Inside the outdoor industry

OTS 2018: The preview

With less than a week to go until the UK's biggest outdoor trade show we look at what's on offer at Event City, Manchester.


It’s not exactly on a par with Ross and Rachel from Friends, but there was something of an inevitability that the Outdoor Trade Show would move North and hook up with at least one of the other UK trade shows and finally it has come to pass.

It made sense for the industry to join forces with ROKS and while KORS continues to stand alone, the success of the two shows in the coming weeks will surely determine whether OTS emerges as the UK trade’s sole trade event next year or whether that situation remains the same.

With a record number of exhibitors and a venue that allows for a floorplan with everyone under one roof, all the ingredients are in place to produce an event which will showcase an industry with some degree of togetherness, in one of the UK’s major cities. It may not quite be ISPO but it’s good way for the UK market to show its strength. And shelling out for one show rather than three just has to be more agreeable for everyone. will be at the show. If you see us and we know you please say hello, and if you don’t know us but know who we are the same applies. Enjoy the show. Oh and this little lot below will also be there….


Wilton Bradley

Stand: 219


Wilton Bradley is targeting the outdoor market with a variety of Officially-licensed Volkswagen-branded products, and the Urban Beach Clothing range which will be showcased at trade shows this summer.
The range includes pop up tents, cool boxes, camping chairs, family low chairs, as well as a range of Urban Beach wear featuring wellies, t-shirts, shorts, swimwear and flip-flops. The OutDoor show will feature a full-size VW Camper Tent, children’s-size VW Camper tent and VW Camper-branded pull along coolbox.

International sales manager, Ross Bradley said: “We are very excited to be working with the iconic Volkswagen brand to create a unique and stylish range which both consumers and VW aficionados will love. From festival camping equipment to products designed for the beach, the Wilton Bradley VW range offers something truly unique from the rest of the market. Setting the trend for a family fun holiday to the beach, this range was borne from VW’s renowned legacy for fun and adventure and matches perfectly with our expertise in producing leisure products.”

The iconic Volkswagen visuals have been thoughtfully introduced into the UB designed and VW inspired range. Now you can take on your next journey along the coast, begin your trip to the hills or explore urban environments with gear you know is made ready for the adventure.

It will also be showcasing products from its action sports brand, Osprey. From the latest Wetsuit and Tri-Suit re-designs to the hugely popular Stand-Up Inflatable Paddleboards and Dry Bags, Osprey has proven its effectiveness over recent years at capturing the market of beginners to intermediate action sport enthusiasts.

Burton McCall

Stand 56

Burton McCall will be demoing its new style of insect repelling device for this year, Thermacell’s MR150, which deploys a protective cloud around the user, keeping away midges, mozzies and other insects, dispensing with the need for sprays and lotions.

Thermacell technology uses heat activated repellent to create an invisible, scent-free, zone of protection from mosquitoes, midges and other small flying insects. The devices are powered by a small fuel cartridge that provides the cordless, portable heat that is directed to a metal grill. A small mat saturated with repellent is inserted on top of the metal grill. Heat disperses the repellent from the mat into the air, creating the zone of protection.    In this way, mosquitoes and midges are stopped in flight instead of on one’s skin, so Thermacell reduces both bites and the annoyance of buzzing mosquitoes and midges.
The repellent, allethrin, is a synthetic copy of a natural repellent found in chrysanthemum plants.


Stand: 70

SnugpakSnugpak’s Kitmonster G2 collection includes the 35 litre Roller Kitmonster Carry On (£84.95), Kitmonster 70L G2 (RRP £79.95), a 70 litre capacity holdall, and for longer trips, a 120 litre capacity version with wheels, the Kitmonster 120L G2 (RRP £129.95). The outer shells on all three G2 packs are constructed with super tough, durable, waterproof tarpaulin fabric to provide the ultimate protection for gear on the go, making it the perfect choice for the hustle and bustle of travel and rugged outdoor terrain.

The Journey collection comprises four tents in a Sunburst Orange colourway, all 4000mm HH, constructed with a durable ground sheet in a bathtub style and supplied complete with a tailored tent footprint to help protect the ground sheet. They all include No-See-Um-Mesh Mosquito Netting on the inner tent too! The Journey Solo (RRP £109.95) is the smallest in the collection, being a lightweight durable one person tent. The largest is the Journey Quad (RRP £269.95), which offers a generous sleeping area for four people and an extended living compartment to store camping essentials.


Stand: 250

Summit International will be showcasing a wide collection of products at this year’s show including the Summit Pack Away Chair which collapses down to a tenth of the size of a conventional folding chair, and weighs just 1kg.

Its strong, lightweight frame makes it easy to transport and can hold up to 110kg in weight. Made from water-resistant PVC material, the chair is able to withstand unexpected showers at outdoor events.

The firm also has a Summit Onesie “wearable sleeping bag” which zips or unzips enabling use of hands and feet whilst keeping them warm. The bag is designed for all outdoor events including barbecues, festivals, camping trips or where comfort and movement is a main priority.

This year, Summit launched a new eco-friendly, reusable MyBento bottle range made from high quality, BPA-free tritan plastic and borosilicate glass, serving as a viable alternative to single-use plastic bottles. Single-use plastics are a highly topical subject in today’s environment and a major contributor to plastic pollution, MyBento bottles are travel-friendly, easy to clean and ensures a fresh taste with every refill.

Summit are supporting the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) in connection with the new MyBento ‘Pure’ glass bottle initiative. For each bottle sold in the UK, a 50p contribution (or £1 for the premium bottle) goes to MCS in support of their #StopThePlasticTide appeal. The appeal aims to reduce plastic litter choking, starving and poisoning marine life.

The firm will also be showcasing its dedicated outdoor dining brand, B&Co. New to the range is the B&Co Al Fresco Smokeless BBQ Grill – the next innovation in charcoal cooking. Ready to cook for up to six people in under five minutes, the Alfresco Smokeless BBQ Grill offers all of the taste and flavour of outdoor charcoal cooking, but none of the waiting time traditional barbecues require. 

“We are proud to offer products that have an exceptional blend of quality, comfort and style at an affordable price. Our lines are perfect for outdoor enthusiasts and offer retailers a one-stop-shop across all active leisure and outdoor living products,” said Richard Taylor, sales director at Summit International.

New Brands Area

This year’s Outdoor Trade Show (OTS) will again host a special area dedicated to new brands looking to showcase their products.

Limited to seven brands that have not exhibited at OTS before, the New Brands Area is a dedicated display area which gives smaller brands the opportunity to break into the market and showcase new products to the trade .

Those already signed up for the New Brands Area include:  NB1 – Woolpower; NB2 – Yugen Explore; NB3 – D3 Tape; NB4 – The iiCap; NB5 – TDSQA.


HJ Hall

Stand: 112

The Hall family has been manufacturing socks from the heart of Leicester since 1882. With the original goal of providing warm, long-lasting socks for the farming community. Through continuous innovation and fresh designs HJ Hall has become the largest branded sock manufacturer in the UK.

It is launching a new collection of its ProTrek socks at the show..


Stand: 2

Founded in 1977, ASI is the distributor of premium brands that known and respected for their quality and innovation. Brands include Aku, Alite Designs, Boreas, CMP, Leki and Tyny Tools

Coal Headwear

Stand: 76
The Wilderness (shown here in Navy) is a light cap perfect for Summer. The classic trucker fit has been pared down with a low density foam, trimmed internally with printed taping. Featuring Coal’s custom wildlife embroidery some colourways are also made from UPF rated material helping to protect you further from the sun.



Stand: 232

Paramo will be showing its new tough Men’s Enduro Trek and Women’s Ventura Trek Trousers designed for mountain professionals and enthusiasts and featuring new water-repellent fabric with four-way stretch for greater freedom of movement. It also has secure pocketing for mountain essentials and generous thigh vents for temperature control, Dyneema reinforcement on seat, knees and at ankles for crampon use.

Men’s Halcon Trek and Women’s Alondra Trek Trousers come in muted colour without reflective and offer a really trusty fieldwork trouser, which will shrug off the elements and allows plenty of carrying space with both zipped hip pockets and poppered cargo pockets. Reinforcement for sitting, kneeling and at ankles to fight off heather, brambles, scree etc with optional foam inserts to improve comfort.


Stand: 44

At the OTS 2018 show in Manchester, Buffera will be showcasing the upcoming AW18/19 collection (launching on 1st August 2018) which includes the launch of the new Original Buff, made from a four-way stretch recycled polyester microfibre. The SS19 collection will also be shown which includes the brand new CoolNet UV+ Buff and an all new Kids Caps Collection which launches on 1st March 2019.


Stand: 90ProAgencies

UK sales agents for Cascade Designs, Eagle Creek, Expedition Food, Outdoor Research and Asolo.




Stand: 113

Three key new innovations have been added to the Craghoppers SS19 range; Odour control, Zip ‘n’ Clip, and Non iron + Easy care.

Odour control has been achieved through discreet fabric patches have been added into selected garments, which capture and absorb odour molecules when the garment is being worn. It is a chemical free and environmentally friendly process.  Zip ‘n’ Clip is a new technology that allows additional security for storing valuables. The Zip ‘n’ Clip feature will be added to all products within the NosiLife category of Shirts and trousers. The introduction of Non Iron and Easy Care fabrics means that you’ll be able to enjoy exploring without any niggling creases from sitting on the plane. The clothing that is ready to go as soon as it’s been unpacked, and is constructed from specially selected fabrics created so that no ironing is necessary.

Key styles for this season include the Men’s Trieste (left), Varese, Treviso, and Caleb Gore-Tex Jackets, as well as the NosiLife Adventure II, Kiwi Boulder, and Broni long sleeved shirts, accompanied by the NosiLife pro, Lairg, and Allori trousers.

Key products within the new Women’s collection include the Minori, Juno, and Palermo jackets. They can be paired with the NosiLife Bardo and Verona shirts, the new NosiLife Sydney Crew; a stretch jersey packed with Craghoppers’ signature NosiLife technology, and the new Ellory Jeans.


Stand: 134

Keela’s offering will include a new and improved SDP system plus a variety of new garments including the popular Hydron softshell and all-new baselayers.

The Hydron Softshell jacket is described as ‘chock full of well thought through design features’ the Hydron has become a fast favourite of many, and is great for use hiking through the wilderness

Machu Trousers feature new Insect Shield treatment and are aimed at the casual traveller.

The Cairn Jacket (left) is an outdoor jacket with 3-layer fabric designed to provide maximum waterproofness and breathability.


Stand: 188

The Polaris Hat from Tilley has features including stowage for sunglasses, moisture wicking and cooling elastic sweatband, reflective wind chords, and a thick foam brim to hold its shape in high winds (and means it floats) UPF50+ & includes a stow away sun shield that offers maximum protection for neck and shoulders. As with many Tilley hats, the Polaris is also guaranteed for life.

The Polaris also features 3XDRY BIO fabric from Schoeller Technologies, a PFC Free finishing technology that is based on renewable resources and mimics the protective plant cuticle that repels morning dew drops and heavy rain. The outer surface fends off water and dirt so that it will simply run off the surface of the fabric, while the interior absorbs moisture and wicks it away.

Tilley’s new Performance Collection is for the field expert devoted to their sport or activity and features innovative technologies that will keep the wearer cool and comfortable.


Stand: 52

STORMCARENew for the show, FC free, water based trigger application tent proofer, incorporating UV protection. Easy to use direct application proofer ideal for reproofing smaller tents and adding resistance to UV degradation. Also on show will be Storm’s new Ultimate care kits, in both regular and aluminium bottling. These make the in-store selection easy, giving all you need in one unit. Available in a range of care options for apparel and gear.

GP Batteries

Stand: 164

GP will be introducing its new GP Design Beam range and new budget-friendly head torches. The company will also continue to promote its recently launched ‘Recharge the Outdoors’ campaign. The OIA backed campaign is challenging the outdoor industry to switch to only selling and using eco-friendly rechargeable batteries in a bid to reduce the 600m disposable batteries thrown away in the UK every year.  There will be special offers on the stand for retailers joining the campaign and committing to only selling rechargeable batteries to help reduce their footprint.

OMM – Original Mountain Marathon

Stand: 160

The third OMM Alps and sixth OMM Japan will experience more mountain weather so OMM has entered the ultra packable waterproofs market with Halo Jacket and Pants designed to escape sudden downpours. A sub 200g total suit and pack size smaller than a tennis ball without compromise to waterproofing features makes the Halo the serious offer for the truly uncompromising racer.


Carry continues to be a focus, with OMM’s premium Phantom series reengineered to combine TrailFire Vest’s front carry with Ultra 8’s diaphragm adjustment and all onto the unique Phantom suspension Yoke Harness. The result is a rugged, highly technical pack vest designed for moving fast and light in difficult environments with unparalleled stability.


Stand: 116

LED Torch brand, Coast, will once again be showing and demonstrating a full selection from its growing range at OTS 2018 including several new additions.

The first of three new additions to Coast’s FL series, the FL denoting front-mounted battery compartment, much favoured by Outdoor enthusiasts over those with an additional rear battery pack 

Weighing only 65 grams, the FL11(£23.95) provides a maximum 130 lumens/27 metres, with an additional 45 lumens/15 metres option when less light is required, plus a useful red led mode for ‘anti-glare’ also to preserve night vision and a flashing red mode for personal safety and identification

The FL19 High-Powered Compact Head-Torch (£29.95) provides a maximum 330 lumens/38 metres output, with an additional 45 lumens/15 metres option when less light is required, plus a twin-red led mode for ‘anti-glare’ also to preserve night vision. Also featuring a reflective head-strap for added user safety

Compact and lightweight at only 65 grams, the FL60 Rechargeable Head-Torch (£59.95) provides a maximum 400 lumens/32 metres output, with an additional 205 lumens (medium) and 45 lumens (low) option when less light is required

Designed to produce an ultra-wide flood beam to illuminate a wide/broad area around the wearer

It comes with both Lithium-ion Rechargeable Battery and three AAA standard Alkaline batteries, so that head-torch can be in constant use at full brightness, even when li-ion battery is being recharged outside the torch.

Also supplied with Mains, USB and Car charger adaptors for maximum flexibility and convenience when re-charging.


Stand: 262

Mammut Ducan Low GTX – extremely robust, sporty and agile low-cut hiking shoe with greater wearing comfort for efficient walking in alpine terrain. The Ducan use a unique mix of technologies: 3D Knitted, Georganic 3D Technology for a good fit and comfort and Mammut Flextron Technology ™ – a combination of features resulting in: more stability during all walking phases due to better distribution of power and pressure, improved posture, anatomically correct foot position, which, in turn, has a positive effect on the person’s performance

Also available in High GTX version.


Stand: 202

Nikwax TX Direct WashNikwax is the ideal solution for extending the life and effectiveness of you gear. To name just two: TX.Direct is the go-to when you need to re-waterproof your gear; it’s easy to use in the washing machine and the Durable Water Repellency (DWR) develops on air drying – so no heat or tumble drying is required.

Outdoor Industry Award winning wash-in conditioner BaseFresh can be used in place of standard fabric softener in a washing machine. BaseFresh deodorises and improves wicking keeping base layers smelling fresher for longer.


Hydro Flask 

Stand: A5 201

Hydro Flask Skyline Series – a modern design evolution of some customer favourites – the 18 and 21 oz Standard Mouth. The perfect sizes to keep you hydrated throughout the day whether you are commuting, exercising or just chilling. TempShield insulation eliminates condensation and keeps beverages cold up to 24 hours or hot up to 12 hours.

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