Eye care entrepreneur is awarded an MBE

  • by Emma

Yorkshire businesswoman Sue Grant, the Co-Founder and Managing Director of The Body Doctor Ltd, has been awarded an MBE for Services to Entrepreneurship in the King’s Birthday Honours.

Entrepreneur Sue and her two sons, Adam and Sam Wymer, founded The Body Doctor Ltd in 2012 with her youngest son Alexander joining the company in 2022. The family-run business behind the Eye Doctor range of eye drops, eyelid wipes and compresses won the Queen’s Award for Innovation in 2016 and again in 2021.

“It’s such an honour to be awarded an MBE after almost 30 years of working with microwavable hot compresses, a concept that was not available in the UK at the time,” said Sue. “It’s incredible to think that I came back from New Zealand in 1996 with my two young sons and having to make a living, I formed the Natural Wheat Bag Company.”

The Natural Wheat Bag Company Ltd was based in Emley, West Yorkshire, and grew into a £1.8m turnover business, with customers including House of Fraser, Debenhams, the National Trust, John Lewis, The Body Shop, Virgin and the QVC shopping channel.

The company won a raft of business awards, one of which resulted in being invited to Downing Street to meet the then Prime Minister, Tony Blair and Sue was in the national finals of the Top 10 Women in Business Awards, culminating in winning the Queen’s Award for Innovation in 2004 and a personal visit from Prince Andrew. This exposure led to Sue subsequently co-inventing the EyeBag compress.

“I had been producing eye compresses since 1996 but this was my first introduction to its use in optics and eventually led to the creation of The Eye Doctor product. It’s fabulous to be recognised with an MBE after all these years,” Sue concluded.

The Body Doctor Ltd employs over 30 people and is backed by science and supported by experts in the ophthalmic and medical fields, including TV’s Dr Hilary Jones.

The company achieved a major milestone when a patent was granted for the antibacterial shield Sterileyes, which is clinically proven to reduce bacteria by 99.9% and is an integral component of the Eye Doctor hot and cold compresses.

The granting of the patent followed five years of research and development with three independent laboratories and was a major boost for the company. The Huddersfield-based business continues to expand and recently bought additional premises for its sales and marketing team across the road from its production base.

Sue is looking forward to being presented with her MBE at Buckingham Palace later in the year.

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