Sacks Jewellers’ new owner Adam Tuohy understands the importance of keeping the Sack family name in Warrnambool, he is a third-generation jeweller himself.
Mr Tuohy and his wife Anna took over the store in May and have spent the past two months renovating it.
The Warrnambool business is the couple’s fifth jewellery store, operating alongside others in Bendigo, Castlemaine, Maryborough and Echuca. “From when I was a little kid I was always going to be a jeweller,” he said. “Jewellery was always in my blood.”
Mr Tuohy’s grandfather started JM Leech Jewellers in Bendigo in 1928, which was one of the reasons he wanted to continue the Sack family legacy and the long-running business name.
“We’re really glad to be here,” he said. “We appreciate all the support we’ve got from the local community. We’re exceptionally proud to be carrying on the name of Sacks, which is your oldest jeweller, and to be trusted to take that on and to continue that for many many years to come. That’s something I’m very proud of, as is Anna, and it’s been great to meet David and June and continue that history.”
He said jewellery was sentimental and the items and memories remained with families for generations. “You get a lady talking about her jewellery and there’s a story. If you can attach a really important moment in your life to a piece of jewellery it stays with women forever.”
The new owners have introduced brands including Thomas Sabo, Swarovski, Von Treskow, Georgini, Olivia Burton and many others, while also keeping some of the original product range including Pandora. They also offer repairs, watch batteries and custom-made bridal jewellery which he said was a focus of the business.
Mr Tuohy said their jeweller, who was based in Bendigo, had great expertise with platinum jewellery which he had worked with in Japan for two years. He was also employed at Tiffany & Co and has been a jeweller for 40 years, including 12 years experience running a jewellery factory.
He said they were searching for an experienced jeweller for the Warrnambool store but were waiting to find the right person for the role.
The couple is happy to have a store in the city and said the local tradespeople did an outstanding job and were “absolutely brilliant” to work with.
“We’ve had an eye on Warrnambool for a long time,” Mr Tuohy said. “We knew the town and we know Liebig Street. We saw the opportunity and it was too good to pass up. I’m really excited about Liebig Street. We’ve got businesses in other towns and they should look to Liebig for some inspiration I think. What you’ve done with Liebig Street deserves a pat on the back, it’s amazing.”
Proud family tradition set to continue
The Sack family has given the new-look Sacks Jewellery store, which their grandfather opened more than a century ago, their seal of approval.
David and June Sack who owned the business for 51 years are pleased that new proprietors Anna and Adam Tuohy have continued the family name and the Liebig Street store’s proud tradition.
The jewellery store was opened by David Sack’s grandfather Fred Sack in 1911. David Sack worked with his father William Sack from the age of 16 in 1946 until he retired in June, 1998. His wife June also worked in the store while raising the couple’s three children and their daughter Rose also worked in the office for a period.
In between, Wendy and Peter Hogg operated the store for 20 years before retiring in May.
The Sacks said it was pleasing to see the bright, new-look shop which still carries the family name. “It’s great,” Mrs Sack said. “They’ve come into the 22nd century. When we had it all those years ago we kept it more traditional deliberately. But times have changed in those years.
"They were happy years. I loved meeting the people who would keep coming back. They would say ‘my parents used to come here’ or ‘my grandparents used to come here’,” Mrs Sack said.
For Mr Sack the store was his life and he said he enjoyed being in business. “In those days the son was expected to follow the father and you didn’t have much choice. A lot of people have said how lovely the shop looks which is great. It’s encouraging but as well as that they’re happy that the business is still trading as Sacks,” Mr Sack said.