Adventure Ready Merino

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Friend of FINDRA: Neil Manson

Since releasing our ‘Designed by Demand’ menswear range in 2018, we’ve thoroughly enjoyed seeing men benefiting from FINDRA designs and innovations. So we’re very proud to bring you this month’s Friend of FINDRA as Neil Manson: wild swimmer, runner and cyclist fundraiser!



Hi Neil! Tell us a bit more about the ways you enjoy getting outside.

Originally it was road running, as I travel a lot with work and it was the easiest way to exercise on the move. However, I’ve switched to trail/hill running which has helped me fall back in love with the Scottish countryside and lead to much more cycling, and recently open water swimming which I’ve developed a passion for at weekends with Heather (my wife).



That’s quite an eclectic mix! How long has the outdoors been a part of your life?

Since I was a young boy, when family holidays consisted of camping or caravan holidays throughout Scotland, and the occasional overnighter in my Dad’s estate car (my Mum even had curtains!). I was also a committed Scout through all the age groups and enjoyed many camping expeditions home and abroad.

What has been your favourite adventure?

Oh my! I made two trips to The Gambia in West Africa to assist with the construction of local school buildings in my late teens, but sharing my recent charity cycle challenge in Vietnam and Cambodia with Heather is probably the highlight (so far!).


Neil and Heather (bottom right) after completing their cycle through Vietnam and Cambodia in 2019


We love that – “so far”. Is there anyone who inspired your love of the outdoors?

I have a real sense of adventure which stems from my Mum and Dad when I was young, and a particular Scout Leader really encouraged the International expeditions. And of course, now getting to share it all with Heather is fantastic.



Enjoying adventure with your partner is so valuable, a great way to connect. Do you find that being outside has a positive impact on your wellbeing and mental health?

Definitely, both physically and mentally. Although not being outside for any period of time probably has a more obvious impact.


Do you wear FINDRA when you’re not outdoors? 

Yes, I wear my Merino wool t-shirts for everyday casual use. And the socks are always favourites at anytime.



When did you discover FINDRA and what’s your favourite piece?

I met Team FINDRA at the Gleneagles Great Adventure Race and was really captivated by Alex and her success story. It was really valuable to spend the whole weekend absorbed in the world of adventure.

At the moment my socks are my favourite piece. I have a tendency to wear darker colours when I’m running or on the bike and like to jazz things up with my FINDRA socks.