An outdoor clothing company that dressed Sir Edmund Hillary on his Everest expedition is to change its name from Fairydown because Australian men don't like the name's effeminate connotations.
The New Zealand brand is to be renamed Zone.
Hugo Venter, managing director of Arthur Ellis, the company that makes Fairydown, told The Dominion Post newspaper that market research showed Australian men were uncomfortable with the connotations of the word "fairy". He said he was taken aback by the findings, adding that the name had never been an issue in New Zealand. Sir Edmund, who in 1953 with the Nepalese guide Sherpa Tenzing became the first to climb Everest, wore Fairydown clothes for the expedition and used a sleeping bag made by the company. He said that Australian men were being ridiculous. "Reading that connotation into the name is just absolutely stupid," he said. "It's a good brand. I have a Fairydown jacket and I am very proud to wear it." He said his sleeping bag had performed well until the expedition got close to the summit.Reuse content