Tony Gross, of the pioneering optician and frame stylists Cutler and Gross, has died peacefully at the age of 78. He suffered from a severe stroke 11 years ago.

He met his business partner Graham Cutler at Northampton College while studying optometry. On graduating in 1963 he went into practice but saw an opportunity to make spectacles more exciting.

Cutler and Gross began selling hand-made fashion frames in 1969 and opened a Knightsbridge practice in 1971. The duo quickly became famous for providing eyewear to Icons such as Elton John, Princess Diana, David Hockney and Grace Jones.

Cutler and Gross flourished during the 1980s as the ‘yuppie’ culture grew and in 1983 the pair launched their first ready-to-wear collection from the Italian region of Cadore.

After suffering his stroke, he sold his stake in the business to pay for his health care.