John Cain

3 min read

In 2011 John Cain retired from his role as Head Stevedore at Victoria Wharf in Plymouth. After 40 years working outdoors in a physically demanding job, he was looking forward to spending more time with his wife Sue, enjoying the good times ahead, including plenty of walking.

Fast forward to 2016 and John started to experience serious footpain, which his doctor diagnosed as arthritis in the balls of his feet. “She said it was not something that would get better, so I tried to put up with it,” said John.

The pain got worse until he reached the point where his doctor recommended a series of painful cortisone injections to ease things. The thought of injections in to sensitive areas of his feet was less than appealing, but was the lesser of two evils so he agreed and waited for his appointment date to be set.

Just before Christmas in 2018, Sue got a call from John who was walking their dog, Sam. “He was at the end of Mountbatten pier,” said Sue, “and the pain had got so bad he couldn’t walk home. I had to go and collect him in the car, and that’s when I remembered seeing Foot Solutions shop on Royal Parade.”

They made an appointment for a free foot assessment between Christmas and New Year, and after carrying out a range of examinations Foot Solutions’ advisor Lauren recommended John should try an over the counter insert with a pair of Brooks trainers for walking, and ordered a specifically designed custom orthotic.

“The improvement in just one day was wonderful,” said John. “The pain immediately reduced and after a couple of days I called my doctor, who agreed that there was no point having the cortisone if the insert and trainers were working so well.” When the custom orthotic arrived, it was another level of improvement altogether. “It’s changed my life around,” said John. “Walks with Sue and Sam are now a pleasure again.

You can’t get rid of arthritis but my Brooks trainers and custom insert from Foot Solutions have made such a difference to us.

“I couldn’t find shoes that were comfortable and I was always in pain with my feet,” said Marguerite. “I needed a wide fitting because of the bunions, but this inevitably meant that the shoes were sloppy on my feet and led to more problems.”

The former HR specialist from Devonport sought help from her GP on a number of occasions, but was advised that the problem could only be solved with surgery. “I was also told that until the pain became unbearable it would not warrant surgery. I couldn’t afford to go privately so I just had to put up with the pain,” she said.

By chance she saw a repeat of the TV programme Dragon’s Den which featured an item about a shoe business which promised relief for people with problems similar to Marguerite.

“I was in Plymouth city centre the very next day and I saw Foot Solutions and realised they offered exactly what had been described in the Dragon’s Den programme.”

Marguerite walked into the Royal Parade store – and acknowledges that it was the most important step in her life.

The experienced team at Foot Solutions carried out a series of tests and analysis and identified the full extent of Marguerite’s challenge.

Foot Solutions supplied insoles to provide arch support which are suitable to wear with high heels, slippers and other types of her shoes.

“I can’t believe what a difference the special insoles have made. I didn’t realise how severe the pain had become – until it had gone!I can now walk tall and enjoy mylife without pain and discomfort,”said Marguerite.

Marguerite – who sings in the choir at Plymouth Cathedral – has also received an unexpected bonus because of Foot Solutions. “My posture was poor due to my fallen arches which restricted my lung capacity and in turn affected my singing. Now I can sing without having to take so many breaths,” said Marguerite.