New optometrist research facility set to open in fire-hit former Northampton garage

A derelict garage ravaged by fire in Northampton two years ago has been transformed into a state of the art facility for optometry research following a rennovation.

Monday, 17th September 2018, 12:44 pm
Updated Monday, 17th September 2018, 1:48 pm
Practice owner Brian Tompkins.
Practice owner Brian Tompkins.

Tompkins Knight & Son Optometrists (TK&S), based in Kingsley Road, is set to open the new facility on Wednesday, October 10, with an event featuring renowned American optometrist Tom Arnold, who will fly in from the US to discuss the latest research around specialist contact lenses.

Brian Tompkins, who owns the practice alongside wife Nicky, said: “We are proud of our past and we are excited for our future. For 150 years TK&S has been at the forefront of eye health and the technology at our disposal today means we can continue to push the boundaries of what’s possible in eye care.

“The secret to our success has been our refusal to stand still. We are always pushing, always progressing. That’s what the founders believed back in 1868 and it’s still very much the case today.

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“The Garage R&D Lab is the latest step in our journey and it will allow us to host some of the finest optometrists in the world, sharing their knowledge and allowing our team to practice the pioneering techniques that will make a long-lasting difference to patients’ lives.”

The company was originally formed by Alfred Knight who teamed up with his watchmaker father James to open Knight & Son, a jewellers and optometrists, in Mercers Row in Northampton.

The business remained in the family for several generations, with Monty Knight, Alfred’s grandson, teaming up with Mr Tompkins, a former president of the British Contact Lens Association, in 1980 to form TK&S.

In 1994 the practice moved to its current home in Kingsley Road, where the new research facility is now based.

For more information on TK&S Optometrists, call 01604 714413 or visit