AS A teenager Amelia Maston always knew the job she wanted to do, now seven years since she was a Saturday girl at David Gould Opticians she has returned as an Optometrist.

Amelia had contact lenses fitted at the Haslingden practice when she was about nine, having always accompanied her mum to check-ups.

Then, at 14 she asked the owner David Gould if she could have a Saturday job.

David, who run practices in Haslingden and Rawtenstall, said: “She said that she wanted to do this job when she was older, but I said she was too young for a Saturday job and suggested she ask again when she was 16, which she did.”

While Amelia was completing her A levels at Bacup and Rawtenstall Grammar School, she began working Saturdays and during the holidays behind the reception of the Bank Street practice.

She said: “I would work a Saturday morning, which was good because it meant I could also still go to the football in the afternoon.

“I would also come in on Wednesday afternoons for work experience when there was a clinic on.

“David wrote my reference which helped me to get into Bradford University where I studied a degree in Optometry. The degree was very hard but I enjoyed it and I did well and won awards.”

After graduation, she completed a pre-registration year and as part of that time was spent with David Gould's which specialises in contact lenses and children's eye care.

She then got a job with Vision Express in Altrincham.

David started work in Rawtenstall in 1992 for Manchester-based Blakes Optical, which had a base in the former Valley Centre.

He said: “I worked for them for a few years and become operations director, then I decided I wanted to run my own business and so I made the boss an offer he did not refuse.

“When my previous optometrist Klara Dupelycz was retiring, I knew who to contact to take over the role and Amelia has settled in really well.”

Amelia, 25, said: “When I came back as an optometrist, it felt like I had never left because the staff were still the same. I am so pleased to be back working in Rossendale.”

The business is always innovating and investing in the latest technology.

Throughout the pandemic, the practice remained open.

Although initially it was just for emergencies, since June last year it has been fully operational with reduced capacity.