Local Optician Runs For Charity

Monday, 12 September 2011

A HEXHAM optician is slipping on her running shoes in a bid to conquer the Great North Run this Sunday (18 September) in aid of a charity working to improve eyecare in developing countries.

Energetic Pauline Wellstead is a director at the Specsavers store in Hexham, and has been encouraging staff and customers to donate money and old glasses towards UK-registered charity Vision Aid Overseas.

She has been training for the world's most famous half marathon for months and said she can't wait to pound the streets of Newcastle.

'I am really excited about taking part in the run on the 18th of September. I know it is going to be tough, however Vision Aid Overseas is a great charity and I am happy to do be doing my part to raise some extra funds.

Over the past nine years Specsavers stores across the country have donated more than a quarter of a million pairs of glasses.

Set up in 1985, Vision Aid Overseas is dedicated to helping the 300 million people in the world who suffer from poor sight and blindness. It aims to provide those in the developing world with basic eyecare, through unpaid, qualified volunteers.    

'I would like to remind everyone that we collect old specs for the charity.  If you have any old spectacles not being used at home, bring them to the store and we will see that they are put to good use.'

Throughout September the Hexham Specsavers store will be donating any money collected for spectacle repairs to Vision Aid Overseas.

If you would like to support Pauline and Vision Aid Overseas pop along to Specsavers in Hexham, 30 Fore Street, Hexham, Northumberland NE46 1LZ.

To book an appointment for a sight test, call 01434 600 222


 Specsavers notes to editors                                                                                

  • Specsavers was founded by Doug and Dame Mary Perkins in 1984 and is now the largest privately owned opticians in the world
  • The couple still run the company, along with their three children. Their son John is joint managing director
  • Specsavers has more than 1,500 stores throughout the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark, Spain, Australia and New Zealand.
  • Annual turnover for the Specsavers Group was £1.36 billion for 2009/10 and is forecast to reach £1.55 billion in 2010/11.
  • Specsavers optical stores and hearing centres are owned and run by joint venture or franchise partners. Together, they offer both optical and hearing services under one roof.
  • Specsavers employs more than 26,000 staff
  • Specsavers was voted Britain's most trusted brand of opticians for the ninth year running by the Reader's Digest Trusted Brands survey 2010
  • More than one in three people who wear glasses in the UK buy them from Specsavers * - 9,700,000 glasses were exported from the warehouse to stores in 2009
  • Specsavers was ranked No 1 for both eye tests and glasses in the UK *
  • Specsavers is the largest retail provider of home delivery contact lenses in Europe and one of the top two retail suppliers of continuous wear lenses in the world
  • Specsavers is now the largest retail dispenser of digital hearing aids in the UK and offers a hearing service from more than 400 locations
  • Specsavers supports numerous optical and hearing charities, including Guide Dogs and Hearing Dogs for Deaf People. During its three-year support for Diabetes UK it raised more than £250,000 to fund various projects
  • Since 2003 more than a quarter of a million glasses have been collected and recycled by Specsavers stores for Vision Aid Overseas, for use in developing countries. Specsavers has raised over £370,000 for the charity since 2006, with almost £245,000 going towards its work in Zambia.


*GfK NOP  


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