February 1912: Harry Pennell and his Terra Nova shipmates brave storms and ice to bring supplies to Antarctica. They hope to celebrate Captain Scott’s conquest of the South Pole, but are forced by ice to return north before Scott’s party returns. In New Zealand a reporter tells them that Roald Amundsen reached the Pole first. Returning to Antarctica in early 1913, they learn that Scott’s party reached the Pole but died on the ice shelf.
Back in Britain memorial services, medal ceremonies, weddings and resumed careers are abruptly interrupted by the First World War. Fit and able men, Scott’s ‘Antarctics’ trade one adventure for another.
By 1919 Scott’s ‘Antarctics’ have fought at Antwerp, the Western Front, Gallipoli, in the Channel, at Jutland and in Arctic Russia. They serve on horseback, in trenches, on battleships and hospital ships, in armoured cars and flimsy aircraft; their brothers-in-arms include a prime minister’s son and poet Rupert Brooke. As in Antarctica, life is challenging and dangerous. As on the ice, not all survive.
“Strathie’s story of these remarkably talented adventurers is fascinating, as is the evidence that many of these men remained in touch during the war, although talk of the frozen continent gave way to their latest war adventures. Her book is well written, excellently illustrated … and recommended to all those who want to know more about Scott’s Antarctic survivors and their Great War Deeds.” – Stephen Chambers, Gallipoli Magazine 2016
ANNE STRATHIE became a full-time writer following a career in the business, arts and heritage sectors. Whilst researching for Birdie Bowers: Captain Scott’s Marvel (THP, 2012) and From Ice Floes to Battlefields she travelled to Antarctica (including Scott’s hut), New Zealand and First World War sites and delved into archives all over the world. Anne has taken part in Antarctic centenary events in Britain and New Zealand and given regular talks on Bowers, the Terra Nova expedition and related subjects. She co-wrote Hugh Willoughby: The Man Who Loved Picassos (2008) and now researches polar and mid-eighteenth to early twentieth-century topics for future projects.