The Centenary of the Endurance Expedition was celebrated with a series of events from August 2014 through to September 2016. The snippets below give a flavour of all that was going on; our Newsletters give a fuller picture.
BBC Radio 4 repeated the play Beyond Endurance, by Meredith Hooper, starring Dominic West as Sir Ernest Shackleton, on Friday 15 April at 2.15. Voted BBC Drama of the Week, it coincided with the exact date on which Shackleton and his men reached Elephant Island in 1916. The play recounts the vivid and harrowing story of their four and a half months marooned on the island.
The highlight of the Endurance Expedition centenary was a memorial service in Westminster Abbey on Friday 20 May at 12.00. The event is described fully in our Newsletter.
The Shackleton Endurance stamps issued for the Centenary are beautifully produced and have been selling well in Post Offices throughout the country. Hurley’s black and white pictures illustrate each stage of the 1914-16 expedition, from Endurance under sail to scenes on the ice, the landing on Elephant Island, the launching of the James Caird, and the final rescue.
Enduring Eye: The Antarctic Legacy of Sir Ernest Shackleton and Frank Hurley
One of the greatest ever photographic records of human survival was transformed into a remarkable exhibition created by the Royal Geographical Society and curated by Polar historian and JCS member, Meredith Hooper. The exhibition enjoyed a marathon tour of the UK between 2016 and 2018, followed by four months in California, and welcomed some 400,000 visitors.
Honouring the achievements of Sir Ernest Shackleton and the men of the Endurance Expedition of 1914-1917, newly digitised images reveal previously unseen details of the crew’s epic struggle for survival both before and after their ship was destroyed.
At the heart of the exhibition were more than 90 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.
“I spend the day with Sir Ernest, selecting the finest of my negatives from the year’s collection. 120 I re-soldered up and dumped about 400. This unfortunate reduction is essential, as a drastic cutting down in weight must be affected, owing to the very limited space that will be at disposal in boat transport…” Hurley’s diary, 9 November 1915