We are delighted to report an overwhelming response to our announcement that the Official Opening of the Oates Galleries will take place on Saturday 10th March at 11.00am.
Space within our new Galleries is limited. To ensure everyone’s comfort and safety, only the first 30 paying visitors, Friends of the Museum or those with residents’ cards will be invited to witness the speeches and ribbon cutting, alongside those who have sponsored the new exhibition.
However, none of our visitors will miss out! Opening ceremony complete, all visitors will be able to enjoy the new Galleries at their leisure. Guests awaiting the opportunity to visit the new exhibition will be able to enjoy the rest of the Museum.
In Bell’s Library, the Antarctic Adventurers, the only re-enactment group in the world specialising in the Historic Period of Polar Exploration, will be exhibiting. The group depict a sledging party of the period complete with all the clothing, sledge, tents and other equipment that would have been carried on a Nansen sledge between 1900 and 1915. Since their formation in 2002, the group have taken part in many multi-period history shows organised by English Heritage and the National Trust as well as museums and even the quarter deck of HMS Belfast.
We are also delighted to announce that folk-rock guitarist and songwriter Jake Wilson will perform ‘All’s Well’, a new cycle of songs inspired by the journals and letters of Captain Scott’s expedition, throughout the morning in the Great Parlour. Jake has composed a song from the point of view of each of the members of the team who died on the return journey from the South Pole – Captain Scott, Edgar Evans, Edward Wilson, Henry Bowers and Captain Lawrence Oates – and the songs have been described by Edward Wilson’s great-nephew as “a cultural masterpiece for the centenary”.
Throughout the day, costumed staff – and it is rumoured a penguin – will be on hand should you have any questions. The gardens will be full of spring promise, our award-winning Tea Parlour will be serving delicious food, and our renowned Gift Shop will be stocked with many Antarctic-themed books and gifts.