A Llanelli couple, Jan and David Gordon, will be travelling to the top of the world this summer to visit  the icy wastes of  the North Pole.

They will be following in the footsteps of Victorian explorer, Sir John Franklin who led the ill-fated attempt to discover the North West Passage in 1845.  They plan to visit the graves of some of the Naval Ratings and Royal Marines who perished there and were buried in the permafrost of  Beechey Island .

Llanelli has a special relationship to the Franklin expedition in the person of Francis Dunn, R.N., Caulker's Mate, who lived with his father and mother in Heol Fawr, Llanelli.

Our present day travellers would like to take with them a small memento of Llanelli and place it at the North Pole as an act of remembrance.  They have contacted us at Llanelli Community Heritage to ask for suggestions as to what would be an appropriate item.

Of course, there are certain constraints, such as size, environmental and local laws applicable at the Pole, but some suggestions are that the token should be an item representing Llanelli in the 1840s, the time in which Francis Dunn lived here and said his final goodbyes to his parents and the town.

The Whitehall Vaults pub which many people will remember as Barnum's in Station Road was owned and run by Seaman Dunn's family. They opened the business with the proceeds of his Naval back- pay from Whitehall when he was officially declared dead in April 1854

For further reading see Llanelli's Lost Artic Explorer


These photographs of Jan and David's were taken in August 2012