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Antarctic Division
State Branches & Regions
New South Wales


On 28 June the Epping Club was again the venue of the Midwinter gathering of the Sydney Branch of the ANARE Club. The numbers were modest, just over 50, and recent expeditioners were noticeably absent. This continues a worrying trend seen over recent years. Nonetheless, the room was comfortably full, both of bodies and of ANARE spirit. To judge from the level of noise, the swapping of the yarns was at full throttle.


The mob in Sydney

The gathering was enriched by the presence of more than a dozen veterans of “FIDS” , more formally, the Falkland Island Dependency Survey, now known as the British Antarctic Survey (“BAS”). They had many stories stories of living and working at bases on and around the Antarctic Peninsula. Their number included the well-known writer and historian Herbert Dartnell, author of the newly-published “Lost in the Mists”, reviewed in this issue of Aurora.

We were also honoured by the presence of some ANARE luminaries, most notably the legendary “Antarctic Man” doctor Grahame Budd, who first went south in 1954 and so was the “last man standing” in our Call of the Years. In one of the many highlights of the evening, his long-time mate Warwick Deacock recalled how the two of them made the first ascent of Big Ben on Heard Island in 1964.

In the absence of a speaker from the AAD we watched a well-made video covering the highlights of the season.

Our guest speaker was a prominent researcher into global change, Professor Will Steffen from the Australian National University. He spoke from personal experience on “Science and High Latitudes”, having spent time in Greenland and Siberia. He certainly had the full attention of the room as he presented data on how global warming is pushing up temperatures steeply around the North Pole, leading to melting of permanently frozen ground with the potential release of trapped methane, which will worsen the warming.

The smaller numbers let us take our time over the Call of the Years, with those on their feet able to tell the rest of us a bit about what they did and when and where. Our FIDS guests entered whole heartedly into the spirit of it all. As noted above Grahame Budd was the oldest expeditioner present, but the man standing most often was serial offender Graeme “chompers” Currie, whose multiple trips south stretched over nearly four decades.

Who was there;

Will             Steffen            Guest speaker

Craig          Austin            C72
Christine     Austin

Josephine   Bastian          HI12  Antarctic peninsular 92 South Georgia 98

John            Brotherhood BAS Signy 66 Halley Bay 67

Graham      Budd            Various 1954 - 2012

Rowan       Butler            M81 C84   Bunger Hills 86 Marine science voyages

Bill             Burch            W61 Club rep voyage 08
Robyn       Burch

Paddy        Butterworth   M87-91 QANTAS flight 2012
Ann            Butterworth   QANTAS flight 2012

Peter          Cheers            C01 M02

Colin          Christiansen   M71 RRS John Biscoe 72-74 C75 D77 HI85s Club rep voyage 1995

Dick           Cotton           BAS RRS John Biscoe
Thomas      Cotton

Graeme       Currie            M60,77,83 W63,67 C69,74 MI85,87,89 Summers 71,85,95-99

Herbert       Dartnell          BAS ANARE SANAE 1973-2008

Graham       Dewar            FIDS Adelaide Island 61,62

David          Ellyard            M66 Club rep voyages 2003 Commonwealth Bay 2012

Rex             Filson             M62 MI summer 65 PCM 75

Kirstie         Fryirs              C08/09 09/10

Alexandra   Gaffikin            BAS Halley Bay 99 00 Rothera 01

Peter            Hay                BAS Base T Adelaide Island 60 61RRS John Biscoe 3/O 66 2/O 67

Patrick          Haynes         BAS Base F 60 61 Halley Bay 65 66

Stuart            Hodges         M91

Owen            Holmwood   C89 Club rep voyage 09/10
Gayle            McHale

Clive             Jewell            South Georgia 53 54 55

Paul               Lytwyn         M83/84 M85
Dee               Lytwyn         QANTAS flight 09

Damien         Macey

John              Manning      M67 various summers
Beth              Manning

David            McDowell   BAS Signy 57 Horseshoe 58

Cameron       McHale        M97 C01

Mike              Morgan       Enderby Land 74/75 75/76
Carol              Morgan

Trevor             Olrog         MI65 W67

Warwick         Deacock    HI 63 65 69

Paul                Pilkington   BAS Signy Base H 63-66
Vivienne         Pilkington  

John               Rankin        M66

Kit                 Scally         M71 91 RT05
Julie               Finch-Scally QANTAS first flight 1977

Patrica           Selkirk         MI C HI 10 Summers 79-04

Lindsay         Stubbs           M79
Taeko           Stubbs

Steve            Symonds      MI72 Club rep V5 2000

Robin            Thomas        M84 C87

Olga               Veselova

Ron                Webb         MI 72 M83 Commonwealth Bay 04

Mike Poulton
David Pottage
Ingrid Pottage
Keith Goodwin
Chris Hutchinson
Phil Crosby
Gilbert Wallace
Tim Brown
Lucinda Coates
Neville Smethurst
Maureen Smethurst
Ray Brookes
Tom Harwood
Phil Silvestro
John Seaton
Barbara SeatonSyd Kirkby