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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars highland caper!
really comfy & robust and great fit.Just used them up in the highlands and performed to my expectations.like the fact they were so warm which is unusual for wellies!
Published on 24 Aug 2010 by weeman

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83 of 87 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars O proper Hunters - where art thou?
It is with a heavy heart that I must discourage serious boot users from going for Hunter boots. I have posted the same review under the Balmoral Neoprene for Women (sounds like a fetishist perfume)but I wanted to sound the same views here as they apply to the Men's model as well and they stopped me from getting a pair for myself.

Why the heavy heart? Because...
Published 20 months ago by watchingripples


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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars highland caper!, 24 Aug 2010
really comfy & robust and great fit.Just used them up in the highlands and performed to my expectations.like the fact they were so warm which is unusual for wellies!
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83 of 87 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars O proper Hunters - where art thou?, 25 Oct 2012
This review is from: Hunter Men's Balmoral Neoprene Wellies (Apparel)
It is with a heavy heart that I must discourage serious boot users from going for Hunter boots. I have posted the same review under the Balmoral Neoprene for Women (sounds like a fetishist perfume)but I wanted to sound the same views here as they apply to the Men's model as well and they stopped me from getting a pair for myself.

Why the heavy heart? Because I have grown up in them since the early 1980s and I have always been well served by them. But since the change of ownership on 2006 and the relocation of many if not most of their manufacturing processes to China, the product appears to be utterly different, save for the all important "Hunter" label on the front.

My wife needed some decent boots for long, wet, muddy walks. Sick of replacing cheap uncomfortable boots every year, I decided to treat her to a pair of Lady Balmoral Neoprenes with accompanying Hunter fleece boot socks. She is very slim but with fairly solid ankles, but I was shocked when she said that she just couldn't wear them, just after a minute of walking about in the living room. The rubber was stiff, plasticky and quite rigid and the fold at the front of the boot when stepping forward pressed in. She also had something pressing hard up against the back of both ankles. The size was otherwise correct, if anything a little on the roomy side. Back they went.

I was pretty crestfallen - it was a bit like a foreigner spitting out a kindly proffered bit of Dairy Milk in disgust. This was a brand that I had used to destruction in the field in my youth and as such I hadn't even checked any reviews on it. I assumed that in light of my very positive experiences in the past - and the price - that quality and satisfaction were both a given.

Now, OK - it could just be that my wife is in fact weird and has weird ankles (this suggestion is at least half right), and given the other 19 reviews here (at the time of writing) are largely positive, non-weirdly-ankled buyers can arguably breathe easy.

However, after my shock I dared to question the brand. I looked up reviews and comments on forums and asked around. I ended up with the very clear impression that the brand is not at all as it used to be. I would urge any prospective buyer to do the same research and make up their own minds. There are of course always a few grumbles about any product, but this is something else. Many, many complaints about discomfort. Boots leaking and even falling apart even after light use. Soles wearing out prematurely. Pretty severe lack of traction underfoot. Utterly appalling customer service.

I know it is easy to talk about "the good old days" even at my still relatively tender age, but these boots were primarily built to withstand proper use in the field, albeit that they increasingly also became fashion items as well after the early 1980s. Mine used to last for a good three years with a bit of care despite being used very much in anger on an almost daily basis dog walking, hiking, fishing and shooting. They never leaked.

It appears that the new owners have fundamentally changed the recipe and are now primarily targeting the fashion market - yummy mummies, city folk who want to keep their feet dry to pop down to Waitrose for a cheeky bottle of Chateau-Neuf du Pape and "pretty young thing" festival goers. Don't get me wrong - if you are in any of these categories and you want posh boots with ladybirds on them, the price is OK for you and you don't mind chucking them out in a few months when the fickle winds of fashion change or they simply fall to bits, then literally "fill your boots". Nothing whatsoever wrong with that. But if like me and my wife you want functional boots that can stand up to many years of proper use out in the countryside, I would seriously advise you to look elsewhere.

I returned to shooting recently and I was shocked (yes, "shocked" again - surprising how much a grown man can be shocked by welly-related matters, but there it is - I was shocked and so I will say so) shocked to see that there were NO Hunters at all out of some 50 country people attending. Those that I asked (popular conversationalist, me, as you can imagine) said the same - used to swear by Hunters but got sick of having to replace them every year at over 100 a pop since the 2006 ownership changeover. What brands seem to be in favour with such a crowd? Primarily Le Chameau, Aigle, Seeland and Muckboot, in order of price. I have just received a pair of Aigle Paracours for my wife, and mine are on their way - similar price and spec, but the difference in quality and comfort to the Hunter Balmorals is - well - shocking.

That's a lot of words for someone who is disappointed with a pair of gumboots. Why bother? Well, I'm glad you asked. It is because I am so disappointed. Hunter may have changed hands a few times in recent years, but it is still (rightly or wrongly) a stereotypically British brand. We need these brands and they are dying off. Rover died. Barbour is wobbling a bit. Hunter seems to have spun off its axis and what the heck is happening with Hardy Rods? All for the same reasons, it seems - they abandoned to one degree or another the essence of what the brand stood for - what it became famous for in the first place. What happens to Hunter when the current "equestrian-esque" fashion trend blows out? Few if any of the true country people who used to be the core market will still be there for them. I can understand why Hunter wants to effectively sell cheaply made disposable rubbish to people with more money than sense, but why can't they maintain some proper lines of proper boots in the meantime? Thankfully, Barbour seems to have just cottoned onto this in time - let's hope so. Come on, Hunter - wake up!! I really want to like you and fly the flag but I am not prepared to put up with you hiking prices and dropping quality!!

Conclusion: rich, pretty young festival goers - please continue despite my envy. People who want to walk about with dry feet for a few years without having to fork out for replacements - i.e. who want boots that do what they are supposed to do - you have been warned.

Right - I'm done. I would pop down to Waitrose for a cheeky bottle of Chateau-Neuf du Pape to calm myself down, but it's raining outside....
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Very Comfy but a bit shoddy!!, 16 Jan 2012
This review is from: Hunter Men's Balmoral Neoprene Wellies (Apparel)
I was bought these for Christmas 2011. The first pair I received had an insole missing so Amazon sent a new pair which arrived the next day.

I don't go 'working'- I just wanted a decent, comfortable pair of wellies for walking the dog, twice a day.

The boots as so comfortable and extremely warm. Can't really say much more than that. BUT, on the 9th day of wearing them, I noticed that my heel felt very sore. When I got home and took them off, I noticed that not only did I have a hole in the ankle in both socks, the neoprene lining had worn through to the rubber - in both boots! I spoke to Amazon who sent replacement (3rd!) pair.

The 3rd pair arrived on Monday 9th January. So, Tuesday morning, I start wearing the new boots. Today, 16th January - 6 days (12 walks) later, my socks have holes in the heels and the neoprene lining in both boots have worn through to the rubber!

So, I have given up on these boots and sent them back for a refund. If they only cost 20, I could sort of understand the failings and put up with them but when they are supposed to be of a certain quality, and they cost what they cost, I expect a lot more!

Shame really as when I had to wear my old 'cheapo' boots, it was like walking barefoot on concrete!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Poor Quality Product from Hunter AGAIN!!, 3 May 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I have to wear wellies quite a bit with my work with the horses, These wellies should last a long time, 12 months plus, I have had them 6 months & I know have holes appeared on the seems of the neoprene on the sides of the wellies, the soles are still showing good tread but the sides are holey crap

I purchased these as I thought they might be a good strong wellie & well made, as it turns out they are as crap as the original style hunter wellies, I will never be buying a hunter product again, they are most likely made in a sweat shop by kids anyway,

Poor Poor Naff Quality product, DONT BUY!, Amazon showed no interest in helping resolve the issue, so im off to Hunter direct to tell them how crap their products really are.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At last warm feet!, 30 Nov 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
These wellies are simply the best winter footwear I have ever owned. In normal wellies your feet freeze but in these your feet stay lovely and warm. I think there is a design flaw with them though in as much as the seam down the lining splits at the heel (I sent one pair back because of this and got them replaced, only for these to split also!) but apart from that they're great. Worth every penny, and they were a lot of pennies!! Even my husband has a pair now and loves them, even though his middle name could be Ebeneezer!!!!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Materials Not Up To The Job!, 20 Jan 2012
This review is from: Hunter Men's Balmoral Neoprene Wellies (Apparel)
These boots lasted me 2 weeks before my heels had worn through the neoprene liners of both boots. I returned them for refund. I walk a lot of miles with the dog and I thought I was buying a hard-wearing quality product. Unfortunately, Hunter's choice of material and construction is not up to the job.

I'm now wearing Aigle Parcours ISO. The heel cavity is reinforced with a rubber abrasion strip so the neoprene is protected; a much better design and choice of material (I notice that my Mother-in-Law's Toggi wellys are similarly reinforced). I think it's sad that Hunter couldn't get it right, the Balmoral is very comfortable and it's a great looking welly.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wellies!, 28 Nov 2011
Bullied into buying posh wellies by "country type" girlfriend. 1st wearing, sort of ok, sorted insoles out (which came with the boots) and now I wear them everyday, and i must say, the hype is true, they are superb! Service from seller unreal, ordered 1 day, delivered by midday, the next Great!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hunter Neoprene Wellies, 20 Feb 2011
I've always been a bit of a cynic when hearing how much better one welly boot is vs another. And who in their right mind would pay 90.00 for a pair of wellies? Well after the November and December snows and subsequent muddy thaws I took the plunge and bought these Hunter neoprenes. Not only have they been waterproof , warm and comfortable they have been supreme walking boots - so much so that I've resigned my hiking boots to the summer ! Well worth the investment.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disgruntled Customer, 28 Oct 2013
Sadly I have to agree with the reviewer who said "Don't buy these." I have been using these Balmorals for walking the dog for just over a year. Recently I have found that both boots were leaking slightly and was most perturbed to find that the heel of the left-hand boot had come away completely. Amazon were most unhelpful, telling me to take it up with the manufacturer which indeed I did: they were equally unhelpful saying that Amazon get the boots through a supplier and I would need to discuss the issue with them. I could have chosen much cheaper boots but mistakenly thought that I was paying more for quality and no quibble guarantee. How wrong I was! I used to think Amazon put the customer first but that seems no longer to be the case. I shall think very seriously before buying anything from them again.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor quality, won't last a year, 3 May 2013
This review is from: Hunter Men's Balmoral Neoprene Wellies (Apparel)
When I forked out the cost of these Hunters I was expecting not just a great product but a better lifespan than your average wellie.
To be fair, they are a comfortable wellie. The fit is good, they are comfortable, the neoprene does it's job.
However after 10 months of not particularly heavy usage and being well maintained - dog walking mainly - they split on both wellies at the ankles. Wear and tear I can handle, but come on. These were probably used on average 1 hour a day for 10 months. At that rate, if you wore them on the farm or for any kind of work, you would be lucky to get 3 months out of them. My recommendation is pay a bit more for the French wellies, or half the price for Tayberry Rooks or something similar. At least if they fall apart after 10 months you wont feel like you've been ripped off.
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Hunter Men's Balmoral Neoprene Wellies
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