The Lady at Lindley
It doesn’t seem that long since you started working with us but we have made some big steps forward in that time. What has been the biggest change for you first of all when you started here and then during that time?
Prior to Bottomleys I had worked in the high street style of opticians, where I never had the opportunity to choose the frames we sold, or run the practices to suit the clients’ needs and practice locations. Optical friends who had moved to an Independent told me how much better they were, and now I know for myself how true that is! What first struck me was the freedom to be able to offer different lens and frame products to our customers to suit THEIR needs, and how we can be involved in various aspects of the business, as we are our own head office! The biggest change during my time here was making the decision to visit Milan, Munich and Paris to purchase more creative, different-from-the-norm frame ranges. It’s amazingly hard work but well worth it when those collections arrive and we start to see our choices on our clients’ faces.
What is it you enjoy most about your job?
It’s lovely to have such a personal relationship with my clients. Lindley has such a local feel – it’s a bit like the bar “Cheers” – where everybody knows your name, and to know our clients trust us (and even enjoy coming in to see us) makes our days that little bit more special. Every day is exciting and different. Without doubt the reactions our clients have when they collect their new specs is always a thrill! Quite often they are stunned at how good their chosen eyewear looks on them, and how clear their vision is. It’s great to know that the frame they wear is something I’ve personally selected because it suits them and meets their desires. Whether we’ve helped a client choose gorgeous new specs or referred them for treatment, knowing we’ve helped them, given them greater comfort, confidence and enhanced their vision is an amazing reward in this job.
I know you really love being involved with eyewear at a high level… what are your favourite choices of frames at the moment?
It’s no secret I’m a huge Lindberg fan – I’ve recently acquired a new pair for myself and it’s really like wearing air! They are so amazingly comfortable, stylish, and made from the best materials so they’re a joy to wear. I love how customisable they are too – creating a frame for a client is great fun, and because of the different shapes, colour and size options Lindberg offer they compliment all faces, skin tones and fit like a glove. Not to be out-done, the David Green collection is also stunning. They are inspired by the beauty and nature around Cape Town, incorporating either mother of pearl, delicate leaves or water reeds into their handmade frames. Whenever I wear my Theo frame I get a lot of comments from clients…perhaps it’s got something to do with the neon pink colour of it, or the bold cats-eye shape?! I do enjoy surprising our clients with “which pair shall I wear today?!”
Quite a few of us have enjoyed your activities outside of work on a number of occasions… would you tell us more about that?
As I child I was always drawn to anything musical, so aged 8 I was very happy to start having cello lessons. I was always immersed in school choirs, orchestra’s and musical ensembles. Some 30+ years later I’m still playing (and learning!). I can sometimes be found in the musical pit playing for productions and the numerous local G&S societies, and frequently on the Huddersfield Town Hall stage as I’m proud to be principal cellist with the Slaithwaite Philharmonic Orchestra. We’ve performed many fantastic pieces and had very memorable times touring China and Normandy. To me, an orchestra can produce the most amazing soundscapes and can be a force of nature! I hope my Bottomley friends thought so when they came to a recent performance of Verdi’s Requiem, and maybe they’ll come again when we perform West Side Story in 2021. (shameless plug for the SPO… http://spo.org.uk/category/concerts/ sorry, not sorry).