SAMS news room

Celebrating our legacies, heralding new beginnings

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Sir John Murray (1841-1914), who is regarded as the father of oceanography, was among the scientists on the HMS Challenger expedition (1872-76) that toured the world’s oceans conducting the greatest programme of soundings and samplings yet undertaken. Subsequently, Murray established the Scottish Marine Station at Granton (Edinburgh) on board an old lighter, the Ark, which was officially opened in 1884 and dedicated to research of the marine environment and its living inhabitants.

The Granton station was the founding event of an association that has persisted, adapted and expanded over 130 years. Records of the activities of staff and visitors of the association have been meticulously maintained as a continuous series, extending back to its first days in 1884, and can be seen here in our library.

The guest speakers at the 130th anniversary events are:
•    Anne Christine Brusendorff, General Secretary of ICES
•    Olav Sigurd Kjesbu, Director of the Hjort Centre for Marine Ecosystem Dynamics
•    and Dr Patricio Bernal of the International Union for Conservation of Nature, who is presenting the Newth Lecture titled, “Oceanography and ocean policy: What are the links?”

The Newth Lecture is SAMS principal annual seminar.

The 130th anniversary event was the brain child of SAMS director Professor Laurence Mee who sadly died suddenly and unexpectedly in August this year.

Acting director Professor Axel Miller said: “This event was driven by Laurence, demonstrating his passion for SAMS and our historical context. Our speakers were invited personally by Laurence and include close friends and colleagues of his.”

Professor Miller added that the day’s events would also include the formal launch of the Laurence Mee Centre for Society and the Sea. This is one of SAMS new Research and Innovation Centres and Professor Miller hopes that today will in time "take its own place in our historical narrative”.

The day will end with a ceilidh in Argyllshire Gathering, Oban.

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