Fusion has been imagined as a near perfect energy source for many decades. However, despite early optimism, substantial scientific, engineering and financial hurdles remain. Several approaches have been proposed and explored, with magnetic confinement being the most studied. Although various magnetic confinement schemes have, and continue to be, investigated the tokamak has become the main stream and hence most mature technology. Until the turn of the century this lead to rapid progress in a succession of ever larger devices. This was fuelled by scaling laws that indicated ‘bigger is better’. The logical conclusion was the design and construction of ITER. Much valuable work continues, but the size and complexity of this next generation machine has caused a pause in progress towards the combination of density, temperature and energy confinement time required for a commercial power plant. This has created opportunities for non-government organisations to raise capital and investigate other approaches in parallel. Tokamak Energy is one such company. Uniquely we continue to build on the well-established tokamak knowledge base, but we propose ‘squashing’ the traditional tokamak into a near spherical geometry. Tokamak scaling laws indicate that fusion conditions can be created in a much smaller device by this means, but the small volume in the middle of the torus creates significant engineering challenges. This talk explores some of the history of fusion and the approach Tokamak Energy is taking to overcome the challenges, especially the use of high temperature superconductors.