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Any good ski shops in the south east of England?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I'm on the hunt for a new pair of ski boots before the
Ski season kicks off again, but I can't seem to find any
ski shops near me, and recommendations?
(I live in Canterbury)
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
There is a place called the captains cabin in sevenoaks, if you wanna drive a bit further then there is ski bartlett
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@jakey, I live in Ashford and have bought 3 lots of boots,( all been custom fit) since I have lived down here for last 12 years ish. First pair I went to Knockhatch dry ski slope near Eastbourne, based upon good reviews, unfortunately they didn’t fit well and had to go back for adjustment, clearly pain given distance from Ashford, despite adjustment still not comfortable and after 3 ski trips decided to buy new pair. Despite mixed reviews on major chains went to Ellis Brigham in Covent Garden ,( next door to our head office so very handy as I was there a few times a month.) Never had to go back for adjustment ironically when it was easy to do so, they lasted loads of ski trips before I wanted some new ones. Last pair I got from Snow and Rock in Stratford Westfield, can’t remember why I didn’t go back to Ellis Brigham, but being on high speed route back from St Pancras, the opportunity to go back for adjustment was a factor. These needed an adjustment and after that they were fine and still going strong, albeit bit worn on heels from too much apres ski dancing and walking the streets all evening after repeated failure to return to hotels for dinner!

So in summary my advice is factor in going back for adjustments.
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There's the Skiers Lounge in West Sussex. Sensible bloke runs it although shut at the moment for C19.

https://www.theskierslounge.co.uk
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
I didn't know there was so many ski shops to choose from!
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+1 for the Captains Cabin in Sevenoaks. We have been using them for several years and have bought skis and boots for the whole family plus jackets, helmets, goggles etc! Their boot fitting service is very good and you can go back unlimited times if any further adjustments are needed. There is a very cheap carpark just behind the store.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@Jakey, there used to be a lot, lot more but C19 and the change in buying habits has killed a lot of them off. The problem is that a lot of people buy online from massive warehouses in Europe whose overheads are lower so reduce prices accordingly.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
I can recommend Snowlab (at Knockhatch as mentioned above), near Hailsham - not a huge shop but they seem to pack it all in and have a good selection of clothing and equipment at all price ranges and the team are always friendly and willing to offer advice. They have a website for sales too www.snowlab.co.uk

As they're local to us, we get our skis serviced there every year and they've always done a good job . I can't say anything about their boot fitting as I have no personal experience but friends have bought boots there and Snowlab went to some lengths to ensure a good fit (including adjustments after their first trip)

It was a while ago, but I got mine done at Ellis Brigham too - excellent service, no nonsense - first comment was not to get hung up on the boots I had my eye on, as fit was key - and I never had a problem with the boots they fitted me with.

I se that the Skiers Lounge near Horsham mentioned above has risen from the ashes of Edge & Wax who were always well regarded as I recall. Good luck to them.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Ignoring covid:
Trains from Canterbury come in to Victoria, and a few stops from there will get you to ProFeet in Fulham (who I've used for boots and have been happy with both sales and after-sales service).
As extremerob said you've got Ski Bartlett, though on completely the wrong side of London for you, in Uxbridge (used for non-boots and good service).
Or there's also Finches Emporium in Forest Hill, closer than Uxbridge...but possibly no quicker to get to (used for non-boots and good service).
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
Absolute Snow have a storefront (sort of) in Watford - bit off your radar in Canterbury, but maybe if you were taking a trip to Hemel it'd be worth a detour.
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
While it is a fairly decent trek (130+ miles) Solutions4Feet and @CEM (the bootfitter most snowheads seem to recommend in the UK) in Bicester are doable from Canterbury (and it wouldn't surprise me if that is easier than some of the places in London...)
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Ski Bartlett are actually quite easy to get to from the M25 so time wise not actually that bad from Canterbury compared to Central London even though they are on the "wrong" side! Excellent in my experience too.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@Jakey, not sure how new you are to the ski world and I don't want to discredit the talented fitters that do work at Ellis Brigham, less convinced by S&R. Thing is it can really be hit and miss with who you get at these "High Street" stores. Yes the likes of CEM, ProFeet, Ski Bartlett and a few others are in a separate world are you have more certainty to get a better end result, the reason why is they have the experience and you usually pay more for the skiboots/service. For example skibartlett have in the past taken a £50 non-refundable boot fitting appointment charge that comes out of your purchase, they do not fit boots otherwise, they take notes of each fitting session and subsequent modifications to boots. Sort of like a dental record. So years down the line a good fitter has a story of what worked and didnt when you next pop in.

While at Ellis Brigham and Snow and Rock, its a bit more of a quantity of sales vs quality, they dont do appointments or take a deposit, so how does a salesperson know if it is worth investing time with a potential client, people go in and want to try things on with no intention to buy - hell I do it sometimes If I want to try the fit of a new model - the times I have popped into Snow and Rock and seen a "boot fitter" or two spread across a number of clients, or quite frankly the fact that none of the staff really stick around year after year kinda proves the point of quality and lack of experience amongst the boot fitting staff. There was a young girl last winter at S&Rs High Street Ken shop, that had never skied, or boarded, had been to a fitting workshop/course and was fitting people en masse.

A good friend of mine bought boots two years back against my advice from EB, he spent 4 afternoons at the ski fitters in Val Thorens getting adjustments done to his boots, the boots he was sold were not right for him - in the end after a signficant amount of time, modifications on the shops side and some extra money that far exceeded the boot price difference between EB and Ski Bartlett he is in a boot that he can ski in all day but still with some discomfort. So you may also consider that though the prices may be higher in resort, you can get VAT back post Brexit, you also have access to good fitters and free service if needed during your ski trip.

At the end of the day the point I am making is, you get what you pay for, you can tell the difference between a good fit and a poor fit, the better the skier you are the more aware you are of the differences.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
These guys based in Dover will travel to you
https://www.thebootbus.co.uk/

Ps I do not have any experience with them
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Good post from @extremerob, fully concur.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Also Ski Shack at Chatham Ski Centre has a small selection and do fittings and adjustments. Might we worth a call see what they have in.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
And another vote for Captains Cabin in Sevenoaks. Impressed by their fitting process and a few years on they were able to source and replace the sole plates. When in Sussex I have previously bought boots from SnowLab at Knockhatch and would happily go back there too.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
I ski at Chatham! I didn't know they did fittings there though, I'll have a look next time I go whenever it opens up again. The place at Sevenoaks sounds really good.
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By the way, I'd like to thank everybody who's sent suggestions in, I don't have any friends who ski, so this place is the only place I can ask for help and suggestions with skiing. Very Happy Very Happy
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
I found this to be a great and informative video, its in german but youtube can automatically translate for you and add the subs.


http://youtube.com/v/ob1Th4XVZvk
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Captains cabin in Sevenoaks are excellent
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Captains cabin in Sevenoaks are excellent
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
I've heard good things about them, I'll give them a shout.
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