Matthew Dargie has joined the team at Wickford to become the new audiology director.

The Glaswegian-born studied law and accountancy at Stirling University and worked as a chartered accountant before deciding to retraining in audiology in 2016.

Matthew said: ‘I lost all my hearing at the age of 12. One year later I regained partial hearing in my left ear only. I now wear a Specsavers provided ‘cross’ hearing aid system, allowing me to capture sounds from both the left and right hand side. A few years ago, my hearing aid stopped working and discovered few appointments were available in the public sector. It was not a good situation and made it difficult to continue life as normal.

‘I tried the private sector and found that the service was often quite poor, so I decided to do a conversion course in the field of audiology, to try and make a difference.’

'Making a difference’

Matthew enjoys the direct relationship he has with customers and hearing their life stories, as well as being able to help people whose problems he understands personally. He plans on extending the audiology offer across the stores he is the director of, which include Basildon, Wickford, Canvey Island and Upminster, bringing in new staff, supporting trainees and changing the way we think about hearing aids.

He said: ‘People spend a long time thinking about their glasses – what frames to buy and what fits best – it’s time we starting thinking the same way about our hearing aids.’

Matthew discovered the Pathway course run by Specsavers which allows qualified professionals to begin a career path as a director within the company.

He added: ‘I began working as a hearing aid audiologist at Specsavers in Brighton and was later approached by the directors at the Basildon store, Lee and Alan, and the regional relationship manager Roy to help them create a Hearing Hub, so I started at the end of last year. They, along with the managers at the stores, have been a huge support.’

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