Get ready to step back in time to the age of Antarctic exploration inside our replica of Scott’s Hut. To this day, the original can still be found perfectly preserved on the edge of the Ross Ice Shelf on Antarctica.
Scott's Hut was erected in 1911 by the British Antarctic Expedition of 1910-1913 (also known as the Terra Nova Expedition) led by Robert Falcon Scott. In selecting a base of operations for the 1910-1913 Expedition, Scott rejected the notion of re-occupying the hut he had built by McMurdo Sound during the Discovery Expedition of 1901-1904. It is rectangular, 50 feet (15 m) long and 25 feet (7.6 m) wide. Insulation was provided by seaweed sewn into a quilt, placed between double-planked inner and outer walls. The roof was a sandwich of three layers of plank and 2 layers of rubber ply enclosing more quilted seaweed. Lighting was provided by acetylene gas, and heating came from the kitchen and a supplementary stove using coal as fuel.
All provisions for the duration of the 1911 expedition were brought on board their vessel – the Terra Nova (meaning “new land”) – and they had to be made to last! All manner of items were taken, including luxury items such as a piano, gramophone, whiskey and even a new invention at the time – a video camera!
Although they failed to reach the South Pole first, Scott and his team conducted important scientific work along the way. On their return journey, Scott's party discovered plant fossils that proved Antarctica was once forested and joined to other continents. In addition, Scott and his team collected valuable climatic data. This provided information that is still used in current climate change research.
There was also an intense scientific interest in the new and unusual animals that could be seen in Antarctica. Within the original hut there is still a penguin carcass perfectly preserved in the laboratory due to the below freezing temperatures of Antarctica.