News archive 2002
Ahoy there! War Studies Professor sets sail on Endeavour in BBC TV' s The Ship16 Aug 2002, PR 36/02
A King’s academic will be amongst the intrepid crew of the Endeavour who are about to be the subject of the new, ground-breaking BBC Two documentary series, The Ship.
The series will throw new light on historical and scientific aspects of Captain’s Cook's epic voyage of discovery in Australia and the south seas. Andrew Lambert, Laughton Professor of Naval History and Director of the Laughton Naval History Unit, established last year in the Department of War Studies at King’s College London, was among 41 volunteers who joined 15 working crew on the Endeavour - a perfect replica of Cook's original ship.
The BBC described Captain Cook’s original voyage as the 18th century equivalent of flying to the moon.
The series of 6 programmes will show the volunteers attempting to get to grips with the rigours of life on an 18th century tall-ship. These included an authentic 18th century diet, no external communications, no smoking, drinking or coffee and the absence of any personal space.
Award-winning documentary film-maker, Chris Terrill was on board with the crew to capture the insights and human dramas during the six week long voyage.
Also on board the ship were British and Australian historians together with scientific specialists including a botanist, botanical artist and astronomer.
Professor Lambert said of his time on board the Endeavour: “I learnt more about a square-rigged ship than any book could offer. More than this, the voyage was a priceless opportunity because it taught me the importance of the teamwork, small group loyalties and comradeship on Cook’s ship – when we worked aloft, we relied on each other.”
Such voyages, even in the modern age, are not without their perils, and Professor Lambert had to be airlifted off to hospital with pneumonia as the ship left Australian waters.
The Ship begins on BBC Two on Tuesday 20 August at 8 pm.BBC History website.
Notes to editors
Professor Andrew Lambert
Andrew Lambert studied for his MA and PhD at King's and returned to teach in the Department of War Studies in 1991. Awarded a personal chair in naval history in 1999, and appointed Laughton Professor of Naval History, and Director of the Laughton Naval History Unit in 2001, he specialises in 19th century history, strategy and naval warfare. Among his publications are The Crimean War: British Grand Strategy Against Russia (1990), The Foundations of Naval History, John Laughton, the Royal Navy and the English Historical Profession (1998) and War at Sea in the Age of Sail (2000) and Letters and Papers of Sir John Knox Laughton 1830-1915 (2002).
Professor Lambert is also the Honorary Secretary of The Navy Records Society which was established in 1893 by Professor Sir John Knox Laughton to publish original materials dealing with the history of the Royal Navy.
King's College London
King's College London is one of the oldest and largest colleges of the University of London with some 12,400 undergraduate students and over 4,700 postgraduates in ten schools of study. The College had 24 of its subject-areas awarded the highest rating of 5* and 5 for research quality, demonstrating excellence at an international level. It is in the top group of five universities for research earnings and has an annual turnover of over £300 million and research income from grants and contracts in excess of £87 million (2000-2001).
Melanie Gardner, Senior Public Relations Officer, King's College London, Telephone: 020-7848 3202 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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