Two members of staff at Specsavers North Shields are celebrating career achievements.
Eddie O’Gara has returned to the team as store director while Louise Thompson, who joined as a school leaver, has completed her degree to become a fully qualified dispensing optician.
Eddie, originally from Ireland, first joined the store 12 years ago before leaving to travel.
He said: “I fell in love with North Shields when I first arrived from Ireland. I joined Specsavers and really enjoyed working here and living here.
“When the opportunity came up for me to take up a role as store director at North Shields, I leapt at the chance.”
Louise, 27, worked full-time at North Shields while studying for her Foundation Degree in Sciences. She began her career in the store after leaving school and took the opportunity to gain her qualification through Specsavers.
She said: “I joined Specsavers when I was just 18 and have worked in a number of roles.
“I attended Anglia University for three days every three months as part of my studies and completed the rest in my spare time.
“Learning on the job was much easier than sitting in a classroom and I loved being able to apply my knowledge to my day-to-day work immediately.
“One of my colleagues Alan Bartholomew, an optometrist here, was my personal tutor and I had dedicated time each week working with him.
“I’d like to thank all of the team here for their great encouragement, support and guidance over the last three years, I’m really proud and feel it’s a joint achievement.”
Eddie added: “Louise has worked extremely hard to achieve this qualification – working full-time and studying is tough – so staying focussed and positive is important and we’ve got great infectious enthusiasm in the store.
“We’re all looking forward to seeing Louise develop further within the company.”
For more information visit www.specsavers.co.uk/stores/northshields