Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 12°C

min temp: 8°C

Search

Gallery: Captain Oates’ sledge goes on display at museum

PUBLISHED: 10:15 09 January 2014 | UPDATED: 10:16 09 January 2014

Prototype Sledge for Captain Oates ill fated polar expedition made at Ransomes and Rapier of Ipswich. 
Cllr Bryony Rudkin, former Olympian Lenny Paul and Cllr Alistair Ross

Prototype Sledge for Captain Oates ill fated polar expedition made at Ransomes and Rapier of Ipswich. Cllr Bryony Rudkin, former Olympian Lenny Paul and Cllr Alistair Ross

A link with one of the most glorious – and tragic – true-life British adventures of the 20th century has gone on show at Ipswich Museum.

A sledge ordered by Captain Lawrence Oates before he took part in Captain Robert Scott’s ill-fated journey to the South Pole in 1911/12 has been put on display.

The sledge was made by Ipswich engineers Ransomes and Rapier, and was one of two that were ordered by Capt. Oates before he left on the expedition.

He decided to take his other sledge to the Antarctic – possibly because it was not quite as long as the one made by R&R – and that was abandoned when the party died near the South Pole.

Capt. Oates’ family lived at Gestingthorpe near Sudbury and after the tragdy in the Antarctic they donated the spare sledge to Ipswich Museum.

The British expedition arrived at the South Pole in January 1912, only to find that Nowegian explorer Roald Amundsen had beaten them to it by a few days.

On their way back to their ship their supplies became exhausted and the five-man team perished.

Diaries left by them revealed that Capt. Oates had been suffering from frostbite and illness and as they huddled in a tent he told his comrades: “I am going out, I may be some time.” He never returned – and his body has never been found.

Tragically the other four members of the team also died before a rescue team arrived to find them.

The sledge was put on display at the museum yesterday with the help of a more modern British “Ice Age” hero – bobsleigher Lenny Paul.

He took part in four Winter Olympics between 1988 and 1998, and said: “This is rather different from what we used, although you can seen certain similarities with the construction.

“When bobsleigh started it was an eight-person team and I can see how it evolved from a sledge like this.”

0 comments

Police in Essex are hunting for two man after a man in his 30s from Norwich was stabbed in Chelmsford.

Emergency services have been called to a two-vehicle crash on the B113 near Ipswich.

Pledges to save Finchingfield Bridge and protect the famous vista of one of Britain’s most-visited villages have been made by both the Conservative and Labour candidates for the county council elections on May 4.

Changes to “invigorate” the 26th East Anglian Beer and Cider Festival in Bury St Edmunds seem to have paid off, its organiser has said.

Speeding fines are going up from tomorrow – with penalties doubling for motorists clocked doing more than 20mph above the limit.

This year’s Bury St Edmunds Festival is already out-selling last year’s, with the programme mix believed to be the reason it is proving such a hit.

Residents of Ipswich’s Westgate Ward are being urged to embrace different cultures in an effort to build a community spirit in one of the most deprived areas in Suffolk.

Most read

Eating Out in the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Eating Out
supplement

View

Visit the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Visit the Broads
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24