23 February, 2005

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Two former colleagues were among those honoured recently by the Antarctic Place-names Committee (APC). David Wynn-Williams and Kirsty Brown both had areas of the British Antarctic Territory named after them.

Wynn Knolls are immediately west of the Jane Col research site on Signy Island where David Wynn-Williams, a terrestrial microbiologist, had worked for much of his time in the Antarctic. His research focused on assessing the capability of microbes to adapt to environmental extremes. At the time of his death in 2002 David was at the forefront of international research in astrobiology.

Kirsty Island is one of the Lie Islands, in Ryder Bay, south-west of Rothera Research Station. It is named after Kirsty Brown, who was a Rothera marine biologist. Kirsty was researching the influence of iceberg disturbance on seabed fauna when she died in 2003. The island is a major feature in the area in which she used to SCUBA dive.

The APC is the government committee that approves all names for British use within the British Antarctic Territory, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands. New names are generated when the need arises, usually for research, publication and navigational purposes. The website includes lists of the latest additions, guidelines for choosing names and proposal forms which can be submitted to the Secretary.

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