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SPRI Review 2004: Friends of the Scott Polar Research Institute

Friends of the Scott Polar Research Institute

2004 was a challenging year for the Friends. The death of William Mills, the Librarian, Keeper of Collections and a popular member of the Friends, was a particular loss. In response, the Friends launched a £50,000 appeal, in William's honour. The William Mills Library Acquisitions Fund will meet a part of the objectives of the main Library and Archives Appeal through setting up an endowment fund for the purchase of library books and periodicals. The Fund currently stands at a figure of £29,380. Very many thanks indeed to those who have contributed.

Whilst rising to such challenges, our 503 members also enjoyed numerous activities in support of the Institute throughout 2004. The Friends Public Lecture, were well attended; thanks are due to William Mills and to Bob Headland for organising these. The Summer Lunch and Autumn Buffet were particularly successful this year, the Summer Lunch seeing the launch of a hugely popular Polar Book Den.

The Friends donated £12,729 to support the work of the Institute to the year ended July 2004. This means that the Friends have raised £130,000 for the Institute over the last ten years, not including legacies or spending in the shop. We were delighted to contribute a further £15,000 in December, to the exciting purchase of Herbert Ponting's original glass plate negatives of Scott's last expedition. Thanks are due to all the Friends for their support throughout 2004 and in particular to those volunteers who serve on the Committee, assist at Friends events and those who work in the Archives, Library and Picture Library.

Dr David M. Wilson
(Chair, Friends of the Scott Polar Research Institute)