Why did we launch our start-up?

by Callum Hemsley

eola started from a major frustration.

Throughout my life, I have taken part in a great number of different watersports and activities. Beyond my enjoyment of them, the main unifying element between them was the pain that came with organising them.

From hunting them down on Google, calling them up and arranging, to paying and signing waivers; the whole process was a nightmare every time. If it had only been the same pain each time, that would have made it slightly easier, but every time, there was some new challenge to deal with, in some new unique way.

Some centres required printed off PDFs, some required oddly specific emails, many couldn’t take anything but cash on the day.

Photo by Lachlan Dempsey on Unsplash

The latest two generations now spend less time outside than ever before.

Ever year, the average age of enthusiasts increases, as it becomes more challenging to get in front of the younger generations. Nowadays, if something isn’t immediately bookable online, many folk aren’t interested; they’ll just look for something that is.

In fact, a recent study found that most UK children now spend less time outside than incarcerated convicts. That is unbelievable.

Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

Where did eola come in?

Mid last year, we spent a few months talking to activity providers and enthusiasts and looking at booking data. Quickly, it became very obvious that technology innovation was needed here.

We believed that by partnering with the larger community of activity providers and working directly with them we could create an innovative technology platform. From that, eola was born.

At all stages of construction, we believe learning from the users is critical. If you have any thoughts or comments about what we are doing, or want to get involved, email us on

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Next article: Through the keyhole: eola one year on