Included here are notices of exhibits, lectures, conferences and other gatherings or events of Antarctic interest. Current and closest to the present usually listed first. Go to PAST EVENTS for those that have already happened.

The best polar gathering of the year is the Shackleton Autumn School, held each October in Athy, Co. Kildare, Ireland. Have a look at photos and commentary on the past seven gatherings excerpted from trip reports on my personal webpage.

Last updated: 14 September 2015.

Accessed at least many times since 17 April 2007.

Events associated with the centenary of Shackleton's Endurance expedition 2014-2016
Current & Continuing Antarctic Events
Upcoming Antarctic Events

Events associated with the centenary of Shackleton's Endurance expedition 2014-2016:

[Numerous events, mostly in the UK, are being proposed and planned during 2014-2016 to commemorate Shackleton's Endurance Expedition. The
Shackleton 100 website has now been launched that will act as a central information clearinghouse for these events and once up, much of the information will be duplicated here or possibly just a link will be included.]

Current & Continuing Antarctic Events:


Ferry Terminal, Dun Laoghaire, Ireland. Exhibition open every day. Admission.

"The exhibition tells a survival story like no other: Irish-born explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton's Imperial Trans-Antarctic expedition of 1914-1917. Today it's rightly seen as perhaps the most remarkable in exploration history: a tale of extraordinary leadership—of the triumph of the human heart and spirit when faced with the most terrible odds. But it was years before its true significance emerged.
Relive this true life story at the Shackleton Endurance Exhibition in Dun Laoghaire. On display are over 150 photographs taken by the Expedition photographer Frank Hurley, a full size exact replica of the James Caird; the lifeboat that proved so critical to the rescue, and much, much more. After visiting the exhibition, you'll understand that it truly was a 'Triumph against all odds'."

(24 November 2013)

Upcoming Antarctic Events:


20 September- 4 October 2015. Performance times vary (some matinees, some evenings). Emerson College's Paramount Center, 559 Washington Street, Boston, MA. See Be sure to click the 'Ernest Shackleton' link below for far more information, videos, etc.

"Ernest Shackleton Loves Me is a geeky, high-tech musical adventure starring GrooveLily's fierce and funny electro-violinist Valerie Vigoda and the dazzling and hypnotic Wade McCollum, with a tongue-in-cheek script by Tony award-winner Joe DiPietro. This show kicks off ArtsEmerson's 2015-2016 season!

Kat is a sleep-deprived single mom who has just been fired from her day job as a video game music composer. When legendary gentleman-explorer Ernest Shackleton makes contact with Kat through a dating website, the two embark on an Antarctic quest, conquering new horizons and forging a time-traveling love affair for the ages."


Friday-Monday, 23-26 October 2015, Athy, Co. Kildare, Ireland
For a flyer, click here.

FRIDAY 23 October
7:30 pm. Official Opening & Exhibition Launch

8:00 pm. Book Launch. In association with the History Press the school is delighted to host the launch of From Ice Floes to Battlefields: Scott's 'Antarctics' in the First World War by Anne Strathie. From Ice Floes to Battlefields draws on previously unpublished journals, letters and other archive material to throw new light on the Terra Nova expedition and on 'what happened next' to Scott's 'Antarctics', men who had taken part in Scott's 1910-13 Terra Nova expedition and, in several cases, in Shackleton's Nimrod and Endurance expeditions.
SATURDAY 24 October
10:00 am. "Shackleton's Crossing of Antarctica—Could they have done it?" Robert Burton. Admission €10

10:50 am. TEA/COFFEE

11:20 am. "Captain Scott, The Modern Traveller" Dr Phillip Sidney. Admission €10

12:10 pm. "Lessons from a Polar Explorer about Success" Dr Jesus Alcoba. Admission €10

1 pm. LUNCH

2:30 pm. "Survival and Sacrifice in Mars Exploration—What we know from Polar Expeditions" Dr Erik Seedhouse. Admission €10

3:30 pm. "Scurvy and Polar Exploration" Dr Kevin McKenna. Admission €10

4:30 pm. 'Icebreakers' A series of short presentations on topics relevant to the Shackleton Autumn School, presented by those with a passion for their subject. Admission Free.

8 pm. Autumn School Dinner. Clanard Court Hotel, Athy. Tickets €40
SUNDAY 25 October
10.00 am. "Penguin legs are good cold—Notes from the Scott Polar Archives" Naomi Boneham. Admission €10

10:50 am. TEA/COFFEE

11:20 am. 'Wintering over in Antarctica—15 months at the French station Dumont d'Urville' Samuel Blanc. Admission €10

12:10 pm. "Over by Christmas? Back by 1915? New worlds for Scott's and Shackleton's men." Anne Strathie. Admission €10

1 pm. LUNCH

2:30 pm. Film, Athy Library. Antarctica—A Year On Ice
This is a visually stunning film that lets you experience what it is like to live in Antarctica for a full year, including winters isolated from the rest of the world, while enduring months of darkness in the harshest place on Earth. Anthony Powell has been working in Antarctica with his wife Christine for many years. After over 10 years of filming, his documentary is now complete. Anthony has had his work appear in numerous films, exhibits and TV shows. He most recently featured in the Emmy Award-winning BBC series, The Frozen Planet. Admission €10
4:00 pm. Open Forum. Chaired by Bob Headland

8:00 pm. Cultural Evening. Athy Dominican Church. Music
Shackleton's Endurance tells for the first time the story of the 1914 Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition through words and music. Brian Hughes' composition and John MacKenna's narrative capture the facts and feelings underlying key stages of the expedition, from the optimism and hope at the departure in August 1914, through to the joy as Yelcho hoves to off Elephant Island. The performers will be joined by Kildare County Orchestra and Monasterevin Gospel Choir, while Craig Blackwell's backdrop will complete the full sensory experience. Admission €15
MONDAY 26 October
10:00 am. Field Trip. Assemble at The Heritage Centre-Museum
Bus tour through Shackleton country. A visit to Ballitore and the home of Mary Leadbeater, writer and ancestor of Ernest Shackleton and Quaker Meeting House. Fare €10

Dr Jesus Alcoba
Jesus Alcoba MsC, MBA, PhD is the Dean of La Salle International Graduate School of Business. He is also a member of the Board of La Salle University College, which is affiliated to the Autonoma University of Madrid. He has authored several scientific papers and books. His latest one is La Brujula de Shackleton (Shackleton's Compass), a book that combines his research in personal success with the legendary Endurance expedition that was awarded as one of the best 2014 business books in Spain. He the author of, a website that narrates the Endurance expedition following Shackleton's "South", and he has travelled to Antarctica to retrace some of its more breathtaking passages.

Cristian Barnett
Cristian is a professional photographer with over 15 years experience working with many of the best cookery book publishers and magazines as well as restaurants, hotels and other commercial clients. His recent book titles include Tom Kerridge's Best Ever Dishes and Hope and Greenwood's Sweets Made Simple. Magazine work includes Country Living, Saga and House and Garden. His long-term project Life on the Line, a series of portraits shot along the Arctic circle, was published in September 2014.

Samuel Blanc
Samuel Blanc 29 years of age, was born in the Chartreuse mountain range in the heights of Grenoble in Isère. It is in this universe of the mid-range mountain, that his passion for nature in general and for the fauna in particular was born. Manager of pedagogical projects targeting public schools, adults or students, he lead conferences, headed naturalist visits, and participated in audiovisual shows. It is after this enriching experience, that he left for fifteen months in the Adélie Land in Antarctica, on behalf of the CNRS and of the French Polar Institute in the framework of a research program on biology and ecology. On site, he was in this way responsible for the study and monitoring of populations of birds and of marine mammals.

Naomi Boneham
Naomi Boneham is the Archivist at the Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge. After studying mainly European history at University Naomi moved on to much more local records working in County Archives both before and after qualifying as an Archivist. In 2006 she switched from estate records to the frozen world of Arctic and Antarctic exploration. The SPRI Archives have provided an opportunity to combine her interest in cataloguing theory with the ability to remain in daily contact with researchers.

Robert Burton
Robert Burton is a natural history writer who has been involved with South Georgia for many years. He visited the island for the first time in 1964 and returned in 1971 to study albatrosses and fur seals. From 1995 to 1998, he was director of the museum at Grytviken and started to collect information on the island's history. This included researching the time that Shackleton spent on South Georgia. Bob now visits annually as a lecturer on cruise ships.

Bob Headland
Bob Headlandis a senior research associate of the Scott Polar Research Institute of the University of Cambridge. He specialises in the history and geography of both polar regions. His work with the Antarctic Heritage Trust involves the preservation of the historical huts and other aspects associated with the exploration of the discovery of the Antarctic. His most recent publication is A Chronology of Antarctic Exploration.

Dr Kevin McKenna
Dr Kevin McKenna was born in Belfast. He trained at Queen's University Belfast and Harvard Medical School, Boston. He is currently a consultant at the Belfast City Hospital. He has a life long interest in history and polar exploration. He is married to Gail and has five children.

Dr Erik Seedhouse
Erik Seedhouse is a Norwegian-Canadian suborbital astronaut. After military service Erik pursued his Ph.D. at the German Space Agency's Institute for Space Medicine. He found time to win Ultraman Hawai'i and the European Ultraman Championships as well as completing the Race Across America bike race. Erik won the World Endurance Triathlon Championships in 1995 and 1996, the World Double Ironman Championships in 1995 and the infamous Decatriathlon, an event requiring competitors to swim 38km, cycle 1800km, and run 422km. Non-stop. In 1997 GQ magazine nominated him as the 'Fittest Man in the World'. Erik works as an astronaut instructor, professional speaker, triathlon coach and author. Between 2008 and 2013 he served as director of Canada's manned centrifuge and hypobaric operations.

Dr Phillip Sidney
Philip Sidney is a freelance writer and researcher, currently at work on a literary history of Scott's last expedition. He completed his PhD thesis, Scott's Last Expedition and the Literature of Cold, at the University of Cambridge in late 2013. Philip has frequently presented on polar topics, most recently at the 'Heroes' conference held at the Royal Geographical Society; his writing has appeared in Polar Record, Critical Quarterly, Church Times and The Junket. Philip was a shortlisted candidate for the International Scott Centenary Expedition 2012.

Anne Strathie
Anne Strathie was born and educated in Scotland and now lives in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire. Before embarking on researching and writing Birdie Bowers: Captain Scott's Marvel, she worked in business and the arts and heritage sector, including at Cheltenham's Wilson Art Gallery & Museum. In the course of her research for Birdie Bowers and From Ice Floes to Battlefields, she travelled to New Zealand, Antarctica (Ross Sea) and World War One sites; she has given talks and taken part in events in Britain and New Zealand.
"Life on the Line" celebrates the variety of existence in the circumpolar Arctic, in the face of overwhelming environmental and cultural change. Over a number of years, photographer Cristian Barnett has journeyed to the Arctic Circle, an invisible line of latitude 66 degrees and 33 minutes north of the Equator. The line intersects eight countries and is home to a rich diversity of peoples for whom the sun never sets in high summer, nor rises in deepest winter. All the photographs were taken on film within thirty-five miles of the Arctic Circle.


Friday, 6 November 2015, 6pm, Great Hall, Dulwich College, London. Preceded by the AGM at 5:30pm in the South Cloister.
A special reception around the James Caird will be followed by talks from Dr Jan Piggott and Sebastian Coulthard.
Dinner will be served at 7pm in the Great Hall.


Saturday, 7 November 2015.
SPRI Lecture Theatre, Cambridge. Time and program TBA.


An exhibition at the Royal Geographical Society, 1 Kensington Gore, London.
Running 27 November 2015 - 28 February 2016.
Preview for Fellows and members of the Society on Friday, 20 November.

"The Society's forthcoming exhibition, The Enduring Eye: the Antarctic Legacy of Sir Ernest Shackleton and Frank Hurley, brings to the fore the importance of film and photography in our contemporary understanding of Shackleton's Imperial Trans-Antarctic or Endurance Expedition (1914-17).
    Australian film-maker and photographer Frank Hurley's images are at the core of the Endurance Expedition's story, providing us with a unique visual record both pre- and post-destruction of the ship in November 1915. Passionate and meticulous, Hurley had been inspired from a young age by the opportunities which photography and film-making provided.
    In December 1911, at just 26, Hurley joined the Australian explorer Douglas Mawson's Australasian Antarctic Expedition (1911-13). Following this expedition, Hurley's growing reputation secured him the post as Shackleton's official expedition photographer, joining the Endurance in Buenos Aires in October 1914. Hurley arrived in Antarctica an experienced expedition member, seasoned to extreme hardship and eager to revisit the Antarctic landscapes.
    Hurley's companions on board the Endurance recorded their astonishment at the dedication he showed to achieving the best possible shots, and his work reveals a primary desire to story-tell through the medium of film. While the financial imperative for his photographic and film work to underwrite expedition costs was paramount, Hurley's work in Antarctica tapped into his desire to reach out to the mass market, and his techniques—using photomontage and latterly in creating large-scale photographic prints to better convey his subject to audiences—make him the first truly modern photographer and film-maker to work on the continent.
    A showman at heart, on his return to Europe and then onwards to Australia, Hurley's sense of theatre delighted and amazed audiences. His 'Synchronized Entertainment Lectures', which combined still, cine-film, projection and commentary, demonstrated his confidence in the power of his Antarctic images; an experience which we hope to emulate for visitors to the Society's exhibition this autumn.
    The exhibition is generously supported by the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust, the Governments of the British Antarctic Territory and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, Rolex and the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851."


A memorial service associated with the cenetenary of Shackleton's Endurance expedition is being planned for Westminster Abbey on 20 May 2016, followed by a reception at the Institute of Engineers.