Twenty-five years ago, Nigel Davidson launched Specsavers in Sutton-in-Ashfield with a team of just six. Today, he oversees a team of more than 40, who look after the eye and audiology needs of the local community.
A quarter of a century in action
Under the helm of Nigel, Specsavers first opened its doors in 1995 in the Ildewells Shopping Centre in the unit that is now occupied by Holland & Barrett. The business quickly grew and in 2002 it moved premises, just across the main aisle to its current location. In 2017, following a £1M investment, the store underwent a massive expansion, which included a large training room and team break out areas, making it the largest Specsavers store worldwide. Alongside the development, the store also invested in various state-of-the-art equipment and was one of the first to boast a hospital-grade OCT (optical coherence tomography) scan that can help to detect sight-threatening eye conditions many years earlier than conventional techniques.
Alongside Nigel’s commitment to clinical care, and with numerous optical award wins to lay claim to, he’s also been a community champion supporting a range of initiatives such as the foodbank and an eye care service for the homeless. His work was recognised when he received a British Citizen Award in 2018, as well as being honoured with a lifetime achievement accolade in The Chad in 2017
A word from the store director
‘The journey has been incredibly fulfilling and I have been fortunate to work with some wonderful people along the way,’ comments Nigel. ‘We have many team members who have been with the store for much of the journey and we pride ourselves on developing the team, allowing individuals to grow and develop.
‘The past six months have been extremely challenging and for a period we were actually down to just three people (myself included) supplying essential and emergency eye care during lockdown. We’ve instigated many new procedures and initiatives to ensure the safety of the team and customers during the COVID-19 pandemic with the aim of keeping everyone safe in-store.
‘Our overall philosophy includes a commitment to constant and never-ending improvement and we look forward to providing the highest standard of eye care to the people of Ashfield for the next 25 years.’