20 years ago in Chemistry in Britain

20 years ago in Chemistry in Britain 


When it all started in January 1965

In the 1950s there were three monthly chemical society publications which included chemical news- the Proceedings of the Chemical Society  (CS) the Journal of the Royal Institute of Chemistry  (RIC and Chemistry in Industry  .  

In 1957 an anonymous letter appeared in all three publications deploring the ’burgeoning of publication’ and pleading for ’one good chemical news journal to read once a week.’  

Although there was not much reaction to this eloquent plea at the time, by early 1964 John Ruck Keene of the CS and Eric Parker of the RIC had produced a plan for a joint monthly news journal.  

Potential titles toyed with included Chemistry Today  and The Chemical World, but eventually we favoured, for better or for worse, the suggestion for which I was responsible - Chemistry in Britain. The first issue of the joint magazine appeared in January 1965. The first article in the new journal was a transcript of the RIC Thirteenth Dalton Lecture delivered in Manchester Town Hall by Lord Todd. It was an eleoquent plea for closer co-operation between scientists, industrialists and Government. This was followed by a article on haemoglobin by Max Perutz. 

I have no doubt that its foundation was a crucial step in the progress towards unification of the CS and the RIC.