Mandurah to follow Sir Ernest Shackleton’s footsteps in new display

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Over 100 years later in Mandurah, famous Antarctic explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton and his greatest survival story of all time is being displayed in a new panel exhibition on tour from the Australian National Maritime Museum who invites visitors to walk in his footsteps and discover his heroic voyage of survival for themselves.

The display, Shackleton: Escape from Antarctica opens at Mandurah Community Museum on August 3 and brings together first-hand accounts and dramatic images by official expedition photographer Australian Frank Hurley to tell the compelling story of Shackleton’s Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition of 1914-17 and his bid to stay alive.

Shackleton set out in August 1914 with a bold plan to be the first to cross Antarctica’s vast interior.

His strategy was to have two parties working from opposite sides of the continent. He would lead the Weddell Sea crossing party while a second Ross Sea supply party would lay critical rations ahead of him.

Both ships were ultimately lost, one crushed and the other wrenched away by the ice, Shackleton’s party would never even touch the continent they hoped to cross, and the other would be marooned on it, desperately sledging across hundreds of kilometres of ice to lay depots for the party which would never come.

Through the eyes of modern-day adventurer Tim Jarvis AM, who re-enacted parts of Shackleton’s journey, and biologist and Shackleton fellow Mel Mackenzie, the display follows the harrowing experiences of both parties and asks visitors to think about their reaction and decisions.

Mayor Marina Vergone said she was excited for Mandurah to host and honour Shackleton’s survival story.

“I’m delighted that Mandurah will be a part of this remarkable story being showcased by the Australian National Maritime Museum,” she said.

“The story of Shackleton’s heroic voyage is an educational eye-opener for all members of the Mandurah community.

“I strongly encourage all members to visit the Mandurah Community Museum during the time this exhibit is displayed in Mandurah.”

There are five Shackleton panel exhibitions which will tour nationally, visiting over 80 venues in the next three years.

Shackleton: Escape from Antarctica is on display at the Mandurah Community Museum from August 3 to 31. Entry is free. For more information visit www.mandurah.wa.gov.au.