The Banbury opticians is the original location where Walford and Round began its life. This practice has been owned by the business for 87 years, since Jonathan’s grandfather Pete Walford set up a combined opticians and jewellers business in 1927. Pete’s son Richard, and Richard’s university friend Tony Round then took over the business and developed it further, changing the practice name to Walford andRound Opticians.
In the last 15 years, Richard’s son Jonathan and Tony’s son Michael have taken over the business and remain the practice owners and directors to this day.
Walford and Round have a long history of providing exceptional eye care to the residents of Banbury. They stock a variety of brands, including top-of-the-range Lindberg frames, and always strive to provide the best possible optical experience to their patients.
Jonathan Walford is a dispensing optician at the Banbury practice. He has followed in his father’s and grandfather’s footsteps, having already accumulated 21 years’ experience with the business.
Jonathan is joined by optometrist Jeremy Hayward, who has been with the company since leaving university. Accredited for the Oxfordshire Glaucoma Referral Refinement Service, Jeremy heads the team of Banbury Opticians and also has a particular interest in dry eye management. What’s more, their reception staff are trained ocular hygienists so will be able to offer additional advice on controlling your dry eye symptoms.
Walford and Round also have practices in Brackley, Coventry, Shipston-On-Stour, Stratford-Upon-Avon and Solihull.
A regular to 100% Optical we catch up with Jonathan to learn more about his background and the ethos behind the practice.
What is the name of your practice and where is it based?
Walford and Round Opticians, Banbury, Oxon.
How would you best describe your practice ethos?
Our vision is to continually build on our traditions of excellent customer care, embracing the latest technology and supplying the highest quality products to give all our patients a comprehensive eye care solution.
Walford and Round Opticians aim to be the opticians that all our patients recommend, without hesitation, to their family and friends
What is your own background?
Jonathan Walford is the 3rd Generation of Opticians in the family run business that have been trading for over 90 years. I have grown up in Optic's and have never done another job. I have a BSc in Optical Management.
What characteristics do you need to be successful in your job?
Good listener and good communication skills. Understanding Px's needs and providing the best solution that fits their requirements. Being Skilled in the understanding of frame and lens construction, to provide excellent knowledge of products and adjustments.
Describe a typical working day in your life
Dispensing Spectacle prescriptions, frame fitting and adjustments, Staff communication and HR. Administration with in the company. Frame and lens purchases.
What challenges do you see facing the optical industry in the coming years?
The government giving the NHS contract to Specsavers.....as they have already done with other services.
Why do you choose 100% Optical to buy your frames and equipment for your practice?
I consider it to be the UKs biggest and most vibrant show. It is a must attend event for any optician looking to invest in quality, luxury or high end frames for their practice. It is important in any business to understand your market and 100% Optical provides a fun opportunity to achieve this.
You participated in the 100% Optical VIP buyers programme. What was your overall experience of this?
Very Good, apart from the hotel being booked on the wrong day, but that was sorted out over the telephone when booking in! The VIP buyers programme enabled me to have more structure in my day. Meetings were organised on my behalf with key suppliers that I wished to do business with
What factors do you consider when buying frames and equipment?
Who in our area stocks those frames. The quality and design of the frame and of course the cost.
What is your proudest career achievement in the last 12 months?
New customer care services brought into the practice to increase the standard of service for Px's.