Late autumn is always a busy spell at this magazine as the editorial team has to find some time to sketch out ideas and plans for the approaching year. As a weekly publication, Optician is geared up to bring you the latest news and goings on of the optical world as they occur. While that rapid reaction hopefully benefitted readers as the tumultuous events of the past two years unfolded, mapping out the year ahead in pencil, albeit with room for course corrections, certainly doesn’t hurt.

Parts of this process are very straightforward; underscoring the dates of trade shows and other ‘can’t miss’ events, for instance. More nebulous is identifying the trends and big stories from the year gone by that will stick around and gather pace over the next 12 months. Reviewing 2021 in this manner prompted me to take a further step back and consider how UK optics has changed in the decade or so that I have been covering it. There’s no space here to get into that in detail, but one of the positive things that stood out for me was the rising support for equality within the industry.

With that in mind, I would like to tip my hat to a couple of recent examples. First, sisters Clare and Christina Kimeze who have launched a new eyewear company to specifically cater for people with lower and wider bridges (see page 14 for the full story). Second, the excellent Women in Vision UK organisation, which aims to promote connections between women working in all fields related to vision. Having followed on social media for a couple of years, I was very pleased to speak with its communication lead Helen Khan recently, hear about its imminent expansion and, as a bonus, find out that men are welcome to join as supporters. Look out for a full report soon.