The Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers

Supporting better vision for all, since 1629

We are the only City of London Livery company dedicated to eye health.

We are the oldest existing optical body in the world.

Founded in 1629, our purpose is the same now as it was then. We support better vision for all. 

In the 21st Century we believe that nobody should be held back because of their vision.

 Today, you do not have to be involved in making spectacles to join our Company. Our members represent over 35 different professions in eye health, sight loss and many other fields. Through them, our reach spreads out from the City of London, right across the world. 

We seek to inspire future generations committed to visionary eye care, building on our rich heritage of almost 400 years.

We’re interested in everything that can be done to prevent unnecessary sight loss and increase access to work, sport and culture for people with partial or full sight loss. 

Rooted in tradition, we bring the best of our experience to bear on the continuing need for eye health provision, helping education, employment, life and leisure. 

To find out more, click below – or, even better, come and join us!

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CURRENT MEMBERS: For all the latest news and information, please click on the Members' Login button at the top of this page

Upcoming Events

16 April 2024, 6:45 pm

The 2024 Livery Dinner

[SOLD OUT] This year's Livery Dinner will take place at Stationers' Hall. Booking will open in the first week of February.

17 April 2024, 5:30 pm

Local Gathering: The Glass Heart (free exhibition)

Join Jenny, the Clerk's Assistant, for an evening visit to the exhibition at 2 Temple Place on the history and artistry of glass making. Please drop an email if you'd like to pop along.

01 May 2024, 8:30 am

Annual Golf Day

Booking now open! Join the Spectacle Makers' Golf Society at their Annual Golf Day. Email David Kirk to book.

07 May 2024, 6:30 pm

Eye-to-Eye: The Spectacle Makers’ Charity

The trustees of the Spectacle Makers' Charity have invited speakers from Waterloo Uncovered, TimeBank and Goalball UK to speak about the aims of their charity and how support from the Spectacle Makers has made a difference.

09 May 2024, 7:00 pm

Local Gathering: Brackley

Join Liveryman and Court Assistant Gwen Rhys for informal drinks in Brackley.

10 May 2024, 12:00 pm

Society Belfast Weekend

Join the Society for a weekend of cosy dining and historical sightseeing in Belfast and across Northern Ireland. Booking can be made by contacting Gaynor Foulkes-Taylor (her email is in the members' directory).

12 May 2024, 6:30 pm

Local Gathering: Master’s drinks in Belfast

The Master Liz Shilling will be at the Crown Liquor Saloon in Belfast on the Sunday evening of the Society's weekend away, for any Liverymen or Freeman who are in the area and want to stop for a drink or bite to eat.

13 May 2024, 6:30 pm

Livery Eye Health Event

An informative evening aimed at educating the Livery and wider public on the importance of basic and regular eye care.

15 May 2024, 3:30 pm

Local gathering in Worthing

Wine, cheese & antiques! Liveryman John Dixon Salt has kindly opened his home and will have his antiques collection on display, with optical instruments, objects & other paraphernalia dated as far back as 1750. Cheese, wine & nibbles will be on offer for any Liverymen or Freemen who drops by.

12 June 2024, 12:30 pm

June 2024 Livery Court Luncheon

The June Livery Court Luncheon will take place on 12 June 2024. Fingers crossed for sunshine! Booking for Liverymen will open in April.

24 June 2024, 11:30 am

The Election of Sheriffs

Liverymen with one year's standing can vote for the two Sheriffs of the City of London at Common Hall, Guildhall. There is the option to attend lunch at Barber Surgeons' Hall following the proceedings.

24 June 2024, 12:30 pm

Lunch after the Election of Sheriffs

Liverymen are invited to attend lunch at Barber Surgeons' Hall after the proceedings at Common Hall.

16 July 2024, 7:30 pm

Horse Guards Parade

The Household Division presents a military musical spectacular with fireworks, massed bands and horses.

26 July 2024, 2:00 pm

Tour of Wimbledon Tennis Club

Join the Society for a private tour of the iconic Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Club & Museum. Please book by Friday 26 April as space is limited!

13 September 2024, 11:00 am

The Master invites you to the South Downs

The Master, Liz Shilling, invites members to join her for one or more activities taking advantage of The Great Outdoors. On Friday 13 September there will be a private tour, tasting and lunch at a Sussex vineyard; on Saturday 14 September members can join us at the fabulous West Dean College and Gardens, near Chichester, for a tour of the house and gardens and/or a picnic lunch. A form listing the options available will be sent to all members in January 2024.

19 September 2024, 5:30 pm

Presentation Ceremony

The Annual Spectacle Makers' Presentation Ceremony for award winners, new Liverymen and Freemen who have joined the Company in the last year. Those who are invited will receive an invitation from the Clerk.

24 September 2024, 12:30 pm

City Walk for City Giving Day

A lunch time guided walk around the Square Mile, led by a seasoned City Guide, in support of The Mayor's Appeal for City Giving Day.

29 September 2024, 11:00 am

The Annual Sheep Drive

Join the Spectacle Makers in this rare opportunity to recreate an ancient London tradition and exercise your right as a Freeman to drive sheep over one of London's bridges!

04 December 2024, 12:30 pm

December 2024 Court Lunch

This year's December Court Lunch will be held at Stationers' Hall in the City of London.


The Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers is an open company, which means we welcome members with professional backgrounds beyond the vision care and sight loss sectors.



Ideal for those at the beginning of their career in optics and vision care looking for extra support.

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Applying for Freedom of the Company is the first step to joining a community committed to better vision for all.

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Corporate Supporters