Walter Baynes recounts the story of ‘Clarino’!


“Here is one of the photos I found recently. The story is this… In the early/mid 1970’s BU was involved in the marketing of a new ‘poromeric’ upper material called “Clarino”. It was being promoted as a high quality, breathable substitute for leather and as such was the ideal product for everyday footwear for the successful ‘business man’. We in the Advertising Dept. produced a film to help in the sales of Clarino featuring just such a person exiting his ‘private aeroplane’ before driving off in his Rolls Royce. This scenario gave plenty of opportunities to show close-ups of his smart Clarino shoes! The photo shows cameraman Dick Kursa using a 16mm Arriflex to film the scene whilst the ambient sound is recorded by Peter Minshall on a Nagra reel to reel tape recorder. The location is at the Leicester Aero Club’s airfield at Stoughton. (Several of the aerial pictures of BU’s Headquarter Site were taken using the facilities offered by the Aero Club and their instructors).

The finished film was used by the BU’s Salesforce to explain the benefits of Clarino to potential shoemaking customers. Unfortunately Clarino was found to be wanting in many areas when it came to making high quality footwear. Maybe there is just no substitute for leather.”

The second picture shows Walter at work in the Labelle factory in France.


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