Polar Exploration Expert Hosts Series Of Lectures

Michael Smith, an author and journalist who specialises in the history of Polar exploration, will present a series of lectures in Waterford, Dublin and Cork this week.  

Michael Smith has written books on Polar history for adult audiences and children, lectured extensively and contributed to a wide range of television and radio programmes, newspapers, magazines and websites.

His latest book, "Great Endeavour – Ireland’s Antarctic Explorers" is the first single volume to salute Ireland’s unique link with Antarctic discovery, spanning 200 years of daring exploits in the frozen wastes. It includes many previously unknown stories and photographs of early explorers and discloses why so many Irish heroes, caught up Ireland’s fight for independence, were soon forgotten.

ThE book also contains the first comprehensive account of hardy 21st century Irish adventurers who trekked in the footsteps of the pioneers, including Mike Barry from Kerry, the first Irishman to walk overland to the South Pole. Other thrilling stories include Clare O’Leary, the first Irishwoman to march to the Pole and the courageous Mark Pollock, who overcame blindness to make the trek.

Michael’s first book, An Unsung Hero – Tom Crean Antarctic Survivor (2000) was short-listed for the Banff Mountain Book Festival 2002. His other books are: I Am Just Going Outside – Captain Oates (2002); Sir James Wordie – Polar Crusader (2004); Captain Francis Crozier – Last Man Standing? (2006); Tom Crean – An Illustrated Life (2006) was shortlisted for the Irish Published Book of the Year 2007. He has also written two books for children: Tom Crean – Iceman (2003); Shackleton – The Boss (2004).


  • Waterford Lecture (Wednesday, 17 Nov) - Lawlor's Hotel, Dungarvan. Lecture starts at 8pm.
  • Dublin Lecture (Thursday, 18 Nov) - Basecamp, Middle Abbey St., Dublin 1. Doors open at 7pm and lecture starts at 7.30pm.
  • Cork Lecture (Friday, 19 Nov) -  Cork Institute of Technology. Doors open at 7pm and lecture starts at 7.30pm.
Entry - €5 for the general public and FREE for Mountaineering Ireland members.

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