AOP confirms opticians will remain open during second English lockdown

Practices can continue to provide services including routine sight tests

A female having an eye test

The Association of Optometrists (AOP) has confirmed with NHS England that optical practices in England will remain open for routine sight care during the second lockdown, currently confirmed to be in place from 5 November until 2 December 2020. 

Practices can continue to provide services including routine sight tests, as long as they are following public health advice, and ensure correct PPE and infection control processes are in place. In some areas, patients may need to wait longer for an appointment if practices are having to prioritise patients based on the greatest need to ensure that genuine eye health problems are detected and dealt with appropriately.

Peter Hampson, AOP’s Clinical Director is urging people to be confident about booking a sight test, saying: “It is very important that people look after their eyes to avoid unnecessary sight loss. Optometrists are playing a vital role at a time when hospitals are facing backlogs. The most common eye conditions including cataracts, glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration can be detected during a routine sight test. With optometrists remaining open for routine appointments during this second lockdown, we are urging anyone who needs a sight test to contact their local practice to book an appointment.”


For media enquiries, please contact Mary Jones, Interim PR and Media Manager, at the Association of Optometrists, [email protected] or telephone 020 7549 2040.

Notes to Editors

Association of Optometrists

The Association of Optometrists (AOP) is the leading representative membership organisation for optometrists in the UK. We support over 82% of practising optometrists, to fulfil their professional roles to protect the nation’s eye health. For more information, visit