The Institute of Optometry

The Institute of Optometry is a centre for optometry, based in London (56-62 Newington Causeway). It was established in 1922 as the London Refraction Hospital, the first institute of its kind in the world. Owen Aves, one of the 'grand old men' of optics in the early 20th century, was one of the co-founders. The Hospital provided a complete range of optometric services, especially for the poor, and was a clinical training centre for optometry students and practitioners. In 1928 the Hospital closed so that the buildings could be remodelled and was officially reopened by the Countess of Mayo in February 1929. During the Second World War the Hospital was badly damaged by bombing in 1943, and its Orthoptic Clinic completely destroyed. By 1949 the Hospital had been repaired and re-equipped. In 1988 the Hospital was renamed the Institute of Optometry. Its role expanded to include postgraduate training and education, and research. In 2008 the Institute launched a new degree, a Doctorate in Optometry, in collaboration with the London South Bank University, for part-time study by qualified optometrists.

The Institute of Optometry


Commemorative plaque placed on the front of the building in 1929

  • Photos by Adrian Thomas (September 2019) and page layout by Annamaria Palese ti.liamtoh|49.eselapairamanna#| (October 2019)

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