The Trust sends sincere condolences to the families of Rt Hon Paul East and Chris Hubbert.
Rt Hon Paul East visiting Shackleton’s grave on South Georgia Island in 2015. © AHT
Rt Hon Paul East CNZM QC
The Trust is sad to share that former Board Chair Rt Hon Paul East CNZM QC passed away in February 2023.
Paul joined the Board of Antarctic Heritage Trust in 2002 following a distinguished career in the legal, parliamentary and diplomatic services. He held a number of Cabinet posts during his political career including Minister for State Services, Defence, Corrections and Crown Health Enterprises; was a Leader of the House, served as the country’s Attorney General for seven years, and was later appointed the New Zealand High Commissioner to the UK.
Paul was a dedicated advocate for the Antarctic Heritage Trust throughout his time on the Board and as Chair, making a significant contribution in all areas of operations over 15 years of service.
Heritage conservation plans were underway for the Antarctic huts when he joined the Board, and during Paul’s tenure he saw the Trust team complete restoration work at Scott, Shackleton and Hillary’s Huts, and conserve thousands of important artefacts.
In 2007 Paul visited Antarctica with Sir Edmund Hillary to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Scott Base. Paul also had an opportunity to visit South Georgia with HRH Princess Anne in 2015 to mark the 100th anniversary of Shackleton’s death.
Paul retired as Chair of the Antarctic Heritage Trust in September 2016, and from the Board in May 2017. The Trust is incredibly grateful for the passion he displayed for Antarctica and our work, his thoughtful chairmanship, sage advice and the tremendous commitment he made to the Trust over the 15 years he was involved in our governance.
Our thoughts are with Paul’s family at this sad and difficult time.
The Trust also recognises with sadness the passing of long-time member Chris Hubbert in December 2022. Chris had a great love of the Antarctic, was inspired in life by heroicera explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton and had been a supporter of the Trust since 1996.