Could polar hero Wild have saved Captain Scott's life?


Yorkshireman Frank Wild was the unsung hero of the age of Antarctic exploration.

He was renowned for his survival skills, having been second in command during the epic struggle of Shackleton's Endurance expedition.

Wild was highly respected by Captain Scott, and had explored Antarctica with him on the Discovery expedition between 1901 and 1904.

But he turned down the chance to be with Scott on his ill-fated attempt to reach the South Pole in 1911-1912.

Wild refused, saying he was "too much the Navy man", but he did lend Scott the diary of how he got within 97 miles of the pole on the Nimrod expedition with Shackleton, Armitage and Adams.

Presenter Paul Rose speaks to historian Dr Huw Lewis-Jones who believes Scott might have reached the pole and survived if Wild, 'a born survivor', had been there to share his experience.

However, biographer Angie Butler thinks he may have perished along with Scott's elite team if he had been selected.

Frank Wild: Antarctica's Forgotten Hero is on Sunday, 22 April at 19:00 BST on BBC Two.

Stills are courtesy of the Scott Polar Research Institute and the family of Frank Wild.

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