Clapham Optical merges with Leightons in Totton

It is hoped that the merging of two independent businesses will create the area’s “ultimate destination for optometry and hearing care”

Ryan Leighton and Nick Clapham sit on grey arm chairs in front of a dark blue painted wall
Ryan Leighton

Totton independent optometry practice, Clapham Optical, has merged with Leightons Opticians & Hearing Care.

The collaboration brings together two well-established family businesses. New partners, Nick Clapham and Ryan Leighton, are both grandsons of the founders of their respective companies.

Clapham Optical was opened by Raymond Fletcher Clapham in Totton, near Southampton, in 1967.

Leightons was founded in 1928, and has remained family-owned and family-run ever since. The group now has 35 practices across the south of England.

It is hoped that the new business, named Clapham & Leightons Opticians & Hearing Care, will bring a “powerful synergy” for optometry and audiology in the area.

The merger was made official on 17 January 2024, with optical teams from the former Clapham Optical coming together with those from the Totton branch of Leightons to elevate the clinical service and product offering available.

Optometry services will continue to be offered in what was the Clapham Optical practice, on Commercial Road, which has been renamed Clapham & Leightons: Optical Centre.

Totton’s Leightons practice, on Water Lane, has become a dedicated audiology centre, renamed as Clapham & Leightons: Hearing Centre.

It is hoped that Clapham & Leightons Opticians & Hearing Care will provide “a home for market-leading optometry and dispensing” as well as being “the home of hearing care in Totton.”

Leighton said: “This is a true joint venture, which not only merges our brands, but also integrates our experienced teams, offering a comprehensive range of professional eye care and expert hearing services across two locations.

“Our collective vision is to position ourselves as the ultimate destination for optometry and hearing care in Totton and the surrounding areas.”

Nick Clapham called the opportunity to join with another independently run family business “an honour.”

“We share not just similar values, but a similar history,” he said. “We are both companies that pride ourselves on providing quality care and exquisite products, with people who love what they do.”

Clapham added that the “support, marketing and the economies of scale that Leightons brings us, as well as the addition of audiology, helps us to significantly strengthen our team and service proposition.”

Leighton said: “Nick has an incredible practice in Totton; he has a wealth of experience and a real passion for independent eyewear and high-end dispensing. The practice looks great and Nick and his whole team are a delight, so we are super excited to be joining forces.”