Celebrating 200 years of discovery through art and culture.

Human endeavour:
courage and exploration
2020 Theme
Climate:
Scientific legacy
2020 Theme
Geopolitics:
Exploitation to preservation
2020 Theme

2020 is the 200th anniversary of the first recorded sighting of Antarctica. Throughout the year, the United Kingdom Antarctic Heritage Trust will be bringing the continent into the lives of millions of people in Britain through an innovative arts, education and events programme, giving everyone the chance to be inspired by the Antarctic.

What's on

In the interests of the wellbeing of our employees, artists, partners and the public, UK Antarctic Heritage Trust is taking the precautionary measures of postponing many of our forthcoming plans for the Antarctica In Sight public programme.

We continue to follow government guidance on the COVID-19 pandemic, and are working closely with partners to get a clearer position on longer-term programme and activities. We will stay in regular touch as events unfold.

We are reviewing the situation on a daily basis and will post any updates on www.ukaht.org and social media.

Read the full statement from our CEO Camilla Nichol.

Antarctica Day
Festival of Nature
Online  •  5 June
On 5 June, log on to Festival of Nature's digital celebration of the 200th anniversary of the discovery of Antarctica.
This unique day will involve a programme of free online events, which will explore the history of Antarctica’s discovery, recent expeditions by top film makers and photographers, how researchers are working to understand the continent and its wildlife, and how people can help with conservation efforts. Brand new digital content will include live question and answer sessions, presentations, storytelling, and films!
Event details
Proposals for Antarctica
Peter Liversidge
UK and Antarctica
From 1st November 2019 to 30th November 2019, Peter Liversidge typed and mailed 60 proposals to the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust to mark the 200th anniversary of the discovery of Antarctica in 2020. The 60 proposals range from the possible to the impossible,  including creating a series of full size Easter Island heads from snow gathered on Port Lockroy, raising a flag on Antarctica that is blank, other than a single word that reads: Hello, to asking 200 schools around the United Kingdom to collaborate on a series of watercolours, using gathered iceberg water to activate watercolour paint, to paint watercolours of icebergs.
Order the Book
Antarctica World Passport
LUCY + JORGE ORTA
National Maritime Museum, Greenwich • Postponed
As part of a UK tour, a new edition of the Antarctica World Passport will visit Greenwich this summer. The participative artwork invites visitors to apply for their very own Antarctica passport. In return for becoming a 'world citizen', passport holders pledge to work to defend natural environments under threat, share values of peace and equality, and consider the critical role Antarctica plays in our global climate system. For the artists, Antarctica embodies Utopia: a continent whose extreme climate imposes mutual aid and solidarity, freedom of research, and collaboration for the good of the planet. More dates to be announced.
Find out more
Polar Pint of Science Edinburgh
Pint of Science Festival
Teviot Underground, Edinburgh • Postponed
We're sorry to say this event won't be going ahead as planned, but it will be rescheduled for later in the year. All tickets will be refunded in full, and new dates will be announced in the near future. Thank you for your understanding and continued support.

Join Dr Sian Henley (University of Edinburgh, School of GeoSciences), Dr James Harrison (University of Edinburgh, School of Law) and Dr Kim Last (The Scottish Association of Marine Science) for an evening of Arctic and Antarctic celebration to mark 200 years since the first sighting of Antarctica. With talks on climate change in the Southern Ocean, Antarctic treaty and environmental law, and the effects of light on zooplankton, as well as a quick-fire quiz and a variety of prizes, it’s a must for polar enthusiasts!
Event details
Polar Pint of Science Cambridge
Pint of Science Festival
Panton Arms, Cambridge • Postponed
We're sorry to say this event won't be going ahead as planned, but it will be rescheduled for later in the year. All tickets will be refunded in full, and new dates will be announced in the near future. Thank you for your understanding and continued support.

Join Professor Geraint Tarling (Head of Ocean Ecosystems, British Antarctic Survey), Kirstie Jones-Williams (PhD candidate), and Dr Jonathan Shanklin (Emeritus Fellow, British Antarctic Survey) for an evening of Arctic and Antarctic celebration to mark 200 years since the first sighting of Antarctica. With talks on why krill are important to us all, citizen science, and the discovery of the ozone hole, as well as a quick-fire quiz and a variety of prizes, it’s a must for polar enthusiasts!
Event details
Polar Pint of Science
Bristol
Pint of Science Festival
The Spin Bar, Bristol • Postponed
We're sorry to say this event won't be going ahead as planned, but it will be rescheduled for later in the year. All tickets will be refunded in full, and new dates will be announced in the near future. Thank you for your understanding and continued support.

Join Dr Jade Hatton (Post-doctoral Reasearch associate, University of Bristol), Professor Martyn Tranter (Polar Biogeochemistry, University of Bristol), and Dr Adrian Howkins (Reader in Environmental History) for an evening of Arctic and Antarctic celebration to mark 200 years since the first sighting of Antarctica. With talks on melting glaciers and ice sheets, drilling into an Antarctic subglacial lake, and the history of this important continent, as well as a quick-fire quiz and a variety of prizes, it’s a must for polar enthusiasts!
Event details
Easter holidays: Finding the Heart of Antarctica
UK Polar Network & Royal Museums Greenwich
National Maritime Museum, Greenwich • 5 - 19 April 2020
This Easter come and discover the Antarctic!  As part of our UK wide programme to celebrate 200 years since the first recorded sighting of Antarctica, we've teamed up with the National Maritime Museum to challenge families to discover this magical continent. Meet scientists from the UK Polar Network, be inspired by the region and get creative. Over two weeks of fun, explore Antarctica through themed sessions including Deep-sea Creatures, Frozen Fables, Penguin Puppets, and Microscopic Majesty.
Find out more

And lots more coming soon...

View past events and projects
White Space with Beth Healey
NI Science Festival
Ulster Museum, Belfast • 23 February 2020 @1:00pm
Join Dr Beth Healey as she talks about her 2017 year-long mission for the European Space Agency to Concordia Station in Antarctica. Nicknamed ‘White Mars’, Beth’s time at Concordia was to investigate the effects of the extreme environment - isolation, inaccessibility, altitude and low light levels - on the physiology and psychology of the overwinter crew stationed there. Hear Beth discuss her findings and how the lessons learned will help future settlements on Mars.
Past Event
Antarctica family fun
Sutton African Caribbean Cultural Organisation
Sutton • 18 and 20 February 2020
As part of a series of family and community workshops, Sutton African Caribbean Cultural Organisation presents ‘Exploration to Antarctica!’ This free event will see children and their families learn about George Washington Gibb Jr – the first person of African Caribbean descent to set foot on Antarctica – and get creative through a range of fun activities designed to encourage an exploration and discovery of this impressive and important continent. From science and technology to art, maths and engineering, there’s lots of Antarctica-themed fun to be had this half term! Booking essential.
Past Event
A Journey South
Chris Watson
Queens University Belfast • 13 February, 7:30 pm
As part of NI Science Festival, experience a sound journey to the Antarctic and the South Pole, with sound recordist and musician Chris Watson. This audio-visual tour includes recordings made during the BBC series Frozen Planet – the sounds of glaciers calving, Adelie penguins, orcas hunting, and Weddell seals singing under the sea ice – and concludes at the South Pole, at the location of Captain Robert Falcon Scott’s ill-fated journey in 1912. The sound journey is accompanied by narration from Chris and images to illustrate the locations.
Past Event
we are opposite like that
HIMALI SINGH SOIN
UK Wide Tour 2020
An ongoing series of works incorporating video, performance, poetry, music, and dance from material gathered during the artist’s research in the Arctic and Antarctic circles. Since mistakes in measurements, mirages, fog and ice prevented the discovery of these uninhabited places – neither place has any indigenous community and therefore no pre-existing myths and legends. we are opposite like that seeks to create fictional myths for the two poles from the non-human perspective of a melting fossil that has witnessed the great shifts of epoch: the ice. At the core of this project is a film, co-commissioned by Forma with Frieze and Channel 4 Random Acts.
HimaliSinghSoin.com
Solveig
Genevieve Lacey
UK Tour Autumn 2020
Three musicians play live in Solveig, amid an ice forest of abstracted images. Every sound they make is collected in a system of infinite sustain. The sounds and images in Solveig are symbiotic. It’s clear that tiny acts have long-term, cumulative repercussions. This project brings together artists from multiple countries of origin (Australia UK, Norway), each with different historical, contemporary and imagined relationships to Antarctica, the fragile, alluring continent that is one of the clearest indicators of our environmental emergency.
GenevieveLacey.com

About Antarctica In Sight:
Our Past, Present and Future.

The United Kingdom Antarctic Heritage Trust is dedicated to preserving and promoting Britain’s fascinating history and legacy in Antarctica.

By exploring Antarctica’s past, and the role of humans on the continent, UKAHT will help create a future where Antarctica is at the centre of discussions about humanity’s role in preserving and safeguarding the planet. 

2020 Themes

Each year we will select new themes to represent our Antarctic heritage. Celebrating 200 years since the first sighting of Antarctica the 2020 themes are:

2020 Theme
Human endeavour:
courage and exploration
The UK has long been at the forefront of Antarctic exploration, from Captain Cook to Scott and Shackleton and latterly Expedition Ice Maiden, and these tales of human courage and endeavour continue to inspire us today. The heritage of this exploration remains preserved in Antarctica and in collections throughout the UK, reminding us of this legacy.
2020 Theme
Climate: scientific legacy
Britain’s role in climate science was born with Operation Tabarin, and ongoing international science programmes show us Antarctica’s role in the earth’s climate system and its acute sensitivity to our actions thousands of miles away. The climate crisis is integral not only to Antarctica’s past, present and future, but to that of all of us, and UKAHT’s unique perspective can use this scientific legacy to unlock both understanding and perhaps propose solutions to the climate crisis.
2020 Theme
Geopolitics: Exploitation to preservation
Antarctica’s geopolitics are completely unique. After an early period of devastation of the continent’s biodiversity through sealing and whaling, efforts to explore and understand prevailed, and in 1959, twelve countries signed the Antarctic Treaty. The Treaty supports and promotes scientific research, while prohibiting military activities, mineral mining, nuclear explosions and nuclear waste disposal. The Treaty is unique – no other governing document like it exists, and it has held fast for sixty years – but in these fast changing times with different global pressures and a shifting geopolitical landscape, could it become as fragile as the ecosystem it represents?
See What's On

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