The Maconaghie family: Frank, Margaret, Paul, Pearl, David (left to right), 1987
Framar Health has enjoyed a rich and diverse history within complementary medicine. The business made pioneering progress in the availability of alternative therapies, treatments and foods to the people of Northern Ireland; Framar welcomed one of the first fully qualified reflexologists to its clinic, had the first NAHS qualified staff member and was the first to bring aromatherapy products to its shelves. It was the first and only Jan de Vries clinic in the province and has welcomed thousands of customers through its doors since its opening over thirty years ago.
In the summer of 1987 Framar Health received a high accolade and was the first health food shop in the province to be recognised on a national level. Framar won 'The Best Health Food Shop in the UK', a national award from the magazine of the health food trade, "The Natural Food Trader", accompanied by a cheque for £1000 which was presented by the magazine editor Jenny Bain.
Jenny Bain presenting Paul Maconaghie with the £1000 cheque
Paul Maconaghie with the other finalists in London, 1987
Paul Maconaghie with his award
Pioneered by the Maconaghie family in 1981, Paul and his mum Margaret founded the natural health food and supplement retail store, whilst Paul’s father Frank was the founder of the Framar Health complementary clinic and the first practitioner on the premises, offering homeopathic and herbal advice to his clients. Paul’s wife Pearl Maconaghie, who holds a BSc (Hons) in Biochemistry from QUB, has played an integral role in the business. In 1984 she became one of the first reflexologists in Northern Ireland and the second official practitioner in the Framar Health clinic, and in 1989 she completed her Diploma in Nutritional Therapy at the Institute of Optimum Nutrition (ION) working alongside Patrick Holford. In 1986 Framar Health welcomed the fifth member of the Maconaghie family to its ranks, Paul's twin brother David who ran the Ormeau Road branch until its closing in 2007.
Margaret Maconaghie and staff member, 1985
Pearl Maconaghie, 1987
Jan de Vries joined the Framar Health clinical team in 1993 with great enthusiasm from the family. Jan brought expertise, passion and commitment to his clients in Northern Ireland and was a great friend of the Maconaghie family and the wider Framar community. He was dedicated to his clinic in Belfast until his death in the summer of 2015. Paul’s parents passed away in '06 and '07, but their legacy will forever live on, embodied by the business name;
FRA (Frank) MAR (Margaret).