Bristol's oldest opticians practice celebrates 80 years!

Left to Right: Gerard Fernandes, Lynne Fernandes and Roger Owen

Left to Right: Gerard Fernandes, Lynne Fernandes and Roger Owen

One of Bristol’s oldest opticians’ practices situated on Wells Road, Knowle has celebrated being in business for 80 years and helping the sight of thousands of Bristolians.

The practice is currently owned by Lynne Fernandes Optometrists, but it was first opened by Mr Cook in 1933. The practice became one of Bristol’s first independent opticians.

The company, run by husband and wife team Lynne and Gerard Fernandes (both optometrists) celebrated the 80th birthday in style with events on Saturday 25th January at both the Wells Road practice and the Gloucester Road branch, which incidentally also celebrated 35 years in business.

Lynne is highly respected in the optical community both in Bristol and nationally. She is evangelical about improving eye care for not just her patients but everyone.
Lynne Fernandes, Director of the company, said “We’re very proud, after the worst ever recession for the optical sector, to be continuously growing, successful independent group.
Opticians have changed hugely in 80 years, with clinically trained optometrists now being highly skilled in the diagnosis of eye conditions. Our primary aim is always to offer the best possible standard of eye care and eye wear. We also offer specialist clinics for people at risk of eye conditions such as: Dry Eye, Glaucoma, Macular Degeneration, and ultimately help ensure good eye health for our customers across Bristol”.

Gerard Fernandes, Director of the company also comments: “The other huge change in independent eye care is the understanding of retail. We explain clinically what would be the best product for each individual lifestyle, image, comfort and budget. This is one of the wonderful things about being an independent opticians practice. We can offer the best products from anywhere and have the freedom through independence to ensure the best deals for our customers without compromises.”

Despite big changes in the profession in the last 80 years both Lynne and Gerald put the success and longevity of the practice down staying close to the values and roots of the business.

Lynne said: “The spirit of independence was passed to us by Michael and Roger Owen who owned our practices previously. When everyone else was copying the offers from the big optical retailers, they continued offering excellent personal clinical and customer service. All we have done is to carry on that ethos using the opportunities that are around today.”

Lynne, Gerald and their staff were joined by Michael Owen at the Wells Road practice, and Roger Owen at the Gloucester Road branch events where they all met with old patients and friends to celebrate the birthdays.

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