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Rhyl Business Owner Celebrates 30 years with Specsavers

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A Rhyl optician who opened the first Specsavers store in North Wales has celebrated her 30th anniversary in Rhyl.

Shelley Jones now runs Specsavers in Rhyl alongside ophthalmic director Hannah Bradley, but much has changed since she first opened the doors to the White Rose Centre store in 1991.

Initially a modest outlet with one test room and six staff members, demand for services quickly grew – leading Ms Jones to relocate to a larger premises within the shopping centre eight years ago.

Now, Specsavers in Rhyl has six test rooms and employs 29 members of staff. In recent years it has also begun operating as a hearing centre, providing audiology services for local residents seven days a week.

More recently, during the first COVID-19 lockdown – when many optical stores chose to close – the Rhyl store was designated as an ‘emergency hub’, allowing residents to receive urgent eye and hearing care, taking the pressure off the NHS.

Ms Jones says:

‘It’s such an honour to reach this milestone and to have served the Rhyl community for 30 years. I was born and raised in Rhyl, and even when I worked in various other roles across North Wales and the North West of England, when my time come to open up a Specsavers store, I knew I had to come home.’

As well as founding and running the Rhyl store, Ms Jones was instrumental in opening stores in Llandudno, Prestatyn and Denbigh in 1995, 2005 and 2020 respectively.

She adds:

‘So much has changed in the region since I opened my first store in 1991, but the Specsavers ethos has always stayed the same. Providing a vital community service was why I set the Rhyl store up in the first place, and I am proud to have played a part in the growth of state-of-the-art eyecare services in North Wales.

‘I couldn’t have done this without our excellent colleagues – past and present. Seeing them flourish and grow over the years really gives me the greatest satisfaction.’