Date: Sep 14,2018


Manx Blind Welfare Society and RNIB Isle of Man have partnered up with the Island’s opticians to highlight the importance of eye tests for children and to encourage parents and carers to get their child’s sight tested.

All children who receive an eye test will receive their very own Nellyn the Bear (Manx for ‘Little Champion’).

All opticians on the Isle of Man have signed and can be contacted on the numbers listed below. 


  • Boots Opticians, Douglas – 676886
  • Gillian Sheard Opticians, Douglas – 676260
  • Holmes and Davidson, Douglas – 676230
  • Patricia Wild Opticians, Douglas – 613158
  • Sadler and Vanderplank, Douglas – 673643
  • Specsavers, Douglas – 689500
  • Newby and Padley Optometrist, Onchan - 611110
  • Newby and Padley Optometrist, Port Erin – 832519
  • Patricia Wild Opticians, Ramsey – 813977
  • Sadler and Vanderplank, Ramsey - 814934
  • Laxey Opticians, Laxey – 861177 

Manx Blind Welfare Society Volunteers Coordinator & Events Organiser Debbie Thomson said: ‘There is strong evidence to show that many children in the UK do not have eye tests other than regular screening which should take place between the ages of four and five.

‘The NHS Choices website highlights the importance of regular eye tests for children and that, without routine tests, a potential problem could go undiagnosed for months and years.

‘It’s important for eye problems to be identified as early as possible because they can significantly affect a child’s development and education.

‘It’s also recommended that children have regular eye tests at least once every two years. These are free for all children under 16 years old (and those under 19 years old in full time education).

‘We have teamed up with Island opticians so when children have their eyes tested, they will be given their very own Nellyn.

‘An eye test is nothing to worry about but, of course, if they want to bring their own bear for comfort they can and then get a teddy pal afterwards.’

The Rotary Club has funded the initiative through the Lockington Marshall Trust which was established to aid Manx charitable organisations.

MBWS looks after the interests of and provides services to more than 500 blind and visually impaired people in the Isle of Man, relying entirely upon fundraising, donations and legacies.

To find out about Vision Awareness Week 2018 and the work of Manx Blind Welfare Society, visit: