OLD soldier Denniss Whinfrey knows all about spit and polish. He has been wearing the same pair of shoes for the past 25 years. Every six months he has his hand made leather Derbys, manufactured by traditional English form Loake, repaired to keep them in pristine condition.
Dennis, now 91 bought the shoes for £60 - equivalent to £120 today - and still has them repaired at the shop where he bought them. The former engineering machinist of Sheffield, South Yorkshire, said "They may be 25 yeras old but i still take care of them. They polish up well and i try to look after them".
Widower Dennis, who served in the Green Howards during the second World War, has been offered a free pair of Loake shoes worth £200 by shoe boss Peter Bullock, but he isn't too sure.
He said: "It's a lovely offer but the shoes i've got have served me well. I'm not sure a new pair could be any better."
His only complaint is that he can't wear the shoes for the weekly tea dances he attends at Sheffield City Hall because "they're not suitable for dancing". Shop owner Peter estimates Dennis has spent £500 keeping his footwear going over the years. He said: "They must be the most repared shoes in the country. "How long the heels last varies. Obviously as he got a little bit older he has done less walking. It's best to buy all leather shoes which keep your feet cool and you tend to feel a lot better for it."
Andrew Loake is managing director of the company, based in Kettering, Northants, which was founded in 1880 by his great-grand-father John.
He ssaid: "we'd like to thank Dennis for being so loyal. We are delighted his shoes still look so smart after all these years."