Our public lectures series held in the Blake Studio kicked off in style on 11th January 2024 in the company of Rebecca Stephens MBE.
We are delighted that the illustrious Royal Geographical Society continues to use the Blake Studio as their hub in the East of England for their public lectures. The series for 2024 was kicked off in style by Rebecca speaking about 100 years of mountaineering on Everest.
We were extremely fortunate to have had as our guide for the evening the renowned author and mountaineer Rebecca Stephens, one of Britain’s foremost explorers. Rebecca is the first British women to have climbed Everest which she summited in 1993 and, in the following year, she went on to become the first British woman to scale the legendary ‘Seven Summits’ (the highest mountains on each of the seven continents). She is a climber of astonishing capability, drive and bravery.
There was not a free seat in the house, as the appreciative audience of RGS Members, adventurers, staff, parents, ONs and pupils was held enthralled for 90 minutes and posed some insightful questions to our speaker afterwards and over refreshments.
The subject matter had particular resonance, this being the centenary year of the death of British high-altitude pioneer George Mallory near Everest’s summit. Her talk detailed the fascinating history that preceded her own climb, sumptuously illustrated by beautiful slides and delivered with modesty and clarity, as she shared just what it means to stand at the highest point on earth.
Her talk concluded with some sobering reflections on climate change, the dangers and damage caused by thoughtless tourism in such a magical high-altitude kingdom, and how the delicate relationship with the local sherpas needs to be managed sensitively.
For other RGS events to be held this spring, please see their events listing for the East of England: Upcoming events - RGS. We look forward to RGS talks back on the school site on 8th February and 12th March. All are welcome.