WhyBuy? the JCB Grey Suede Workboots
- Water resistant
- Safety tested
- Good sole
- Insoles and padded lining for warmth
- Well priced
Fortuitously these grey suede boots arrived at exactly the same time as the wet and wintry weather down here in Sussex. The timing couldn’t have been better. I hate having cold and/or wet feet while working.
The boots are modern looking and as stylish as work footwear can get without being impractical. Loosening them up and tightening again is made easier by not having lace holes but metal lace loops. The strong nylon woven laces can slide through these without catching, so getting in or out is quite easy. If I have one small thing I would change it would be to have the last few metal loops replaced with hooks like hiking boots have – thus making it even easier to get in or out.
My foot comfort in work boots relies heavily on having the boots lined with a sympathetic but insulating material – and in this case the box is more than adequately ticked because from heel to toe the lining is thick enough for warmth and good padding.
Secondly, despite my small stature, I have quite wide feet, so I need to have enough room around my toes. These boots took about half an hour to go from “new boots” to feeling like I had been wearing them for months. I had even taken the precaution of packing a second pair of boots in case I needed to change but that clearly wasn’t necessary.
Some site workers need a highly cleated sole to get grip on very muddy work sites. I mostly don’t have this problem and tend to prefer work boots to have a slightly smoother sole that doesn’t accumulate loads of mud. This is because I am often working inside and out in equal measure. Last week was a case in point. Having lifted an old, rotten floor, I had to lay a new one with a laminate topping. With not enough space to accommodate the mitre saw inside, I had to have it on the stand outside – on a muddy grass patch. The constant popping in and out on relatively smooth soles meant that I could keep the floor clean by simply wiping the boots on a waste piece of chipboard flooring before I laid the next piece of laminate.
When it comes to protections though, the boots are made to satisfy the relevant EN ISO 20345:3011 standards so you will be protected against slipping, penetration by sharp objects, electrical currents, water absorption and warmth, amongst others.
When I question tradespeople about work wear they often tell me that they want to take all the safety stuff for granted because that is what they are paying for. But they do all tell me that they want a boot that is very comfortable, hardwearing, water resistant (nothing quite as nasty as cold, wet feet on a building site in late November!) and reasonably stylish.
I am happy to report that I found these grey suede boots all of those and they will therefore be joining my small collection of work shoes that I definitely will use again and again – especially in winter.