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SPRI Review 1999: Friends of the Scott Polar Research Institute

Friends of the Scott Polar Research Institute

The Friends of the Scott Polar Research Institute are pleased to record another highly successful year. The membership achieved, and indeed, passed the Millennium 500 target: reaching 505, an increase of 105 members in the past year.

The Friends are ably led by the Chairman, Philippa Foster Back, with support from the Friends Secretary, Anne Millar, and Friends Membership Secretary, Jennifer Dale. Thanks also must go to Sally Stonehouse and Anne Todd for their help with serving coffee at evening lectures. Tony Billinghurst and David Powell have also assisted at events.

The year started well with the Friends hosting 'Antarctica 100,' a discussion forum at SPRI in January. This day was attended by delegates from many organisations with polar interests.

The re-opening of the Museum shop saw increased sales at evening lectures. The credit card facility, an initiative sponsored by the Friends, was well used. The Museum Shop Committee, chaired by Philippa Foster Back, met regularly and continues to update and improve the range of merchandise available. Thanks are due to Irene Burns for her continued work with the Museum shop.

The Friends Committee met twice during the year and donated more than £4000 in support of projects for the Library, Picture Library, Archives, and Polar Oral History Project.

The Chairman and Friends Secretary worked on the production of a new membership brochure and membership card, which will be in use in the year 2000. A new venture was the Friends advertisement in What's On, a publication of Cambridge University, circulated with a wide readership within Cambridge. A Friends website has details of Friends activities and is updated regularly to include the current issue of Polar Bytes.

This year the annual summer lunch was held in June at Girton College and was attended by more than 70 Friends. Following lunch an illustrated presentation for the Polar Oral History Project was given by Isabella and Christopher Warren. This lunch will again be held at Girton in June 2000.

To herald the Millennium the Chairman is leading a party of Friends on an Antarctic Tour aboard Kapitan Khlebnikov in January 2000.