Shop Spotlight: Skatewarehouse
We have headed down south for this months Shop Spotlight to speak to independent skateshop owner Will Harrison about his store Skatewarehouse. Located in Devon’s “skateboarding capital”, Will talks to us about all things shop including the team, supporting the local community, hosting competitions around the country and much more.
What is the name of your shop, its location and when was it founded?
We are Skatewarehouse and we’re based in the countryside slap bang in the middle of Devon, Okehampton (Devon’s skateboarding capital!) The company started out of my bedroom back in 2002 with a computer and £150 worth of stock!
What’s the shop’s mission?
We believe it doesn’t matter what board you ride, how good you are, how old you are, what gender you are, what colour you are or what your background is. If you love to skate and get hyped every time you ride your board, you’re our kind of person! We aim to create that ‘traditional skateshop’ feel with friendly, knowledgeable staff ready to help all our customers, whether online or in store. We are all skaters ourselves, which allows us to give useful information through our own experience to you.
Contrary to some people’s beliefs, you are a completely independent shop. Do you often get linked with the American Skate Warehouse chain?
Only by a few ‘uneducated’ individuals! Literally a couple of minutes on our website and you can see that we are a totally independent company. When I started the company the US Skatewarehouse was not even a thing! They were formed in the same year as us and have always done their own thing.
Your shop team seems to be growing all the time; can you tell us who you have got riding for you?
Yeah, we’re always looking to expand the team and support the up and coming skaters throughout the UK. Currently we’ve got Adam Keats, Alex Decunha, James Threlfall, Aaron ‘Slug’ Jago, Aimy Brady, Tobias & Fraser Moors, Ben Borrill and a bunch of Flow bro family types. We’ve had a couple alterations recently and we may have someone new coming in very soon… It’s a rad team though, we have a lot of fun sorting out the Weekender trips and just cruising around the country in the van, with a solid variety of skating and an excess of bants we’re definitely more of a family than teammates.
Can you tell us a bit about the community work that you have done in and around Devon?
We get really involved with putting on comps around the area, we have some great parks locally and the council are super keen to team up and get things rolling. We have also campaigned hard to get more parks in the area and to have our local park extended which happened a couple of years ago. We even venture outside the boundaries of Devon and have held comps all over the country, it’s something we all really enjoy doing and we have got pretty good at putting them on.
What’s the shop’s greatest achievement?
I think probably (sounds a bit cheesy) was back in 2002 when the site had launched and the first order came through the system, I was pretty stoked that someone had chosen Skatewarehouse to order from, I even remember it was a World Industries deck! Mainly the fact that we are still here, 14 years later and we are stronger than ever before. We are a small team and work real well together, that means we can adapt in the ever changing skate world.
If you had to diversify into selling something non-skate what would it be? Video games? Kebabs?
Pornography?! More realistically we are all into our surfing and snowboarding so one of those possibly. Or we also very recently invented the balance board office chair™ which is a brand new revolutionary way of moving around the warehouse and shop with absolutely no control what so ever, so probably start punting them out for a few hundred quid each!
What are the stupidest things you’ve been asked for?
Which side of the deck does the grip go on (and that was just this week!)
Is your online sales game still as strong?
Pretty strong, in fact we are on for our best year ever. We adapt and change super quick to go with the times. We work hard on the website and are currently building a brand new site. Check it out by clicking here.
What can people expect from your social media? And don’t forget to drop in the links.
We like to keep our instagram flowing with stuff that gets us hyped, fresh product dropping in the warehouse, our top picks and skate team content. Some of the guys on our team like to travel a lot so we get plenty of Euro & UK contest coverage. Plus we also like to post classic viral crazy mindblowing skateboarding, or just some rad insta footage from your favourite pros. Almost forgot, plenty of social competitions, giveaways and deals too. Plus check out our snapchat for loads of behind the scenes mayhem in the shop and special snapchat only deals.