We wanted very much to own a small, independent practice that would allow us more time to give to every patient and the environment where we could really offer continuity of care as our patients could see the same people on every visit.
We started the practice from nothing and it has been a very busy seven years. We now have around 4000 patients on our books – mainly from our local area but quite a few from all over Cardiff and further afield.
In the last year we have invested heavily into our Stand Out Specs promotion as we both have a passion for unusual, amazing specatcle frames and we believe everyone should be able to have a pair of amazing Stand Out Spectacles.
I moved down to Cardiff from North Yorkshire in 2001 to start my degree in Optometry and Vision Science. After graduating three years later I completed my pre-registration year and my professional exams at Specsavers in Bridgend. It was brilliant to begin my career in such a busy practice as the experience I gained was extremely valuable as a newly qualified optometrist.
After working for Specsavers for over nine years I left to set up this practice. It was a huge learning curve and as I am not someone who does things by halves, the day we opened the practice to the public I found out I was pregnant! I then began my maternity leave in March 2013 and had twin girls at the end of April.
I returned to work in February 2014 and have loved being back into optometry and also coming home to my family at the end of the day. My family mean the world to me and becoming a mother has been the hardest yet best thing I’ve ever done. I am the sole optometrist at the practice and my clinics run from Monday to Friday during our opening hours.
Outside of work I love anything crafty and always have a sewing, knitting or crochet project on the go! You will be able to see the odd touch of craftiness in the practice from me including the speccy bunting that first made an appearance for our two year anniversary. Sport also plays a large part of my life and a few years ago I entered my first triathlon and have enjoyed the challenge of similar events each year. I am a cycle commuter and come rain or shine on Tuesdays and Thursdays I will be on my bike to and from work!
I have recently been elected as a council member for the College of Optometrists so am looking forward to what the future holds.
I started my career in 2001 with Specsavers and I later worked for Boots Opticians before joining the practice in 2013. Even with all my years of optical experience, becoming a business woman has been a very challenging (but ultimately wonderful) journey for me and I am so proud of the practice.
As the practice manager, I have many business-related responsibilities here and during clinic time my main focus is the dispensing of spectacles to our patients following their sight tests. In the last few years I also have developed a love of social media marketing and really enjoy using it at the practice as our only form of outside advertising. During 2019, I have been developing my online skillset by working as a Social Media Consultant for Optometry Wales in my own time. In 2020 I plan to set up a Social Media consultancy business.
I am recently married, and we have two lovely teenagers. We also share our home with our adored pets – our cat, three dogs and five chickens. I enjoy being active – I spend as much time as possible at the gym, practicing yoga or pilates and climbing mountains whenever I can. I have a passion for supporting small businesses and I love a trip to my favourite charity shops. I spend as many weekends as possible at my Hideaway in the Brecon Beacons and I am proud to say that I have studied up to level two in British Sign Language.