THE reawakening of the British optical industry which began with the first years of this century brought with it a demand for the provision of special technical education in optics. The Northampton Polytechnic Institute, from its situation in Clerkenwell, where much of the London optical industry is centred, was particularly suited as a centre for such work, and optical classes were begun there as a branch of work in general physics. The optical trade, however, regarded these classes as being of little value, and in 1902 a new syllabus was adopted and a special department of technical optics was instituted. Since that time this department, under Mr. S. D. Chalmers, has developed very considerably and done much useful work for both day and evening students, but the scope and value of this work has been continually hampered and further development has been completely blocked by want of proper space and equipment. This unsatisfactory state of affairs has been fully realised, and the governors of the Northampton Institute have acquired the necessary land on a site opposite the institute, and have had plans prepared for a complete “Opto-technical Institute”; for the erection and equipment of the building they are, however, dependent on a grant from the London County Council.