A HARD-WORKING family jeweller is proud to be celebrating 30 years in the industry.

Simon Mandel, who owns Thomas Wood Jewellers in The Rock, said he "must be doing something right", given that his independent business is still going strong.

Mr Mandel, aged 56, has been trading in Bury town centre for 17 years, more recently with some help from a cousin who works part-time.

Today, the store draws in a footfall of about 50 customers each week.

Whitefield born and bred Mr Mandel said: "I enjoy dealing with the general public and using my knowledge.

"I have learnt about everything from a piece of raw gold to the finished product which allows me to provide a personal, professional service as a family jewellers.

"It is a privilege in today's economic climate that I am still trading as a one-man band when so many other businesses have gone under. I must be doing something right. We go the extra mile to help our customers and provide services such as watch battery repairs while you wait.

"We are very pleased to be celebrating our 30th year."

Former Heys Road Secondary School pupil Mr Mandel undertook his two-year training at Openshaw Technical College where he learnt the skill of making jewellery and learnt about stones.

While studying, he worked part-time at a jewellers and kept up a Saturday job at H. Samuel, before joining the company full-time after college.

Four years later, in 1986, Mr Mandel became an assistant manager at Browns Jewellers in Bury, later progressing to become manager.

In 1989, he left to start his own business in Rochdale, relocating to Bury 13 years later, where he has been established ever since.

To mark the business' 30th year, Mr Mandel is offering a 10 per cent discount off all jewellery, clocks and gifts.