Rohan Road Trip One Day Three Shops

Rohan Keswick Visits Rohan Long Preston

The Rohan Keswick team make a pilgrimage to Rohan Long Preston where it all started…

On my first day at Rohan Keswick, it was made very clear to me how important the history of Rohan and the shops are.

After reading though the history of how Rohan in Keswick came to be, it took me aback with the amount of knowledge I would need on previous products. We’re not talking knowing what jacket we produced 3 months ago or 3 years ago, were talking 30 years ago, and they are not just products, they are our Originals! I say “our Originals” because working for Rohan in Keswick with the largest collection in the world (…probably) of Rohan Originals it feels like it’s ours because they are what made the brand what it is and frankly without them I wound’nt have a job. But I’m not here to talk about Originals, I’m here to tell you about a Rohan Road trip, but I needed the Originals to let you know why the road trip is so important.

When you hear “Originals”, “Olfio” , “Pampas”, “bright pink Bags”, “Moving On” they are soon followed by “I bought them from Long Preston”, or “I remember buying Rohan before you were even born, from Long Preston”, “I used to travel for miles to go to Long Preston for my Rohan items”.

So the Rohan Keswick “newbies” (all working at Rohan in Keswick for under 10 months) squeezed into a Ford Fiesta (note 5 of us in totally) and went to Long Preston. Looking at the road map as we headed off I noticed two things, one there is a village called Giggleswick nearby which literally made me giggle as it’s such a brilliant name. Number two Long Preston is remote, it’s a small quiet village, a little dot on my road atlas. It made me think back to the Originals and just how ground breaking they were. People would travel to a little dot on a road atlas to buy Rohan.

Long Preston Rohan

When we arrived we took are first look at the Long Preston shop a cute stone building with bags (pun intended) of character. The cute front window made me think back to my childhood looking through the small front window of the local sweet shop and now I was doing it all again but this time with the grown up sweet shop, where instead of sherbet fountains I’d find Microgrids and other goodies.

Rohan Keswick in Long Preston

For me the shop itself felt homely, it felt some where relaxing to shop and I wanted to explorer every bit of it. The products themselves were not my focus as I’m lucky enough to see them every day, but how it’s laid out, where they have put their Men’s Cool Silver Briefs, how they have shown off the Rohan Waterproofs. I also loved the exposed stone work, it really enhanced to the shops character. Best of all they made us a brew.

After looking around we all bundled back in the Fiesta to make the journey back to Keswick but we had planned a minor detour to Rohan  Ambleside, our neighbours and also a part of the Rohan Keswick (Evans family) history.

Rohan Keswick and Rohan Ambleside Team

Rohan Keswick and Rohan Ambleside Team in Rohan Ambleside

This is a very different shop to Long Preston and to the most part us, both ourselves and Long Preston have dividers in our shops, theirs is split over two floors and ours has a rather big stair case running through the middle but in both case it breaks up the men’s and the women’s sections. In Ambleside you are met by this lovely feeling of openness and with it comes loads of natural light, coupled with a high ceiling it does feel huge when you initially walk in.

We had a slightly quicker nosey around the Ambleside shop, then for the last leg we bundled back in the fiesta and went home. When I say home I mean Rohan Keswick, but it is homely our wood fittings bring out a softness to the shop. The two sides to the shop entice you round to see what goodies lie at the end. For me, more personally it feels like our shop, even in our short time we have made it our own. It took going to see a couple of shops to really appreciate the one you have, the big windows, the well-dressed mannequins, the originals framed on the walls, the Mark Richards prints behind the till, they have all had an input and they all have little stories behind them. But most of all the over whelming feel of family, which has been instilled by the Evans family, and that runs all the way down through management right the way to the part-time staff.

We’re all here together, we all work together, we all love Rohan, and we all owe a lot to the Evans family.

Elizabeth – Deputy Manager Rohan Keswick , 10 months old in Rohan time on 10th December 2013.

 

Rohan Heritage

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