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How a pop up shoe shop got everyone talking

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Shoppers got more than they bargained for when they visited pop-up designer shoe store, Amp Shoes, just off Brick Lane in London’s East End, last weekend.

There were 135 shoes on display but not a single one was on sale. In fact every shoe on display represented one of the 135 diabetes-related amputations taking place in England each week.

More than 700 shoppers visited the store which was open for three days (Friday 22 – Sunday 24 April) and were greeted by more than 20 volunteers from Diabetes UK who acted as shop assistants with a twist!

Volunteers took this opportunity to chat to people who visited the shop about the serious issue of diabetes-related amputations. They explained how diabetes complications, such as amputations, can be extremely serious but also that 80 per cent of these amputations could potentially be avoided through good diabetes management and expert foot care.

Volunteers also helped people to find out their own risk of developing Type 2 diabetes by using Diabetes UK’s free onlineKnow Your Risktool.

The shop’s funky style was the work of British design house Eley Kishimoto, founded by husband and wife design-duo Mark Eley and Wakako Kishimoto. The couple have previously enjoyed successful collaborations with iconic shoe brands such as Vans and Clarks.

Health advertising agencyLangland, a member of global media giant Publicis Groupe, created the idea for the store and approached the designer couple who agreed to help raise awareness of this issue and the human tragedy behind the statistics, in collaboration with Diabetes UK.

Diabetes UK is committed to putting a stop to the scandal of avoidable amputations and is working with MPs, Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) and the NHS to tackle the problem by improving diabetes foot care.

We've created a Storify to show you the highlights of the weekend:

View the story "Amp Shoes - a different kind of shoe shop" on Storify
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