Letter from Sir Dorabji Tata

Capel House,
New Broad Street,
London E.C. 2.

27 August 1920

Dear Mr Vice-Chancellor,

I gathered, during my recent visits to Cambridge, that the demand for engineering training at the University has so increased in recent years that the existing building and equipment of the Engineering School are now proving quite inadequate; and that you have, therefore, now in hand a scheme for removing, rebuilding, and enlarging the school, which work, if sufficient funds are forthcoming, you expect to complete by October next year. I can quite understand how heavily overtaxed must be the financial resources of the University by the growing claims of scientific development. As one interested in a number of engineering and industrial enterprises in another part of the Empire, I fully realise also the value and need of engineering training at the University in the service of industrial and scientific progress. And I am writing to you to say that, as an old Cambridge man, I shall be only too happy to contribute a sum of twenty-five thousand pounds towards the reconstruction scheme of the University Engineering School. I consider it my privilege to give my old University such assistance as I am able to give for I share the hope that the enlarged school may be the means of imparting a fuller and more thorough training in the subject to the thousands of students who will flock to it from the Empire in future years. I recognise that the University in the past has given a most cordial welcome to young students from India, and given them also of its best. In making this gift, may I venture to express the hope that, in the furtherance of human knowledge, Cambridge will extend to my countrymen a yet warmer welcome; and with the growing demand for higher training in my country, bestow on it the response and the favour of increased facilities for the purpose.

Assuring you my deepest interest in the success of the scheme,

I remain, dear Mr. Vice-Chancellor,
Yours very faithfully,

D. J. Tata