Our directory of things of interest

University Directory

Honouring Antarctica’s fallen scientists

The monument in Stanley The monument in Stanley BAS
26 Feb
2015
A monument to Britons who lost their lives for science in Antarctica has been unveiled on the waterfront in Stanley, Falkland Islands

Since 1948, 28 men and one woman have died in the British Antarctic Territory. Each one would have passed through Stanley on the way to the Polar South.

The fatalities are not confined to distant history.

‘Kirsty Brown lost her life at Rothera in 2003, while Miles Mosley, John Anderson, Robert Atkinson, Ambrose Morgan, Kevin Ockleton and John Coll were lost in three separate incidents in the 1980s,’ says Felicity Aston, an ambassador for the British Antarctic Monument Trust (BAMT), which honours those who did not return from the South.

‘The majority of personnel working in the British Antarctic Territory are young, which makes the losses even more tragic. It also means that there are many remaining relatives,’ says Aston.

The monument has a counterpart 8,000 miles away at the Scott Polar Research Institute at Cambridge University.

The Stanley monument’s mirror finish reflects the water and clouds around the historic Dockyard Point to represent both the human intrusion into the environment and the need for study and understanding.

‘A main aim of the monument is to generate awareness,’ says Aston. ‘Today many cruise ships visiting Antarctica travel via the Falklands, so many more visitors will be able to see the monument in Stanley than if it was located in a remote part of Antarctica,’ she adds.

Oliver Barratt designed both sculptures while Graeme Wilson designed the plinth. He has previously been involved in constructing a monument to those killed on Everest. Wilson designed the plinth using 3D printing to create accurate maps and lettering for the monument.

The Cambridge sculpture consists of two oak pillars to create a long needle shape from which the stainless steel needle in the Falklands was taken.

‘I was a surveyor on an expedition from the British Antarctic Survey’s Research Station Halley Bay in 1965, when three of my colleagues, including Jeremy Bailey, were killed when their tractor fell into a crevasse,’ says Roderick Rhys Jones, chairman of the BAMT.

‘I have never forgotten them and wanted to create a lasting monument to them and the others who lost their lives in the pursuit of science in Antarctica.’

Related items

Geographical Week

Get the best of Geographical delivered straight to your inbox every Friday.

Subscribe to Geographical!

University of Winchester

EDUCATION PARTNERS

Aberystwyth University University of Greenwich The University of Winchester

TRAVEL PARTNERS

Ponant

Silversea

Travel the Unknown

DOSSIERS

Like longer reads? Try our in-depth dossiers that provide a comprehensive view of each topic

  • The Human Game – Tackling football’s ‘slave trade’
    Few would argue with football’s position as the world’s number one sport. But as Mark Rowe discovers, this global popularity is masking a sinister...
    Essential oil?
    Palm oil is omnipresent in global consumption. But in many circles it is considered the scourge of the natural world, for the deforestation and habita...
    National Clean Air Day
    For National Clean Air Day, Geographical brings together stories about air pollution and the kind of solutions needed to tackle it ...
    The Nuclear Power Struggle
    The UK appears to be embracing nuclear, a huge U-turn on government policy from just two years ago. Yet this seems to be going against the grain globa...
    Diabetes: The World at Risk
    Diabetes is often thought of as a ‘western’ problem, one linked to the developed world’s overindulgence in fatty foods and chronic lack of physi...

MORE DOSSIERS

NEVER MISS A STORY - Follow Geographical on Social

Want to stay up to date with breaking Geographical stories? Join the thousands following us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and stay informed about the world.

More articles in NATURE...

Wildlife

Whale sharks have been found to not travel far from…

Wildlife

The Lone Star tick is spreading across North America, carrying…

Tectonics

Earlier this week, Indonesia was struck by a series of…

Energy

Efforts to reduce the energy drain of the internet are…

Energy

Coal’s rising popularity among climate-apathetic leaders is a worrying trend,…

Climate

Sharing the ideas of climate justice with a little humour…

Polar

Rising bedrock under the West Antarctic Ice Sheet could prevent…

Oceans

Officially declared the world’s ‘most overfished sea’, the Mediterranean is…

Wildlife

An interview with biologist Chris D Thomas, author of ‘Inheritors…

Geophoto

Some may see using the 50mm lens as a regressive…

Oceans

With the war against plastic gaining publicity and popularity, one…

Wildlife

India’s booming domestic dog population is attacking some of the…

Energy

Soaring sales of air conditioning units over the next thirty…

Climate

Well-meaning promises and actions don't always have the best outcomes.…

Geophoto

With the days at their longest and more light in…

Oceans

Tourism might be an economic pillar for many countries surrounding…

Wildlife

Brain sizes directly shown to correlate to survival rates among…

Wildlife

Celebrated author Professor Tim Birkhead provides a fascinating insight into…

Oceans

The world’s most biodiverse seagrass region – Indonesia’s Coral Triangle…

Oceans

Ocean conservation group urges world governments to step up action…