"Because it is there." In these few words, given to a reporter of the New York Times in 1923, George Leigh-Mallory won international fame, and a place in the annals of mountaineering history for his attempts to summit Everest.
13 men would die on the Everest expeditions of 1921, 1922 and 1924, but Mallory’s death in 1924 is the one remembered, having climbed close to the summit before being ‘lost to human sight between Heaven and Earth.’
At 7am on 24 September 1921, Mallory and his team began their assault on the North Col of Everest. This first, courageous step into the unknown paved the way for future summit attempts of the 1920s and ‘30s. One hundred years after his first expedition, Winchester College’s medieval Cloisters will play host to a special exhibition, featuring images and artefacts relating to Mallory’s attempts, as well as acknowledging the notable roles played by Sir Charles Bell, Guy Bullock and Henry Morshead – all former Winchester College pupils.
Adam Rattray, Exhibition Curator, and Head of Art History, commented, ‘Mallory and Irvine lost their lives responding to the challenge Everest posed. Whether they reached the summit or not remains a mystery but this exhibition highlights the ground-breaking work he and others achieved in pursuit of that goal.’
The exhibition commemorates the achievements, as well as the disasters:
The exhibition also seeks to give an insight in to the expeditions from the point of view of the Tibetans, Indians and Nepalese who encountered the British during these years: the Dalai Lama and his government who gave permission for the expeditions; the porters who made them possible; and the officials and monks who offered generous hospitality en route.
There will be a service of commemoration in Chapel on 23 September at 17.30, with a plaque dedication at 18.15. All are welcome. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your place.
On 23 September, Stephen Venables will give a talk, More than just a mountain, which will be a commemoration of the achievements of Henry Moreshead, Guy Bullock and George Leigh-Mallory on Everest. Mr Venables is former President of the Alpine Club and Everest mountaineer and historian. There will an opportunity prior to the talk to view the exhibition. This talk is for the Friends of Winchester College, and new members are always welcome.
9th August 2022
Each year Winchester College welcomes hundreds of visitors to events, art exhibitions and specialist tours of the school and its collections for Heritage Open Days. This year, in-person events will return to the College with bookings now open.
15th February 2022
A masterpiece by one of the leading artists of the eighteenth century – François Lemoyne’s Annunciation (1727) – has returned to Winchester College after ten years on loan.
11th October 2021
An ancient Greek vase, stolen from the school sixty years ago, has been recovered.
24th August 2021
England's largest free heritage festival takes place this September with Heritage Open Days. To celebrate this year's theme of 'Edible England', our College Archivist reflects on some of the unique terminology that has been associated with food over the centuries.
19th July 2021
A new publication explores the College's collection of medieval glass. Created across a period of significant artistic change, they demonstrate the development of stained glass production techniques and the Gothic style from the mid-thirteenth to sixteenth centuries.
28th May 2021
The school's Treasury museum will re-open to the public next month, on Monday 21 June, in line with Government advice.