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Blog | ReQuest 2021 - Adventure of a Lifetime
By Aaron Wappler
A team of ten Scouts officially launched their Antarctic Research Project – ReQuest2021 – in London on board the 100-year-old Thames barge called the Lady Daphne. Sam Payne, one of the expedition participants is from Inverurie, Aberdeenshire and will be representing Scotland as one of the two original Scottish Scouts who sailed with Shackleton on the original Shackleton-Rowlett ‘Quest’ expedition. Sam will be following in the footsteps of James Marr, also a Scout from the North East, who assisted Ernest Shackleton on his trip to the South Pole, 100 years ago.
The Lady Daphne was part of a flotilla of half-a-dozen Scout boats that made their way from Greenwich and then under Tower Bridge – which opened its famous bridge spans – into the Pool of London to mark the launch of the Scout’s ReQuest2021, Antarctica Project.
The team of Scouts on board Lady Daphne were hand-picked for their personal research projects on topics spanning climate change, the arts and science.
One experiment the team will undertake is to study the Krill population of the region which is a basic component of the Antarctic food chain. To do this the team has using the same style of Nansen Nets as originally used by Marr in his the experiments conducted 100 years ago. The data collected in 2021 will be compared to the data collected in 1921 and real time information will be gained on the health of the Antarctic waters.
Launching ReQuest2021 the Honourable Alexandra Shackleton, granddaughter of Sir Ernest Shackleton, said:
“I am enormously impressed by the attitude, dedication and attention to detail that these ten members of Scouting have shown. It will be a truly life-changing experience for each and every one of them. I am very much looking forward to learning more about their individual projects and how we can work together to educate more people around the world about the need to protect our fragile polar ecosystem.”
The 23-day expedition will begin on 30th December 2021 with the 2000km+ voyage on board Bark Europa from Ushuaia, Argentina, crossing the infamous Drake Passage, to the Antarctic Peninsula which the Scouts will be exploring for two weeks.
Whilst in Antarctica, as well as working on their projects, the team will get to help crew the tall ship and to visit the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust base of Port Lockroy. They will also make a number of landings to study wildlife and carry out some ice trekking through dramatic scenery.
Dougie Simmers, Regional Commissioner for North East Scotland Scouts commented:
“ReQuest 2021 shows how far a Scout can go in the movement; Antarctica is truly the ultimate adventure, where Sam will put the skills for life learned with Scouts into practice at every turn. Antarctica is a destination, a select few people ever get to experience first-hand in their lives and now Sam will be one of them following his time as a Scout in the North East of Scotland.
Dwayne Fields – Naturalist and Polar Explorer added:
"Recreating expeditions like Shackleton’s classic 1921 journey gives Scouts from 2021 a real way to experience what those Polar pioneers must have experienced 100 years ago. Being inspired by Shackleton and some of the other greats from our past as well as sharing some of the same experiences that Shackleton’s team did back in 1921 helps shine a modern light on climate change issues which is the greatest challenge of our times. It’s important to see the Scouts doing their bit to tackle this issue."
To support Sam on his amazing adventure, consider donating towards his fundrasing page or purchase:
ReQuest2021 Tea-Towel here.
Christmas cards, pack of 10 £4 plus p&p here.
Wrist bands £5 plus p&p here.
Sew on badges £2 plus p&p here.



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