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‘From Birkenhead to Everest’ Climbers commemorated 100 years later – Birkenhead News

A series of thought-provoking events will mark the centenary of a 1924 Everest expedition in which two climbers with close Wirral connections lost their lives trying to reach the summit.

As part of Wirral Borough of Culture 2024, local residents and visitors are invited to a series of events throughout June remembering two intrepid explorers, George Mallory and Andrew ‘Sandy’ Irvine.

Jason Gooding, director of neighborhood services, said, “100 years ago, George Mallory and Sandy Irvine became pioneers in their attempt to climb Mount Everest. Sadly, both disappeared and much debate continues to this day as to whether or not they reached the summit before perishing.

“We are really proud to recognize their achievements as part of the ongoing Year of Wirral as Liverpool City Region Cultural District, with local arts and heritage organizations getting involved. I hope the people of Wirral can be inspired by the brave story of these two local men during these special events.”

While Sandy Irvine was a native of Birkenhead, having grown up in one of the original villas around the historic Birkenhead Park, George Mallory spent time as a child in Birkenhead, where his parents lived at St Johns’ Vicarage, on Slatey fruit

Events specifically related to the commemoration of the 1924 British Everest expedition include:

  • A photography exhibition entitled ‘Sandy Irvine, from Birkenhead to Everest’, which will be held at the visitor center in Birkenhead Park. The exhibition will run from Saturday 1 June to Sunday 18 August and will feature a detailed account of Birkenhead-born mountaineer Andrew ‘Sandy’ Irvine and his position on the expedition.
  • The Williamson Art Gallery will present a lecture by Sandy Irvine’s great-granddaughter, historian Julie Summers. Julie will provide exclusive information about the life of her great uncle of Park Road South, Birkenhead, and his role in the historic expedition. This event will take place on June 6 at 6:00 p.m., the same date that Sandy Irvine and George Mallory left camp to make their final trek to the summit of Mount Everest.
  • The installation of two blue plaques for both family homes as a reminder of Andrew Irvine and George Mallory were last seen “going strong for the summit” of Mount Everest on June 8, 1924 – as their fellow climber Noel Odell testified , in his account of his last sighting of them that day on the summit ridge of Everest.

Julie Summers, historian and great-granddaughter of Sandy Irvine, said“I have long been fascinated by the story of my great uncle Sandy Irvine, as have many Everest enthusiasts around the world.

“So I am delighted to be taking part in Wirral’s celebratory events in this centenary year of one of climbing’s most enduring mysteries. I look forward to giving a talk at the Williamson Art Gallery with my own insights as a historian on Sandy Irvine. I would like to thank the people of Wirral for celebrating 100 years of this piece of local history.”

Julie Summers’ talk at Williamson is sold out.

For more on Wirral’s Borough of Culture 2024 events visit: Wirral Borough of Culture 2024 (visitwirral.com).

Mount Everest : Credit: Carsten.nebel – CC BY-SA 3.0
George Mallory: Unknown photographer
Andrew “Sandy” Irvine: Photographer unknown
Editing: Birkenhead News: (L-R) Andrew ‘Sandy’ Irvine and George Mallory

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