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Exploration into science: Discover the story of planet Earth's coldest, driest, windiest, highest and deadliest places …

The Scott Polar Research Institute holds a unique collection of artefacts, journals, paintings, photographs, clothing equipment, maps and other materials illustrating polar exploration, history and science. Come and find out how past discoveries in the Arctic and Antarctic help today's scientists to investigate our changing environment.

Open box of Scott's negatives

Captain Scott's 'lost' photographic negatives saved for the nation

The Scott Polar Research Institute's urgent appeal to save historic Antarctic negatives taken by Captain Scott in 1911 has been successful.

The Polar Museum at the Scott Polar Research Institute, University of Cambridge, is proud to announce that it has successfully raised the £275,000 needed to be able to purchase the 113 photographic negatives, thanks to public support.

The negatives represent an extraordinary visual record of Scott's last expedition, but were in danger of being sold abroad.

Read more about our success.

» What's On

Take a quick look at the exciting events in store this season ...

» What's new

Forthcoming exhibition: Delivery by Design: Stamps in Antartica open Thursday 12 June...

Read about Kathleen Scott's maquette for the statue of Captain Robert Falcon Scott ...

Newly on display: Tresor's dog tag

Learn more about the work of our Conservators via our Conservation blog ...

Take a peek at work behind the scenes via our University of Cambridge Museums blog posts ...

» Exhibitions


Scott's Expedition Diaries online

The Polar Museum has begun an exciting new project to provide access to the journals and diaries of the officers, scientists and crew of Scott's Terra Nova Expedition, 1910-13, held in the Institute's Archives. Check our Polar Diaries project pages for news of developments.

Read more about the 2010 redevelopment of the Polar Museum and our Heritage Lottery Fund award.

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We look forward to welcoming visitors of all ages, including school and other groups.

» Museum catalogue

The museum catalogue is not yet fully published but sections not on the web are SPRI Museum Y: 88/1/2, Caribou skin bag from Mittimatalikavailable to visitors by appointment. Special collections available online include:

Access and contact details

» Directions to the museum are available. » Contact us if you need more information.

Visitors are permitted to take photographs (with flash or a tripod) in the galleries for their personal, educational use only. Photographs taken by visitors must not be reproduced or published in any form, including on the internet, without permission.

The Museum welcomes requests for scholarly access to the Collections. Scholars wishing to access the Museum's reserve collections should make an appointment with the Keeper.

Acquisition of museum material has been principally by gift. Access conditions for collections not on display are similar to those for archival materials. Copies of items in the Institute's collections, including paintings and photographs, can be supplied for publication. The Library and Archives are also accessible to visitors by appointment; please read the notes on access to the Special Collections. Please use our online booking form for appointments to consult material in the Archives or Art Collection.

Our Museum policy documents describe our policies on acquisition, loans and other areas. See also information on conservation.