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Press release

ANTARCTICA


A series of free Darwin Centre Live events at the Natural History Museum
Monday 23 – Friday 27 February 2004
Webcast live at www.nhm.ac.uk/darwincentre/live

The desire to explore and conquer the icy continent has drawn people to extreme hardship and sometimes even death. Today, Antarctica’s inhospitable mystery, beauty and isolation still fascinate scientists, artists and even tourists. Join us in a series of free live events – including a live link to the British Antarctic Survey – to explore the southern continent and discuss the impact of visitors on our last great wilderness. These events accompany the new exhibition Due South: Art and the Antarctic by John Kelly, at the Natural History Museum from (Tuesday 24 February to Sunday 1 August 2004). All events are webcast live at www.nhm.ac.uk/darwincentre/live

Live at the British Antarctic Survey
Monday 23 February, 14.30

Join fisheries expert Matt Belchier, live by satellite at the British Antarctic Survey, and find out more about his research aboard an Antarctic icebreaker.

Journey to the End of the Earth
Tuesday 24 February, 14.30

Museum scientist Sharon Grant spent six winters traveling the stormy, freezing Antarctic seas, collecting specimens and data for ecological projects. Join her in the studio and let her saga, combined with video footage of the scenery and wildlife she witnessed, take you on a voyage of discovery to the end of the Earth.

Breaking the Ice: Who decides Antarctica's Future?
Wednesday 25 February, 19.00

Tickets for this event are free but must be pre-booked on
020 7942 5555
The UN’s Antarctic treaty stipulates that the continent can only be used for peaceful purposes and guarantees freedom for scientific research. Today 18 countries have 44 stations there and around 10,000 tourists visit the Antarctic Peninsula each year. Join us for a lively discussion on the future of our planet’s last great wilderness and its potentially valuable resources.

Due South
Thursday 26 February, 14.30

Artist John Kelly spent three months at the beginning of 2003 on the South Orkney Islands as part of the British Antarctic Survey’s Artists and Writers Programme. Join him to find out about his experiences, inspirations and the art he created, now part of the Due South exhibition at the Natural History Museum.

Pack Ice and Penguins
Friday 27 February, 14.30

Join wildlife enthusiast Chris Collins on a trip to the frozen continent of Antarctica. Discover the wildlife that survives in this inhospitable part of the world, where the sea freezes in winter and the temperature can drop to below -50°C.

Darwin Centre Live at the Natural History Museum is a free programme of daily events where visitors can talk to scientists, hear more about their work at the Museum and around the world, and see the fascinating specimens they work with. For further information please contact the Natural History Museum, by calling 0207 942 5000 or visit www.nhm.ac.uk/darwincentre .

- Ends -

Notes for editors
These events accompany the new free special display Due South: Art and the Antarctic by John Kelly on show at the Natural History Museum from Tuesday 24 February to Sunday 1 August 2004.

Event visitor information
Venue: Darwin Centre at the Natural History Museum,
Cromwell Road, London SW7 5BD
Dates: Monday 23 – Friday 27 February 2004
Public enquiries: 020 7942 5000
Entry: free to all
Nearest tube: South Kensington
Website: www.nhm.ac.uk/darwincentre


GENERAL MUSEUM VISITOR INFORMATION
The Natural History Museum is open
Monday - Saturday 10.00-17.50, Sunday-11.00-17.50
The Natural History Museum's public enquiries telephone number is 020 7942 5000
The Museum is accessible to visitors in wheelchairs.
For access details telephone 020 7942 5000
Entry to the Museum: FREE

CONTACT INFORMATION
To arrange interviews with any of the presenters, request images or further information, please contact:

Joanna Glyde or Chloe Kembery, Science Communications PR
Tel: 020 7942 5881/5881
Email: j.glyde@nhm.ac.uk (not for publication)

Issued January 2004