Explorers return home from bitter icy depths in 1985

With avalanches, crevasses, blizzards, icebergs and the bitter cold, the 10 men who returned to Portsmouth after a year’s exploration in Antarctica felt lucky to be alive.

Three members of the team ‘at home’ in the Antarctic winter.
Three members of the team ‘at home’ in the Antarctic winter.

All members of the Joint Services Expedition to Brabent Island, were the first men to deliberately spend the Antarctic winter in tents. Six men survived falls into crevasses, while one climber fell 130ft down a mountainside and lived to tell the tale.

Lt Oakley, who was involved in survival studies at the Institute of Naval Medicine, estimated it could have taken 15 years to evaluate and publish all the scientific work carried out on the expedition.

Airman Jed Corbett, 25, from Soberton Heath, was the expedition photographer and thought it was all over when he fell from a rope and saw an avalanche rushing towards him.

Trapped with a 70lb pack on his back, he took pictures and was more than a little relieved when the avalanche stopped just before it reached him.

He said: ‘We took gambles and got away with it.’