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Watch as Ernest Shackleton’s lost ship Endurance is found after Dan Snow launched search in Dundee

A lost ship captained by the pioneering sailor Ernest Shackleton has been found 107 years after sinking in the Antarctic.

Endurance was crushed by ice and sank in 1915 – but explorers have now managed to locate it and film the wreckage.

The ship was captained by Sir Ernest Shackleton on his second mission to the Antarctic, after his successful voyage onboard the Dundee-based RSS Discovery.

Staff at Discovery Point tweeted on Wednesday to describe the find in the Weddell Sea as “emotional”.

The Endurance22 team was accompanied by historian Dan Snow, who had launched the expedition to locate the ship in Dundee earlier this year.

Writing on Twitter after the find was announced, Snow said: “Endurance has been found.

“Discovered at 3,000 metres on March 5 2022, 100 years to the day since Shackleton was buried.

“After weeks of searching Endurance was found within the search box conceived by Mensun Bound, only just over four miles south of the location at which its captain Frank Worsley calculated it had sunk.

The stern of the wreck of Endurance, Sir Ernest Shackleton’s ship
The stern of the wreck of Endurance, Sir Ernest Shackleton’s ship. (Falklands Maritime Heritage Trust/National Geographic)

“The entire team aboard #Endurance22 are happy and a little exhausted.

“Nothing was touched on the wreck. Nothing retrieved. It was surveyed using the latest tools and its position confirmed. It is protected by the Antarctic Treaty. Nor did we wish to tamper with it.”

He says the wreck is “coherent” and in an “astonishing state of preservation”.

The expedition’s director of exploration says footage of Endurance shows it to be intact and “by far the finest wooden shipwreck” he has seen.

‘Polar history’ as Sir Ernest’s lost ship is found

Mensun Bound said: “We are overwhelmed by our good fortune in having located and captured images of Endurance.

“It is upright, well proud of the seabed, intact, and in a brilliant state of preservation. You can even see ‘Endurance’ arced across the stern, directly below the taffrail.

“This is a milestone in polar history.”

Sir Ernest’s voyage was cut short after Endurance was crushed by ice.

It will now be protected under the Antarctic Treaty, ensuring that while it is being surveyed and filmed it will not be touched or disturbed in any way.

Dr John Shears, the expedition leader, says his team had made “polar history” by completing what he has called “the world’s most challenging shipwreck search”.

He added: “In addition, we have undertaken important scientific research in a part of the world that directly affects the global climate and environment.

“We have also conducted an unprecedented educational outreach programme, with live broadcasting from onboard, allowing new generations from around the world to engage with Endurance22 and become inspired by the amazing stories of polar exploration, and what human beings can achieve and the obstacles they can overcome when they work together.”

Dundee links remembered as ice explorers prepare to search for Shackleton’s stricken ship the Endurance

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