Recipients of the 2014 Land Rover Bursary, the Grand Alpine Tour, led by PhD student Mark Allan, completed a 10,000 km journey across the European Alps last summer to investigate landslides above glaciers.The team - Mark, Dr Michael Lim and Thomas Shaw (all Northumbria University) -have returned to the Society this month to exhibit some of their early findings
From Monday 9 to Friday 13 February high-quality imagery showcasing highlights from the journey, as well as initial results, including 3D models, will be on display in the Pavilion. The exhibition is free for all to explore, with doors open between 10.00am and 5.00pm.
The original Grand Tour was a journey across Europe and an educational ‘rite-of-passage’ for young gentlemen of the 16th and 17th centuries. Following in the footsteps of some of these early explorers, scientists and artists, the team of three geographers from Northumbria University aimed to further our understanding of the magnitude, frequency and spatial distribution of landslides above thinning and retreating glaciers in the Alps.
Their journey took them through breath-taking landscapes; from the UK to Italy, through France, Austria, Switzerland and Slovenia. Among other methods, the team flew an unmanned hexacopter above glaciers and mountain slopes to capture hundreds of aerial photographs, which are being combined to create highly detailed 3D models which, when compared with repeat models created over various time periods, will document change in the landscape. The team are helping to pioneer this innovative technique as a new method for monitoring landscape change.
Mark Allan returned to the Society in January to present some of their findings in a Monday night lecture, which is now available for Fellows and members to watch online.
The Land Rover Bursary
Since 2007 the Society, on behalf of Land Rover, has awarded an annual Bursary of up to £30,000 and the use of a Land Rover Defender 110 for a journey with a geographical purpose that aims to push the team beyond their usual limits and boundaries.
Projects supported in the past have varied hugely in topic and destination, from a journey tracing the coastline of projected sea level rise, to chasing the onset of winter across Europe and Siberia.
The annual deadline for applications is 30 November.
Find out more