Independent celebrates centenary
Author: Andrew McClean
Wigram and Ware Opticians celebrated its 100th anniversary with a 1920s fancy dress tea party at the practice in King’s Lynn.
The independent, which is part of the Hakim Group, hosted a traditional tea party and held a raffle for attendees, with prizes including an £80 voucher, Cocoa Mint sunglasses and a bottle of prosecco.
Wigram and Ware Opticians was founded by the Wigram family in 1920 on King’s Lynn high street, with the founder’s nephew Francis Wigram taking over as chairman and chief executive in the 1950s.
He sold the business in 1969 to Peter Hutchinson and Kevin Smith, who opened a second branch in Dersingham in 2003 and moved the original practice to its current location on Blackfriars Street in 2006.
Wigram and Ware is now run by optometrists Sarah Baldock and Linda Vernon-Wood, who took over from Mr Hutchinson in 2012 and Mr Smith in 2018.
Baldock, co-practice owner at Wigram and Ware, said: ‘Being a part of this practice as it reaches its 100th anniversary is very special. I’ve personally been a part of Wigram and Ware for the past 20 years, so I’ve almost grown up with our patients who continue to come back to us year after year - they’ve become almost like family.’
Vernon-Wood shared that the technology used in practice has been the biggest change to how the independent operates. ‘We now only use the best and most state-of-the-art equipment, but the same quality customer service that Wigram and Ware is known for remains to this day,’ she said.
‘The best part of this job has been the people. I think our patients are quite proud to be supporting an independent and for that reason we feel part of strong communities in both King’s Lynn and Dersingham. This practice continues to grow from strength to strength every year, so here’s to the next great landmark anniversary,’ Vernon-Wood added.