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Opchat Magazine Exhibition and Training pagesExhibition and Education News, January to March 2016

FODO looks forward to Optrafair 2016.

WCSM Educational Trust provides another "Eye to Eye" discussion event at Optrafair to hear about the Foresight Project.

DOCET’s new website offers bite-sized learning.

PHN’s Editor and Director organises a day of lectures at the Royal Society of Medicine in June 2016.

Silhouette sweetens a visit to Optrafair with much to see.

Vision Care for Homeless people reaches out at Optrafair.

High street optometrists bring OCT to life at Optrafair.

Get confident with contact lenses and Maximise Your Potential at BCLA UK.

AOP Awards 2016 – nominations now open.

College publishes annual report and agenda for the next AGM.

2016 AIO Conference details released.

Education’s a winner at 100% Optical.

100% Optical breaks records and wows visitors at London Excel

If you've not got to 100% yet, get here now.

The Body Doctor premier new product with Dr Hilary Jones.

Myopia crisis needs optometrists to take the lead.

NHS only sustainable if CCGs work through opticians.

HOYA announced as Academy conference platinum sponsor for second year in a row.

Heidelberg Engineering brings OCT to life with OCT LIVE

100% Optical Set to Break Records in Landmark London Show.

Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers provide a warm welcome at 100% Optical on Sunday.

New Heidelberg Engineering Retina Faculty Chairman announces Angiography Masterclass in May 2016

Doug Perkins and Paul Morris to lead debate on the challenges that Optometry faces.

100% Optical announce the return of the catwalk to show latest fashion trends.

AOP launches extensive 2016 CET and events programme.


Record numbers attend 13th International SPECTRALIS Symposium 2015 in Valencia

Grafton Optical will be at 100% Optical with a larger stand and more equipment on show

100% Optical announce presence of Birmingham Optical at London Show

Diary dates for specialist contact lens fitting announced by No 7.

The WCSM Education Trust presents the first in a series of “Eye to Eye” discussions.

Let’s make wearing specs fun says Stephanie Collier, the founder of Blinx.

FODO looks forward to Optrafair 2016.

March 2016

Optrafair, the must attend event in the optics calendar, takes place next weekend (9-11th April ) at the NEC in Birmingham.

This year, we are looking forward to meeting FODO members, finding out the latest news from the sector and discussing our offer with prospective members.

We will also be launching the hard copy of the FODO Annual Review – don’t forget to pick up your free copy from our stand at E61, as well as your copy of the Foresight Report and Vouchers at a Glance.

David Hewlett

David Hewlett, FODO Chief Executive said: “What excitement 'when Spring calls "Ho, there! ho!".

“With Spring comes the excitement and anticipation of Optrafair with its heady mix of new ideas, new technologies and new thinking.

“This year looks to be better than ever and a great opportunity to mix with clinicians, manufacturers and business owners, get some high quality CET and hear from the sector leaders."

"We hope as many members and non-members will visit our stand at E61– to meet us in person, to pick our brains, swap views on policy, business, employment or regulatory issues or just chew the fat.

“This year we will be running special daily competitions for students to help them understand about the optical bodies, what they do and the career choices they have."

There are lots of changes happening in optics in the next few years, including MECs and new registrations, so we will be on hand to answer your questions and to get a better understanding about how we can support our members in the future.


You can meet FODO staff and our Board at Optrafair 2016 from 9-11th April at stand E61 in Hall 20.

WCSM Educational Trust provides another "Eye to Eye" discussion event at Optrafair to hear about the Foresight Project.

March 2016

Julia Manning

The title is "Facing our fears – initial outcomes of the Foresight Project" and the speaker will be Julia Manning, founder and Chief Executive of think tank 2020 Health.   

The session will run in the GOC/OCCS workshop area, in the outer Atrium, from 2-2.20pm on Saturday 9 April.  

The Foresight Project was commissioned in January 2015 by the members of the Optical Confederation and the College of Optometrists.

The project contracted 2020 Health to undertake specialist research into the impact of new technologies and changes in demographics on the optical sector.

The full report and news topic is available in Opchat News reported Tuesday this week by PHN



DOCET’s new website offers bite-sized learning.

March 2016

DOCET New websiteDOCET, the Directorate of Optometric Continuing Education and Training - established to deliver free, high quality CET to UK registered optometrists, has reviewed and renewed its website, which launches today.

The new site has a fresh look and offers bite-sized CET programmes to fit in with busy lives, as well as new personalised accounts so that users can keep track of their DOCET activity.

Other features include an easy-to-search comprehensive audio/visual reference library covering key topics and conditions, which will help optometrists to boost their clinical and professional skills and knowledge.

The site is available to all UK registered optometrists at

PHN’s Editor and Director organises a day of lectures at the Royal Society of Medicine in June 2016.

March 2016

Bob Hutchinson, a Fellow of the RSM and Web Champion Council Member of the GP and Primary Care Section has arranged a key series of lectures over one day to emphasise the importance of detection, management and required follow up social care for those suffering from sight and hearing loss. June 15th 2016.

“I wanted this day to progress across the patient journey of detection and management of sight and hearing problems, some of which are treatable and others less so.

The 2 challenges can often run their course in tandem making the recognition of social care both at home and in residential care vital.”

“I hope the audience normally predominantly GPs and Nurses will be equally bolstered by those from our optometric profession, as well as with representatives from the Optical poitical sector and the 3rd sector who have set challenges for the primary care sector to step up to the plate.”, said Hutchinson.

“This is an opportunity for us to come together as a unified broad primary care grouping where we can influence GPs to be on the lookout for patients who should be directed to community optometrists.”

The day starting at 9.00 am after registration is packed with key note speakers including those from Moorfields and other leading teaching hospitals as well as contributors from the College of Optometrists and from Hearing groups. It will end with a call to action from Lord Chris Holmes MBE.

At the end of this meeting delegates will:

• Have discussed the patients’ journey with treatment and dealing with sight and hearing loss with shared Px experiences

• Have discussed the role of primary and secondary care with social care

• Have reviewed the follow up provided within primary, secondary and the social care sectors

• Have discussed hard to reach groups such as the homeless

The full meeting programme is detailed below and you can register on line here.

CET points have been applied for by the RSM through the GOC providers.

Meeting Programme June 15th

8.30 am Registration, tea and coffee

9.00 am Welcome and introduction
Mr Bob Hutchinson, Council Member, General Practice with Primary Healthcare Section

9.05 am The role of primary care in improving detection, prevention and outcomes in reducing sight loss
Miss Parul Desai, Consultant in Public Health and Ophthalmology, Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

9.35 am Patient perspective: My journey to blindness with AMD
Mr Harold Tuwie to be interviewed on stage by Ms Mercy Jeyasingham, CEO of Vision 2020 (UK) Ltd

9.55 am
Achieving better outcomes in primary and community eye health services
Mr David Parkins, Immediate Past President, College of Optometrists and Chair, Clinical Council for Eye Health Commissioning and the London Eye Health Network

10.25 am Tea and coffee break

10.45 The certification of vision impairment, its importance and how its use is key to continuing social care of the patient
Mr Richard Wormald, Consultant Ophthalmologist, Head of Epidemiology, Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

11.15 am Vision 2020: The fight against poor and failing sight in the UK
Ms Mercy Jeyasingham

11.45 Improving accessibility and inclusivity in the GP surgery and assisting GPs in a greater understanding of their key role in early and better referrals
Dr Waqaar Shah, GP, Council Member, General Practice with Primary Healthcare Section, Clinical Expert in Ophthalmology, Royal College of General Practitioners and Chairman, Macular Degeneration Guideline Committee at NICE

12.25 am Lunch

Optional lunch time workshops to be held at 12.45 pm
Delegates can sign up for workshops before/during the meeting

Workshop A Demonstration of what it is like to lose one or more of the senses
Mr Ian Hughes, Associated Optical

Workshop B Demonstration of the latest developments in fundus photography and the measurement of intra ocular pressures taking into account residual elasticity and thickness of the cornea
Mr Anand Manichand and Mr Malcolm Redfearn, Grafton Optical

Workshop C A description and hands on display of low vision aids
Mr Mike Spinks, Associated Optical

1.55 pm What it’s like to lose your hearing when loss of sight or other disabilities might co-exist
Ms Lidia Best, Chair, National Association of Deafened People

2.25 pm Groups who are excluded from vision care, those that are homeless or have learning difficulties
Ms Elaine Styles, Trustee, Vision Care for Homeless People

2.45 pm Care in the community, care homes, residential homes and nursing
Professor Janet Marsden, Professor of Ophthalmology and Emergency Care, Manchester Metropolitan University

3.15 pm Tea and coffee break

3.35 pm Dealing with sensory loss, audiology in the community
Mr Harjit Sandhu, Director of Policy, National Community Hearing Association

4.05 pm Following the sudden onset of blindness: What blindness means to others and I
Lord Chris C Holmes of Richmond MBE

4.35 pm Completion of evaluation forms and close of meeting

Book the day out, enjoy the hospitality of the RSM and register here.

Silhouette sweetens a visit to Optrafair with much to see.

March 2016

TMA Pulse at Optrafair

Silhouette are pleased to be exhibiting at Optrafair this year and will be showcasing Silhouette, adidas Sport eyewear and Neubau.

The highlight of the stand for Silhouette will be the TMA Pulse – launched at MIDO.

The Pulse is the reincarnation of the TMA to celebrate 10 million wearers; brightly coloured end tips and plugs aimed at a slightly younger generation to show the versatility of the TMA design blueprint.

Silhouette will be running one-to-one CET accredited rimless workshops on our stand worth 3 points.

And of course also serving Austrian wine and Austrian sweet treats and speciality chocolates from Vienna!

Vision Care for Homeless people reaches out at Optrafair

March 2016


Vision Care for Homeless People will be reaching out to volunteers at Optrafair – for optometrists, volunteers, team leaders for each clinic and regional fundraisers.

The centres in London, Brighton, Manchester and Birmingham all rely on volunteers to run and finance the weekly clinics, with more help always needed.

As Elaine Styles, Chair of Vision Care for Homeless People, said, “There is a great need for our service in many other locations in the UK but we do rely on the support of the profession and volunteers in each area. We are urging anyone interested in setting up a clinic in their area to come and speak to us at Optrafair."

Volunteering is a very worthwhile way to spend a few free hours each week.

“We pride ourselves on providing an eye examination which is as good as in any High Street practice. We are hugely grateful to our wonderful sponsors for enabling us to achieve this, and to Optrafair for providing us with a platform,” she added.

High street optometrists bring OCT to life at Optrafair.

March 2016

Heidelberg Engineering has announced the speaker line up for Optrafair 2016.

Heidelberg at Optrafair 2016Nine High Street optometrists and dispensing opticians who have integrated OCT successfully into practice will discuss how they did it, and how it improved patient care, across three seminars hosted on the main stage.

“Striking the perfect balance between promoting clinical services and retail sales is quite a challenge”, explained Krysten Williams, Heidelberg Engineering Director.

“Understanding and truly believing in the benefits of a multi-modal imaging approach to the diagnosis and treatment of eye disease for patients is vital to success.”

The Optrafair seminars will combine clinical education with personal experiences and practical business advice on improving the standard of patient care whilst being profitable.

Dates, timings and speakers:

15:10 – 16:10 – Saturday 9th April

Paul Adler, Paul Adler Optometrists, Peter Waite, KG Miles Opticians, Mark Holloway, Thomas and Holloway Opticians

11:00 – 12:00 – Sunday 10th April

Jude Edwards, Healthy U Optometrists, John Rose, John Rose Eye Care, Jason Rickaby, Jason Rickaby Opticians

13:15 – 14:15 – Monday 11th April

Romana Hashim, The Eye Academy, Niall O’Kane, Niall O’Kane Optometrists,

Get confident with contact lenses and Maximise Your Potential at BCLA UK.

March 2016

Optometry professionals have been given the chance to learn more about contact lenses and ‘maximise the potential’ of their practice.

Taking place in June this year, BCLA UK will give young practitioners the chance to brush up on the basics of contact lens fitting and find out more about how they can help grow their business.

Cheryl Donnelly, chief executive of the BCLA, said: “We want to give UK eye care practitioners more confidence when it comes to contact lenses and give people the chance to add another string to their bow.

“Fitting contact lenses is something to be enjoyed, not endured. BCLA UK will give young practitioners the opportunity to reap the rewards of learning a new skill which will last them a lifetime.”

BCLA UK is being held at The Belfry on June 12 - 13 and tickets are now on sale at a discounted ‘early-bird’ rate.

The two-day show will feature a range of talks and presentations from leading figures within the contact lens industry. Places are limited and early booking is strongly advised.

AOP Awards 2016 – nominations now open.

March 2016

From 26th February patients and practitioners will be able to nominate individuals and organisations for the AOP Awards 2016, with optical professionals also encouraged to put themselves forward. Organised by the Association of Optometrists (AOP), the Awards recognise the highest levels of achievement in UK optics.

Individuals and organisations who are interested in nominating themselves or others for an award should visit the AOP Awards web page at before 10 April 2016. Nominators will then be asked to fill out a brief form with the contact details of their nominee which the AOP will follow up.

Henrietta Alderman, AOP Chief Executive, said: “We’re delighted to launch the AOP Awards 2016. Now in its sixth year, the Awards give us the opportunity to recognise excellence and exceptional achievements in optics. Could it be you this year? The Awards are all about practitioners who give so much to the public and profession. Do have a look at this year’s categories and consider putting yourself forward.”

The twelve categories, including optometrist, dispensing optician and contact lens practitioner of the year, will go to public vote after the awards judging panel have selected a shortlist. Successful nominees will be profiled in Optometry Today (OT) and invited to an awards ceremony and dinner on 11 November. Last year’s Optometrist of the Year winner, Dr Martin Smith, said he has been overwhelmed to win the accolade commenting: “Winning Optometrist of the Year is a great feeling, it is an honour.”

In addition to the eleven categories open to public nomination and vote will be the Lifetime Achievement Award, selected by the AOP judging panel. This category recognises the person who has dedicated their career to promoting and expanding the role of optics or who has brought the benefits of optics to a wider audience.

College publishes annual report and agenda for the next AGM.

February 2016

The College Annual Report 2014-15 and the agenda for the next College AGM to be held at The Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel, on Monday 14 March at 2.30pm are publsihed.

The AGM is taking place during the College’s annual conference, Optometry Tomorrow 2016, full details of which are available at here.

You can access the full annual report and financial statements online at college-optometrists/annual-reports.

The annual report focuses on the work we have done between October 2014 and September 2015 and if you would like to share your feedback on any of this work, you can do so via Twitter @CollegeOptomUK or you can email Ian Humphreys at

College AGM

2016 AIO Conference details released

February 2016

New Feature announced for The Vale 9th and 10th October 2016

The Vale CardiffThe Association for Independent Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians (AIO) confirmed today that its 2016 Conference will be held at the superb Vale Resort in Cardiff on 9th and 10th October 2016. The Conference this year is anticipated to be the biggest and best yet and a new feature has been added which is expected to generate a lot of interest.

Alongside the main lecture programme, and CET break-out sessions, a separate event will be staged for people who aspire to move into Independent practice either through acquisition or as a start up operation. The programme for this event will include all aspects of setting up or acquiring a business, marketing, finance, acquiring equipment and insurance amongst other important subjects. Delegates will also be able to hear first-hand the experiences of people that have recently taken the plunge!

Keith Pearce, AIO Vice Chairman and Organiser of this year’s Conference said ‘2016 will mark a number of firsts for our Annual Conference. We will be visiting Wales for the first time and we will have more than 200 delegates in attendance for the first time. We will also hold a new and unique event for those who aspire to work in the Independent Sector. We know that there are many people working in the multiple sector, and people who are newly qualified, that would dearly love to own and run their own practice, but don’t know how to go about it. Our job as the only professional not for profit body that exclusively represents Independents is to provide help and support and create a roadmap that shows the move is not as daunting as some may think.’

The 2016 Conference will feature the usual excellent array of speakers and will cover clinical and practical subjects with an array of CET feature lectures and workshops. In keeping with its origins, the Conference will provide a great networking opportunity for like minded people and there will be some fun social activities to go alongside the informal Saturday night dinner before the Conference on 8th October and the formal Gala Dinner on Sunday 9th October.

‘We had excellent feedback from our Conference at Eastwood Hall in 2015, and we are determined to build on that success in 2016’ Keith added.

Bookings for the Conference will be open from early March. Read more about the AIO here.


Education’s a winner at 100% Optical.

February 2016

This year’s 100% Optical was a great success, with a 20% rise in attendees to the event and one of the most varied and up to the minute educational programmes in the sector.

This year’s event, which was held at ExCel London from 6–8 February 2016, offered attendees the chance to catch up on the most pressing issues in the profession. Highlights included Department of Health Minister, Alistair Burt, discussing the role of optometrists and dispensing opticians in delivering a sustainable NHS and Professor Kovin Naidoo covering the increase of myopia in his talk Myopia: A growing clinical and public health challenge of our time.

Commenting on the event, Chief Executive of the AOP, Henrietta Alderman, said: “The AOP are delighted with our ongoing partnership with Media 10, and this year delivered a show that lived up to and beyond expectations. The show delivered world class education provided by the AOP, a fantastic exhibition and an opportunity to network and bring the whole sector together under one roof. This year’s programme also provided plenty of opportunity for topical debate within the 90 plus sessions of CET, including hearing from the Minister who is responsible for optics, Alistair Burt MP, who gave delegates his view of the challenges we face and the positive role he feels we should play within primary care.”

AOP member, Mehul Patel, identified Professor Naidoo’s session as a highlight of the event. Mr Patel commented: “It was very interesting - a hot topic at the moment.” AOP member, Dr Joy Ekpata, echoed this and commented that Professor Naidoo’s session was “enlightening”.

For many the event was a chance to focus on patient needs. AOP member Sarabjit Kaur said for her 100% Optical was, “an amazing event to learn how to help people around us” with sessions available on both treating special needs patients and disease management.

Throughout the event, AOP members had exclusive access to education at the AOP lounge, including peer discussions, career workshops and clinical sessions. Peer discussions were particularly popular with an extra session provided on Monday afternoon to meet member requirements.

ian Beasley AOP

Commenting on another successful education programme, Dr Ian Beasley, AOP Head of Education, said:

“The education delivered by the AOP continues to grow in reputation attracting internationally-renowned speakers keen to showcase their work at the event. The success of the programme was undoubtedly due to its strength in depth with contributions from optometrists, ophthalmologists, dispensing opticians and contact lens opticians. This was complemented by content provided by experts in the field of orthoptics, psychology and even micro-robotics.”


The announcement that the AOP’s relationship with Media 10, to deliver education at 100% Optical, would continue for another three years was also welcomed during this year’s event.



AOP member, Sarah Peaceful, said she was “thrilled” at the news. Mrs Peaceful said: “The combination [of the event] with the AOP, for me, makes it the best in the UK”.

100% Optical will return for a fourth year in 2017, running from 4-6 February at ExCeL London.

100% Optical breaks records and wows visitors at London Excel

February 2016

crowd at 100%


The Optical trade show, 100% Optical, has smashed attendance, business and exhibitor expectations during its third year in the capital.

lecture theatre at 100 %




The show broke the mould, with 20% more floor space housing over 200 companies, a 20% increase in visitors both UK and international and a whopping 100 CET points on offer for each person over the weekend, cementing itself as the place to do business in the optical trade calendar, proving it is fast becoming the future of optics.


The show’s event director, Nathan Garnett, is thrilled with what the show has delivered.

“The feedback from exhibitors and visitors has been incredible!” said Nathan. “We saw business being done from the moment the doors opened on Saturday morning right until they closed Monday evening and the atmosphere was just electric. We even had to extend the opening hours on Sunday as many exhibitors were still doing business.”

Julie Abel, joint managing director of EyeSpace said: "It's been brilliant. We've been blown away by how good it has been.

With more staff we'd have taken even more orders – we were still here at 9.40pm on Sunday processing orders; security had to ask us to leave!

The visitors are high quality too - they are here to buy and we've placed really good orders. We've reached a lot of new accounts that we'd probably not have met and there is such a good vibe here."


The show attracted buyers from around the UK and overseas, with some travelling from as far as Australia and South East Asia to attend the weekend.

“We've come over from Australia to spend the whole weekend here as London is so convenient for us,” said Optometrists Catherine Cheah and Jonathan Tay. “It's our first time at the show and we've been so impressed by the innovations and expertise on offer.”

“100% Optical is, and has always been, about showcasing the future of optics, building businesses and having a great time,” said Nathan. “Not only that but we’re proud to present the biggest selection of eyewear under one roof, more than anywhere else in the UK and the largest amount of free CET points available than at any other UK show, along with big name exhibitors and speakers.”

Visitors were treated to the best in eyewear at the fashion hub, the latest technology and business services in the equipment and business hubs, and cutting edge lenses in the lens hub.

The education programme delivered a lot more than just CET points, with debate and discussion rife over the three days.

Fight for Sight stand“The Association of Optometrists (AOP), along with support from the Fight for Sight Speaker Network, have really delivered on a world class seminar programme this year,” said Nathan.

“Personal highlights – Doug Perkins and Paul Morris from Specsavers with a rally cry to get the industry to work together and seal the legacy of the independent sector, Professor Kovin Naidoo on the growing myopia challenge and hearing Rt hon Alistair Burt MP, Minister of State for Community and Social Care discuss the future of primary care and the NHS with Professor Rob Darracott and Katarina Venerus – but it’s all been brilliant.

Sessions have been full to bursting; we had to bring in extra seating just to meet demand.

“We’re already wondering how we might top it next year!”

Commenting on another successful education programme, Dr Ian Beasley, AOP Head of Education, said, “'The education delivered by the AOP continues to grow in reputation attracting internationally-renowned speakers keen to showcase their work at the event. The success of the programme was undoubtedly due to its strength in depth with contributions from optometrists, ophthalmologists, dispensing opticians and contact lens opticians. This was complemented by content provided by experts in the field of orthoptics, psychology and even micro-robotics.”

The UK’s main eye research charity, Fight for Sight, was the show’s charity partner for the second consecutive year. With a number of fundraising activities helping to raise the importance of eye research including the #BlinkWinkThink selfie campaign and on-stand photo booth. Back by popular demand, Rock-a-oke, allowed exhibitors and visitors to let their hair down after a second busy day on the Sunday evening.

Catherine Woodhead, Director of Fundraising at Fight for Sight talking about the charity's partnership said: "We are grateful to 100% Optical for giving us this opportunity to raise the importance of eye research, from members of the Fight for Sight Speaker Network discussing a wider range of funded projects, encouraging the public to take a #BlinkWinkThink selfie, to the Fight for Sight Rock-a-oke party it has been another successful year raising funds for a future everyone can see.

Eyewear Company at 100%"Thank you to everyone who has supported the fight against sight loss, we're looking forward to working in partnership with 100% Optical for the 2017 show."

For Nathan and the team, the one thing they wanted to get across is that 100% Optical really is a place for the whole spectrum of optical trade to do business, network and have fun together.

“I think we’ve proven this year that whether you’re an optometrist, eye surgeon, dispensing optician, assistant buyer, practice manager, or a manufacturing optician you will find everything you need at 100% Optical,” ensures Nathan. “London is the business capital of Europe and we’ve given the optical trade a slice of that action for another year.

“We gave 100% to the show and our visitors and exhibitors got 100% back and more. Bring on 2017!”

100% Optical will be back at ExCel 4-6 February 2017 – see you then!

If you've not got to 100% yet, get here now.

February 2016

The Catwalk at 100% Optical

In what promises to be the most successful show to date, 100% Optical at Excel buzzed with people and excitement. An extraordinary programme of education and topical lectures often running on 4 different stage settings throughout the entire day kept 100's on the edge of their seats.

Sunday has the same format with a different range of speakers with the key note WCSM Education Trust sponsored debate: "If we were all called Doctors, myth or the future at 1.00pm with a meet the Spectacle Makers following in the VIP area.

Later Doug Perkins and Paul Morris make a reflective view on the dramatic changes occurring in Optics at 5pm.

Can't make Sunday, don't panic, Monday is just as power packed with yet another complete all day programme plus the regular "Happy Hour" spots and the great fashion show.


The show with its central bar provides a great opportunity for networking plus the BCLA cafe bar and of course the ABDO arms.


Only 30 minutes from central London you can mix and match your day with a spot of sight seeing after the show.

The Body Doctor premier new product with Dr Hilary Jones

February 2016

“100% Optical is an incredibly progressive and active show and we’re expecting a lot of business for our new products”, said Sam Wymer, sales manager for The Body Doctor. Exhibiting for the third year in succession, The Body Doctor are here to launch their Eyelid Wipes range and are targeting independents looking for attractive new income opportunities.

Crowds throng 100% Optical on Saturday


Dr Hilary Jones said “I first came across their hot eye compress in my search for a solution to my own sore, red, dry eyelids and I was very impressed. I contacted the company to give them positive feedback and before long I was volunteering to present an instructive video on the subject of Blepharitis and Dry Eye Syndrome which patients could view whilst waiting to see their optician or ophthalmologist.”


The new wipes handle daily eyelid hygiene, cooling and soothing the eyes, gently cleans, refreshing and handling sensitive eyes.

“The great thing about the show organisers is that they don’t just sit back, they make things happen and we’re incredibly excited about this year’s appearance” said Sam.


Myopia crisis needs optometrists to take the lead.

February 2016

Profession is the catalyst for change according to Professor Kovin Naidoo.

It was standing room only at the Main Stage as Professor Kovin Naidoo opened the 100% Optical 2016 Conference Programme on Saturday morning.

Prof NaidooProfessor Naidoo called the optometry community to action, urging them to tackle the growing problem of myopia, which could see 50% of the population visually impaired by 2050.

“We have to respond as a profession now,” said Professor Naidoo. “Otherwise we’re risking a future public health crisis and severely limiting our capacity to say that optometry is relevant and up to modern challenges.”

He also went on to stress that the myopia challenge needs a co-ordinated approach, with optometrists working to promote education for parents and children around the condition, not just their own practices and services.

“It’s only by working together that we can address this challenge and hit our target of reaching 50 million children by 2020, both in developed and developing countries,” continued Professor Naidoo. “That’s why we’ve set up Our Children’s Vision and partnered with organisations like Brien Holden Vision and Essilor. Optometrists are the gateway to getting the NHS, NGOs and governments to take notice and work with us to change a future where 50% of the population could be visually impaired.”

For more information, including access to the latest research and more for Professor Naidoo, visit

NHS only sustainable if CCGs work through opticians.

February 2016

"Let’s create 500 new GPs", says LOCSU MD Katrina Venerus
Alistair Burt Minister of State

If NHS England did things differently it would unleash the power to create the equivalent of 500 new GPs, delegates heard as Katrina Venerus of LOCSU took to the main stage with Alistair Burt, Minister of State for Community and Social Care at the DOH. “We could take so much pressure off GPs and hospital eye departments. Only thirty per cent of clinical commissioning groups in England have commissioned services to treat minor eye and common ailment conditions," she said, "in contrast to NHS Scotland who were in the winning seat."

“England, compared to Scotland, is a postcode lottery”.

The Minister said he was used to being interrogated by John Humphrys on the Today Programme about postcode lottery issues but there could not be one model for the whole of England. “We will have devolution coming in the East of England and in Devon and Cornwall and each area has its own needs. In the West Country you have rural issues and scattered communities which is very different to NHS Manchester.

“The fact I’m speaking here at 100% Optical reflects the fact we know that primary care is not just about GPs and that we recognise the need to use the best resources and the skills of optometrists”.

He urged the delegates to use their influence with local commissioners and said that the NHS Five Year Forward View was examining new models to help the nation maintain its health and vision. “Ophthalmic services targeted at the frail and elderly for instance, he said, was a classic role”.

HOYA announced as Academy conference platinum sponsor for second year in a row.

February 2016

The European Academy of Optometry and Optics has announced HOYA - a key player in the global ophthalmic lenses market - as platinum sponsor of its annual conference for the second year running. The conference takes place at Beuth University of Applied Sciences, Berlin, from 19-22 May 2016.

Last year, HOYA – celebrating its 75th anniversary this year – sponsored the Academy’s clinical skills workshops at their HOYA Faculty in Budapest, in addition to being the headline conference sponsor.

Olga Prenat

Olga Prenat, Director HOYA Faculty and Education, said: “We are delighted to be the platinum sponsor of the EAOO conference for the second year in a row. At HOYA Faculty we support eye care professionals across Europe in their day to day work.

"We ensure they become leaders in the sector and have a full range of skills at their disposal, both in a scientific and a practical sense. The ultimate goal, of course, is to help people see well. By working closely together with those at the cutting edge of optometry and optics - eye care professionals and respected organisations such as the Academy - the HOYA Faculty is playing an important role in promoting a lifelong learning strategy in our industry and life care.”

Academy President, Dr Mireia Pachecho-Cutillas FEAOO, commented: “HOYA shares the vision of the Academy to harmonise and raise standards and improve education in the fields of optometry and optics. They are a perfect partner in working towards our commitment to sharing knowledge and promoting expertise and we thank them for supporting our annual conference again. Working together we hope to improve the quality of vision across Europe and to meet the optical demands that today’s society places on us."


The conference is a joint meeting with the European Council of Optometry and Optics (ECOO). It will bring together key members of the optical community from over 40 countries across Europe, to discuss and share the latest research, education and clinical practice and provides a platform to exchange knowledge and information on optometry, optics and dispensing and vision science.

Heidelberg Engineering brings OCT to life with OCT LIVE

February 2016

OCT LIVE is a new series of CET-accredited educational events nationwide with a glaucoma theme.

Running from 2nd February, the roadshows will guide you through the patient journey, from scanning the patient live in HD on the big screen to interpreting the images and making a decision on patient management.

These interactive, CET-accredited sessions challenge the classic case study book format and demonstrate how a multimodal imaging approach can be used in real life to assess a patient’s eye.

This year’s theme is glaucoma, and the Heidelberg Engineering Academy team plus special guest speakers will explain how OCT can be used to spot the early signs of glaucoma, to monitor progression of the disease and in making decisions on patient management.

"The OCT LIVE roadshows are an exciting way for practitioners to learn about OCT as they can see the scan taking place live in high definition and learn every aspect of OCT playing a major role in the detection and treatment of glaucoma" explains Christopher Mody, Director of Clinical Services at Heidelberg Engineering.

The roadshows are held in the evening, starting at 6.30pm and are suitable for OCT beginners and skilled users alike.

Upcoming dates and locations:

Jurys Inn, Newcastle upon Tyne: Tuesday 2nd February 2016

Mercure Hotel, Winchester: Monday 15th February 2016

Holiday Inn (Cardiff City), Cardiff: Tuesday 23rd February 2016

Hilton Belfast Templepatrick Golf & Country Club, Belfast: Monday 7th March 2016

The Barnstaple Hotel, Barnstable: Monday 14th March 2016

The Grand Hotel, Torbay: Tuesday 15th March 2016

Venue TBC, Calderdale and Kirklees: Thursday 25th March 2016

To register your interest in an event, please email with your name, address, tel. number, email and GOC number.

100% Optical Set to Break Records in Landmark London Show,

February 2016

Optical trade show, 100% Optical, has its sights set on smashing attendance, business and exhibitor targets when it opens on 6-8 February at London ExCel.

Now in its third year, the must-attend show is breaking the mould with 20% more floor space housing over 200 companies, a 20% increase in visitors both UK and international, and a focus on being the place to do business in the optical trade calendar.

The show’s event director, Nathan Garnett, is excited to show the optical world what’s on offer.

“100% Optical is about building your business, and creating a bright future for everyone involved in optics” said Nathan. “We have the biggest selection of eyewear under one roof, more than anywhere else in the UK, the largest amount of free CET points available across the weekend than any other UK show, and some big name first-time exhibitors and speakers.”

This year welcomes newcomers Birmingham Optical, the BCLA and Essilor, among others, the return of the popular fashion shows and VIP guests like the Rt Hon Alistair Burt, De Rigo MD, Michele Aracri, Dr Hilary Jones, music producer and artist MrBigz, and presenter and model Charlotte Holmes.

“It’s exciting to see our exhibitors pulling out all the stops for the show, giving visitors the perfect balance between business and leisure throughout the day,” said Nathan.

The world renowned education programme, in partnership with the Association of Optometrists (AOP) and the Fight for Sight Speaker Network, is another jewel in the show’s crown. Main stage speakers this year include Doug Perkins, Joint Group CEO and Co-Founder of Specsavers, Professor Barbara Pierscionek, Professor John Marshall, Professor Harminder S Dua, and Professor Kovin S. Naidoo.

“Demand for the education programme has rocketed this year” continued Nathan. “So we have had to increase our capacities in the hubs and theatres to allow more people the chance to access the education”

“We’re delighted this year to have attracted speakers from around the world, many at the top of their respective fields, and all with insights and expertise that will help visitors improve their knowledge, understanding and ultimately their businesses.”

Fight for Sight returns as this year’s charity partner, with a number of other fundraising events at the show. These include ‘blind dates’ with Fight for Sight researchers and speakers, an ‘Eye Spy’ competition, the return of the #BLINKWINKTHINK photo booth and back by popular demand, the infamous Rockeoke will take place on the Sunday night.

For Nathan and the team, the one thing they really want to convey is that 100% Optical really is a place for the whole spectrum of optical trade to do business, network and have fun.

“Whether you’re an optometrist, eye surgeon, dispensing optician, assistant buyer, practice manager, or a manufacturing optician you will find everything you need at 100% Optical,” ensures Nathan. “London is the business capital of Europe and the optical trade deserves a slice of that action.

“Visitors will find that, and more, at 100% Optical.”

Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers provide a warm welcome at 100% Optical on Sunday.

January 2016

Members, friends and those wanting to find out more about membership of the WCSM are invited to meet fellow Freeman and the Master in the International VIP Lounge on stand W390 where they can also meet the highly respected speakers following the “Eye to Eye” debate titled;

“If we were all called Doctors” - a myth or the future?

The discussion is chaired by Professor John Marshall who will be introducing Samantha Peters, GOC CEO, Ben Fletcher, Boots Optician CEO and Professor David Thompson, Past Head of City University and starts at 1.00pm on the main stage.

Audience participation is the name of the game for the WCSM Education Trust’s sponsored Eye to Eye, so here’s your chance to make your voice heard to those who make a considerable impact on the way our professions are seen to run by the public.

Eye to Eye starts at 1.00pm on the Sunday in the main stage followed by a social meeting at the International VIP Lounge till 3.00 pm.

You can register now or turn up on the day but seats are going fast! Cant make the debate then join us at stand W390 and find out about our events and good fellowship. You will need to register for the show first before you can register for the seminar. Register here and before you complete registration ask to register for seminars. If you are already registered you can return using the same link with your registration key and login.

New Heidelberg Engineering Retina Faculty Chairman announces Angiography Masterclass in May 2016

January 2016

Pearse KeaneThe Heidelberg Engineering Academy have confirmed their keynote speaker for the 5th Annual Retina Faculty Masterclass 2016 as Professor Giovanni Staurenghi, from the University of Milan, alongside new Retina Faculty Chairman, Pearse Keane, NIHR Clinician Scientist at the Institute of Ophthalmology, University College London.

This year’s Angiography Masterclass will explore the unique attributes of a dynamic multi-modal approach to fluorescein (FA), indocyanine green (ICGA) and OCT angiography*.

“For the first time, the Masterclass will focus on angiography, including a thoughtful and rational look at the role of OCT angiography in the clinical decision making process,” explains Pearse Keane.   

“A highlight of this year’s Masterclass will be an interactive ‘Ask the Angiography Expert’ panel discussion, which will foster a lively debate.”

The Masterclass will be held on Tuesday evening, 24th May from 6-8pm at Austin Court, a historic canal side building which is just a few minutes’ walk away from the Royal College of Ophthalmologists Annual Congress at the International Convention Centre (ICC).   

Space is limited. Register for the Masterclass by emailing

*OCT Angiography for SPECTRALIS is under development and not currently for sale.

Breaking News on speakers at 100% Optical.

January 2016

fashion shows at 100% Optical

Doug Perkins and Paul Morris to lead debate on the challenges that Optometry faces on 100% Optical Main Stage.

On Sunday both Specsavers Joint CEO and his lead for Advancemnet in Optometry will put forward how they see Optometry going forward against a backdrop of the biggest period of change seen for decades.

This completes the largest ever educational programme over 3 days providing an opportuinity for 100 free CET points. The most available anywhere in the UK in 2016.

The show lectures are just a part of an exciting and vibrant show with live activities, fashion shows and show parties happening over the weekend providing a great location to meet your friends and familly as well as colleagues from the AOP, ABDO and the WCSM.


January 2016

fashion shows at 100% Optical

Back by popular demand, the catwalks at 100% Optical will be showcasing top eyewear trends for 2016, hosted by model and TV presenter Charlotte Holmes on 6-8 February at London Excel.


With at least three shows every day there are plenty of opportunities for visitors to watch the latest collections hit the runway.

Among the top brands being showcased visitors will be treated to the latest designs from William Morris, Silhouette, SALT., Oliver Goldsmith and Eyespace.

<empty>Fashion shows at 100%


Eyewear buyers can expect to see bold statements breaking tradition, with natural eyewear made from wood or other sustainable and recycled materials rising as a key trend for 2016.

Legendary frame revivals, such as the cat eye and aviator, will be brought up to date for a more modern feel, and in sun lenses, mirrored or coloured flat and visor lenses are the trends to watch.

Clodagh Norton, founder of and editor in chief of 2020 Europe, compiled the top trends in eyewear for 2016, which will be showcased at the 100% Optical fashion shows.

Clodagh said, “Colours and materials are going to be on everyone’s minds during the fashion shows at 100% Optical. In 2016, we’re going to see some innovative new designs and an injection of vibrant colour. Vintage-inspired acetates, 3D printed frames and a rise in bold silhouettes, decorative effects and experimental use of pattern are just some of the directions that will be illustrated at the very popular catwalk shows during 100% Optical."

As part of its dedication to eyewear fashion, 100% Optical has worked with the Royal College of Art (RCA) again for the Eyewear Design competition. The competition shines a spotlight on fresh fashion talents, giving them a chance to showcase their designs and win an internship at a renowned eyewear company. The winner from the shortlist of six ‘ready to wear’ and ‘couture’ designs will be announced on Sunday 7 at 12pm. The shortlisted entries have been made into prototypes and will be available to view within the Fashion Hub throughout the show.

The Fashion Hub will also host talks by respected industry names, including Jason Kirk, Walter Berwick and Tom Davies. The Visual Merchandising competition and DADA competition awards presentations will also be held on stage within the Fashion Hub.

Have you registered yet for any or all of the 3 days? Register FREE NOW.

Take a peek at the preview pages of the show posted on PHN.

AOP launches extensive 2016 CET and events programme.

January 2016

The Association of Optometrists (AOP) has launched its extensive 2016 CET and events programme which will run throughout the country, in print and online, offering over 200 CET points during the first year of the new CET cycle.

The programme will cover both interactive and non-interactive CET points with members and Optometry Today (OT) subscribers able - for the first time - to discuss CET on the Association’s new online CET and events forum.

In particular each OT CET video will have its own individual area for conversation, with a new video scheduled to be released every two months. Peer discussion roadshows and legal roadshows can also be discussed online post event, providing AOP members with further networking and interaction opportunities.

Dr Ian Beasley, the AOP’s Head of Education, said that 2016 will be an innovative year for AOP education. He explained: “The AOP will delivering a fresh approach to education at our events and in OT in 2016 to reflect changes to the GOC requirements and the evolving needs of all practitioners. We are particularly excited about our Therapeutics London event - formerly London Education Destination - in September. This event provides a mix of seminars and workshops targeted for those who are IP qualified, contemplating taking this route, or simply wanting to broaden their clinical skill set. 2016 will also see an expansion of the popular Student Conference with third year students invited to join second year's with two separate streams of education tailored for each cohort”.

The 2016 events programme launches with 100% Optical on February 6-8 at ExCeL London. As the official education partner for the event, the AOP has developed a comprehensive programme that offers a wide range of seminars and workshops across several hubs.

The first of the AOP’s popular peer discussion roadshows will also take place in February. The Association’s team of in-house experts will be visiting Wrexham on 24 February, followed by visits to Plymouth on 8 March and Newcastle on 16 March. Each session will provide three CET points.

Other national events returning in 2016 include legal roadshows and the National Optical Conference in November. All events provide excellent networking opportunities to meet and share ideas with peers.


January 2016

Exciting news for 100% Optical attendees this year as world leader for corrective lenses Essilor (stand L231), the British Contact Lens Association (the BCLA Café)

Essilor CrizalBoth are exhibiting at 100% Optical for the first time, joining an already stellar line-up.

Event Director, Nathan Garnett, said, “I am thrilled that such big industry players are joining us this year! All are leaders in their areas of expertise and will be a big attraction for our visitors. We’re delighted they’ve chosen to start the year with a bang at 100% Optical.”

Brand new BCLA Café introduced to 100% Optical
Visitors will be able to take advantage of the brand new British Contact Lens Association (BCLA) Café.

This is the perfect place to grab a light bite between seminars and meetings, network with industry peers and find out about the benefits of becoming a BCLA member. BCLA members are also invited to stop by for a free tea or coffee.

Essilor joins 100% Optical

Visitors are also invited to find out more about how Essilor Instruments can partner with them and provide equipment for each of the practice areas, including the range of payment terms and lens refund deals. Read more in the preview pages on PHN.

Record numbers attend 13th International SPECTRALIS Symposium 2015 in Valencia

January 2016

OCT Scan from HeidelbergMore than 400 participants from 49 countries accepted an invitation from the Heidelberg Engineering Academy to the 13th International SPECTRALIS Symposium in Valencia, Spain, held on October 16 and 17, 2015.

“This success was certainly partly due to the attractive venue” explained Dr Stephan Schultz, Head of the Heidelberg Engineering Academy, “but above all, it can be attributed to the high-level international faculty, the interesting scientific program, and the constructive discussions generated.”

The program and the poster sessions were devoted to clinical applications and research work carried out with diagnostic imaging tools for retina and glaucoma. Several lectures covered the clinical use of well-known SPECTRALIS examinations such as MultiColor or autofluorescence imaging, but innovations such as the Widefield Imaging Module or the Glaucoma Module Premium Edition were also discussed.

The clinical application of OCT Angiography* was one of the newest topics under discussion.

You can now view the video recordings of the ISS lectures by going to and selecting “conference videos”.

The 14th International SPECTRALIS Symposium will take place in Vienna, Austria, on November 25 and 26, 2016. Registration will open from the end of February 2016.

*OCT Angiography for SPECTRALIS is under development and not currently for sale

Grafton Optical will be at 100% Optical with a larger stand and more equipment on show.

January 2016

Grafton are pleased to announce that Anand Manichand of i-Optics, will be on hand to demonstrate and explain the importance of EasyScan, the highly succesful retinal image laser scanner.

Find out why Easyscan works as a much more efficient and useful tool in the optometrists consulting room first hand from Anand. He will explain how using the SLO retinal scanner will help you work more closely with your ophthalmologist and save time in the practice.

Reduce examination time, capture images through small pupils and increase patient satisfaction with the fact that no dilation is ever needed.

Reichert CR7 from Grafton


Reichert CR7 from GraftonGrafton will be bringing other new equipment to the stand including the Reichert 7CR – (IOPcc measurement) providing accurate compensated IOP measurements.

IOPcc is a better indicator of glaucoma presence, making Reichert 7CR "The Glaucoma Tonometer"

Read about the special offers available on the days, especially the:

Start up – budget entry package deal. Go to the preview pages on PHN

100% Optical announce presence of Birmingham Optical at London Show

January 2016

Birmingham Optical


Birmingham Optical join an increasing number of Instrument and Equipment manufacturers attending the show.


Zoe Smith, Head of Marketing for Birmingham Optical said” We are excited to be exhibiting at 100% Optical this year. We can’t wait to talk to opticians about how they can differentiate their practice this year.”



Read on more about exhibitors at 100% Optical on our preview pages for 100%.

Diary dates for specialist contact lens fitting announced by No 7.

January 2016

Differentiating your practice with specialist contact lens fitting comes a step closer with free to attend CET training days organised by No7 Contact Lenses.

No 7 Trainng day15 February – Managing Patients with Irregular Corneas, with 3 CET points

Gain knowledge and skill in assessing patients with corneal topography to confidently assess and fit a wide range of contact lenses. Learn the attributes of fitting mini-scleral, hybrid, soft and RGP lenses, thereby building practice loyalty.

16 February – Ortho-k and Myopia Control, with 4 CET points

Acquire knowledge and the skills to introduce Ortho-k to your practice, by gaining an understanding of corneal topography.

The benefits of Ortho-k are now being enjoyed by patients from eight years to 80, representing a modality that has great potential.

Both events will take place at the Contamac Training Centre in Saffron Walden, near Cambridge.


Blinx for kidsWCSM Education Trust

The WCSM Education Trust presents the first in a series of “Eye to Eye” discussions

January 2016

“If we were all called Doctors” - a myth or the future?

Sunday 7 February 2016 at 1pm on the Main Stage, 100% Optical London

On stage to discuss current and future career paths and competencies within the Optical Sector will be:

Prof John MarshallChairman: Professor John Marshall, Past Master of The Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers -

Professor John Marshall is the Frost Professor of Ophthalmology at the Institute of Ophthalmology in association with Moorfield's Eye Hospital, University College London. He is Emeritus Professor of Ophthalmology at Kings College London, Honorary Distinguished Professor University of Cardiff, Honorary Professor the City University and Honorary Professor Glasgow Calendonian University. His research over the past forty years has ranged over a number of ocular problems but has concentrated on the inter-relationships between light and ageing, the environmental mechanisms underlying age-related, diabetic and inherited retinal disease, and the development of lasers for use in ophthalmic diagnosis and surgery.

Read more about Prof Marshall and more information about 100% Optical here


Blinx for kids

Samantha Peters, CEO and Registrar of the General Optical Council

Samantha Peters is Chief Executive and Registrar of the General Optical Council (GOC). The GOC is the regulator for the optical professions within the UK. It exists to protect the health and safety of the public, by promoting high standards of education, performance and conduct amongst 26,000 registered optometrists, dispensing opticians, student opticians and optical businesses. Samantha has worked in the health sector for 15 years, and held a number of public interest posts focusing on delivering services and support for patients and the wider general public during that time.

Ben Fletcher Boots MDBen Fletcher, MD, Boots Opticians.

Ben Fletcher was appointed Managing Director, Boots Opticians in October 2013 and is responsible for leading the Boots Opticians Business across 640 stores and 5,000 colleagues. Boots Opticians has been formed from the merger of Dollond & Aitchison and Boots Opticians in May 2009. Ben was previously Finance Director of Boots UK & Ireland and joined Boots UK as Commercial Finance Director in July 2011. Prior to this, he was Finance Director for the global Salon Professional division at Procter and Gamble (P&G). During his 12 years at P&G, Ben worked in a variety of finance roles in the UK and Western Europe. Ben is a board member of the British Retail Consortium and chairs the Audit & Risk Committee.

Ben is married with two children and lives in Leicestershire.

Professor David Thomson, Past Head of Department at City University

The speakers will discuss their views on the future of optometric training, and career milestones in Optics, given the demands created by community service contracts, the unprecedented evolution of optical equipment and the likelihood of even greater simplified objective diagnostic ability in the future.

It’s then over to the audience for discussion, challenge and shared experience from professionals across the sector.

• Are we training optometrists in the right way? Should training continue to be life science based or more medically based?

• Optometrists are currently taking extra courses to comply with new community service contracts. Would it not be better to ensure that these skills are included in the main curriculum for optometrists before graduation?

• As the scope of practice of Optometrists expands, what will be the role of Dispensing Opticians?

• What role can the GOC play in upgrading teaching modules to make sensible use of the latest equipment?

• Should GOS contract requirements for a sight examination be widened as has happened in Scotland?

• How will we cater for the public’s needs in future?

And many more questions from the floor!

The WSMC Education Trust looks forward to seeing you on Sunday 7 February at 1.00pm.

(CET points applied for)

Make sure you register on the 100% Optical site to ensure your seat at this exciting event.

Let’s make wearing specs fun says Stephanie Collier, the founder of Blinx.

January 2016

Blinx for kidsBlinx are a new eye-catching range of accessories for children who wear glasses, allowing them to easily customise their existing spectacle frames.

Designed to easily slip on and off the arms of children’s spectacles, the small silicon charms can be swapped and changed to suit the ever changing moods or outfits of little ones!

They can be worn individually, as matching pairs, or mixed together to create a unique and colourful look. Retailing at just £1.99 the charms provide an affordable way to accessorise.

Blinx will be on show at 100% Optical in February on stand D26.

Read all the 100% previews as they are published here

Read about Blinx in the first of our Company Profiles in 2016 where Stay at home mum wins awards for launching product to help children who wear glasses.
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