The OLPRO Rambling Blog
Father's Day Ideas.
Father's day is quickly coming upon us, as it always does. What once was a distant dream is now a reality touching down with a couple of weeks. Now, don't despair, your friendly neighbourhood Olpro blog post is here to help with ideas for what to get that special man in your life!
The classic... A tent!
Just in time for the big day we have received a big load of stock so we are able to supply all of your camping needs! Whether it be a brand new POP Tent or a big Wichenford 8 Berth a tent can provide a lot of great quality family time and fun. Also, with Father's Day being the 19th of June it is perfect timing for a spontaneous camping trip!
A Caravan Mover
We have now started to stock caravan movers which are a near must have accessory for anyone who is serious about caravanning. A caravan movers basic feature is to accurately move a caravan into required destination such as a driveway or pitch. This device eliminates any physical labour which can lead to injury. The caravan movers that we stock can be fitted on your own, or we can provide a fitter to help.
Melamine is a great gift for anyone who likes anything outdoors. We provide both 16 and 8 piece sets in various different designs. Melamine is better to use outside as it doesn't smash when knocked over. This is handy when travelling to and from your favourite camping destinations, as well as inevitable bumps and knocks on campsites.
Despite working at a company that largely designs and supplies camping gear such as tents and awnings, I will be the first one to put my hands up and say that I am useless at putting up anything involving poles and fabric. This all changed however when I tried to put up the Loopo Breeze. This awning removes all difficult to use stiff poles and replaces them with inflatable inner tubes. This means all that you need to put up this range of awnings is a pump and a campervan!
So here concludes what I see as top picks this Father's Day! With great weather on the horizon as well I can't see a better reason to go outside with the family!
Cooking a Lamb Roast on the OLPRO Safire
This Easter Bank Holiday weekend I decided I would cook the Lamb Roast on our OLPRO Safire Barbecue.
I knew it would be good but never expected it to be quite this good.
This is what Happened
The Lamb Joint was 1.5kg and I rubbed it with a mixture of olive oil , black pepper, salt and a Lamb herb mix, from the supermarket.
I put two BBQ fire lighters and 7 charcoal brickettes into the Safire and lit the fire lighters.
When the brickettes had gone white after about 15 minutes I but the extension and the grill plate for the Safire in place.
I put the Lamb on the Roasting grid on the grill plate with the lid on to cook for 1 hour
After the hour I turned the lamb over and added some new potato's rubbed in olive oil with sea salt to the moat next to the charcoal pit and added a couple more pieces of charcoal.
After a further hour the lamb and potato's were done
Needless to say, the lamb was a real success and all the family enjoyed will definitely be cooking with the OLPRO Safire again.
It's Time we got Camping!
It is now under 40 days until Easter and although Easter is a little earlier this year, so we can say that it's now under 40 days until Easter a little earlier too it remains a fact that the first Bank Holiday since the last one is nearly upon us.
It's also the first bank holiday of the year which is evident earlier and earlier each year with Chocolate Eggs appearing on every vacant shelf space as soon as we hit December 26th.
It's 4 days off - nothing happening, unless you're a Junior Doctor in which case you get to work for less than you used to while we all get to go camping and in all cases are greatful that you're there in case of that drunken tent peg episode.
There's also that funny Sunday where the Supermarkets are shut because they're a certain size or shape.
So what to do?
Sometimes the first bank holiday is the one where people do less in order to recover after months of credit card bills from Christmas and the relentless worry of -20 and snow.
It's odd because it's not Winter any more but it still feels quite a lot like it, but with Eggs .. and then suddenly it all gets a little bit warmer.
What to do?
In 1995 myself and friend - it was supposed to be two friends but one lay in, decided we'd walk from my then home Sheffield to Hope, in the Peak District and camp. The intention was then to walk on to Castleton.
They say in those parts Live in Hope, Die in Castleton. For us it was almost the case. A step too far, almost, on a very cold day.
We relied on my friends tent, a £20 two man affair from a shop that, in those days, was a high street chain. Oddly my Uncle ran a climbing shop in Sheffield and sold actual proper tents but for some reason we went with a cheaper one.
By the time we'd made the long days walk in the strong, cold wind we needed a beer. After a few we set up the tent on a small but busy campsite.
The wind, the rain, the cold.
I'd packed for four or five days and by 4am I was wearing every piece of clothing I had brought. Had the rucksack I'd carried been big enough I would have worn that too.
Damien said that he'd spent the whole night wondering what my first words would be in the morning. When they were - "Let's go home" I am sure I saw a tear of joy in his eye - a frozen one.
We did walk to Castleton that day. We came across a child who had dared to buy a ice lolly and then got his tongue stuck to it due to the air being colder than the lolly. The last we saw of him was an old lady in a Co-Op boiling a kettle and sitting him down.
On the way home, on the train, I swore I'd never not take a tent camping again that couldn't hold up to the wind, that wouldn't see us through a Easter bank holiday.
At Easter it's the first chance to get out there. To have the time, as the shops are shut and you have four whole days to enjoy time away but whatever you do beware the easy option. Buy a proper tent - Buy proper gear and enjoy it.
I don't think we've actually had as cold a Easter since then.
I'll never forget 1995 and we often laugh about our one day camping trip but we missed out on a few more days out in Hope and Castleton and the dozens of times I've been back I've enjoyed them more knowing that my bed was comfy and my tent was warm and dry.
I'm not saying just buy OLPRO - Just buy a tent and the right accessories you'll enjoy and use over and over. It is the reason we began 5 years ago. It doesn't have to be Easter to be wet and windy in the UK but we've made OLPRO Tents and Inflatable campervan awnings to survive the Great British weather.
From now on we're going to keep on blogging and all of our older blogs, from the last four a bit years we're going to re-post too. We'll tell you about what we're upto, our thoughts, our experiences and I hope you enjoy them.
As a British brand made and inspired by Britain... but sold around the world we want you to know more about the brand and the products we make and we use too.
And we have more to come. This year we're five years old but we have only just started.
- Daniel Walton
Who are OLPRO and what do we do?
First published back in 2013.
We make some pretty funky outdoor stuff for definite. Started 3 years ago when I left the employment of others we started designing and dreaming up things which would make being in the outdoors even more fun.
There are now 9 of us in the team and we’re growing all the time.
As well as from the camping world we also have people in the team from clothing and from marketing. We’re always looking at what we can develop or what we can make that’s not out there already. This has led us down some different paths but we’re always up for exploring new ideas.
Our exposure on social media has helped (21,000 followers on Twitter) as we get great feedback from friends and followers.
We’re really well known for Melamine sets. We design and then produce some fantastic melamine designs for people who want something contemporary and cool. Our Berrow Hill melamine set is sold across the world now and has been featured in a lot of media, as well as winning a number of awards. It’s a great set which depicts camping, caravanning, outdoor wildlife and tree! Following from Berrow Hill we launched Bewdley which is made for the gardener.
Recently, we launched our EAT OUT set. This has gone crazy. For once we wanted to put together a set where everything in the box was different. So, the person who buys the EAT OUT melamine set gets 16 different products – 8 plates, 4 bowls and 4 mugs but all with different etchings across them.
Every one loves EAT OUT, which recently featured in Jamie Olivers magazine.
Away from Melamine we make tents.
Again we don’t do boring stuff.
Our family range of tents features cool three colour designs and special design features made for families. We’ve won awards in the national press 2 years running now for tent design and work with several festivals. Our new Cocoons won Festival Tent of the Year for the Four Berth and with features such as the removable panel and darker sleeping areas we weren’t surprised.
We camp all the time so these tents get a lot of testing and we tweak them a lot before launching.
2015 see’s the launch of our Martley 2.0 and Wichenford 2.0 tents. More on these in the coming months.
One product we didn’t see coming straight away was the Pop Up Beach Hut. This fantastic full size Beach Hut you can take anywhere with you! It comes in a 80cm bag and all you have to do is take it to the beach – open it up and voila! You have somewhere to chill and keep the kids out of the sun.
We have become well known for our Beach Hut and again, it’s been seen on a lot of TV and in a lot of magazines. We’ve also had some great emails and photos from people who’ve found all sorts of crazy uses for them. Most recently it’s been a regular feature on Lorraine in Benidorm.
OLPRO have also become famous (in our own bath water) for making some pretty fancy chemicals including Bottom & Top PLUS which is an all in one toilet chemical and rinse, highly concentrated, and in a measuring bottle – so for campers and caravanners alike you need only take one small bottle away with you – rather than two huge bottles. It saves money, time, space and effort.
And if all that wasn’t enough we also make sleeping bags, windbreaks, tent pegs, bags and covers for all sorts of camping accessories, awning carpet, tent carpets, lighting and accessories for caravans.
And finally in 2014/ 2015 we have become the exclusive distributor of the Happy Camper range of accessories from Unikia in the UK and for the SAFIRE Roaster. These are two very OLPRO ranges of products, the first from Norway and SAFIRE from South Africa.
You can see the full range of OLPRO at http://www.olpro.co.uk and we have links to both our retailers and to those people who offer the ranges online.
Because we’re pretty funky we only sell to like minded people so there are lots of places you can’t buy our products. If you need to find somewhere then email us or call us and we will be very happy to help. We do supply over 150 retailers and many with multiple stores so we should find someone near you.
If you want to sell our products then contact us too and we’ll he happy to talk further about what we do and the support we can give retailers.
Beyond GlampingBeyond Glamping
What Type Of Happy Camper Are You?
The current UK economic climate has seen a huge surge in interest in camping this summer, according to British camping manufacturer OLPRO whose sales have doubled since 2012 (www.olproshop.com)
First came the trend for more glamorous camping – or glamping, as it is known – but, working with behavioural psychologist Barbara Bishop, OLPRO have identified a host of camping sub-groups into which most of the British population can be included.
Wigwamping – our love affair with camping begins in childhood. Everyone has had a wigwamper moment – whether it be crafting a tent from a clothes’ horse and blanket or playing cowboys & Indians in the garden.
Cramping – penniless students are the main cramping protagonists. It involves bunking down in your car overnight or cramming as many people into a borrowed tent as you can to save money wherever possible.
Amping – these are the types who see themselves as uber-cool and only camp at festivals. Happy to rough it for a couple of days, this is usually the only time their tent sees the light of day.
Champing – a rite of passage for any young family. Champing involves leaving at some ungodly hour to catch a cross-Channel ferry to France for a week’s holiday. Champing takes it’s name from toasting one’s success at putting up a family-size tent with a mug of the fizzy stuff.
Scamping – men are the ones who mainly make up this category. A scamper is a boy scout who has never grown up. Scamping involves using the latest gadgets, packing with military precision and ensuring enough kit is involved to ensure a family survives a nuclear holocaust.
Vamping – if men are scampers then women are vampers. These are the ladies who see style being just as important as function. Alongside their tent, vampers can often be spotted with a VW Camper van – the must-have accessory.
Tramping – trampers are committed campers. They are the new back packers and are also very eco-aware. They tend to walk everywhere as the journey is key to the overall experience – it’s less of a holiday for them and more of a life event.
Shamping – shampers hate camping but talk a good camp. Even if they buy a tent, it’s unlikely to ever be used as they’ll opt for a hotel bed over an inflatable mattress every time.
Commenting on the findings, Barbara Bishop said:
“It’s interesting to note that, whilst people share a similar hobby or interest – in this instance camping – they still stamp their own unique personality on it.
Die hard campers who model themselves on Bear Grylls tend to look down on the sub groups for not camping ‘authentically’ but, ultimately, camping is about a love of the outdoors and sleeping under the stars, no matter how you dress it up or down!”
Check out the full range from OLPRO at www.olproshop.com
- Daniel Walton
Research Finds Music Festivals More About Escapism & Less About MusicDespite the social media frenzy that follows the announcement of a headline act at the UK’s top music festivals, according to research by British camping manufacturer www.olpro.co.uk , it’s not the music that keeps people coming back. It’s the inner hippy in all of us that festivals unleash, allowing us to live simply, in a community and without responsibility.
The OLPRO team went to ten festivals in 2013, each of them offering a different range of music and content, appealing to everyone from families to heavy metal fans. OLPRO spoke to over 10001 festival-goers and established that 90% were there to forget real life rather than to see a specific artist. Interestingly, most of those questioned admitted to spending only 50% of their waking time enjoying the music with drinking, eating, partying and being with friends and family being equally as important.
Of those questioned who had gone travelling during a gap year, for example, 95% stated that a festival reminded them of the simplicity of life as a backpacker. People seem to yearn for a stripped-down life where the only concerns are where you are going to sleep and what you’re going to eat.
40% of those OLPRO spoke to stated that they have started to go camping at other times of the year to recapture the feeling of being at a Festival, even though the majority never went camping as children. Commenting on their findings, OLPRO MD Daniel Walton stated:
“Festivals remind people of their childhood – the big circus-like tents, fairgrounds, entertainers, stalls and side shows, bubbles. For a few days they can forget their job, their responsibilities, which reminds them of how they felt before they grew up. The music seems to be secondary to the adventure.”