THIEVES stole £30,000 worth of designer sun-glasses after using a concrete block to smash their way into a store.

Dozens of pairs of Oakley and Ray-Ban shades were taken, leaving the directors of a family-run optician fearing for its future.

It is the third time that Clapham Eyecare has been targeted by thieves in the past eight months, leaving them tens of thousands of pounds out of pocket.

Nearly £10,000-worth of sun-glasses were taken in separate raids in August and October last year.

Smashed glass lay all over the store after thieves used a concrete barrier base from a roadside barrier to enter the store through a door window at about 12.50am on Wednesday.

They then climbed through and shattered a glass cabinet at the back of the store taking between 40 and 50 top-of-the-range sunglasses.

On a previous occasion a drain cover was used to smash the same window.

But despite three other opticians in town, including a Specsavers next door, Clapham Eyecare is the only store which was targeted.

Daily Echo:

Now Nick Clapham, who runs the Totton Precinct store with his parents Vincent and Sue, hopes insurers will pay out again.

“When I got the call from the security firm I think I swore quite a lot. As soon as the phone rang I knew what it was,” Nick, 32, said.

“In 45 years it’s not been a major problem and then it happens three times in eight months. There’s still going to be a significant cost for us for the security measures.”

The business has been in Totton since 1972 and moved to its current premises two years ago from where Costa Coffee now stands.

Now Nick and his parents are looking at ramping up the security at their store with shutters and CCTV.

Daily Echo:

Sue, 57, said: “It doesn’t matter if it’s a business or a home, it’s a violation. You spend so much time there, trying to run the business fairly and squarely and doing the best you can.

"It’s a violation. It just feels like somebody’s walked into your premises and taken anything that they think belongs to them.

“We’re not a multi-national. We’re just an independent trying to run our own business.”

The store will still be open during the week and all appointments honoured.

Anyone who saw anything suspicious in the area at around the time is asked to contact Hampshire police on 101.