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Talks by Seb Coulthard



Seb Coulthard

Seb Coulthard was born in London, raised in Quito, Ecuador, and completed his higher education in England. He is an award winning sailor, engineer and adventurer with 15 years long service and good conduct in the Royal Navy (retired 2016). During his time in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces he travelled extensively between British Overseas Territories from the South Atlantic to the Indian Ocean.

In 2013, with a passion for adventure travel, Seb joined Shackleton Epic Expedition the most audacious and faithful re-enactment of the celebrated 830 mile boat journey undertaken by Sir Ernest Shackleton aboard the James Caird lifeboat from Elephant Island to South Georgia. The crew of the ‘Alexandra Shackleton’ spent 12 days at sea using the same period equipment as Shackleton 100 years prior: woollen underwear, wooden lifeboat, sextant, compass, and starvation diet. The Shackleton Epic team became the only expedition in history to complete Shackleton's perilous voyage using period resources.

As an empirical historian and expedition guide, his latest expedition took him to the Arabian Peninsula where he following in the footsteps of Lawrence of Arabia to mark the 100th Anniversary of the Battle of Aqaba, one of the most influential military victories of World War One. The expedition travelled unsupported, on camelback during mid-summer where temperatures exceeded 45ºC.

Seb is Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, and a joint Royal Yachting Association and Union Internationale Motonautique  powerboat world record holder. He is a specialist in remote areas travel and a certified Antarctic tourism guide.

Human History of The Antarctic 

 Who were the first humans in the Antarctic? Where does the name Antarctic come from? What does the future hold for the Antarctic and how is it governed? In this fascinating talk, Polar historian Seb Coulthard looks over the 200 years of recorded history of Antarctica including the early explorers, “science diplomacy” and the creation of international spaces, demilitarisation and the subsequent Antarctic Treaty (1959-61), as well as the concept of Antarctica that was around for centuries before its discovery.



The story of The Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition led by Sir Ernest Shackleton 1914-1917

In 1914 Ernest Shackleton outlined his ambitious plan to cross the Antarctic from the Weddell Sea to McMurdo Sound, via the South Pole, and in this talk polar historian Seb Coulthard recounts this remarkable tale of human endurance, seamanship, and navigation from the HMS Endurance getting trapped in ice off the Caird coast to Shackleton reaching South Georgia and succeeding in rescuing his crew from Elephant Island. This incredible expedition is often considered the last major expedition of the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration.



Click here to view details of our small ship cruises to Antarctica

Click here to view details of the upcoming cruises on which Seb will be speaking