Fascinating oral history project capturing the history of British endeavour in the Antarctic launches to the public

Collaboration between leading polar organisations brings ambitious British Antarctic Oral History Project to life

The British Antarctic Oral History Project is the result of collaboration between the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust (UKAHT), British Antarctic Survey (BAS), BAS Club and Scott Polar Research Institute (SPRI). The project’s aim is to capture and preserve the recollections and memories of those extraordinarily dedicated individuals who have worked in Antarctica, with a particular focus on those who worked for, or closely with BAS and its predecessors, Operation Tabarin, 1943-45 and Falkland Islands Dependencies Survey (FIDS), 1945-61.


Enduring Eye: The Antarctic Legacy of Sir Ernest Shackleton and Frank Hurley Media Release

The Enduring Eye exhibition will open to the public on Saturday 21 November, exactly 100 years to the day that the crushed Endurance sank beneath the sea ice of the Weddell Sea, and run until 28 February 2016.

At the heart of the exhibition are more than ninety high resolution images, taken by Shackleton’s official expedition photographer Frank Hurley, and saved by him under the most extreme circumstances to provide a lasting record of the men of the Endurance and their story.

For the first time, the fragile glass plate and celluloid negatives, stored securely at the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) for more than 80 years, have been digitised directly from the originals. Now viewed at full definition, the images unlock the remarkable detail captured originally by Hurley in his photographic processing, including interior images of the Endurance and high resolution information of life on the pack ice of the Weddell Sea.


Enduring Eye: The Antarctic Legacy of Sir Ernest Shackleton and Frank Hurley

One of the greatest ever photographic records of human survival will shortly go on display in a remarkable new exhibition at the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG). Honouring the achievements of Sir Ernest Shackleton and the men of the Endurance Expedition of 1914-1917, newly digitalised images will reveal previously unseen details of the crew’s epic struggle for survival both before and after their ship was destroyed.

The Enduring Eye exhibition will open to the public on Saturday 21 November, exactly 100 years to the day that the crushed Endurance sank beneath the sea ice of the Weddell Sea, and run until 28 February 2016.


Happy World Responsible Tourism Day 2015

Port LockroyWith less than a week until the new Port Lockroy team leave the UK for Port Lockroy, today we celebrate World Responsible Tourism Day. 

Antarctica is a unique and extraordinary place to visit, both due to its scenery and wildlife, but also because it is governed by a unique and extraordinary treaty guaranteeing its peace and use primarily for scientific purposes. The Antarctic Treaty was signed in 1959 by 12 nations, and today has 52 signatories.


What's on this October Half-Term

H annan DSC 2545 Parent with chicks smlNeed some ideas on what to do this half term? Read our guide to the Polar activities and events happening this October half-term around the UK.






Historical Antarctic Base Research Opportunity

P1020297 sWould you like the chance to work alongside BAS (British Antarctic Survey) and UKAHT (UK Antarctic Heritage Trust) staff researching an Antarctic historic base?

The University of Hertfordshire, in collaboration with BAS, is now offering a fee waiver for a full-time MA by Research to start in January 2016. Based in Cambridge and using the extensive archive material held at BAS, the MA will produce a biography of Horseshoe Base Y which is currently managed by UKAHT. It is intended that the results of this MA will inform the future care and conservation work of UKAHT at this site, and contribute significantly to the telling of the story of Horseshoe and the men that worked there.

The deadline for applications is 12th November 2015. For more information and to apply visit 


UKAHT team unite for training in Cambridge to equip them for their season in Antarctica

Bransfield HouseThe 2015/16 Port Lockroy team are put through their paces prior to leaving for Port Lockroy in the Antarctic Peninsula

Each year, the United Kingdom Antarctic Heritage Trust (UKAHT) send a team of four to live and work on Port Lockroy during the Austral summer (November – March). Applications for the posts were unprecedented this year with the final four having to fight off competition from 2,500 other applicants to get through to interview and on to the final selection weekend.

To prepare the chosen teams for their Antarctic season, the UKAHT organise a training week each year. Held at Girton College, Cambridge the week is an opportunity for the current team to spend time getting to know each other as well as learn more about the Antarctic Peninsula, Port Lockroy and the varied tasks and responsibilities they will have whilst there to maintain Port Lockroy as a location of historic interest.


UKAHT supports Primary Science Teaching Trust Celebration Day

UKAHT were delighted to be able to support the Primary Science Teaching Trust Celebration Day, by providing materials related to their theme of penguins and the Antarctic. They sent us this article:

Primary Science Teaching Trust Celebration DayIMG 2170 w

Teachers from the Monmouth Comprehensive School and their feeder primary schools: Cross Ash Primary School, Raglan Primary School, Trellech Primary School, Osbaston Primary School, Llandogo Primary School,  Overmonnow Primary School,  Usk Primary School and Kymin View Primary School have been part of an exciting project funded by the PSTT (Primary Science Teaching Trust) to support Scientific Enquiry and the transition between primary and secondary schools in Wales.


Antarctica! by Lisa Avis

Port LockroyThe last time I travelled on my own was when I was about 9 years old and I sailed to Sweden to meet some old family friends – that sea passage still haunts me now! But I wasn’t to be deterred, I knew there must be a set of sea legs inside of me and I was ready to face the infamous Drake Passage.

Setting off aboard the beautiful steel chariot, Le Boreal, I was instantly drawn into an air of excitement and trepidation of what lay ahead. The Beagle Channel was just stunning, flanked either side by snow-capped mountainous terrain, with a luminescent sunset backdrop. A slight air of confidence was starting to creep in; this sailing malarkey was going to be a piece of cake!

Around midnight I woke up with the sensation of sliding from one side of my bed to the other – the expedition crew member’s advice comes back to the fore - ‘it’s going to rough around midnight, so if you haven’t got any sea sick medication, I would take one of these!’. Grabbing the little tablet I crawled out of bed and shot across the room – these large modern ships, with excellent stabilisation systems still do rock ’n’ roll. I woke hungry and after a good breakfast felt ready to face the day - I’d found my sea legs.


Antarctica - this team has what it takes

The United Kingdom Antarctic Heritage Trust’s search for a team of four to spend five months at Port Lockroy in the Antarctic Peninsula, culminates in two day selection programme
Each year, the United Kingdom Antarctic Heritage Trust’s (UKAHT) UK team, based in Cambridge, search for four dedicated individuals to spend five months at its flagship site, Port Lockroy – a historic former science base on a tiny island on the Antarctic Peninsula.

Competition was fierce; over 2400 applications were received from more than 75 countries. Shortlisting was a huge task for the Cambridge team, but they managed to narrow the field down to sixteen candidates who then had a telephone interview before being selected as one of twelve put forward for a demanding two-day selection process.


IAATO releases Antarctic Tourism Figures for 2014-2015 and Estimates for 2015-2015

IAATO-LOGO2 smallThe International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO) today announced its tourism figures for the 2014-2015 season on the first day of its 26th Annual Meeting in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

The total numbers of visitors travelling to Antarctica, with IAATO members, was 36,702, a slight decrease of 2% compared to the previous season. Overall, since 2011-2012, levels of visitation have been increasing modestly, but are still considerably less than the peak of 46,265 during the 2007-2008 austral summer.


UKAHT ex-Trustee Keith Shackleton obituary

We are sad to report that our ex-Trustee and long-time supporter, artist Keith Shackleton, died on 17th April 2015.

Keith was one of the pioneers of Antarctic tourism along with Lars Eric Lindblad and Peter Scott. He was a very good friend of Peter Scott and David Attenborough. He was also a UKAHT Trustee and very good friend to UKAHT for many years. Keith was kind enough to donate a painting of Port Lockroy to the Trust, which is currently housed in the Scott Polar Research Institute. Limited edition prints were produced of the painting in order for it to raise funds for UKAHT. His print has proved very popular and become one of our iconic images of Port Lockroy.


Port Lockroy - Antarctica Keith Shackleton Painting UKAHT marked