The ‘Walkie Talkies’ have been created by designer Sean Miles using retro models (pre-smartphone era) that are still fully functional. Footwear in the range include a men’s brogue, a Nike Air trainer, and a Hunter Wellington Boot.

Each Walkie Talkie performs exactly as a normal phone would, the keypad being incorporated into the sole of each shoe. The models used are either Nokia or LG handsets, sent in by O2 customers who no longer had a use for them.

Talking about his creations, Miles said: “I wondered how I could make phones that people might be embarrassed to be seen with into something that would give them a new lease of life – which is what upcycling is all about.

“I’ve been using them while out with friends and they never fail to start a conversation, even when I’m not using them as a phone! I hope that they can get more people talking about the need to recycle old gadgets rather than binning them.”

With 70 million old mobile phones in the UK and 30 million new handsets are bought annually, O2 hopes the shoes will highlight what can be done with used handsets, rather than being sent to landfill.

Maxine Perella

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