Visit to St Paul's Cathedral
Review of other polar memorials and search for possible sites
The artist and designer Graeme Wilson joined Chairman of the Trust, Rod Rhys Jones, at the end of March 2008 on a visit to St Paul's Cathedral to explore how to develop a suitable memorial. The requirement is a contemporary design that continues the long tradition of high quality of design in the Cathedral and which fits easily amongst its neighbours.
There are two memorials to polar heroes. The memorial to Scott and his companions is in the South Transept close to the steps down to the crypt.
The inscription reads:
In Memory of
Capt Robert Falcon Scott CVO RN
Dr Edward Adrian WIlson
Capt Lawrence Edward Grace Oates
Lieut Henry Robertson Bowers
and Petty Officer Edgar Evans
who died on their return jouney from the South Pole
in February and March 1912
Inflexible of Purpose, Steadfast in Courage, Resolute in Endurance
in the face of Unparalleled Misfortune. Their Bodies are left in
the Antarctic Ice but the memory of their Deeds is an Everlasting Monument.
In the crypt there is a memorial to Major Frederick George Jackson of the East Surrey Regiment who mapped Franz Josef Land and rescued Nansen who had abandoned his ship Fram during his attempts to drift across the Arctic Ocean. It says on the plaque:
Polar explorer and soldier.
commmander of the Jackson-Harmsworth
polar expedition, 1894-1897.
He discovered, mapped-in and named
the greater part of Franz Josef Land
and rescued Dr Nansen, who was lost.
Died 13th March 1938, Aged 78 years
Sans Peur and Sans Reproche
"Then there is the feeling of ownership, the right
of possession, which the man earns who lifts a
new land or a new sea out of the darkness of
the unknown and fixes it for ever upon the chart-
the feeling that the savage, splendid scene
before this is his, because he has earned it
by work of brain and body, won it by sheer
force of clear head and clean muscle"
The Land of the North Pole
There is a space beside the memorial to Major Jackson which we are hoping may be suitable. We will be developing ideas for the tablet over the next few months and then we will be presenting it to the Surveyor to the Fabric of the Cathedral and to a number of other bodies that can influence the outcome.