Rubber factory gives inventor Stephen an idea

Stephen Wilde,general manager of Southbourne Rubber  in Waterlooville,with MiBands Picture: Malcolm Wells (170403-9230)
Stephen Wilde,general manager of Southbourne Rubber in Waterlooville,with MiBands Picture: Malcolm Wells (170403-9230)
Senior skipper of Hayling Ferry, Colin Hill

Motors firm signs up for Hayling Ferry deal

0
Have your say

How often have you had to take off your wedding ring? Whether it’s at the gym or at work, it’s not something you want to lose.

Businessman Stephen Wilde, 55, from Rowlands Castle, faced this problem frequently as a gym-goer.

But after nearly losing his precious ring for good one day, the inventor decided to do something about it.

He said: ‘I go to the gym a lot and one day I took off my wedding ring and forgot to pick it up from the locker.’

This misfortune got him thinking and, while working for Southbourne Rubber, Stephen came up with the idea of Miband – a rubber band that can be worn either in place of or on top of your wedding band – last August.

He set about production and Miband now comes in 14 colours and effects and in 10 different sizes.

Stephen said: ‘I also noticed in the factory that a lot of electricians and plumbers don’t wear their wedding rings at work because it’s a risk to wear a metal ring – some people have nearly lost their fingers.’

So as well as targeting the water sports, festival, fashion, sports and leisure industry, he is hoping to sell to people who need to wear personal protective equipment.

Stephen said: ‘Last October I was surfing in the cold waters of Cornwall, which is an easy way to lose your wedding band.

‘Placing the Miband in front of your ring stops it from falling off as the silicone holds it there.’

The silicone-rubber rings are all handmade in the UK.

Stephen said: ‘They’re actually silk-screened just across the road from us.’

Southbourne Rubber in Waterlooville supplies the MoD and the aerospace industry. Its customers include BAE, Thales, GE, Airbus, Leonardo, Magnox and Rolls Royce.

‘If you do accidently hook it to a nail, it will stretch three to four inches and it will return to its original shape and form,’ said Stephen.

They come in packaging which makes the ring appear as if like it’s floating in mid-air and have been launched online at miband.co.

The website went live earlier this month and rings cost £14.99 each.

Stephen’s firm will attend the autumn fair at the NEC this September where he hopes to attract high street stores and boutiques.

Miband plans to produce a wristband next.