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I bought my daughter Dr Martens boots (Jadon platform) for Christmas last year – a hefty investment at £170 but worthwhile, I thought, as they are known to be hard wearing. Within six months holes appeared, including wide slits at the heels. The shop told us it was “wear and tear”. The slits were blamed on her using the side zip instead of lacing them up (though one assumes the zip is there for this purpose). One zip has now broken and the soles have split.
I have written to the company online but received no reply, and tweeted – but again no reply (and the tweet deleted). I have never had a pair of leather shoes or boots fall apart like this through normal wear. I can see no other way to communicate. KT, Bath, Avon
You sent us the photo of the boots which we agree do look in a terrible state after just six months’ wear. It seems odd to insert a zip as a “design feature” which is not supposed to be used.
Your statutory rights are enshrined by the Consumer Rights Act 2015, which deems that any item of clothing, including shoes, must be of satisfactory quality, fit for purpose, and as described.
If the shoes can’t be replaced or repaired economically you are entitled to a refund or replacement. But the issue comes down to whether “wear and tear” over six months was reasonable or not, which is difficult to prove. The lack of response from a major brand was also disappointing, although we understand that your case had been logged as a general inquiry after your initial store visit.
Dr. Martens says: “We recognise that we didn’t meet our high standards on this occasion and have been in contact with the customer to understand what went wrong. We can confirm that we have brought this to a resolution that meets the customer’s expectations.”
We gather the company has sent a replacement pair which have arrived and you have been offered 25% discount on your next purchase.
We welcome letters but cannot answer individually. Email us at [email protected] or write to Consumer Champions, Money, the Guardian, 90 York Way, London N1 9GU. Please include a daytime phone number. Submission and publication of all letters is subject to our terms and conditions