Huw Lewis-Jones was one of the highlights of this year’s Hay Festival. He is a charming, lively, adverturing raconteur whose festival sessions are full of anecdotes and insider gossip about the 1953 Everest expedition and the characters who took part. Lewis-Jones worked closely with George Lowe before his death in 2013 and speaks warmly of Lowe’s humour and modesty. His talks bring to life the camaraderie and courage of the men on the expedition and his admiration for Lowe. This year we’re delighted to offer a very special lunch event with Lewis-Jones, Adventures on Ice.
Watch a clip of Lewis-Jones talking about ‘The Conquest of Everest’ and George Lowe.
Henry Wallop of the Telegraph attended the Hay session and wrote the following on the Telegraph blog: What perfect timing. On the 60th anniversary (well, the anniversary that the Queen was passed a note telling her the news, on the eve of her coronation) Huw Lewis-Jones gave an inspiring talk on George Lowe, the official photographer on the 1953 Everest expedition. “The third man”, who made it within 300 yards of the summit.
A few great details:
* The tiny Union flag attached to the pick axe — held aloft by Tensing in the iconic photograph — was taken from the British Ambassador to Nepal’s car.
* There is no photograph of Hillary at the top of Everest. Tensing didn’t know how to use a camera. And, as Hillary said, “the summit of Everest is not the place to teach him.”
* Jan Morris, the Times correspondent, is the last surviving person from the expedition team.