The team at Hexham has had 800 pairs of old spectacles donated in just a few short months – a fantastic haul for a rural market town.

And while some of the glasses may be scratched, bent out of shape or simply no longer in fashion, they are still perfect for donating to charity Vision Aid Overseas (VAO).

Each pair of donated specs helps people in some of the world’s poorest communities to see clearly. Rather than being re-used the glasses are taken by VAO and recycled, with the money made from selling the reusable materials to fund its charity work in developing countries.

This includes giving people badly-needed eye tests and treatment, and training up local optometrists.

A word from the store director

Store director, Pauline Wellstead said: “Hexham has a fabulous community spirit and that is evident by how many pairs of glasses we have collected in such a short space of time. No sooner had we sent 300 pairs of glasses to VAO then our box was full with another 500 pairs!

“We would like to say a big thank you to our customers and community for being so generous - their donations really do help make eye care accessible for people in developing countries.’

All Hexham store information