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Scott of the Antarctic

In 2012 Plymouth marked 100 years since one of the most courageous deeds in our nation's history of exploration.

Captain Robert Falcon Scott, who was born and educated in Plymouth, and his Terra Nova Expedition team bravely walked across 800 miles of snow and ice to the South Pole, reaching their destination on 17 January 1912. Sadly, tragedy struck during their return journey and they perished in the cold wasteland as they ran out of food.

With amazing advances in communication and transport technology it is sometimes hard to understand how these men were prepared to set off across a wilderness in search of scientific and geographical data with so few resources at their disposal. The Terra Nova Expedition, and the others that preceded and followed it, became feats of endurance that tested their crews to their physical and mental limits, and sometimes beyond.

These expeditions generated large quantities of data and specimens, the examination and analysis of which would keep the world's scientific communities busy for decades.

The 'heroic' label, given to this period of exploration recognises the adversities these pioneers had to overcome - that Scott and some of his team returned to this inhospitable region having been there before on the Discovery Expedition of 1901 to 1904 is testament to their undoubted courage and determination.