At Visit West End, we like to shine a light on the people who work hard behind the scenes to make Byres Road and the Lanes the vibrant place we all know and love to visit, shop and dine at.

For the second part of this series, written exclusively for the Visit West End blog, we caught up with Robert Fletcher, who runs Vision Express at 384 Byres Road. Their friendly neighbourhood shop, which is a stone’s throw away from the Botanic Gardens, has a great range of glasses for you to wear whilst taking in the sights and delights of the West End.

Robert has told us that he has enjoyed everything about being a part of the West End community since he took over the shop as a Joint Venture Partner one year ago. He said: “I love being in the West End as I feel part of a very diverse community and I enjoy being able to support within this. I really like getting to know so many different people from customers and their families as well as supporting fellow local businesses.” He continued to add, “It’s great that so many shops, restaurants and bars are dog friendly and I’m getting to know so many four-legged friends although it’s a little worrying though that sometimes I remember their name before their owner!  I also love having the Botanics and Kelvingrove Park on our doorstep as it’s great to get out and have a relaxing walk at lunchtime or a run home at the end of the day. I enjoy admiring the amazing architecture and local gardens too.”

Robert has enjoyed many years as part of the Vision Express group in Glasgow, helping people enjoy better vision. He told us: “Although the store I work in is part of the Vision Express group, it now trades independently as a Joint venture and the store is run by myself as the partner. I have worked withing the Vision Express group for 25 years now and I am passionate about giving people the best care and service to look after their vision and give recommendations on the best glasses and contact lenses to suit what they need.”

He shows a lot of care and enthusiasm as a West End employer. He is well engaged as a member of the local business community and has sat on the board for Byres Road and the Lanes Business Improvement District since the Summer of 2020. He explained: “Investing in people is important to me as I want to have a place where my staff really love coming to work as this will come across in their passion that they show when looking after customers. My team and I are keen to support our local community and take part in events and fundraising.”

Vision Express has a great range of products and services to provide a high quality of eye care. He explained: “I have a few favourites with products and services that we offer. First and foremost is our eye examination which we recommend everyone has at least every two years. This not only checks their vision but the health of their eye which is a very important part of the examination.” He continued to add, “Looking at my favourite products, I have to say that top of my list right now during the current pandemic is contact lenses. They can give great vision without having the common problem of glasses steaming up. I am a bit of a fan of quirky frames and love our current range of Ray-Ban sunglasses. We have a wide price range of glasses from £39 for single vision and £89 for varifocals so we have something to suit everyone’s budget.”

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