Shattky Optometrists

Visique Shattky Optometrists has been serving the people of Hawke's Bay with trusted expert eyecare and eyewear since 1906. We continue a proud history of family ownership with successive father & son teams Ernest & Derek Shattky, Neil & Phil Donaldson plus Mark & Tim Eagle. Using the very latest technologies and systems we specialise in Glaucoma tests, Retinal photography, Diabetic management, Therapeutic drugs, dietary supplements and Behavioural Optometry. We are ACC primary eyecare providers and CAA certificated examiners. Our speciality Orthokeratology and Keratoconus contact lens services are very successful. Using Zeiss, Nikon, Essilor & HOYA quality lenses, High Fashion frames and sunglasses we excel in providing award winning choice. We provide Irlen and Cellfield specialist services for 3D, binocular problems, Amblyopia and reading problems.

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Home > About Us > Our History in more detail

Our history in more detail

Proudly serving Hawke's Bay for over 100 years !

Father and son optometrists continues another generation

Tim Eagle has joined Mark Eagle (father) and Phil Donaldson as a director of Shattky Optometrists in Hawkes Bay. While this appears a normal transaction in the business world, for Shattkys it continues the tradition of father and son optometrist partnerships that dates back to 1906.

On Thursday 1st October 2009, Tim became the latest, and third, link in the family history of father-son combinations. Mark Eagle (his father) and Phil Donaldson in the Shattky business.
Derek Shattky, now in his 90's, was also there to help them celebrate and welcome Tim to the position of Director and to pass on some words of advice from those that have travelled the same road before him.

Shattky Optometrists have survived through many challenges and changes over the past 103 years;

Several fires, the Great depression, the 1931 earthquake, the world wars, the economic ups and downs of the changing face of the farming sectors, the close down of the freezing works that affected many people in Hastings, and the ever increasing speed of change in the optometry profession. They have also extended regular and reliable service to smaller Hawkes Bay towns, where it can be hard to get viable numbers for such professions.

As with many professions, attracting and keeping young optometrists is a modern day challenge. Luckily for Shattky's Tim has wanted to be an optometrist and work with his Dad since he was 12 years old! A goal that has kept him focussed through out all his years of study.

Tim Eagle graduated as an Optometrist in 2006 and then went on to complete a Post Graduate Ocular Therapeutic Course, making it possible for him to prescribe prescription drugs to treat eye infections, which brings another excellent service to benefit Shattky's clients.

Tim happily assures us that the reality of working with his father is as good as his dream and his large smile and cheerful countenance certainly attests to that.


The detailed Hastings history;

Herbert Webber was a pharmacist in the early 1900s and who, like many pharmacists of that era, was dabbling in optometry from as far as we can ascertain , at least as early as 1906. There was no formal qualification at that time. He found that he was interested in optics and so went to England at the beginning of WW1 to study and came back to NZ as a qualified Ophthalmic Optician (as optometrists were called in those days). His premises were located at the North side of Russell Street, where 'Subway' is now.

Ernest Shattky had joined Herbert Webber as an apprentice pharmacist in 1908 and he also developed a keen interest in optics and so followed in the footsteps of his older partner to become formally qualified as an Ophthalmic Optician. At this time the practice was called "Webber & Shattky"

Mr Webber and Mr Shattky separated their Pharmacy and optometry businesses but both men worked in both businesses. The practice name was then changed to "Shattky & Webber"

When Mr Webber retired in 1940, the Pharmacy was sold and Ernest continued with the Optometry business. Ernest Shattky built a reputation for good service with attention to detail and by the 1930s had expanded the practice to include his son Derek as a second optometrist.

Many Hastings and Waipukurau people still remember Derek Shattky who had a quiet and caring manner with his patients. He had a real passion for optometry and showed great empathy for providing professional services to small communities.

Derek Shattky and Neil Donaldson became partners in 1963 and operated under the name "Shattky & Donaldson" . Winthin a few years they expanded and moved to the South side of Russell Street to where the practice is today. They continued to extend their services to the smaller communities around Hawkes Bay.

Neil started the contact lens side of the practice which was very new in the early sixties. Subsequently Mark Eagle and Phil Donaldson (Neil's son) joined the partnership with Derek retiring in 1994 and Neil in 1999. During this time the practice was known as "Shattky, Donaldson & Eagle".

Our last name change was when we became "Visique Shattky on Russell Optometrists". We are foundation members of Visique, a nationwide group of committed optometrists offering special added-value services and Fly Buys.

In 2008 we formed "VisionLink" which is the Behavioural Optometry arm of our patient services.

Most recently of course, as mentioned above, Tim Eagle has joined as our third Director.


The detailed Waipukurau history;

75 years of Optometry in Central Hawkes Bay

Mr Ernest Shattky started to visit Waipukurau in late 1931, bringing down all his optometric testing instruments in his car and setting up in a little room in the back of Gideon's Pharmacy that eventually became Clelland's pharmacy and is now Waipukurau Amcal. This was a tradition that was carried on by his son Derek Shattky after his father died in 1957.

Mr Shattky was well known and well liked in the community. He had a special place in his heart for Waipukurau and indeed continued to work there every Tuesday well into his seventies until his retirement in 1994

Derek remembers that Mr Webber and Mr Shattky decided to branch out to offer optometry services to Waipawa and Waipukurau at the time of the depression. It was a way to extend their business in difficult financial times. At first they would spend mornings in Waipawa and afternoons in Waipukurau, although it proved to be too arduous to fit in both towns so the Waipawa visits were discontinued early on.

During the WW2 there was often not enough petrol to make the trip but they always managed to get to Waipukurau by either using the train or bus or catching a ride with someone else. Derek is proud of the fact that they never missed a week of Tuesday visits to Waipukurau despite the difficulties. He also remembers that the trip took a bit longer than the now 35 minutes!! Although the road was sealed it was very windy in parts. Hazards such as sheep on the road were often encountered and indeed on one unfortunate occasion, hit!

In the early 1980s the partners of, the then, Shattky Donaldson and Eagle decided that they needed a dedicated space to work from in Waipukurau and so set up in the location where they are today in Ruataniwha Street. The Practice has grown from being a one person operation to the now two full time team members with optometrist.

The way optometry is practised now is quite different to even 15 years ago when the last refit was done. Part of the Shattky Vision is to ensure they have the latest technology as they believe it is important to deliver the best eye care possible.

New technology means a far superior eye examination with the capability of storing data that can be measured and compared with over the years, showing up visual changes that might not otherwise be realised. This allows them to link into other relevant historical family data. Shattky's is now seeing third and fourth family generations from Waipukurau and Waipawa!!

Of course new instruments need space and so the practice has had to be redesigned to accommodate this. Architects Hunt Davies Tennent have put their flair into the process and created a design that has invigorated the Visique Shattky Waipukurau Practice. The rooms have been completely gutted and refitted with a look that is fit for the new millennium and will serve its function of providing excellent eye care and fabulous eyewear.

The new design and colour scheme portrays modernity with a hint of tradition that reflects the history of Visique Shattky in Waipukurau.

The latest technology, including the Zeiss GDx Glaucoma Screening tool, Canon Optical Coherence Tomography, a fabulous range of current fashion frames, and well trained optometrist assistants mean that Waipukurau has the best of eyecare and eyewear on its own doorstep. The long standing tradition of Shattky Optometric services in Central Hawke's Bay looks set to continue for another 79 years!!