Chairman's Message - June 2022 - Trevor Cornford FRGS

Another progressive hobby period as Spring starts to spring in my garden and cheer up the longer days after quite a cold Polar type spell!

Reverting to the London International in February it was great to meet a number of members over the days I attended. Especially the RPSL Open day in its new home but historic building with lovely wood stairs, panels and so on. Abchurch Lane is mentioned in the 13th century! Particularly the Spink sponsored canapés and fizz following the tours and the invited Displays from overseas visitors – chatting with our member Roger van Laere from Belgium was one - I did not need dinner after! I liked the stunning items from Serge Kahn’s recently discovered and assembled story of correspondence about Dumont d’Urville from the 1820s and 1837-40 expeditions – how does this still keep coming out from family archives? Thank goodness for the continuity of established families where such records can lie undisturbed and safe for years, nay centuries!

Sadly the Ukraine war started on the Friday to dampen the atmosphere even after finding a pile of BAT and FIDS covers going reasonably – even a £1 box - but Saturday we finally got our administration back in line with AGM and short displays before finishing up a final tour of the show and buying 3 good Polar cards! See the full Reports from Officers on pages 41 to 45. I enjoyed a visit to Camberley Philatelic Society locally afterwards with a colleague from Wokingham P.S. to show some of my side interests – and of course promote Polar with some comic North Pole discovered cards (Figure 1) - its a pub! And rare Scott’s Last Expedition items. Reward? A certificate AND a bottle of red wine, very nice.

Next came the FIPSG weekend conference about which you may have heard the worst - 22 people as I write advised that they succumbed to food poisoning, which I don’t recommend, awful! The good part however before that occurred (Sunday early morning around 3/4 am), was my purchase of 2 rare Polar cards and stamps from the Quest Expedition (See Page 56).

About 2 weeks later I felt able to start ‘normal’ life again. I shall be Exhibiting in Liberec this autumn, in Czech Republic, for the first time in years with a 1 frame. I may see some of you there for the Polar Salon, see Page 47.

Finally, it is 110 years since the loss of Scotts’ Polar party and I found the illustrated South Pole Requiem in a collection of ephemera from the family archive I bought years ago (Figure 2). See you at SWINPEX on 11th June at 1pm (And yes I did see all the hullabaloo about finding Shackleton’s ship Endurance, Figure 3, poor ship!).