years, Wellington Boots have become increasingly fashionable. They’re now worn for work and walks in muddy fields, as well as for festivals, bonfires, and fishing trips!