The result of a partnership programme between St Helena Government, Enterprise St Helena, the St Helena Community College, and Stephenson College in the UK, saw ten students awarded with Edexcel BTEC Higher National Certificates (HNC) and Higher National Diplomas (HND) in Construction and the Built Environment at a presentation held at Mantis St Helena yesterday, Thursday 15 February 2018 (see photo attached).

Councillor Lawson Henry gave opening remarks on behalf of ESH. He said:

“St Helenians are very talented with many developing their skills and craft over many years, learning from others in the community. The Board and team at ESH wanted to recognise those skills and talents and support those on-Island by giving them access to opportunities for appropriate qualifications. That is how this programme came about.”

The Principal and Director of Stephenson College, Dr Nigel Leigh, then gave a heart-warming speech in which he spoke about the friendship and respect between Stephenson College and St Helena. He praised the partnership programme and said the College was honoured to have been part of this successful venture. He gave admiration for the dedication and quality of work produced by the students on the course and said it stood to prove the Island’s hunger for knowledge and thirst for development. He encouraged the continuation of the partnerships in future to educate Saints and enrich the lives of all on-Island.

Certificates were then presented to the ten students – Len Coleman, Nico Ellick, Darren Francis, Ian Gough, Theron Henry (absent), David John, Merrill Joshua, Mark Plato, Devlin Yon, and Peter Young – by Dr Nigel Leigh and Governor Lisa Phillips.

The courses represent either the first or second year of a Degree programme and will now enable the students to apply for memberships of the various International Construction Institutions such as the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), the Institute of Architectural Technicians (IAT), the Institute of Civil Engineers (ICE), the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB).

Following the presentation, ENRD’s Head of Technical Services, David Goodrick, who played a key part in setting up the partnership programme, praised the students for their achievements.

David said:

“This project has shown me the power of positivity. Positive people in a positive environment can achieve great things. I’m sure the students will carry this positivity forward with them for the rest of their lives and use this experience as proof that they can achieve anything they set their minds to.”

#StHelena #ESH #SHCC #StephensonCollege #StudentGraduation #SaintSuccess

16 February 2018


Executive Council will meet on Tuesday, 20 February 2018, at 9.30am in the Council Chamber, with the following Open Agenda items:

  • Application for Outline Development Permission to Alter and Extend the Existing Court House, Jamestown
  • Confirmation of Open Session Minutes – 6 February 2018

These papers (ExCo Memos) will be available online at the following link:

Members of the public who would like to view hard copies of the ExCo Memos should contact the Clerk of Councils, Lydia Buchanan, at the Castle on tel: 22470 or via email:

Elected Members serving on Executive Council are Councillors Anthony Green, Lawson Henry, Christine Scipio-O’Dean, Derek Thomas and Russell Yon.

Councillors Cruyff Buckley and Cyril Leo will be temporary members of Executive Council for this meeting whilst Councillors Henry and Green are off-Island on overseas business.

Non-voting members of ExCo are Chief Secretary, Roy Burke, Financial Secretary, Dax Richards, and Acting Attorney General, Sara O’Donnell.

#StHelena #ExCoMeeting /

16 February 2018

Over the past few years, St Helena’s schools have struggled at times to find sufficient qualified teaching staff.  As a result, considerable efforts have been invested in identifying and developing potential teachers.  The Education & Employment Directorate is proud to share the achievements of its Teacher Trainees.

Robyn Sim

Robyn started her career as a teacher here on St Helena in 2013 where she initially worked as a Teaching Assistant and then enrolled on the local Initial Teacher Training Programme.   After completing a year’s training on-Island, Robyn was given the opportunity to continue her studies in the UK and work towards becoming a UK Qualified Teacher.

Robyn began her journey in September 2014 studying towards a Foundation Degree in Early Years with the University of Hertfordshire. This involved completing modules such as Legislation & Legal Responsibilities, Developing Professional Practice, Early Years Frameworks – Principles into Practice and Approaches to Research.  Whilst studying, Robyn also worked as a Teaching Assistant in a Special Educational Needs (SEN) school for pupils with moderate learning difficulties – this has given her a wealth of experience of working with children with SEN.  Another requirement of this course involved volunteering in different Nursery settings and visiting many children’s workforce settings to gain vital experience and practice, and helping to link theory to practice. In undertaking this foundation course Robyn has gained a wealth of knowledge and experience which she can continue to use as her career progresses.

After passing the Foundation Degree, Robyn enrolled on the final year of the B.Ed. Primary Degree. In order to gain direct entry onto the course from the Foundation Degree, she had to have a successful interview and pass Maths and Literacy Skills tests to be offered one of the few places.  Robyn achieved these requirements and successfully enrolled on the B.Ed. Primary Degree.

The B.Ed. Primary Degree focused on preparing individuals for their first year of teaching and was very practical based. Modules covered focused on Developing Professional Practice, English across the Curriculum, How to become an Outstanding Maths Teacher and Developing a Creative Curriculum. These modules focused highly on identifying the type of teacher one wished to be by establishing the individual’s core values and beliefs.  During her final year, Robyn was required to complete one term of school-based training, teaching 80% of the class timetable in a Year 1/2 class which allowed her to gain essential experience and practice of teaching, planning, working with adults and parents, and meeting the individual needs of the pupils under guidance of allocated mentors.

Robyn was successful on this course and graduated gaining a B.Ed. Degree in Primary Education on 9 September 2017 at St Albans Abbey. Robyn is currently working in the UK to gain further teaching experience and to work towards completing her induction year as a Newly Qualified Teacher.

Robyn said:

“My first term has been exciting but challenging due to the new changes with Nursery Schools making it possible for children to remain in schools for 30 hours per week rather than 15. However we are all getting used to the new arrangements and were excited to prepare for the school Christmas celebrations.

“Thank you to the Education Directorate, my mentor, Mr Brian Fredericks, and everyone who has supported me in the last three years. They have been three challenging years but definitely rewarding.”

Local Teacher Training

In October 2016, four Teacher Trainees – Andrew Yon, Shannon Henry, Roberta Thomas and Chloe Thomas – all embarked on studies with the Open University as part of a new two-year local Teacher Training Programme. This programme offers internationally accredited training to local candidates and allows them rapid progression in the Scheme of Service for teachers.  Trainees studied towards the Certificate of Higher Education in Education Studies (Primary) which involved studying the modules Learning & Teaching in the Primary Years and Introduction to Childhood Studies and Child Psychology.

The Directorate is proud to report that the entire 2016 cohort have successfully completed and passed these modules. They are currently completing the accredited professional training that forms the second year of their programme.

Two current Teacher Trainees – William Knipe and Keeley Yon – started their studies on this course in October 2017.

International PGCE

The Directorate is also able to offer for the first time the opportunity to gain an International Postgraduate Certificate in Education through distance learning.  Gareth Drabble started his studies towards gaining this certification in January 2018.   Gareth previously completed a first degree in Networking while studying in the UK and currently teaches IT at Prince Andrew School.

Director of Education & Employment, Shirley Wahler, said:

“We are very proud of the achievements of these talented young Saints.  Some of them are already making valuable contributions to our schools, and we look forward to their future contributions as well.  It is very gratifying to see such success in our efforts to ensure a sustainable and professional teaching cadre.”

#StHelena #Education #Achievements #Teachers


16 February 2018

On Saturday, 3 February 2018, shock absorbers from two training vehicles were stolen from the Fire Station, Ladder Hill.

As a direct result of information from members of the public, a warrant was executed and a male arrested on suspicion of theft. The stolen property was recovered and the male charged and bailed to Court.

Detective Inspector, David Honan, said:

“I would like to thank the public for their assistance; their information led Police directly to the offender. It is important that the Fire & Rescue Service, which serves all of the community, is able to constantly train and perfect their skills; any interruption to this training is to be regretted.

 “I would like to recognise Police Constable Mark Dalton who conducted a thorough investigation into this matter, recovering the stolen items, and gathering the necessary evidence. It is really satisfying to see officers putting recently gained skills and knowledge to good use.

 “I would encourage all on St Helena to support the Police Directorate, help them to help you. If you have any information about individuals committing crime in our midst then please come forward.”

#StHelena #StHelenaPolice


14 February 2018

The Economic Development Committee (EDC) held a meeting on Thursday, 8 February 2018, to discuss a number of items.

A paper was presented by the Agriculture & Natural Resources Division (ANRD) in the form of a proposal for amendments to fees and charges for veterinary services – this was agreed by the Committee. From 1 April 2018, new fees will be charged for small animal clinic procedures, a higher fee for some surgical procedures and a change in fees for the routine veterinary programme (where animals are treated for parasites) from a ‘per animal’ fee to a ‘herd or flock size’ fee.

The Committee provided a mandate to ANRD to progress amendment to three pieces of existing legislation. Under the Bees Ordinance, there will be a requirement for owners of bees to provide a return for bees as part of the Island’s bi-annual animal census. Revision to the Dogs & Cats Ordinance will prohibit owning or importing four specified dog breeds (and their crosses) into St Helena. The Protection of Animals Ordinance requires thorough revision to improve the welfare of animals on-Island and ensure this is respected and thereby prevent undue suffering.

ANRD advised that the Resilience Forum had agreed to lift the ban as soon as possible for all raw bird products originating from South Africa except those from ostriches.

Enterprise St Helena (ESH) delivered a report for the month of December. During December, the Business Development Team (BDT) promoted the changes that had been made to funding regimes following the review of policies. This now enables the purchase of second hand assets, services offering goods for hire, and the purchase of vehicles and assets used in support of agricultural production.

In addition, a consultant from Colliers International spent a week on the Island in December 2017 undertaking field work for the development of the Jamestown Seaside master plan. An extensive programme of meetings and stakeholder consultations were arranged. The draft master plan was submitted to the working group in January 2018. The presentation of the proposals used at public consultations is available on the ESH website:

Mr Chris Duncan and Mr Charles Ilako from the Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA) attended the meeting. Chris pressed the need for businesses to have business liability insurance to avoid significant business risk to them and recommended a number of options which Solomon & Company (St Helena) Plc could follow to make the process of obtaining the insurance easier.

#StHelena #EconomicDevelopmentCommittee #EDC

14 February 2018

The RMS St Helena, affectionately known as the RMS, made an emotional departure from St Helena on Saturday, 10 February 2018, following 27 years of dedicated service to the Island.

On Saturday morning at 9am, the current crew of the RMS, dressed in their respective uniforms, accompanied by the Scouts, Cubs, Beavers, Girl Guides, Brownies and Rainbows, paraded from the Canister to the Seafront in Jamestown. A large crowd of people followed the parade to the Lower Wharf, where they said their last goodbyes to the crew. Before the crew was ferried back to the RMS by the Gannet Three, the boat circled the harbour allowing the crowd ashore to give them a final cheer.

The goodbyes continued thereafter as passengers for the final voyage began embarking the RMS.

At approximately 2pm, a large crowd of spectators assembled at the Lower Wharf, and were treated to musical entertainment provided by the ‘Get Togethers’, ‘Dry Bottle Country Band’, Pilling Primary School and the ‘St Helena Singers’.  The crowd was encouraged to sing along to the well-known ‘My St Helena Island’.

At 2.45pm, all present witnessed the carrying of the 27ft ‘paying off’ pennant (marking the 27 years’ service of the RMS) by School competition winners, from the Customs Building to the Lower Wharf. The pennant was then presented to Captain Adam Williams by Director of St Helena Line, Mrs Kedell Worboys MBE.

Throughout the afternoon, a specially made model of the RMS funnel showered confetti onto spectators.

The RMS House Flag was also lowered signalled by the Sunset Post.

Before the Ship’s departure, a spectacular flotilla of boats, including jet skis, lighters and yachts, dressed with flags circled the RMS while the St Helena Fire & Rescue Service saluted her with a water arch before she weighed anchor. The RMS then made her way to Buttermilk Point, accompanied by the flotilla, before turning around and steaming past the harbour in full dress.

As the ship steamed past the harbour for a final time, she sounded her horn. Many spectators onshore waved banners and flags to bid farewell to the ship.

The RMS stopped at Lemon Valley to remove her flags and pennant before continuing her onward journey to Cape Town.

#StHelena #RMSStHelena #FinalFarewell #ThankYou


13 February 2018




St Helena has been successful again this year in securing two Darwin Plus Projects, worth £343,038, under the Darwin Initiative.

The Darwin Initiative is a UK Government Grants Scheme that helps to protect biodiversity and the natural environment in developing countries and UK Overseas Territories (OTs).

The two successful projects for St Helena are:

  • Improve biosecurity in the South Atlantic UKOTs through Pest Risk Assessments

This is a two-year project (2018-2020) that will develop Pest Risk Assessment (PRA) procedures and build capacity to use them for St Helena.

Head of the Agriculture & Natural Resources Division, Darren Duncan, explained:

“We are really pleased to be a partner in this two-year project and to work with the Centre for Agriculture & Bioscience International (CABI), based in Oxfordshire, UK, and other South Atlantic UK Overseas Territory (SAUKOT) project partners to address biosecurity capacity gaps, particularly with regards to prevention of new pests entering and becoming established on St Helena.”

  • Sustainable fishery management for the St Helena lobster population

This project will expand the Island’s knowledge of commercial lobster species ecology. It will review existing data, legislation and current management practices and make recommendations to ensure long-term sustainability of the lobster populations.

Annalea Beard from the Environment Management Division said:

“This project will build on the existing fisheries science research and monitoring programme to help establish an ecologically based assessment of lobster stocks, giving St Helena a fantastic opportunity to develop, establish and promote sustainable fishing practices locally, but also setting a good example globally.”

#StHelena # DarwinPlus #DarwinInitiative


13 February 2018



The main farewell celebrations for the RMS St Helena took place at the Seafront on Friday, 9 February 2018 – the day having been declared a public holiday by Governor Lisa Phillips.

A large crowd turned out to celebrate 27 years’ service of the RMS St Helena with many taking advantage of the limited free tickets to attend the RMS Open Day and visit the ship for the last time.

At the Seafront, many stalls were set up by local businesses selling RMS-related goods and souvenirs. The RMS St Helena also had their own stall selling RMS merchandise. The popular Shirley’s Ice Cream van kept children, and adults, cool with a range of sweet treats while a food bus provided eats. Amphibians was also on-hand, providing drinks from the bar and hot food.

Throughout the day, the crowd was kept entertained with live music from Route 66 whilst novelty sports, including the famous RMS Frog Racing, took place in front of the main stage.

At 6pm, prizes were presented for the Fancy Hat and RMS Memories Competitions. Scott George picked up first prize for his ship-themed hat made of newspaper. Children who won prizes in the respective RMS Memories categories were individually called on stage to receive their certificates and prizes from Governor Lisa and Captain Adam Williams. The presentation was followed by the unveiling of an impressive RMS cake, made by local baker, Steve Yon. The cake was later shared out amongst the public.

Speeches were then given by the Governor, Captain Williams, and Director of St Helena Line, Kedell Worboys MBE.

Live performances from Irish duo, Kudos, and local band, Island Politics, kept the crowd engaged late into the night.

The highlight of the performances came from the RMS Amateur Dramatics Society who performed ‘The Final Act of Stupidity’ much to the delight of everyone present.

The night was rounded off with a fireworks display which wowed the crowd followed by the releasing of many Chinese lanterns which lit the night sky above the RMS St Helena.

#StHelena #RMS #FarewellCelebrations #ThankYou

12 February 2018



Visiting Oral Surgeon, Joanna Rees, arrived at St Helena on Saturday, 10 February 2018. Joanna, who last visited the Island in February 2017, is here for two weeks providing an Oral Surgery Service to Island residents. 

As an Oral Surgeon, Joanna will be undertaking dental surgical procedures such as removing wisdom teeth and other impacted teeth and offering advice on other complaints relating to the mouth and jaw.

Joanna commented:

“It’s wonderful to be coming back to the Island and I am particularly looking forward to sharing my experiences with my husband Martin, who is travelling with me this year.”

 Director of Health, Dr Akeem Ali, added:

This is a repeat visit by Joanna to the Island. She will be working in close collaboration with the local Dental Officers to offer specialist surgical care for patients already identified by them.

 “Oral health and hygiene is a critical aspect of wellbeing and our local Dental Service continues to expand available services such as this as well as promote better oral health with children and adults alike. We can all do our bit to ensure that good oral health persists on the Island by avoiding sugary drinks, brushing teeth twice-daily as advised by the dentist and visiting the dentist for regular check-ups even when there is no pain or discomfort. This would help reduce the need for acute and emergency care in the future.”

 Joanna will depart the Island on Saturday, 24 February 2018.

#StHelena # OralSurgeryService


12 February 2018


The RMS St Helena, currently on her way to Cape Town, will return to the Island tomorrow morning, Monday 12 February 2018, at 6am due to an emergency onboard.

Following the necessary operations, the RMS will depart again on her final voyage to Cape Town.


11 February 2018