Unique trainer business opens new premises in South Shields

Bonkers Sole recycle, refurbish and customise branded trainers. 

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

A North East business that recycles, refurbishes and customises trainers have moved to a brand-new premises, located on Chichester Road in South Shields. 

Bonkers Sole, which is owned by husband and wife James and Susan Patrick, opened their new shop to the public last week, but are set to host a celebratory opening event on Friday, November 10 - with all welcome to come along, and find out more about what they do. 

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

As well as taking orders to revamp a customers’ well-loved trusty trainers, they have also launched a sale section within their new shop, where customers can purchase preloved branded trainers as well as trainer themed t-shirts.

Founder of Bonkers Sole, James Patrick explained how the business came to fruition, as he said: “I’ve got a passion for trainers. So the idea for the business started when I learned how to clean my own trainers properly, using YouTube tutorials."

James Patrick of Bonkers Sole.James Patrick of Bonkers Sole.
James Patrick of Bonkers Sole.

He continued: “I then started to buy trainers from car boot sales and charity shops to do them up and sell them on auction sites. 

“I perfected the trade, and after some of my friends asked me to do theirs, I decided to promote my business on social media, which helped me to get more work. It just snowballed from there.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The business is entirely family run, with James and Susan’s son also helping out when he can. 

Read South Tyneside's news on the go with our free email newsletters - bringing the headlines to your inbox. Catch up on the day's news and sport and enjoy even more from your Gazette. Visit our website here to find out more and sign up.

Explaining exactly what Bonkers Sole do, James explained: “We renovate, clean and customise shoes for customers, which is our core business. But we also sell renovated shoes.”

James hopes to promote sustainability within his business, as he explained: “The big thing about our business is recycling.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“People nowadays are a bit broke,” James said, referring to the cost of living crisis.

“If they have a favourite pair of trainers, rather than throwing them away and buying new they can get them re-done.

“That's what we’re all about in here.”

In regards to customising aspects of the business, Bonkers Sole are able to create a unique shoe for the customers depending on request. They have recently created a shoe design dedicated to The Stone Roses, as well as shoes dedicated to football teams.

The custom designs are created by hand-painting as well as by using a heat transfer vinyl machine.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The shoes then have a finish applied, which helps towards the longevity of the design. 

James working on a pair of trainers.James working on a pair of trainers.
James working on a pair of trainers.

With Bonkers Sole almost having a re-launch since moving to their new premises, James hopes to build a community of fellow “sneakerheads”, within South Shields.

Bonkers Sole will be hosting a celebratory opening event on Friday, November 10 from 3pm until 6pm in their Chichester Road shop, with all welcome to go along.