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Time for an eye test?

With modern technology and the latest shades to try on, eye tests aren't run-of-the-mill anymore

Blimey haven’t eye tests come a long way? I remember the days when a quick scan of a row of letters – from big to small, right to left; with one eye shut, followed by the other – would be it. You’d be in and out in a blink (lollipop in your gob if you were a child). Boom. Job done.

Can you read this please madam?

Not these days – no sir-ee. I visited family-owned Dipple & Conway in central Norwich for my first eye test in, well, a while and was there so long I managed to drink a cup of tea. Not in a bad way – I was well and truly looked after from the moment I walked through the door – what took so long was the series of thorough tests my eyes went through to ensure they were in tip top shape.

This thorough approach is doubtless testament to Dipple & Conway’s 100-year-old history. Opening in Norwich in 1916, the company remains family-owned and independent, with branches in Swaffham and Diss.

I love these branch illustrations on the website (L-R: Norwich, Diss, Swaffham)

This is where the nod to the past ends though – they are as savvy and up-to-date as any young company out there, with a sleek, design-led store, and an attractive and regularly-updated Instagram account.

The Norwich branch

They even write a regular blog and get involved in the local community, appearing at Norwich Fashion Week earlier this year.

Kerry Curl: Norwich Fashion Week 2017

As for the technology – the machines could give NASA a run for it’s money; the most impressive being an OCT scan which takes 3D images of the back of your eye. When my result appeared on the screen, I thought I was looking at space – my eyeball easily resembling Mars or Neptune.

OCT scanning: space-age technology

Short for Optical Coherence Tomography, this advanced eye scan is really clever, checking for age-related degeneration, glaucoma (a disease that damages the optic nerve) and even diabetes – what… what? Yup. Other tests included a pressure check (three puffs of air in each eye that felt really weird) and a field test to check for blind spots – push a button each time you see a light blinking to your left or right (a bit like looking for shooting stars but without the blanket or hot chocolate). Eye tests were never such fun.

But the really fun part is finding out which glasses would suit your face shape with the help of a Dispensing Assistant. Dipple & Conway stock a wide range of brands, including Chanel, Chloé, Dior, Gucci and Prada, plus sunglasses – get your Ray Bans here, fashionistas.

Dipple & Conway stocks the latest brands and looks

The lovely Hannah suggested that as I have small features (has she seen my nose?!), round glasses would suit me better than square and that I should probably go with a lighter shade rather than bold black.

What do we think?

At least that’s my Christmas present sorted. More importantly, it’s good to know that my eyes are now in good hands.



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