Science centre named after famous pupil

The Worsley Science Centre
The Worsley Science Centre

Stowe School has a new Science Centre, named after one a famous former student.

The Worsley Science Centre was officially opened on Tuesday, by the family of Henry Worsley, the Polar explorer who died tragically on his solo attempt to cross the Antarctic last January.

Polar explorer Ben Saunders gives a speech at the opening of the Worsley Science Centre

Polar explorer Ben Saunders gives a speech at the opening of the Worsley Science Centre

Henry’s widow Joanna, children Max and Alicia and other members of their family joined friends, donors, pupils and staff to mark the opening of the outstanding new facility, which boasts 18 laboratories, a sixth form science centre and six lecture theatres.

Henry Worsley was the only person to complete the two classic routes of Shackleton, Scott and Amundsen to the South Pole in 2011-2012.

On 24 January 2016, he died while attempting the first solo unsupported, unassisted crossing of the Antarctic landmass. He was just 30 miles from reaching his target.

Ben Saunders, a leading Polar explorer and friend of Henry, was the guest speaker at the science centre opening, which took place on the first anniversary of Henry’s death.

An exhibition of Henry Worsley's Polar equipment

An exhibition of Henry Worsley's Polar equipment

Ben spoke of his friendship with Henry and the late explorer’s kindness and generosity, and hinted that he himself hoped to return to Antarctica to finish Henry’s solo unsupported crossing.

After Ben’s speech, Joanna Worsley and her family opened the Worsley Science Centre and guests were able to view an exhibition of Henry’s Polar equipment and images from his adventures.

A Stowe School spokesman said: “The day was a celebration of this wonderful new facility but also of Henry’s life.

“It was an inspiring day for all involved.”