As we’ve been reflecting back on the last 20 years of New Gen, tons of great memories have popped up in conversation. Lots of our instructors started their training with us from day one, and many team members have been around for years. We’ve also been rummaging through tons of old photos and found familiar faces (that had a few less grey hairs way back when), as well as people who have long left New Gen, but fond memories remain.
A few of our team members shared their favourite memories of their time with New Gen over the years, and we’ve thrown in some old pics for good measure!
20 Years of New Gen Memories
Should I become a ski instructor?
“My first memory of New Gen was doing an off-piste seasonnaire lesson in Courchevel with Roy during my first (and what was meant to be my only) season after University. I loved the session, and Roy clearly loved his job so I asked him about instructor qualifications and being able to teach in France, he replied quite dryly: ‘It certainly isn’t easy, it’d take you a long time!’ His words fired up my stubbornness, and from then on in I was adamant I would get through the Level 4.
The following year I returned to New Gen to do my BASI 1 and 2 and started on my merry little way to the ISTD. Eight years on from that first encounter and I’m teaching and managing the New Gen team in Tignes. Roy wasn’t wrong, but it’s all been worth it and I’ve had the best time with great people along the way!”
– Amy Twigge, Resort Manager – Tignes
Ticked the Grand Couloir off my bucket list
“I’d skied a bit before my first season (learning at the grand old age of 23) and looking at the piste map one day on holiday I said I wanted to do the Grand Couloir. My then boyfriend was like – you’ll never ski that!
Anyway, fast forward a couple of years, when I’d done a season, had spent a lot of time in ski lessons and practising (and broken up with that boyfriend) and moved my life out to France. I was skiing with one of the New Generation instructors and he was like – let’s go down here. The Grand Couloir! I’m sure I fell over loads and skied it terribly but I had a smile over my face for the rest of the week. It was a real ‘there’s more in you than anyone thinks’ moment for me, and I was so grateful to have had the chance to spend my life in this amazing place, doing something I love as my job.”
– Bex Miles, Marketing Director
Becoming a BASI Trainer
“A memory I would like to share is a recent one. I’ve have been working very hard for the last 3 years towards a life long ambition of becoming a BASI Trainer. I put myself forward for the selection process in the summer and I eventually made it through all of the different stages and got selected in late November (along with 2 other New Gen instructors). In order for me to achieve this life long goal I had to work extremely hard on many aspects, I tried to leave no stone unturned.
The New Gen community without question helped me achieve this goal. I had to do the work, but New Gen gave me a large steady work top and all the tools imaginable. When anyone asks me about the potential of working for New Gen, I tell them you get the support to do anything you want (within reason, I think a life size replica of the Millennium Falcon is a bit to far), it’s then up to you to put in the hard graft to make it happen.”
– Gareth Shelbourne, Ski Instructor & BASI Trainer – St Anton
Hadn’t sorted out accommodation for the season
“I have loads of good memories (amazing powder days training in Bruson, fantastic nights out in Verbier and meeting good friends) but I thought I would share my memories of how I came to join New Gen. I was on my Level 3 Tech exam in Zermatt battling down the bumps. Skiing past a trainer I heard somebody shout some encouragement from the side. Finishing the run I looked back up to see who had been shouting at me; it was a BASI Trainer that I didn’t recognise. Not long afterwards I found out that it was Ali Rainback from New Gen.
When it came to getting a job with a ski school in the Alps I sent off my CV to various schools. Quite soon after I received an email from New Gen inviting me to have a phone interview. This interview was with none other than Ali Rainback, the guy who had been encouraging me in the bumps. Apart from chatting through my CV for a short while, we spent most of the time talking about football (Arsenal and Rangers mainly) and how good the West Coast of Scotland is for adventure sports.
Ali offered me a job with New Gen in Verbier for the upcoming season but told me to have a think about it. After chatting with my then girlfriend, I ended up turning the job down to spend the season with her in Alpe d’Huez instead. When I told Ali that I wouldn’t be taking the job he was incredibly supportive and told me that I had to do what was right for me, but if I was ever in any of the New Gen resorts to pop in to the shop or along to the meeting point and say hi to the guys. Needless to say the encouragement, warm friendliness and caring attitude of Ali from New Gen stayed with me and resulted in me joining New Gen in Verbier the following season.
When I rocked up in Verbier for that first season, Tom Speakman picked me up from the train station and offered to take me to my accommodation. When I told him that I hadn’t actually organised any accommodation he looked shocked but took me to his place to stay the night! There I met Pete Miles and Luke Gerrett (who was also crashing at Tom’s!) before Tom took me for a night out to meet Sam Taylor, Sam Pickup and some of the other guys. With a terrible hangover I managed to find accommodation the next day which eventually became known as Chalet New Gen over the next few seasons! Ten years later and I happened to ask one of the new instructors how they were enjoying life with New Gen and they replied, “I really like the fact it is like a family”. I think that that statement alone would make Ali proud of his legacy.”
– Ally Brown, Ski Instructor – Peisey Vallandry
Memories of mono skis and the rare tandem ski
“While working at the Courchevel office I had many unforgettable days skiing with the instructors on our team days out. One of these adventures that I will never forget was the day we decided to all ski on something…different. The kit on show included mono skis, blades and a home made tandem ski.
I am not sure if I have ever laughed so hard in my life. Especially when tandem skiing led to me and Sara crashing into (and knocking over) a piste marker or me and Amanda getting lost and accidentally tandem skiing down a stade!!”
– Gemma Brierley, Instructor Courses Support