Leading article: Frozen asset

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The Independent Online

If you're not relishing stepping out the front door today, spare a thought for Robert Falcon Scott. The UK Antarctic Heritage Trust would certainly like you to, as they are appealing for public donations to preserve Scott's wooden hut at Cape Evans on Ross Island.

These quarters, from which Scott planned the final leg of his expedition to the South Pole a century ago, are remarkably well preserved on the inside thanks to the tremendous cold. Everything is more or less as Scott and his team left it, down to the pats of butter. But unless the hut is protected on the outside from the build up of snow, it is in danger of collapse.

With a bit of luck, today's icy temperatures will generate sufficient empathy from the public to raise enough money to save the hut. It's certainly a worthy cause. For, although Scott might have been unsuccessful in his quest to reach the South Pole first, which of us couldn't use a little of his spirit on days like these?