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Arthur Beale Hasn't Always Been a Yacht Chandler!
We supplied many prestigious explorers and mountaineers.
Our next few posts will cover just a few of our surprising clients.
Henry George “Gino” Watkins (1907 - 1932) was a British Arctic Explorer.
He became interested in exploring whilst studying at Cambridge under the instruction of the Scottish explorer James Wordie. He also learned to fly. By far the most important expedition that he led was the British Arctic Air Route Expedition of 1930-31. They used Shackleton’s old ship called the Quest.
The picture is from the Arthur Beale archive.
They ordered their rope from us and we still have the telegram requesting Alpine Club Line be sent on the ferry to the East Coast of Greenland.
The rope was probably dispatched with one of these labels which we still have in stock.
He was awarded the RGS Founders Medal in 1932 which bought him international fame.
Sadly the talented explorer died in a kayaking accident when he returned to the East Coast of Greenland a few years later. I was lucky enough to visit the area where the accident happened last year on board Will Stirling's splendid yacht "Integrity". You can just see the yacht anchored in the distance.
We managed to find one of his old tenders. I think Will was tempted to build a replica!
As we left the fjord I rowed ashore to visit the cross erected in his memory.
The highest mountain range in Greenland - the Watkin Range - is named after him. There is a Gino Watkins Memorial Fund which still funds worthwhile Polar Expeditions.