Mike & Teresa
“My eyes are my favorite part of me, not for how they look, but for how they see”
Great quote, and it so true, can you imagine not being able to see…well you wouldn’t be reading this for one thing!! Eye health SHOULD be the TOP of your list!
Broadhursts Optometrists have brought some fun and style in to what has traditionally been overall a staid experience. headed up by Mike, who I caught up with to answer some questions
Hi Mike, tell me a bit about yourself.
I am married with 5 children – 4 daughters and 1 son. I also have 5 grandchildren. I enjoy keeping fit, particularly by fell walking, cycling, going to the gym and also include yoga into my life. When I was 25, I decided I was going to work hard and retire by the age of 50. I am now way past that age and still enjoy working and dealing with people. Over the past 25 years I have helped to develop many clinical processes within optometry, many of which have helped reduce hospital activity for referrals. I have been involved in a community based eye care process in Central Lancashire where over 18,000 patients have been seen in a community setting rather than attending secondary care in hospitals.
How long have you been involved in Optometry?
As a student, I always enjoyed physics and in particular the light element of this. When looking around at potential professions, I decided that optometry could be for me. I graduated from the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology in 1971 and worked for one of the, then, well known, multiples for 2 years. I was then offered a opportunity to join a prestigious contact lens provider, delivering services to over 55 optical practices throughout the North West. In 1975 I opened my first practice in Blackpool.
I have always strived to provide the best clinical care for my patients/clients and will obviously continue to do this into the future. I can honestly say that I have never wished that I was ever involved in anything but optometry.
I believe it is also a “Family Affair”?
I met Teresa, my wife, in 1983 and we continue to work together in our practices, but not necessarily at the same time. Teresa also enjoys walking, cycling and yoga but prefers swimming to the gym. We are able to provide support to each other in our professional careers and help to provide a great balance in our business development.
What is your connection with Lytham?
I first moved into Lytham in 1975 when I purchased a bungalow on South Park ‘off plan’ and whilst working for the contact lens firm, one of the optical practices that I visited was owned by Mike Holland at 4 Station Square. Many years later, I was approached by Mike to ask if I would be interested in looking after his patients from that site as he was due to retire and we moved into the premises in May 2000.
What brought about the transition from your old premises
16 years ago optometry was starting to go through a massive transformation with multiples becoming more common than independents. Over the past 16 years, we have realised that there is very little ‘passing trade’ on Station Square and the world of optometry is now moving very much from an attitude of “I wish I didn’t need to wear glasses” to “I am now going to wear spectacles and look fabulous in them”. 25 years ago, most spectacles were purchased based upon their colour or style, whereas today, many clients have an affinity to a particular brand such as Kirk & Kirk, Dita Eyewear, Oliver Peoples, Etnia Barcelona, Tom Ford, Tom Davies (including bespoke).
The store is so stylish, what was the inspiration?
4 years ago or so we decided to move our Preston practice from a small tertiary site to much larger premises. We approached several optical shop fitters who came up with designs very similar to everyone else’s. So, we went to a new company that not only provided shop fitting for optical practices, but in the much wider industry of retailing. Our Business Development Manager, Lynsey, spent much time with the designer to provide large spaces with flowing curves in a bright friendly environment. This had such an impact that we immediately said that we needed to consider the same for Lytham. It has been quite a journey finding the correct premises for this and are thrilled with the premises that we are now in. Our designer, who now has very little to do with optics, but works with other organisations such as Yankee Candle franchises etc, immediately said that we needed to bring the shop front directly onto the pavement so that people would see what was happening inside. We felt it important to try to include some of Lytham’s heritage in our design, introduce some ‘quirkiness’ and an atmosphere that people would enjoy walking into.
The team must be happy about the changes?
All of our team are so excited about what has happened in Lytham. The environment is friendly to be in, as well as work in, bright interesting and exciting. We have introduced Ocular Coherence Tomography which is an instrument which allows us to not only to photograph the back of patients eyes, but also provide the equivalent of an MRI scan of the macular, to observe any changes taking place in the critical part of the eye, as well as the optic nerve head where changes can take place for patients with, or at risk of glaucoma. These conditions can be easily monitored and assessed for changes to help retain sight.
When you say ‘personalised care’ what does that mean?
The patient journey before, during and after a visit to an optical practice, should include information and advice appropriate to the individual. Tailoring care to each client is paramount to our ethos, and why our patients love coming back to us. Whilst every patient is given the best service for their clinical needs, we also factor in their personality when it comes to choosing frames, even offering a full colour consultation with one of our dedicated staff. Our eyewear consultation is an analysis of your prescription, lifestyle and personality to determine the best possible eyewear solution and style for the client. We understand that choosing the perfect eyewear can often be confusing, and at Broadhurst Optometrists our eyewear consultations are therefore designed to ensure that choosing glasses is not only effortless, but also lots of fun! We are truly passionate about finding the perfect solution and giving the best possible vision for the demands of our client’s lifestyle, all the while complimenting client’s individual style and personality. With such a wide choice, selecting the perfect frames without advice can seem like quite an undertaking. Our trained consultants are passionate about finding frames that clients love. We understand that we are all unique and ‘one size fits all’ simply does not apply to eyewear. Frames vary from minimalist to bold and daring. Some ranges allow us to individually tailor the frame to your personal needs and style. Many clients are looking for just one pair of glasses to suit many needs; others prefer to select a wardrobe of glasses for different occasions/activities. Whatever the clients’ preference, our consultations are all about making the customer happy, a personalised service for each individual. We thoroughly enjoy eyewear consulting and every consultation is as unique as our patients.
There is also a Hearing Lab service, how does this compliment your core business?
The Hearing Lab’s mission is to work in partnership with Broadhurst Optometrists to develop a successful and long standing relationship for the benefit of the local community by offering affordable, custom and cutting edge hearing correction technology available in a choice of sizes and colours. The Hearing Lab’s full repertoire of hearing services are conveniently offered alongside the pre-existing and extensive optical services Broadhurst Optometrists already offers to all its customers making it easy for patients to access both optical and hearing services under one roof.
The partnership supplies the absolute latest hearing technology at prices as low as the internet’s largest providers, often 50% cheaper than high street retailers such as Amplifon, Hidden Hearing, Boots and Specsavers. No discounts or offers, just good, honest affordable prices.
Thanks Mike, this has been interesting….and I know I didn’t think it would be (sorry)! Now a couple of years since I wrote this, and it is still the coolest shop in Lytham. See Broadhurst’s Directory Listing HERE