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.

LATEST HEADLINES

Subscribe to Geographical!

Adventure Canada

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

  • 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 Air That We Breathe
    Cities the world over are struggling to improve air quality as scandals surrounding diesel car emissions come to light and the huge health costs of po...
    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...
    When the wind blows
    With 1,200 wind turbines due to be built in the UK this year, Mark Rowe explores the continuing controversy surrounding wind power and discusses the e...
    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...

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...

Polar

Celebrate World Penguin Day with this selection of penguin-related stories…

Geophoto

It takes a lot more than the latest research data…

Wildlife

NGOs shine a light on the underreporting of wildlife crime…

Wildlife

Pioneering laser photography is being used by scientists on the…

Geophoto

Annual competition looks to celebrate island life in all its…

Oceans

Increasing interest in offshore aquaculture is dividing environmentalists

Energy

Well-meaning promises don’t always have positive outcomes. Marco Magrini finds…

Wildlife

The RSPB introduces a new hotline for reporting the unlawful…

Wildlife

With the death earlier this week of the world’s last…

Geophoto

The essence of street photography is its raw, unfiltered, unstaged…

Energy

For Marco Magrini, a tax on fossil fuels would be…

Wildlife

Half of animal species in world’s most biodiverse areas could…

Wildlife

Four-year project to reestablish safe breeding grounds for seabirds on…

Wildlife

First global atlas of soil bacteria reveals a small minority…

Polar

Scientists discover how shrubs are dominating the Arctic tundra

Wildlife

War and conservation have a complicated relationship, with two studies…

Climate

Why is Europe so cold right now? Marco Magrini suggests…

Wildlife

Threatened Californian owls are suffering from digesting rat poison administered…

Oceans

With the majority of the ocean still remaining undiscovered, a…

Oceans

Belize bans offshore oil extraction to protect the second longest…