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Painting raises £935 for the Trust

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The auction of the painting "Never to Return"   ss Terra Nova from Cape Evans 22 January 1913 was won by £935 by Ian Craig, a British engineer living in Canada, who has visited the Antarctic as a tourist a number of times and found the experience awe inspiring.  He appreciates the contribution that men and women have made in its exploration and wanted to help the Trust to commemorate those that died in pursuit of science.  He has been a major benefactor of the Trust and flew in from Canada to attend the service at St Paul's Cathedral and attend the reception and supper. 

Speaking at the close of the auction held during the BAS Club Annual Dinner in Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, the Chairman of the Trust, Rod Rhys Jones, thanked Ian saying it was a magnificent donation. He also thanked him for his long term support for the project.   He also thanked the polar artist Mike Skidmore for his brilliant interpretation of the embarkation of ss Terra Nova.

SS Terra Nova

Mike carries out meticulous research for his historic paintings  ensuring that the ship and scenery are accurate. The scene shows ss Terra Nova leaving Antarctica for the last time 22 January 1913 with the remaining members of Scott's last expedition.  In Febriuary 1913 she arrived in  New Zealand bringing the tragic news to the world of Scott's achievement as well as the sad loss of the heroic Pole Party on their march back to Cape Evans after reaching the South Pole.  They were never to return home.  ss Terra Nova and the ships complement of expedition staff, officers and men never returned to the Antarctic. The painting was commissioned by the British Antarctic Monument Trust,  BAMT, to raise funds for the establishment of a monument in Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands to all those who went to the Antarctic and never returned home again afterwards.

The ship is seen in Erebus Bay set against the mass of Mt Erebus 12974 ft on a virtually cloudless Antarctic summer's day.  Her bulk obscures Tent Island, but Inaccessible Island can be seen beyond her prow with the lava strewn foreshore of Cape Evans beyond.  At her stern the rocky cliffs form a feature called of the Turks Head, a buttress holding back the numerous crevasses and ice falls of Turks Head Ridge which rises to the summit of Mt Erebus, some fifteen miles away.

Terra Nova, Length 187 feet, beam 31 feet, 744 grt. Built 1884, Stephens and Sons Dundee, Scotland as a 3-masted barque with a single 140 hp screw for whaling and sealing. Polar Voyages: Jackson-Harmsworth Arctic Expedition to Franz Joseph Land 1894-97, Discovery relief expedition 1904, Franz Joseph Land 1905, Scott’s Terra Nova Expedition 1910-13. Resumed work with the Newfoundland sealing industry and foundered off Greenland on 13.09.43.

The  British Antarctic Monument Trust has now raised a total of £100,000 towards its target of £120,000. The Trust  has placed a memorial in the crypt of St Paul's Cathedral and the northern part of the Antarctic Monument at the Scott Polar Research Institute in Cambridge. The final tranche of money is required to cover the costs of the sculpture in the Falklands Islands. If you would like to make a contribution please visit our JustGiving web page



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