Yes, the original Grundig Ondigital models worked with a "magic eye". The lead wasn't very long. it was intended so you could control the unit when it was inside a cupboard. You might strike lucky and find a receiver and "eye" on eBay. The socket looked like a modem connection port.
Frankly, it would probably be better just to use one of the wired or wireless "remote extenders".
Actually just got a tvlink plus myself and well pleased - by connecting it to rf2 out on the sky box, the two ir senders allow 2 additional devices to be controlled, in addition to the sky box, so 3 in total, not the two that seems to be advertised.
If the cabling is already in place for tv link, it is well worth the £10 - £20 cost IMHO