About

The Mawson’s Huts Foundation exists to conserve in perpetuity for the Australian people the unique historical buildings known as Mawson’s Huts at Cape Denison on Commonwealth Bay, base for the Australasian Antarctic Expedition of 1911-14 led by Australia’s greatest polar explorer Sir Douglas Mawson.

Established in 1997 with the support of the Federal Government expressly to conserve the fragile and historic buildings at Cape Denison, East Antarctica.

The Foundation’s first expedition in 1997-98 was preceded with a two person team the previous summer consisting of a heritage conservation expert and an architect/photographer who helped to prepare a detailed works programme for a team of 15 who arrived 12 months later. This team of heritage specialists almost certainly saved Mawson’s Huts from imploding and being blown into the Southern Ocean.

With Mawson’s Huts almost totally full of ice the storage platform under the apex of the living area was loaded with ice and vital support beams had fractured. If these had collapsed experts said the building would have collapsed causing irreparable damage allowing pieces of the huts to be blown into the Southern Ocean just 60 metres away.

Since then the Foundation has raised in nearly nine million in cash and in kind support with just under three million of this coming from special grants from the Federal Government. It works in partnership with the Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) which approves all work undertaken by the Foundation each visit and provides vital operational support.

Based in Sydney, the Foundation has an active campaign to help raise further funds urgently required for future expeditions. Its last expedition in 2015-16 removed all but 10 per cent of the remaining ice from the interior and carried out critical maintenance and repairs to the huts. Each expedition in the vicinity of $500,000.

The Foundation built and operates the Mawson’s Huts Replica Museum (www.mawsons-huts-replica.org.au) which is on the Hobart waterfront just 200 meters from where Douglas Mawson and

his expedition departed from on December 2 1911. This assists in the fund raising and it is also organising a four day festival in Hobart this September (8-11) which will help promote the city as the gateway to the Antarctic for the Asia Pacific region.

Secretariat:

The Foundation’s offices and facilities in Sydney are generously provided by Chimu Adventures, Australia’s leading travel company to Latin America and Antarctica.

Chairman and CEO:

David Jensen AM: david.jensen@mawsons-huts.org.au

Office 61 2 9458 1219

Mobile 61 414 333381

Administration Manager:

Sandra Conte: sandra.conte@mawsons-huts.org.au

Office 61 2 9458 1219

Expedition Manager

Robert Easter AAM: rob.easther@mawsons-huts.org.au

Mobile 61 419 337 169