Transglobe Events 2022

Up, Down and Around

Date: Wednesday, 16 November 2022

Venue: Royal Geographical Society (with IBG), London

Time: Doors open at 6pm for a 7pm start

Price: £35 per ticket

Buy tickets for Transglobe Expedition Trust

It’s getting harder to think up new titles for our lecture evenings but with osprey and a sunken ship as well as Arctic tundra and Ethopian tropical forest, “Up Down and Around” seemed logical. As always we are extremely grateful to our speakers for sharing their stories. Charlie Walker set off on his travels across Arctic Russia never imagining that the country would so quickly be at war. Sacha Dench has been planning her flight with osprey for a number of years when disaster struck. Undeterred she has forged ahead with her plans. Julian Bayliss set off into an unexplored part of Ethiopia not knowing what he’d discover and John Shears went in search of Shackleton’s “Endurance” and found her 3,000 meters down. Another spectacular evening of adventure and entertainment.

Charlie Walker is an adventurer and writer from the UK. He specialises in long distance, human-powered expeditions to develop a more intimate understanding of some of the world’s most remote communities. Over his career, this focus has taken him to places as varied as the Tibetan plateau, the Mongolian steppe, the Congolese jungle, Arctic tundra, the highlands of New Guinea and numerous deserts in between. He has travelled over 50,000 miles by bicycle, foot, horse, raft, ski and dugout canoe. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, a 2021 Scientific Exploration Society Explorer Award winner, and a three-time recipient of the Transglobe Expedition Trust’s ‘Mad but Marvellous’ grant. His work has been featured on the BBC World Service, BBC Radio 4, The Sunday Times, The Daily Telegraph and Geographical magazine. He has also written two books: Through Sand & Snow, and On Roads That Echo. In mid February, with the support of TET, Charlie set out on his 1,000 mile winter ski trek in NE Siberia. The harsh climate was not the only hazard he encountered in northern Russia!

Sacha Dench is a pioneering conservationist, record-breaking adventurer and inspirational speaker. As the UN Ambassador for Migratory Species and founder of Conservation Without Borders, Sacha’s real-world experiences offer a unique insight into sustainable procurement. Named ‘The Human Swan’ for her flight, supported by TET, from the Russian Arctic to the UK by paramotor to help save the migrating Bewick’s swan, the focus of her expeditions has widened. By using the birds eye view of the world Sacha focuses on the big issues of today. After her flight across the arctic, and losing her family home to the Australian bushfires, climate change research and solutions are an integral part of all of her expeditions and research. On her 2021 flight around the UK in an electric powered paramotor as part of the UN Climate Conference COP26, she was badly injured but, in Joanna Lumley’s words, ‘the human swan has arisen as the human phoenix’ and despite still having one leg in a frame, she and her team have set off on their next expedition following the migration of the osprey from Scotland to Ghana.

Julian Bayliss is a Conservation Scientist, an Ecologist, and an Explorer. For more than 25 years he has worked extensively across Africa. His work on Protected Area management and the creation and conservation of new protected areas ranges from forests to wetlands. He has also organised and led over 50 scientific expeditions in Africa and discovered over 20 new species to science. In May, with the support of TET, Julian set out to an area of tribal lands which have resisted modernisat ion on a reconnaissance of a little-known forested plateau in SW Ethiopia – the forest with no name!

John Shears is a veteran polar geographer and expedition leader. He has over 30 years of experience of working in both Antarctica and the Arctic, first with the British Antarctic Survey, then the Scott Polar Research Institute at the University of Cambridge, and now running his own polar consultancy business Shears Polar Limited. Since 2017, John’s polar expeditions have focussed on the search for the wreck of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s ship Endurance in the Weddell Sea, Antarctica. A quest called “the impossible search for the greatest shipwreck”. He was the leader of the Weddell Sea Expedition 2019, which failed to find the ship and lost an autonomous underwater vehicle during the search. But returned in 2022 as the leader of the international Endurance22 expedition, and succeeded in making polar history with the dramatic discovery of the Endurance at a depth of over 3000m at the bottom of the Weddell Sea on 5 March 2022. John is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and a Chartered Geographer, and has worked closely with the Society on many polar educational projects. He was awarded the Polar Medal by Her Majesty the Queen in 2019 in recognition of his “outstanding achievement and service to the United Kingdom in the field of polar research”.

Current Grant Winners

  • Sarah Outen’s expedition London to London via the World. After setting out from London on 1st April 2011, Sarah has been kayaking, rowing and cycling her way around the world   Although a solo expedition, this is to be a shared adventure – bringing the expedition to classrooms, offices and homes right around the world.
  • In October 2016 Olly Hicks intends to complete his original goal and will set out from Tasmania to row solo around the world. Follow his preparations and epic journey here at

Previous Grant Winners: –

  • 5000 Mile Project – Katharine and David Lowrie completed an epic expedition to run the length of South America in a year for the continent’s wild lands and wildlife. They ran without support, whilst pulling a trailer they made from recycled materials.  As well as running, the 5000mileproject helped to connect people from around the world to South America’s precious remaining wildernesses, to illustrate how daily choices affect these areas and how with small steps everyone can conserve them. They have created the “Big Toe Classroom”, which is full of information on the continent and provides a real-life expedition for schools in the UK and around the world to get involved in. In between arduous running sessions, they present to schools in South America about the project, the local habitats and importance of functioning ecosystems. They also carry out a daily bird census and collect data on the wildlife and habitats they pass, reporting their findings to local and international conservationists.
  • Huautla Expedition  – In 2012, Chris Jewell and his team of Cavers and Cave Divers began a two year project to explore further than anyone has before in the Huautla Cave System in Mexico.  Using state of the art technology the team spent many weeks underground, diving through flooded cave passages, camping in the dry passage beyond and exploring the unknown cave. An expedition like this is a fantastic example of ingenuity, perseverance, determination, team-work and triumph over physical elements.
  • Kaspersky One Trans-Antarctic Expedition – Felicity Aston embarked on a 1700km, 70-day ski in order to become the first woman in the world to cross Antarctica alone. By completing the journey Felicity also became the first British woman to traverse Antarctica. Felicity set out from her start point on the Ronne Ice Shelf on 12th November 2011 and arrived on the Ross Ice Shelf (via the Pole) on 31st January 2012. Follow her story here
  • Stewart McPherson’s project, Conservation in Britain’s most remote Overseas Territories, aims to raise public awareness of Britain’s Overseas Territories (initially Montserrat, Ascension Island, Saint Helena, Tristan da Cunha and the Falkland Islands) and through detailed investigations, provide management solutions for the unique conservation challenges they face today. The findings of this research have identified conservation priorities and common strategies for local governing bodies to help secure a sustainable future.
  • The Trans-Papua Expedition went to explore the historic inter-tribal trade connection between the Papuan interior and its coastlines. In the first complete crossing of Papua’s width – from the River Noordoost to the mighty Mamberamo River – the 2 man team travelled on-foot and by kayak. They will map and uncover the sources of the island’s greatest rivers and answer one of Papua’s enduring mysteries: How, long before European exploration, did Papuan products make it out of the highland interior to mainland Asia?
  • The Derewo Descent – a kayaking expedition with a primary aim of exploring previously unvisited upland gorges of Papua’s remote river system. The 3 man team descended the rivers in an expedition that tested both physical skill and determination while encountering new landscapes and people.
  • The Wild Camel Protection Foundation for survey of the critically endangered Bactrian Camel and their 2011 expedition to the Taklamakan Desert, Xinjiang Province, China. John Hare and Chinese scientists went in search of these elusive animals which were previously not known to exist in this region.
  • Adrian McCallum,Tristam Kaye and Hugh Bowring for their parts in assisting in the organisation and operations of The Coldest Journey, the first attempt at crossing the Antarctic continent during the southern winter.
  • Endure Greenland Crossing – Ben Thackwray and Ian Couch’s attempt at a record-breaking ultra-lightweight crossing of Greenland on skis.
  • Walking The Amazon Ed Stafford’s remarkable 2 year expedition to walk from the Peruvian Pacific coast, over the Andes and along a tributary to the Amazon estuary and the Atlantic coast.

The Scientific Exploration Society for a biodiversity research expedition in Ethopia to the Beschillo and Blue Nile gorges which included the first descent of the Beschillo River.