Meet Bryan Clark, Retail Director at South Shields.

Tell us a bit about yourself

I’m 52 years old and live in Jesmond, Newcastle. I came to Newcastle after graduating from Aston University and never left, which shows how much I love the North East.

What attracted you to a career in optics?

Becoming an optician, with a view to running my own practice, was always my ‘Plan A.’

I’m originally from the Orkney Islands, in the north of Scotland, and when I was a child my father was the only optician in Orkney. I used be fascinated by my dad’s job and from an early age I knew I wanted to run my own medical business.

How did you come to run a Specavers store?

Earlier in my career I worked at the Newcastle Eye Hospital before becoming the optician at Newcastle University. I then took a career break to go travelling in Australia and on my return I knew the time was right to start my own practice.

I talked to some friends, who were directors of their own Specsavers stores, and on their advice I knew Specsavers was right for me. In 1992 I opened Specsavers South Shields as director, and have never looked back.

What is the best part of your role?

Over time this has really changed for me. In the early days my practice was much smaller, I had a team of six, and I enjoyed the medical side and working with patients.

Now, twenty four years later, I have a team of 38 and I enjoy both the business side of my role and ensuring Specsavers South Shields provides a great service to the community.

Is there an interesting fact people might not know about you?

I like to keep fit and take part in regular triathalons. I also enjoy ski-touring which is where you hike up a mountain, carrying your skis, and then ski back down. I do also enjoy visiting good restaurants locally, so the exercise balances this out!

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