ADIDAS MALLISON SPZL – THE STORY BEHIND THE TRAINERS
Mark Allison, was born on the 9th June 1967, and was a staunch supporter of his beloved Airdrie FC. He had a passion/addiction/obsession, call it want you want, for adidas Original trainers, which would probably apply to most of you reading this.
Sadly, Mark was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in November 2014, at the age of just 47, and was informed by doctors that he only had 6 months to live.
Once diagnosed, Mark decided to focus his energy and time on raising money for a variety of local charities to help people in a similar position to himself, whilst having to battle the cancer with dignity and courage. The St Andrews Hospice in Aidrie which offers palliative care for people with life limiting illness, was one of Mark’s main charity causes.
Towards the end of 2015, Bobby Gallagher and Archie Harkness, 2 of Marks closest friends, contacted adidas to try and get a personalised a pair for him. Adidas agreed and the result; a personalised pair of Stan Smith’s “Endorsed By Mark Allison”. An honour which is normally only reserved for celebrity endorsements.
BOBBY AND ARCHIE PRESENTING MARK WITH HIS “ENDORSED BY MARK ALLISON” STAN SMITHS.
On receiving the pair from his close friends, Mark commented “In the football-fraternity world, this surpasses a knighthood. I am so privileged, honoured and humbled. I’ll never wear them. I’m in the process of having a glass case made and I’ll keep them in that.”
Marks’ selfless fundraising continued over the following months, raising more than £70’000 in total for various charities close to his heart. Gary Aspden from the adidas Spezial team was so inspired by Mark’s story and incredible fundraising efforts, he decided to name part of the Spring Summer 2017 Spezial collection in Mark’s honour. Mark was said to be over the moon when Gary Asdpen called him in the summer of 2016, to let him know his plans for the MALLISON SPZL shoe. Sadly Mark never got to see the finished shoe. He lost his battle with cancer a few weeks after the phone call.
Although no longer with us, the fundraising continues, and Mark’s face continues to get plenty of coverage in the form of celebrity signed Airdrie Shirts emblazoned with a silhouette of Marks’ face and signature. Previous celebs to be involved are Tom Hanks, Paul Weller, Ben Stiller, Kylie Minogue, Happy Mondays, and Vinnie Jones to name just a few. All funds raised from the sales go towards the Airdrie Trust charity.
In March 2017 the MALLISON SPZL, a modern take on the adidas AS700, was born, complete with the number 09 06 67 49 inside every shoe (Mark’s date of birth and age) and promptly sold out in the first week of the release.
And now, in September 2018, the MALLISON SPZL – will be released in its brand-new colourway as part of the AW18 SPZL collection.
The new adidas SPZL release comes with the full backing from Marks friends and family who are said to be delighted that the shoe is being re-released.
And its another pair of Mark Allison Spezial’s to sit proudly alongside the “Endorsed by” Stan Smiths………..
The adidas MALLISON SPZL releases on 21st September.