Mountain Heritage Trust goes On The Edge

As one of the most iconic mountaineers of the 1970s, the Mountain Heritage Trust was delighted to finally bring Pete Boardman’s almost 10,000 strong slide collection under one roof. Working with the Boardman family and the Chris Bonington Picture Library, the extensive slide collection was donated to the Trust in 2017, with Pete’s papers and personal material following in 2018. All this is now stored in our archive at the Blencathra Field Studies Centre.

Two of our volunteers, Sue and Sheila, began cataloguing the slides in February 2018 and discovered just how extensive the collection is. Beginning in 1965 until Pete’s death on Everest in 1982, the slides document many of his high profile expeditions to the greater ranges; Hindu Kush in 1972, the South West Face of Everest in 1975, Changabang in 1976, K2 in 1978, Kangchenjunga in 1979, Kongur in 1981 and Everest in 1982. The slides are a unique insight in to one of the most significant periods in British mountaineering history, at a time when new lightweight approaches to the Greater Ranges were being pioneered. Yet as well as these international expeditions, the images are a unique snapshot of 1970s climbing life, with UK crags such as the Wye Valley and Alpine trips in 1974 and 1977; as well as the Caucaus, Tatras, Corsica and Australia all pictured. Access to the collection can be requested by getting in touch through the website.

The Mountain Heritage Trust would like to extend their sincere thanks to both the Boardman family and our volunteers for ensuring that this valuable archive is preserved for the years ahead. With the slides organised, work is now beginning on re-boxing the slides in specialist archive boxes and our thanks go to the Boardman Tasker Charitable Trust who have paid for these.

On the 25th-27th of July, MHT will take part in Kendal Mountain Festival’s inaugural foray into summer fun! ‘On The Edge’ is a unique event in partnership with the National Trust, and the weekend-long programme explores the theme of technology in the outdoors – resented by some, keenly received by others. A fringe version of the traditional outdoor social meet of the year, ‘On The Edge’ will screen some of the best films of KMF history alongside speakers such as Ella Kirkpatrick and Mr Frostbite – Nigel Vardy, plus workshops on the theme.

We are excited to be presenting a workshop at 10am on Sunday, ‘The History of Image-making in the Outdoors’, with photographer Henry Iddon. Henry recently borrowed an Edwardian 10×12 Underwood Instanto camera from MHT that belonged to the Abraham Brothers, widely recognised as the first adventure photographers, carrying it up Scafell Pike to celebrate the centenary of the first British HVS, Central Buttress. You can see the camera in its current home in our exhibition at Keswick Museum! Henry will be speaking about the development of photography, and some of the more unusual ways by which we record our memories of landscape. This will be an interactive and practical session asking how you record your experiences in the outdoors!

Kendal Mountain Festival have also invited some of the leading technological developers of the outdoor industry to demonstrate their current research. Petzl will present on lighting and safety and Garmin on navigation technology amongst others.

This is an event for the whole family, with wet-weather, tired children, or over-energetic adult options on all day. Get your festival ticket and camping spot at the On The Edge website, tickets are limited.

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