As an essential service, we remain open for the provision of all eye-care services, including:
Contact lens examinations
Glasses purchase and collections
We continue to operate on an appointment only basis and would like to assure you that we operate under strict COVID compliance, with full PPE and disinfection procedures in place. We also restrict the number of patients in the practice at any one time, which is why we work on an appointment only basis.
Should you fine it difficult to be able to collect your contact lenses, please let us know so that we can try and organise a home delivery.
We are delighted to announce that we have once again been pronounced Independent Practice of the Year.
We cannot tell you how much this means to us in what has been a challenging year. Thank you so much to every member of our wonderful team, and to the amazing support of the public which makes this all possible.
We will continue to strive for clinical excellence, stand out fashion and 5* customer service, ensuring that we are deserving of this prestigious award that has been bestowed upon us.
Following guidance from Public Health England, we are pleased to advise that, as an essential public service, we will remain open during the November lockdown. However, we are operating on an appointment only basis for all visits, including
Contact Lens Examinations
Online booking is now available, and appointments of all types can be made by calling us on 0191 2516102. Current safety measures will continue to ensure the safety of our customers and our colleagues.
Did you know that the Disabled British Golf Open Champion is from Whitley Bay?
Jonathan Jones won the title in 2019 but was unable to defend his title this year due to COVID restrictions. He’s now been selected to play in the Phoenix Cup, the disability equivalent of the Ryder Cup. The tournament takes place over 6 courses including Carnoustie, Glenaeagles and Trump International. Originally against the USA, the competition will now between Britain and Ireland.
Jonny was born with a rare medical condition called arthrogryposis. Arthrogryposis affects muscle development in arms and wrists, causing wrist bones to fuse. With wonderful medical care from a team led by paediatric neurologist Professor David Gardner-Medwin, Jonny underwent a series of operations on his hands and feet to help his mobility.
When he took a keen interest in golf, his condition was never going to deter him from what he wanted to do – compete at the highest level.
The support of a loving family directed him to coaching by the late Ken Philips of Wallsend, and then to the expert guidance of Tynemouth’s John Mckenna.
A very unassuming young man, Jonny is someone our whole region can be proud of. This is why it is an honour for us to be able to help in the sponsorship programme.
We all wish you the very best of luck Jonny. Watch this space for how he gets on.
Latest COVID19 Situation – We’re coming back very soon.
It’s been a very lonely time watching over the practice with all the staff furloughed – We didn’t even know what furlough was before March this year! Judith and Nigel have managed to keep the place ticking over; delivering triage advice on eye conditions, offering advice on visual problems, organising and delivering contact lenses and carrying out emergency repairs and glasses replacements.
Luckily we’ve had the help of 16 year old border terrier Mij to keep our spirits up. We are also indebted to our lovely customers who have been an absolute pleasure to deal with- THANK YOU!
We are delighted to say that the wait is almost over.
Week beginning June 15th:
we will be open Tuesday to Friday 9am – 2pm, and Saturday 9am – 1pm . Front line staff Lorna and Sue will be available to answer your queries, book appointments, help with glasses sales, and attend to any possible repairs.
Week beginning June 22nd and until further notice:
we will be open Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm and Saturday 9am – 1pm, optometrists John and Sophie will be back seeing patients face to face. You can book appointments for essential eye care in that period. The staff will be happy to guide you on what constitutes essential eye-care. We would highly recommend that patients choose our premium OCT examination; This gives the most thorough retinal examination as well as keeping safe distance between optometrist and patient.
The timings are likely to be amended to try and meet demand so please do keep checking this website for details.
We have installed the following safety measures:
Safety screens set on reception desks
Hand sanitiser on entry and exit
Floor markings to ensure safe distance
Masks for Practitioners and patients during examination
Face shields, gloves and aprons for practitioners to be used as necessary
New instrumentation to measure pressure which does not have an aerosol effect
Automated instrumentation so as not to rely on traditional trial frames.
UV Frame sanitiser for display glasses (on order to arrive end of June (until then – frame cleansing process)
The health and safety of our patients and staff is of prime importance. Please do not come in if you or any of your household are suffering from COVID symptoms.
We are all really looking forward to welcoming you back.
Robinson Optometrists short listed in two cateogories!
We are delighted to announce that, carrying the flag for Whitley Bay and The North East, we have once again been short-listed as finalists in two categories; Independent Practice of the Year, and Optical Assistant Team of the Year.
We have been informed that the competition has been stiffer than ever this year. Having won The Independent Award on 2 previous occasions and short-listed a further 2, we were amazed to once again be chosen.
This was probably due to a number of contributing factors:
We continue to strive to produce the very highest quality in eye-care and eye-wear.
We invest in the latest equipment, and very carefully select our team of experts, providing you with a very thorough examination. 2019 saw us take a major role in working with National Educational Body NCFE in developing a new training course for optical assistants. It is hoped that this will be rolled out in 2021.
A new piece of Community Art for Monkseaton, commendations from various medical professionals who we work with, and charity work for The Guide Dog Association were probably all paramount in the decision making.
As for the Optical Assistant short-listing- what can we say? We have such a fabulous team who are skilled in both clinical support and fashion advice. Since Nigel and Judith took a more back seat in the running of the Practice, the Team have provided a seamless transition!
One member Lorna, also runs our social media campaign; this has been widely complemented.
We are also very aware that we couldn’t achieve this without the support of our loyal client base ie YOU! We would just like to say a massive thank you to you all! Winners will be announced during a Gala Dinner at The NEC on Saturday April 4th. The full short list can be seen on the Opticians Awards website.
Five of us will make the journey and we hope to give a live Facebook feed from the event. We will publish the results on Social Media and in The News Guardian. Watch this space!
So – a big start to the Year. Obviously we will greatly miss Gary, as we’re sure many of you will, but we have a lot to look forward to.
After 10 years of faithful service, we are very sad to announce that our great friend and colleague, Gary, will be returning to be nearer family in The Emerald Isle.
Gary and Therese love Whitley Bay, but since starting a family, are acutely aware that they would like to see the children’s grand-parents being able to enjoy their company.
He worked part time at Robinson’s and part time running the glaucoma service at James Cook Hospital, Middlesbrough. A very talented optometrist and a gem to work with.
He has asked us to pass on his thanks to all his patients for their loyalty and support. He will be sadly missed, and we’re sure he’ll miss you all too. When one door closes we are great believers that another one opens. We are very fortunate that another of our optometrists, Sophie Worsman, has decided to join us on a full time rather than part time basis.
Like Gary, Sophie has considerable hospital experience (Newcastle RVI), and has proved very popular with her patients at Robinson’s. If Gary has been the optometrist looking after your eyes, we would have no hesitation in recommending Sophie as his replacement. Of course we also have two more excellent optometrists in John and Elaine, should you prefer to book with one of them.
A recurrent request for us is to consider opening hours, and adding an extra late night to accommodate the needs of those who find daytime appointments difficult. We are always looking at ways to make ourselves more available to our clients who work through the week.
We are pleased to announce that, as from the week beginning Monday April 6th, we will be open until 8 pm on 2 nights of the week- Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Many of you will have already visited late on a Thursday night but we’re sure that the Wednesday will be a very useful addition to this. Saturday Afternoons, on the other hand, have become much less sought after, and so we will be closing at 1pm on Saturdays.
We hope that this does not prove to be an inconvenience to anyone.
From April 6th 2020, opening times will be as follows:
It’s here! Our new sculpture – “2020” by Royal Seal of Approval Sculptor Graeme Hopper.
It’s here! After 12 months of planning, deliberation and changed decisions, we have finally taken delivery of our contemporary sculpture – “2020”, created by renowned artist Graeme Hopper.
The name 2020 is not only to celebrate the dawning of a brand new decade, but also stands for 2020 vision, or what is sometimes termed “perfect vision”. As registered optometrists we will always strive to get the best out of your eyes, but we also have an exciting vision of eye-care for the future.
Unveiled in front of a live Facebook Audience.
We feel that this spirit has been captured by “2020”. The unveiling took place on 20th December in front of a live Facebook audience. We are all absolutely delighted. The sculpture is based on a Tom Ford Design and built out of beaten steel. It has certainly proved eye catching.
We would like to thank all the lovely comments from friends, customers and passers-by. We were very conscious of the regeneration revolution sweeping across Whitley Bay. Our old wishing well was in a poor state of repair and, being lovers of art, we wanted to create something which would add to our community environment. It proved quite a challenge to find the right artist, as it’s not exactly your everyday kind of project. We spoke to our friend and architect Tim Bailey of Xcite Architecture, Newcastle.
Finding the right artist.
Tim gave a list of various artists and sculptors who may fit the bill, one of whom was Graeme Hopper. Graeme is choosy about the projects which he undertakes, but this one excited him and he immediately invited us down to his home and studio at Helmington Row, County Durham.
We were met by his lovely wife Susan, in a beautiful farmhouse with a garden full of amazing sculptures. A short trip to his studio showed us the workings of The Forge. He was very keen to get us involved, and Judith was soon carving out shapes from the metal with a laser. We had seen enough!
His enthusiasm and vision persuaded us that this was the artist we wished to commission. He is renowned, especially in The Durham Area, for his iconic giant mushrooms which adorn the entrance to The Botanical Gardens. This work was unveiled by Royal Operatic Tenor Sir Thomas Allen, and has been widely acclaimed in artistic circles. Following the success of The Botanic Gardens project he was lucky enough to be introduced to Prince Charles. Graeme gifted a sculpture to The Prince which now forms part of the Charles Collection and earned Graeme a Royal Seal of Approval.
He has undertaken works for museums, universities, The Arts Council, architects and The Forestry Commission. So we had our man; now to The Design.
Selecting a design.
It would have to reflect our vision, so to speak. We are a practice that excels in providing boutique frames and works of art to fit the face. It would need to be a vision for the future, a journey into the next decade but also reflect the retro qualities of fine design. A giant pair of unique glasses seemed to fit the bill. A sculpture that would reflect our modern thinking, but also draw attention to the fact that we are Whitley Bay Opticians and here to look after your vision. It would need to be modern, but also in keeping with Monkseaton Village, a conservation area.
Several plans were hatched; what should the shape be? What colour? How big? It would need to be big enough to make a statement but small enough to not seem incongruous. Graeme took this all under his wing.
His attention to detail is second to none, even down to the exact hinge shape of the copied Tom Ford frame. There was much talk of the galvanising process and the lacquer to be used to create that beautiful lustred finish.
Graeme then had the idea of displaying the frames on a large packing crate, as if the glasses had just been imported to Robinson’s. He used reclaimed oak, suitably stained and finished, with a surrounding perimeter made from old railway sleepers. The gap between was filled with grey slate and the effect is staggering. We are now just waiting for the delicate up-lighting to be completed. He is also in the process of making a much smaller sculpture to the same pattern which will sit on top of our present signage; a piece that will link together the practice and the main sculpture.
We truly hope that you all enjoy this piece as much as we do, and that Whitley Bay continues on its amazing regeneration process.
Thank you Graeme Hopper for your incredible talent!