Sunderland’s only independent hearing clinic has launched at the North East Business and Innovation Centre (BIC).
Audiologist Dan Wilkinson set up his private practice, Northern Spire Hearing Services, at the BIC in response to a growing demand for his mobile services.
Dan launched his business back in 2020 after spotting a gap in the market whilst working as an audiologist for the NHS – initially offering home visits only to clients. But demand for his expertise quickly led to the decision to establish a permanent base where he could help more clients and offer a wider range of services.
“I knew there was a demand for services like earwax removal because GPs no longer offer this and people still need to have it done,” he said.
“Demand was so high I was having to turn people away and I quickly realised my time would be better spent if clients came to see me instead.”
After checking out other locations around the city, Dan decided to make the BIC home to his business, selecting a self-contained unit on the business park for his new clinic, which he named after the neighbouring Northern Spire Bridge.
And after investing in specialist equipment, he threw open the doors to clients who he can support with hearing tests and hearing aid fittings as well as earwax removal.
Dan added: “People who choose to go to a private, independent practice, rather than a high street chain, often feel like they get more choice, more time and a less sales-driven experience. That’s certainly what I aim to provide.
“The brilliant location, professional surroundings and great facilities play a big part in the customer experience. And the BIC’s friendly business park provides welcome support to me, as a relatively new entrepreneur. Although I have my own front door and self-contained unit, I feel part of a bigger business community.”
BIC Centre Manager Donna Surtees added: “Dan has already built up a successful business and his move to the BIC means he can continue to expand his customer base.
“His hearing clinic is a great example of the diverse range of businesses that now call the BIC their home. Our units are purposely designed to be flexible enough to accommodate all kinds of businesses from a beauty salon and artisan bakery to recruitment and science labs.”