PROF. W. M. CUMMING resigned from the chair of technical chemistry in the Royal Technical College, Glasgow, in August last, to take up the post of technical director of the British Dyewood Co., Ltd. Dr. Cumming graduated in chemistry at the University of Glasgow in 1914, and entered the employment of the British Dyestuffs Corporation, where he was engaged in the manufacture of explosives during the First World War and later on dye intermediates. He returned to Glasgow as lecturer in organic chemistry at the Royal Technical College in 1920, and proceeded to the degree of D.Sc. of the University of Glasgow in 1924. In 1934, following on the death of Prof. Thos. Gray, Dr. Cumming was elected to the Young memorial chair of technical chemistry. He developed rapidly the chemical engineering aspects of the Department and, under his control, a large amount of chemical plant equipment was installed. When war broke out in 1939, he collaborated with the Ministry of Supply in developing the South West Scotland Branch of the Research Department which functioned under his control until 1946. He was also senior gas advisor for Scotland under the Ministry of Home Security, and acted in this capacity until the general stand-down of Home Defence in 1945. For these war-time services he was awarded the O.B.E. in 1946. On the death of Prof. Wilson, he was elected director of the School of Chemistry of the Royal Technical College. Prof. Cumming has been active in the affairs of the Scottish Council on Industry and Development, and chairman of several committees. He was also concerned with the establishment of the Engineering Centre in Glasgow. He has been a member of the Council of the Royal Institute of Chemistry, and of the Institution of Chemical Engineers, and is chairman of the Glasgow Section of the Society of Chemical Industry.
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Technical Chemistry in Glasgow : Prof. W. M. Cumming, O.B.E. Nature 164, 862 (1949). https://doi.org/10.1038/164862a0