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  • A plimsoll shoe, plimsoll or plimsole is a type of athletic shoe with a canvas upper and rubber sole developed as beachwear in the 1830s by the Liverpool Rubber Company. Plimsolls used to have solid rubber soles about 8 or 9mm thick and the canvas was glued to them without coming up the sides as on the Trainers that replaced them also provided a degree of cushioning. Plimsolls were still in use to circa 1970s and were the closest possible to running around without shoes. The shoe was originally, and often still is in parts of the United Kingdom, called a "sand shoe" and acquired the nickname "plimsoll" in the 1870s. This name derived, according to Nicholette Jones' book The Plimsoll Sensation, because the coloured horizontal band joining the upper to the sole resembled the Plimsoll line on a ship's hull, or because, just like the Plimsoll line on a ship, if water got above the line of the rubber sole, the wearer would get wet. In the UK plimsolls were compulsory in schools' physical education lessons. Regional terms are common: in Northern Ireland and central Scotland they are sometimes known as gutties; "sannies" is also used in Scotland as is the term 'Two boab sliders'.

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