Chairman's Message - September 2018 _Trevor Cornford FRGS

Phew – heatwave, but also such a busy time since last issue barely time to draw breath! I flew the flag all over, hope a few new believers created. I managed to give displays on Scott & Shackleton as rivals, Scott as my Royal contribution, and the Shackleton Story from 1901 – 22. On top of the fabulous Royal Polar Exhibition, which was a great time to meet many friends, - see pictures on Page 58! – an evening dinner topped it off making a late, tiring but memorable day. (Thanks to my nephew Mark for helping and putting his uncle up in town, avoiding a long homeward journey!)
Numerous local Stamp and Postcard Fairs, eBay, Antique centres, with some scarce new Antarctic cards, Club competitions – First in Postal History for 16 sheets National Antarctic Expedition 1901-04, and a Postcard to cover Shackleton’s homeward journey via USA in 1903 after being sent back on medical grounds by Scott. If you saw the Grosvenor results you will know the rarity = top prices! (last seen sold in 1990 at Feldmans, Zurich – good things sometimes come to those who wait.) Followed very quickly by a 3 day trip to Plymouth, to celebrate the 150th Anniversary of Captain Scott’s birthday, 6th June 1868. And met his grandson Falcon Scott who kindly put up with the many autograph and photo requests!
We had the annual visit to Swinpex, joint chat with FIPSG – why more people don’t attend I’m not sure? My own Club celebrated 40 years this year with a great dinner free to members – we seem to buck the trend with strong attendances for speakers and vibrant club packet. The fruits of some very hard work by Steve Allen is invigorating the Website and re-vamping it wholesale including many Royal photos – do visit over the next few months! Remember the Live auction too – many very good lots will be on offer, not just USA - Polar, rare Byrd letters, photos, Nordenskjold signature, Fids / BAT mail etc.
The Weekend at Cambridge this year – see the schedules in Polar Post, March and June 2018 (numbered Pages 6, 7 and 34) and booking reminder below. Pleased to see our Europe members now booking too. Some attendees are bringing parts of their Royal contribution so Saturday night will be bolstered, but is still the place to show and tell your favourites on any subject! Finally a lecture by Sir Ranulph Fiennes (possibly our greatest living Polar explorer) at the Royal Geographical Society, London, on behalf of the Charles Swithinbank Scott Polar Research Institute Memorial Lecture was more a comic tour de force – a truly entertaining speaker recommended if you get to hear him at all (and England lost that night, so no contest!).