The ability to prepare organically functionalised, highly ordered silicas with control over texture and porosity is of great benefit to catalysis. A one-step method for the preparation of such materials has recently been developed, leading to Hexagonal Mesoporous Silicas (HMS), which display typical wormhole pore structure, and contain organic groups. High surface areas, and tight pore size distributions can also be obtained. Additionally, very high loadings of organic groups can be incorporated. The paper will describe the scope of the synthesis procedure, and indicate some applications of the materials obtained. © 2000 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.