4th March 2009, 10:56am
Conservation in Extremes
Ross Island - Antarctica (c)Tas50 Senior Lecturer in Conservation, John Greenwood, is to give a lecture on his experiences during the six months he spent with the New Zealand Antarctic Heritage Trust working on the conservation of the historic huts on Ross Island which were left by the expeditions of Scott and Shackleton.

He said: “Antarctica has an unusual and short historic past. It is the only continent that has the first habitations still extant, these buildings still contain and are surrounded by a large number of the artefacts left as each expedition left and they have been recognised as world heritage sites.

“To set out to conserve what is in essence the majority of the most significant buildings and artefacts that cover the entire human habitation of a continent is a daunting challenge. To conserve huts, which were built of wood, canvas and other environmentally vulnerable materials in one of the most inhospitable and harsh conditions in the world, challenges the skill and professionalism of those lucky enough to work on them - not only to preserve the structures but also to carry out full conservation treatments on thousands of objects covering a range of material including metal, paper, wood, textile and food remains.

“To conserve them in a full and complete professional manner and then replace these artefacts back into the extreme conditions was not an undertaking to be taken lightly.”

The lecture will take place on 5 March 2009 from 5pm – 6.30pm in the Architecture Lecture Theatre 1 (AR0107), Brayford Campus.
It is part of the Art, Architecture and Design Thursday Lecture Series which is open to all and takes place on the first Thursday of each month during term time.
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