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Building St Helena Airport

Built and operating

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We shape our buildings, thereafter they shape us.
Winston Churchill

Building St Helena Airport may have been the biggest single construction project in the island’s history

This page is in indexes: Island Structures, Island History, Island Detail

Building St Helena Airport Saint Helena Island Info

This page is about the building of our airport. You can also read about its operations.

NB: In the following you will see references to ‘Runway 20’ and ‘Runway 02’. These are the same physical runway (there is only one, running north-south), but are designated ‘02’ when approached from the south, and ‘20’ when approached from the north.

Below: A long time coming…Building the AirportAn Air Service at last!St Helena Airport GameHow will St Helena change?Read More

A long time coming…

Below: Investigations, but no planSHELCOThe 2005 announcement2011: Airport to be built on St Helena

Prosperous Bay Plain before airport construction 2007 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Prosperous Bay Plain before airport construction, 2007

The island may become an important place of call for aeroplanes, and those flying to and from the East may call at St Helena for ‘refreshment’, as did the old East-Indiamen, only the new ships of the air will stop to take in petrol and oil, instead of fresh water and beef.{a}

Investigations, but no plan

The first mention in the Records of an airport being considered for St Helena comes in October 1943, when the Union Defence Force of South Africa arrived to investigate the feasibility of building an airport here{1}. After four months of study they concluded the answer was: NO.

During March and April of 1973 a team led by R J Wainwright visited to undertake a new study, looking for a site to build a 2,100m runway. Deadwood Plain, Horse Point and Prosperous Bay Plain were all reviewed but weather and cost seemed to be serious problems with all the options considered and the project was abandoned{2}.

Test Flight 22 January 1985 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport{b}

In the 1980s David Parsons, a former colonial engineer, established an organisation called St Helena Airways. He sent a team out to St Helena to survey a proposed new alignment on Prosperous Bay Plain, and set about promoting his plan to build an airport and operate an air service to the UK. A test flight, featuring an RAF Hercules C130, took place on 22nd January 1985 (photo, right). Sadly nothing ever came of these proposals and St Helena Airways was wound up in the 1990s. Meanwhile on 30th November 1986 the Times in London published a plan to buy a four-engined flying boat from the Japanese Navy to serve St Helena. Nothing came of this plan either.

Until access to Saint Helena is radically improved, there can be no significant development of tourism or any other sustainable aspects of the economy{c}

SHELCO

SHELCO Logo Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

In 1999 a private company, the Saint Helena Leisure Corporation (‘SHELCO’), proposed to the British Government that it would build an airport on St Helena, at its own expense, in exchange for rights to operate its own tourist facilities on the island. Its plan was based broadly on the 1980s proposals of St Helena Airways, but SHELCO had serious financial backing and it seemed likely that SHELCO could actually make the vision a reality. Discussions with the Government of St Helena and DfID continued until 2002, but no agreement was reached and on 31st July 2002 the Government of St Helena issued the following press release:

The Department for International Development (DFID) has decided not to undertake further discussions in relation to any preliminary agreement with St Helena Leisure Corporation Ltd (SHELCO), in relation to their proposals for an integrated development for air access and related facilities on St Helena.

This decision was made after careful consideration by DFID of SHELCO’s proposals and the risks they involved for Government. Although DFID has confirmed its decision not to enter any preliminary agreement with SHELCO, it has confirmed willingness to continue discussions with SHG on the expressed wish of Saints to introduce air access to the Island, if possible. These talks will be taken forward during DFID’s visit to St Helena in September 2002.{d}

Is this as close as we will get? Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Is this as close as we will get?

Two years later on 14th April 2004 the Government of St Helena announced that it had formally abandoned the idea of any form of joint initiative involving private investors:

We have decided, in the light of our careful consideration of the four proposals, to abandon the concept of developing air access for St Helena as part of a cross-linked package of private-sector investment in which air access would be part-funded by proceeds from other private development. We now believe that this approach presents unacceptable levels of risk and uncertainty to both our government and the UK government.

However, this does not mean that we have given up looking for ways in which to provide air access to St Helena.

SHELCO retained an interest in St Helena. It bought (new) Porteous House - which it subsequently sold. It also bought a large area of land in Blue Hill and obtained planning permission to build a top-class leisure resort. At the time of writing construction has not begun.

The 2005 announcement

An official press release was issued on 14th March 2005 reporting the airport decision. It said:

The South Atlantic Island of St Helena, which is one of the most isolated inhabited islands in the world, is set to get its own international airport. The airport, which should be ready to accept flights by 2010, is expected to provide a boost for the island’s economy. The Department for International Development (DFID) will provide funding, subject to satisfactory bids for a ‘design, build and operate’ contract and a rigorous environmental impact assessment. All private sector investor interest in St Helena will be considered on an equal footing.

You can hear Governor Clancy announcing the plan at a press conference held on on 14th March 2005 (right):

An ‘Air Access’ team was formed, and work began to select the ‘design, build and operate’(DBO) contractor.

In October 2008 it was announced that the Italian firm Impregilo had been selected:

Impregilo logo Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

St HelenA AIR ACCESS PROJECT - PRESS RELEASE
Impregilo/Arup/Serco Selected as Preferred Bidder

As advised in our press release of 16th September 2008, revised bids for the Operations Phase (PHASE II) of the airport project that we requested have been received from Basil Read and Impregilo.

The revised bids, along with the bids for the design and construction (Phase I), from both companies have now been fully evaluated by Atkins. The two tenders were evaluated against the three categories published in the 2007 Invitation to Tender, being:
a) Technical Knowledge and Skill;
b) Price and Completion Date;
c) Financial and Commercial Requirements

Atkins concluded that the tender submitted by Impregilo SpA offered the best overall value for St Helena, and we havetherefore selected Impregilo S.p.A. of Milan, Italy as the Preferred Bidder.

SHG/DFID have now invited Impregilo to enter into final negotiations to close out any outstanding issues. Final approval of the contract remains subject to Ministerial and Executive Council approval.

SHG/DFID have extended thanks to Basil Read for their efforts in responding to this tender process and for their full cooperation throughout. We will keep you updated on progress.
Sharon Wainwright - SHG Access Project Manager
Nigel Kirby - DFID St Helena Access Project Manager
16th October 2008

The ‘Pause’

Then in December 2008 the UK Government announced a ‘pause’ in the project. No official explanation was given but it was assumed that the 2008 world financial crisis was to blame. During this period our airport featured in a BBC Drama:

Angola invades St Helena

A BBC Radio 4 Radio Play, broadcast Friday 27th November 2009. Officially entitled ‘The Visigoths Are Coming…’, this is part of a series of plays by Jonathan Myerson depicting life inside the UK Prime Minister’s office, Number 10 Downing Street. In this edition, the Angolan Navy has occupied St Helena. After six days, the PM and the Angolan Ambassador are locked in talks to try to prevent the declaration of war. Interesting details emerge, which suggest that the 2009 ‘pause’ in St Helena’s airport project was behind the invasion… Good drama and a few amusing references to (then) contemporary political developments on and in regard to St Helena. More excellent BBC drama here….

The ‘pause’ continued until the UK General Election of May 2010, when the government changed and the Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition came to power.

2011: Airport to be built on St Helena

In 2010 the new UK Government began negotiations to find an new solution to the provision of an airport for St Helena. Much of this discussion was confidential but is known to have related to shifting more of the risk to the bidder rather than the buyer. As a result the contract was re-advertised with a closing date of 11th November 2010.

Basil Read logo Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

After considerable discussion with both Impregilo and Basil Read, it was announced in June 2011 that only Basil Read Pty Ltd had put in a bid for the project. Negotiations continued and on 3rd November 2011 the following announcement was made:

Airport to be built on St Helena

On 22nd July 2010, the Secretary of State for International Development, Andrew Mitchell, confirmed DFID’s willingness to finance an airport for St Helena on condition that:

  • an acceptable contract price is achieved;

  • the risk of cost and time overruns after the award of the contract is addressed;

  • the airport design using Engineered Material Arresting System (EMAS) is approved by Air Safety Support International: and

  • the St Helena Government undertake to implement the reforms needed to open the island’s economy to inward investment and increased tourism.

Since that announcement our Government has been working hard on the necessary reforms, not just to meet the Secretary of State’s condition, but to put in place a legal and policy framework that would allow us to make the most of the opportunities that any future airport would bring. These reforms are vital. Without them we would not be able to justify the investment in an airport. The September 2011 review of progress concluded that the reform process is substantially on track and that there are robust plans in place for ensuring that the work will continue. The report will be issued today.

We are pleased to announce that the Secretary of State’s conditions have now been met, and that we have today entered into a contract with Basil Read (Pty) Ltd in the amount of £201.5 million for the design and construction of the airport, an additional up to £10 million in shared risk contingency, and £35.1 million for ten years of operation. This represents a saving of more than 20% in real terms from the 2008 price, taking into account inflation and the value of the pound.

This is momentous news for St Helena. The airport will be the largest single investment ever made in our island. It is an expression of confidence by the UK Government in St Helena’s future. It will give us the best chance we will ever have of reversing the economic decline of the last 50 years. Saints currently overseas will be encouraged to come back home and contribute to a growing economy. Getting on and off the island will be easier, quicker, and more convenient for everybody.

In the short term it will create new jobs, not only on the airport construction itself but also in supporting industries. The airport will also encourage development of the tourism infrastructure that we will need to accommodate new visitors to our island. New jobs will allow Saints to return to St Helena and to their families.

The airport will inevitably bring changes, and we will need to work together to make sure that these are changes for the better. Working closely with the UK Government, SHG is committed to ensuring that St Helena gains maximum benefit from this investment.

The DFID Project Manager for the airport will visit St Helena in January and we will use this as an opportunity to talk with you in your local communities about the airport and the future.

Lastly, I would like to pay tribute to Sharon Wainwright{3}. Her dedication to this project, and her resilience in the face of the many and significant difficulties experienced in bringing it to fruition cannot be measured and is something to which we can all aspire. I would also like to give special thanks to Clare Harris for her unstinting work through the years, stepping up after the loss of Sharon, and helping to deliver this outcome.

Governor Mark Capes{e}

Building the Airport

Below: ConstructionPhotographsAirport Name and LogoComairTest FlightsOpening indefinitely postponedPlans for a Scheduled Commercial Air Service, 2017‘Category C’The Future of the ‘Bradleys Camp’Not without incident…When did the airport actually open?

Construction

MP Glory 4 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Building the airport was a logistical nightmare. At the start of construction St Helena had access only by sea, and posessed few natural resources. To quote Basil Read, in a 2012 interview published on airport-technology.com:

Almost everything we require for the project has to be shipped the 2,000km to the island. The only main resources we get from the island are personnel, water, rock, housing and some food supplies. Around 70,000 tonnes of goods have to be shipped to the island, including 20 million litres of diesel, 20,000 tonnes of cement, 5,000 tonnes of explosives and more than 100 items of construction plant. All goods that do not form part of the works have to be shipped back to Walvis Bay. It is a big logistics challenge.

Basil Read chartered a 78m long ocean-going landing craft type vessel that could carry around 2,500 tonnes of cargo, including one million litres of fuel below decks. The ship, the ‘MP Glory 4’, sailed on a 22-day cycle from Walvis Bay, Namibia, to St Helena and back. (She made her final call at St Helena in October 2015.)

But before the ship could dock at St Helena they first had to build a slipway… And the dock was in the north-west corner of the island, but the airport site was in the north-east, so a ‘haul road’ had to be constructed to connect the two. All this before any work on the airport proper could begin.

The haul road route Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
The haul road route

In the early stages of construction the project was largely internal. Much happened, but all either in Rupert’s Valley (expanding the island’s fuel storage facility to hold aviation fuel) or out at the airport site, with very little impact on the rest of the island other than the sky to the north west being lit up at night (the project worked in shifts, 24 hours-a-day).

The largest single task on Prosperous Bay Plain was levelling the site and filling of Dry Gut, a watercourse that ran across the intended line of the runway. Small hills on and around the Plain were dynamited and the spoil pushed into the Gut. As scheduled, on 4th September 2014 it was announed that the filling of Dry Gut was now complete after 22 months of work. The fill was just under 120m deep and contained 7,612,255m³ of material (450,000 truckloads; 22,000m³ per day).

The Final Blast

Final construction blast after three years Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

The dust has settled on three years of explosions on St Helena’s airport construction site: the final rock blast of the entire project took place on Prosperous Bay Plain at 5.20pm on Friday 20th March 2015.

It achieved its objective, with 975kg of explosives yielding about 3,700 tonnes of rock near the site of the navigational directional beacon that will help guide aircraft towards the runway. The slopes of the hillside will be safer as a result.

Blasting supervisor Alan Hudson and his team have been praised for the part they have played in moving more than 10million metres³ of rock since work began.

Most of it was ferried, truckload by truckload, into Dry Gut to create a level area long enough for the runway. Explosives were also used to clear the route of the access road up from Rupert’s Bay.

A total of 383 controlled explosions have taken place for the airport project. The number of misfires and safety incidents was: none.{f}

Airport from GoogleEarth™ Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Airport from GoogleEarth™

Construction of the runway and the airport buildings continued. A commemorative stone was laid on 28th June 2014 with a brief ceremony and a time capsule was buried beneath the terminal building (The ceremony was troubled by high winds…).

The final section of the runway concrete was laid in July 2015. The completed runway stretches 1,950m across the old Dry Gut onto Prosperous Bay Plain, featuring 35,000m³ of concrete spread over 90,000m². The runway lights were first switched on two weeks later, at the end of July.

Throughout the early years of the project it was repeatedly announced that the project was ‘on time and on budget’. The airport would be completed in February 2016 and would open for commercial flights later the same month. But by May 2015 the date had changed - to 21st May 2016. This date held right until the opening was indefinitely postponed on 26th April 2016.

Photographs

Here are some photographs showing construction progress:

Before Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Before

September 2012 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
September 2012

Dry Gut Nov 2012 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Dry Gut, Nov 2012

December 2012 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
December 2012

January 2013 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
January 2013

September 2014 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
September 2014

March 2015 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
March 2015

September 2015 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
September 2015

October 2015 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
October 2015

November 2015 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
November 2015

January 2016 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
January 2016

February 2016 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
February 2016

March 2016 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
March 2016

August 2016 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
August 2016

October 2016 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
October 2016{g}

From the air 2017 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
From the air, 2017

Night View Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Night View{h}

Many were intrigued to know whose name the Airport would carry. Wainwright Airport, after Sharon Wainwright, who had a leading role in the work to meet the Secretary of State’s conditions for building the airport and who died suddenly in 2011? Capes International after Governor Mark Capes who announced it? Wirebird Airport after our only remaining endemic animal, The Wirebird?

The answer was given in the 51st Airport Update, reporting the decision by Executive Council: St Helena’s airport will officially be known as… St Helena Airport.

Apparently The name is strongly supported by the aviation industry and has instant recognition for passengers. There was talk of St Helena’s first and only airport being called ‘St Helena International’ but it was decided that the last word of that name would have been rather superfluous - if it wasn’t going to be an international airport, then to where else would the aeroplanes fly?

It was further announced on 16th June 2015 that the IATA Airport Code{4} for St Helena Airport would be ‘HLE’. However:

The IATA Airport Code should not be confused with the ICAO Airport Code. The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) also assigns a unique 4-letter code to airports, but this is primarily for use in flight operations (for example, for flight planning and air traffic control). The ICAO Code for St Helena Airport is FHSH.{i}

So are we all now clear?

 

Original St Helena Airport logo Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

The airport logo was first announced on 13th July 2015 (right). Initial reaction was not favourable, with people observing that the bird depicted does not look remotely like a Wirebird and questioning why an old sailing-ship image was used for a 21st Century airport…

We can always rely on SHG never to disappoint when it comes to displaying new examples of crass incompetence whilst simultaneously getting up everyone’s noses on the island. The Airport logo is unquestionably the worst piece of graphic design ever. It perfectly illustrates the kind of mess that results when unqualified people with no sensitivity or appreciation for visual devices are put in charge of a commission which never should have come within a hundred miles of them. Even worse is the pathetic verbiage in the accompanying Press statement which seeks to dignify and ‘explain’ the sad little drawing in high-flown language and pseudo-intellectual rubbish. The quite preposterous assertion is made that the ‘ship and bird are facing forward’ which ‘signifies St Helena moving forward into a new era of air travel’. Several things are wrong with this: for a start the ship and bird are drawn in profile and facing to the right, not ‘forward’. Would St Helena not be moving forward just as much if the bird and ship were facing to the left, ie going South to SHG’s new-found source of all prosperity and culture, the crumbling and violent Republic of South Africa? Why sell an airport with a ship in any case? Who thought it a good idea to rework the island’s heraldic crest as a toddler’s stick drawing? The ill-defined bird species best resembles some sort of sparrow in an uncomfortable posture of acute constipation; can the towering intellects of the Government press office explain what feature of St Helenian life that motif ‘signifies’?

Long may this dreadful abomination be the subject of jokes and derision. First off, why not a contest for the best interpretation of the three D’s which accidentally form the centrepiece of the drawing: How about ‘Dreadfully Dull Design’ or ‘Dove Dumping Downwind’ or ‘Desperately Dire Drawing’. Then we must not overlook the subtle clue to geographical location of the airport on the island: by cleverly incorporating some rusty bedsprings, the artist has clearly included a reference to Horse Point Tip, so plainly ‘signified’ as a mustsee point of interest for all who use the airport.

Give it up, Mr Ian Jones, if this is the best you and South Africa can do. This logo is a complete turkey… Now, there’s an idea: why not swap a turkey in for the constipated sparrow?

Yours in disbelief, Jamestown Reader

{j}

Criticism continued and on 24th July it was announced that the logo had been withdrawn and would be redesigned. The redesigned version (which was advised as final: No further changes will be made) was issued on 18th August 2015, as below:

Airport Logo Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Comair

On 27th March 2015 it was announced that flights to the new Airport would be run by Comair, on contract to the Government of St Helena. Flights would run to Johannesburg. There would be no service to the UK and initially none to Ascension Island, though after protests a monthly link was later added.

See Governor Capes making the announcement.

Test Flights

Below: The First PlaneSecond Test Flight & ASSI CertificationFinal test flight

The First Plane

A calibration flight - basically to test the airport infrastructure - was first scheduled for July 2015. In April 2015 this date was put back to September 2015 and eventually took place on 23rd. The flight revealed a number of issues with the airport infrastructure which needed to be addressed before the airport could be allowed to open, mostly in relation to the placement of navigational aids - beacons, etc. Although February 2016 remained the official airport opening date, it was admitted at this stage that the date could change. It was notable that in the November 2015 edition of ‘Airport Update’ was given only as in 2016.

First plane to land at St Helena 15th September 2015 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
First plane to land at St Helena, 15th September 2015{k}

The first plane in history to land on St Helena was a Beechcraft King Air 200, registration ZS-TAE, captained by Grant Brighton. It was booked to perform ‘calibration flights’, as part of the airport set-up process.

Traffic heading to the airport Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Traffic heading to the airport to see the first plane land

It arrived at 13:50h on Tuesday 15th September 2015, and was greeted by large crowds, keen to mark this historic occasion. Radio presenter Catherine Turner immediately announced:

I can definitely assure you that the plane has landed and is taxiing in to the airport. The first flight to land at St Helena ever landed at just after a quarter to two this afternoon. We can now genuinely say we’ve got an airport. I’m breaking up. It’s so exciting. When we looked out in the street [in Jamestown] the only thing we could see moving was a cat. I think everybody must be up there.

As another commentator put it St Helena stopped to see history fly in from the ocean.

On arrival Captain Brighton said:

It feels fantastic and we’re privileged to have flown the first plane to land on St Helena and to be part of your wonderful project.

First plane prepares to land at St Helena watched by large crowds Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
First plane prepares to land at St Helena, watched by large crowds

Download the Sentinel’s coverage (818.2Kb).

While most Saints saw the first landing as the beginning of a new future, one foreign media group headlined their coverage:

End of an era as first plane touches down on St Helena

The landing of a Beechcraft King Air 200 aircraft on the Island of St Helena has signaled the end of an era. […] Hundreds of the island’s 5 000 inhabitants were reportedly at the airport to witness the end to the island’s lost-in-time isolation.{l}

The calibration flights were completed on Wednesday 23rd September 2015 and the aircraft left two days later. Captain Grant Brighton commented:

We didn’t know what we were coming to but the runway was very good, solid and conditions were great. When we were first approaching the runway and experienced the turbulence you realise that no one has ever experienced that turbulence before. We probably did a dozen landings over the last nine days. The Island itself far exceeded our expectations. The people are incredible and there’s so much history here which you don’t understand until you research it or are here to see for yourself.

Here are some stills from a video taken onboard the calibration plane.

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 1 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 2 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 3 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 4 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 5 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 6 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 7 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 8 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 9 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 10 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 11 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Calibration Fligt Sept 2015 12 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Watch the full video on YouTube™:
{5}

Second Test Flight & ASSI Certification

A second, successful calibration took place in Mid-December 2015, which should have been followed immediately by a Certification visit from Air Safety Support International (the aerodrome regulator, ASSI), allowing the airport to open. But immediately after the second flight Government of St Helena issued the following announcement:

Following discussions between Basil Read, SHG, DFID and Air Safety Support International (the aerodrome regulator, ASSI), the visit by ASSI originally scheduled for the end of January 2016 has been rescheduled, and will take place at the earliest opportunity that suits all parties. The revised date will be announced once agreed.{m}

The ASSI team eventually arrived (by private jet - a Bombardier Challenger 300 business jet) on 10th April 2016.

Final test flight

Comair decided to give the airport a test-run, so flew in their Boeing 737-800 plane ZS-ZWG on Monday 18th April 2016. This was the actual aircraft which would serve the St Helena/Johannesburg route. It did one deliberate flypast, made one unsuccessful attempt to land (due to unexpected wind shear) and then finally touched down successfully. The cross-winds were reported to have been a problem.

The First Full-size Plane Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Opening indefinitely postponed

Below: Wind ShearPress Release, 10th June 2016Press Release, 28th July 2016Other FlightsA new hope?Press Release, 24th October 2016RAF Test Flight

Wind Shear

In the days following the Comair test flight it emerged that the wind shear problem encountered was actually serious. On 26th April the Government of St Helena issued the following press release:

St Helena Government today confirms that further safety and operational work is required prior to the Official Opening of the Island’s new Airport - and that this event has therefore been postponed. While this means that the Airport will not officially open on 21st May 2016 as originally planned, the safety of aircraft and passengers is of course paramount.

Last week the Island’s Air Service Provider, Comair, brought a Boeing 737-800 aircraft to St Helena on an ‘Implementation Flight’. The crew was able to gather real time information on the conditions at St Helena’s new Airport to assist in preparations for the commencement of scheduled air services. The objectives of the Implementation Flight included route assessment, airside operations, passenger and cargo handling, training and various aspects of safety at St Helena Airport. One outcome of the Implementation Flight has been the gathering of additional data on turbulence and windshear on the approach to Runway 20 (from the North). As a result of the data gathered and the conditions experienced, it has been decided that there is some additional work to be done in order to ensure the safe operation of scheduled passenger flights to and from St Helena Airport.

Windshear refers to a change in wind speed or direction, including a rapid change over a short distance. Difficult wind conditions, including turbulence and windshear, are encountered and safely managed at many airports around the world. All parties are now working hard to get a better understanding of how windshear conditions can be mitigated at St Helena Airport - assessing what measures need to be taken to ensure the safety of incoming aircraft landing on Runway 20.

Everyone involved remains committed to commencing commercial flights to and from St Helena at the earliest possible opportunity.

SHG - working with all parties - has taken the decision to postpone the planned Official Opening Ceremony until a solution is found to manage this important safety issue.The Official Opening of St Helena Airport will now take place at a later date which has yet to be determined.

The public will be kept informed as this work progresses.

As a result, operation of the RMS St Helena was extended - it had previously been due to finish service in June 2016.

The picture below shows the runway end - the aerodynamics of which are considered to be largely to blame for the wind problems.

Runway end Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Despite the wind shear problem, on 11th May 2016 the Government of St Helena further announced:

Another major milestone for St Helena Airport was achieved yesterday afternoon, Tuesday 10th May 2016, when Air Safety Support International (ASSI) issued an Aerodrome Certificate to St Helena Airport - having been satisfied that the Airport infrastructure, aviation security measures and air traffic control service complies with international aviation safety and security standards. This follows a final inspection of the Airport by an ASSI team last month.

Airport Certification is a significant achievement for any airport and even more so for a brand new airport. But it is an ongoing process. St Helena’s first Aerodrome Certificate is valid until 9th November 2016, at which point the Airport will need to be re-certified.

Airport Certification from ASSI and operational readiness are parallel processes - so wind shear and turbulence mitigation is a separate issue which does not affect the certification of St Helena Airport. The commencement of flights is an operational readiness issue.{n}

In other words, ASSI said the airport was OK to use, but because of the wind shear only smaller aircraft would risk landing.

Told you so…

It was later revealed that many Saints had predicted that the wind on Prosperous Bay Plain woud be a problem when the airport design was first announced, but their warnings were ignored…

Press Release, 10th June 2016

Press reports in the UK and elsewhere that describe St Helena Airport as being ‘scrapped’, ‘mothballed’ or ‘postponed indefinitely’ are incorrect. The situation remains as in our last update. This is that there are wind shear challenges on one runway (20, the northern approach) which means larger planes (eg. 737-800) cannot currently land safely. We are collecting wind data which will allow larger planes to land on this runway, but this will take some time.

Wind shear is a factor at several airports around the world, including London City Airport, where safe landings happen every day.

In the meantime, we are working hard to identify an interim flight solution that can land on our second runway (02, from the south). There is no wind shear on this second runway, but there is a tailwind. We have identified aircraft types which can land in these conditions, and airlines that have such planes - and we are now exploring the specific availability of aircraft with these airlines.

The Airport is certified and open, as demonstrated by the emergency medevac flight last Saturday when we were able to fly a sick baby to Cape Town.

Naturally, we will keep the public informed…as we have been doing.

Governor Lisa Phillips{o}

Press Release, 28th July 2016

Work continues to mitigate the challenges of wind shear at St Helena Airport. Safety remains paramount.

The Governor continues to chair weekly meetings of her senior technical and planning staff in order to understand the issues, make decisions, ensure the public are properly informed in a timely manner, and push forward all areas of work. These meetings began as soon as the issue of wind shear became apparent, and they continue. Councillors are represented at these meetings.

In terms of the northern and southern approach (Runways 20 and 02 respectively) we now have more than five months of weather data, plus reports of the experience of each of the nine flights that have so far operated various approaches into the Airport. Another aircraft is due to arrive tomorrow.

We are also installing more specialised equipment at the runway to monitor weather conditions and are employing computer and physical modelling to build a stronger picture of the conditions under which we will be asking aircraft to operate. All of this is building up a body of evidence.

Intensive work continues to consider an interim aircraft solution into the southern approach (Runway 02). A key issue here will be the level and frequency of tail wind speeds, given the constraints these can place on aircraft performance. We are gathering more data on both wind patterns and speeds to facilitate these considerations. Longer term solutions for using the northern approach (Runway 20) are receiving the same attention.

Meanwhile, medevac flights and smaller aircraft continue to operate at St Helena Airport, and the RMS extension is providing certainty of access for St Helenians.{p}

Other Flights

Since the postponment of the official opening the airport was actually used, but only by smaller aircraft. Basil Read flew staff to and fro and medivac flights airlifted to South Africa people in need of emergency treatment.

The first ever medical evacuation (‘Medevac’) flight left on 3rd June 2016 - a premature baby who returned to the island some months later, fit and well. It is believed the baby would not have survived if required to undergo the seven-day journey by sea, and thus became the first life saved by the Airport.

A new hope?

On 21st October 2016, Atlantic Star flew in an Avro RJ100 as a test, the plane being roughly midway in size between the small jets that seem reliably capable of landing and the Boeing 737-800 that had problems in April 2016. The plane landed using runway 20 and again using runway 02, both times with no difficulty.

This success was met with great jubilation on St Helena, giving people hope that with the right aircraft the airport could finally be put into full operation and a commercial air service begun. (See the Press Release from the Government of St Helena.)

Atlantic Star Avro RJ100 landing Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Atlantic Star Avro RJ100 landing{g}

Landing on runway 20 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Landing on runway 20{q}

Avro RJ100 parked Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Avro RJ100 parked{r}

The suggestion was that Atlantic Star could use a normal Avro RJ100 to provide an immediate twice-weekly service to Ascension Island (commencing early 2017), connecting with the RAF Flights to the UK and the Falklands, while awaiting the fitting out of an extended-range Avro RJ100 to provide a service to Cape Town and onto Johannesburg. The unmodifed Avro RJ100 could have been used immediately for Medevac - with fewer passengers it had the range to reach South Africa.

Press Release, 24th October 2016

SUCCESSFUL TECHNICAL STOP BY TRONOS

Avro RJ100 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

An Avro RJ100 jet aircraft, operated by Tronos Jet Maintenance and carrying two Atlantic Star Airlines personnel, successfully conducted a technical stop at St Helena Airport on Friday 21st October 2016 - as part of a delivery flight to a customer in Chile.

Arriving close to its schedule at 15.51hrs GMT, the aircraft performed a smooth landing from the south on Runway 02 and, after disembarking a few passengers, took off, completed a circuit, and performed an equally smooth landing from the north on Runway 20. The aircraft departed St Helena on Saturday afternoon at 14.29hrs GMT.

Positive cooperation between various teams enabled Tronos to gain the necessary approvals for this particular delivery flight. On board were 13 passengers, including Richard Brown and Aiden Walsh of Atlantic Star Airlines - one of a number of potential partners with an interest in operating regular flights to St Helena.

The Tronos flight will provide the Airport with additional real time data and a pilot’s report - all part of building a more comprehensive picture of the conditions under which we will be asking a scheduled air service to operate.

After departing St Helena, the Tronos flight was scheduled to call at Ascension Island, Brazil and Uruguay, finally arriving at Presidente Carlos Ibáñez del Campo International Airport, Chile - the final destination.

The arrival and departure of the aircraft attracted much public interest on St Helena, with landside facilities at the Airport made available for public viewing.

Intensive work continues to mitigate the challenges of wind shear at the Airport. Getting this right and putting in place a scheduled passenger service involves complex work and will take some time. Whilst the focus of everyone’s work is to resolve these issues at the earliest possible opportunity, safety remains paramount.{s}

RAF Test Flight

RAF C130 18th December Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
RAF C130, 18th December{t}

A further test flight, by the RAF using a C130, arrived in 18th December, the largest plane since the Comair Boeing 737-800 flight of 18th April which identified the wind shear problem. The pilots reported no problems.

Plans for a Scheduled Commercial Air Service, 2017

Following the Atlantic Star test, on 7th December 2016 the Government of St Helena launched a new air service tender for St Helena Airport.

The Tender was concluded in July 2017 and an agreement was reached with South African carrier SA Airlink. A contract to deliver a scheduled commercial air service to St Helena was announced on 21st July 2017:

SA Airlink logo Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

The Government of St Helena(‘SHG’) and SA Airlink (‘Airlink’) are pleased to announce that they have today signed an agreement for Airlink to provide a scheduled commercial air service to St Helena Island. Airlink will also operate a monthly charter service between St Helena and Ascension Island. This follows a period of contractual negotiations with Airlink.

Over the coming weeks, Airlink will be finalising regulatory approvals with the South African Civil Aviation Authority. This will include a proving flight to the Island.

Following the necessary approvals and proving flight, SHG will be able to announce the commencement date for a service between St Helena Airport and OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg, South Africa. It is expected that the monthly service between St Helena and Ascension Island will start soon after and operate on the second Saturday of each month.

There will be a stopover at Windhoek International Airport in Namibia before the flight continues to St Helena Airport. On the return route, the flight will stopover at Windhoek before returning to Johannesburg. On both legs of the journey there will be an opportunity for a connection at Windhoek to a connecting flight to and from Cape Town - this gives flexibility to passengers to go to either destination.

OR Tambo is an international hub and offers connectivity to over 80 airports around the world including to the UK and Europe. Further information about the planned service can be found in the attached Q & A.

The initial weekly service on a Saturday will be operated using an Embraer E190-100IGW aircraft in a two class configuration (Business Class and Economy) with the flight time from Johannesburg to St Helena being approximately 6hrs 15 mins including a half-hour stop in Windhoek.

The agreement with Airlink is for an initial term of three years from the date of the first flight.

SA Airlink aircraft Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

HE Governor Lisa Phillips said:

Undoubtedly, 2017 is the year of positive change for St Helena. Very soon a trip to South Africa, for St Helenians, will take a matter of hours rather than days. And we will be able to welcome tourists here in larger numbers and improve the economy of the Island and offer a better life for those who live here. My thanks to everyone who has worked so hard in getting to this point and also my thanks for the funding we received to enable it to happen. I am confident the future is a bright one.

Airlink’s CEO and Managing Director, Rodger Foster, added:

We are delighted to have reached this milestone and we are extremely excited to be preparing for the proving flight and to the inaugural flight shortly after. Airlink is confident that our Embraer E190 ETOPS certified aircraft is most suited to the demanding environmental conditions prevalent at St Helena and that we will establish a safe and reliable air bridge between St Helena and South Africa - thereby creating air linkages between St Helena and the rest of the world by way of the interconnectivity offered at Johannesburg. We are pleased to be able to connect both Cape Town and Johannesburg to St Helena by way of designed flight coordination at Windhoek - we acknowledge that Cape Town is an important destination for Saints and we recognise that Cape Town enjoys significant tourism visitations growing at thirty percent annually which could become an important source market for St Helena’s tourism aspirations.

Information on the commencement date, ticket sales and details on the cost of fares and sales distribution, including for Ascension Island, will be issued in due course. The fares offered are anticipated to be the same or similar between Johannesburg and St Helena and Cape Town and St Helena.

Airlink is a privately owned airline registered in South Africa. It is a franchisee to South African Airways. Airlink is a member of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and as such is IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) accredited. Airlink is a well-established South Africa domiciled airline operating on a comprehensive scheduled network with domestic and regional passenger and cargo services offering more than fifty thousand flights annually.

The Government of St Helena also provided a ‘Q & A document.

Flights commenced on 14th October 2017.

Events on 14th October

Open-Ended Certification

Open-Ended Certification of St Helena Airport was granted by Air Safety Support International (the aerodrome regulator, ASSI) on 25th October 2017, following the first two weeks of successful scheduled commercial air service. This means that no more certification visits will be required unless the airport is materially altered.

‘Category C’

Our airport has been designated ‘Category C’. This is basically an assessment of the risk involved in using the airfield, with ‘A’ being the least risky.

Category C Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

A Category ‘A’ airfield satisfies all of the following requirements:

  • An approved instrument approach procedure

  • At least one runway with no performance limited procedure for take-off and/or landing

  • Published circling minima not higher than 1,000ft

  • Night operations capability

A Category ‘B’ airfield is an airfield which does not satisfy all of the Category ‘A’ airfield requirements, or which requires extra considerations such as:

  • Non Standard Approach aids and/or approach patterns, or

  • Unusual local weather conditions, or

  • Unusual characteristics or performance limitations, or

  • Any other relevant considerations including obstructions, physical layout, lighting etc.

A Category ‘C’ airfield requires additional considerations to a Category ‘B’ airfield and is considered to pose certain problems for the approach and/or landing and/or take-off.

For reference, three of the Category ‘C’ airfields in Europe are London City [EGLC], Gibraltar [LXGB] and Funchal, Madeira [LPMA].

The Future of the ‘Bradleys Camp’

In October 2014 the St Helena Government advertised to find a buyer for the ‘Bradleys Camp’ (photo below), where the workforce was housed during the airport construction, envisaging that it would be converted into tourist accommodation. This news was greeted with considerable amusement, because the buildings in the camp are, to say the least, basic - described by some as the modern-day equivalent of Nissen huts. The facilities for catering and other services are similarly basic.

Bradleys Camp in 2014 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Bradleys Camp in 2014

In addition, in the Airport Environmental Impact study, published before works commenced, it was stated that the Camp, once no longer needed, would be dismantled and returned to ‘natural’ land.

In November 2015 it was announced that the Camp had been purchased and would be converted, in situ, to a ‘holiday park’. The existing prefabricated buildings will be transformed into holiday homes designed to accommodate visiting Saints as well as tourists.{u} Develpment permission was granted on 20th January 2016{6} but at the time of writing no construction has actually begun.

Bradleys Camp plans Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
Bradleys Camp plans

Not without incident…

On the whole the project seemed to go well, but it was not without incident…

A construction truck had an accident (nobody hurt fortunately) Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
A construction truck had an accident (nobody hurt, fortunately)

When did the airport actually open?

The official opening of the airport, scheduled for 21st May 2016, was called-off when the Wind Shear issue blew up. The airport immediately started accepting those planes that could safely land, including Medevacs, small charters and private jets but no opening ceremony was ever performed. The first scheduled commercial air service flight was widely greeted and celebrated but still without an official airport opening.

So the short answer to the question is…we haven’t the faintest idea!

An Air Service at last!

Fly here poster Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

SA Airlink logo Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

On 9th June 2017 the Government of St Helena announced that South African airline SA Airlink had won the tender to supply a scheduled commercial air service to St Helena, details of which were announced on 21st July 2017.

A ‘proving flight’, using the Embraer E190-100IGW aircraft planned for the air service, landed successfully on 21st August 2017, despite relatively windy conditions.

Flights started on 14th October 2017, with prices: Jo’burg - St Helena £804 (£1,544 First Class); Cape Town - St Helena £846 (£1,586 First Class). Note that apparently only a very limited number of lower-price tickets will be available. Tickets went on sale on 22nd September 2017. For details see our Fly here page.

St Helena Airport Game

St Helena Airport Game from the Google™ Play store Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

In August 2016 a computer game became available on the Google™ Play store, which allows you to land a (small) plane on St Helena Airport.

We are told that the game features a reasonably realistic portrayal of St Helena…and even incorporates wind shear!

How will St Helena change?

The question on everyone’s mind, of course, is how will St Helena change after the airport is opened? What will be the impact of the greater numbers of tourists? Will there actually be a greater number of tourists? Will terrorists come here?{7} Will the island’s economy be saved?

The official answer

The opening of the airport in February 2016 will bring an end to the isolation of our island, which is probably best known as Napoleon Bonaparte’s final place of exile.

Currently St Helena is served by one of the last working Royal Mail Ships in the world and many eagerly await the news of who will be providing the air service. Work continues apace on the final stages of the airport construction.

Until now St Helena has only been accessible for travellers with time on their hands - the round trip from Cape Town takes nearly three weeks. St Helena is sure to appeal to a wider audience once flights are launched. From its fern forests to volcanic terrain, lush pastures and striking coastal landscape, there is natural beauty at every turn; St Helena is a birdwatcher’s paradise and the island boasts at least 40 species of plants unknown anywhere else in the world.

Its remarkable history, not least of all the Napoleonic connections, is rich and diverse, and activities from diving, fishing and whale watching, to golf and hiking, offer plentiful ways to enjoy the unspoilt isle.

There are currently 2,800 international visitors a year. This is expected to increase to around 10,700 visitors by 2020. The population of St Helena is 4,442. Currently the only regular way to reach the island is via the RMS St Helena, which takes five days by sea from Cape Town{8}. 12 cruise ships currently visit the island each year.{v}

An unofficial view

This website is not in the business of speculation, but for amusement we provide here some images, compiled originally when the airport was due to open in 2010, looking at what St Helena might be like five years later. Enjoy!

St Helena 2015 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

St Helena 2015 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

St Helena 2015 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

St Helena 2015 Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Fears

Not everyone is unreservedly in favour of the airport. Here are some views expressed by callers to Saint FM:

We are going to have terrorists banging on our doors and they’ll be arriving here by the droves, we have to be careful of these people coming here with guns etc.
…the airport is going to open us up to everything now and we will have all kinds of people coming here.
The world is changing, lives are changing and the mind-set here must change. We must never think it won’t happen to us because we do have something that terrorists are after and that is our peaceful way of living, wrecking lives is their thing. People need to go to bed at night feeling that they are protected and safe.

Read More

Below: Official Access WebsiteArticle: Building an airport for St HelenaArticle: Just a Sample…

More stories on our page Read articles about St Helena.

Official Access Website

A good source of airport construction news was the Airport Update; still operating at the time of writing:

Article: Building an airport for St Helena

From www.worldhighways.com, first published in World Highways, July-August 2013{9}

Editor’s Note: Most articles about our new airport concentrate on the socio-economic impact it will have on St Helena. This one doesn’t; a refreshing change!

The remote South Atlantic island of Saint Helena will shortly benefit from the construction of a new airport as well as access roads and supporting infrastructure. This is the biggest construction project in the history of the island, which lies nearly 2,000km off the coast of Africa.

A fleet of Volvo ADTs is being used to carry out the haulage operation for St Helena’s airport project Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
A fleet of Volvo ADTs is being used to carry out the haulage operation for St Helena’s airport project

The airport is expected to boost economic development for the island’s 4,000 residents with an estimated 20,000 people a year forecasted to visit this highly remote, 122km² equatorial volcanic outcrop. At present the island’s only regular transport link is through RMS St Helena, an old Royal Mail vessel that makes the trip from South Africa once every three weeks.

The project’s client is St Helena’s Government and the work is being funded by the UK’s Department for International Development (DfID) with the two phases of the project valued at US$371 million. The airport is being constructed on an arid part of the island, the Prosperous Plain, on the north-eastern coast. Phase One will see the construction of the airport and supporting infrastructure, including a 14km-long connecting road to the capital of Jamestown. Phase Two will see the operation of the airport for a period of 10 years, commencing in February 2016.

Construction firm Basil Read is carrying out the work and began by building a temporary rock and concrete jetty in Rupert’s Bay on the North of the island, with mooring points positioned in the bay to allow materials to be off-loaded. The jetty is capable of accommodating the NP Glory 4, Basil Read’s chartered 1,530 tonne ship, the first ocean-going vessel ever to voluntarily touch the island.

The first machine to drive onto St Helena was a Volvo G940B grader followed by Volvo’s 70 tonne EC700C excavator and several Volvo articulated haulers, including both the new F-Series A40Fs and an A30E. This fleet joined smaller machines including an EW140C excavator, a BL61B backhoe loader and a DD24 compactor, which had been delivered earlier on the RMS St Helena for preparation work.

Construction workers are carried on the RMS St Helena from Cape Town, a five-day voyage. The contractor moves equipment and materials from Walvis Bay in Namibia on the chartered vessel, an 80m long ocean-going landing-craft fitted with a 40 tonne derrick crane and modified to carry one million litres of fuel, plus 1,000 tonnes of cargo.

A Volvo grader is used for fine finishing work at the new airport construction site as well as for maintenance of the haul road Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport
A Volvo grader is used for fine finishing work at the new airport construction site, as well as for maintenance of the haul road

Once complete the concrete runway will be 1,950m long and the terminal building, air traffic tower and fire station will cover an area of some 2,500m². The contractor is now using four EC700DL excavators, 20 A40F haulers, four A30E hauler-based container carriers, two G940 graders, six A30Es converted to water trucks, two A30E haulers, an EC360B excavator with breaker, a EW140C excavator, four SD200X compactors, a L120F loader and an EC290 excavator.

Each team is using a s 70 tonne excavator and five 40 tonne haulers plus ancillary machines such as graders, dozers and water trucks. At peak times, the teams work six days a week.

Prior to the main equipment being delivered, Volvo CE’s independent South African dealer, Babcock, had service personnel, technicians and parts personnel already in place on the island. Volvo is backing up this team with a technical supervisor for the project. A second delivery by the freighter NP Glory 4 landed a further 15 Volvo A40F articulated haulers, three additional Volvo EC700C excavators and three SD200DX single drum soil compactors.

Article: Just a Sample…

Published in the St Helena Herald, 5th May 2006{9}

Hercules with crowd Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Just before 11.00am on a rather dull and rainy Tuesday morning the chartered Lockheed C-130 Hercules came into view to carry out flight trials on the airport site at Prosperous Bay Plain. The aircraft flew an average four and a half hour flight from Walvis Bay to St Helena.

The trials were necessary for the approach to the proposed airport and it was to ensure that there were no uncertainties in the proposed outline runway designs. Onboard the aircraft during the trials were Jamie Jamieson and Tony Webb - Atkins Aviation Consultants and Ian Ramsey - Air Safety Support International.

Many spectators gathered in the Bottom Woods and Bradleys area to view the aircraft. School children of all ages were transported to the Bradleys area and many members of the public were there to view the trials as well, as it’s not every day that we see an aircraft! I found myself eagerly waiting as well and then without any indication or noise the aircraft suddenly popped into view. The crowd around me was buzzing with excitement; there were whispers of how silent it was and how magnificent it looked against the pale grey sky.

The Hercules did a few Run Way approaches with the descent over the sea and then approached from about 700 feet up. A few approaches were made from the North and South and then gradually lower and lower.

The Police were located at Bradley’s Garage to keep the spectators safe and we also had the members of the Fire crew located along the proposed runway. They were in charge of the Markers - they burned tyres in oil drums to make smoke so that the aircraft could identify the exact central line.

Sharon said the operation was very successful and she has gathered from the public and schoolchildren that they agreed. She said that although many of us on St Helena have seen an aeroplane, Tuesday was indeed a momentous occasion and was indeed historic for St Helena. This exercise has helped put the size of the proposed area in perspective for more people.

When the flight trials were completed at Prosperous Bay, the aircraft headed towards the Jamestown area and then left around 12.30, heading back to Walvis Bay.

Closing Humour Saint Helena Island Info Building St Helena Airport

Laugh at funny Building St Helena Airport humour LOL Saint Helena Island Info


Credits:

{a} Philip Gosse in ‘St Helena 1502-1938’

{b} Andrew/Peter Neaum

{c} UNDP, 2000{9}

{d} Office of the Governor, 31st July 2002{9}

{e} St Helena Government Press Release, 3rd November 2011{9}

{f} St Helena Online, 23rd March 2015{9}

{g} Tourist Office

{h} St Helena Airport

{i} St Helena Government, 16th June 2015{9}

{j} Letter in the St Helena Independent, 17th July 2015{9}

{k} Bruce Salt, ZD7VC

{l} www.news24.com, 16th September 2015{9}

{m} Government of St Helena, 17th December 2015{9}

{n} Government of St Helena, 11th May 2016{9}

{o} Government of St Helena, 10th June 2016, 14:49GMT{9}

{p} Government of St Helena, 28th July 2016, 08:34GMT{9}

{q} Atlantic Star Airlines

{r} Government of St Helena

{s} Government of St Helena, 24th October 2016{9}

{t} St Helena News on Facebook™

{u} St Helena Independent

{v} Tourist Office, March 2015{9}



Footnotes:

{1} Why a South African military organisation would be considering a capital project on British sovereign territory is not clear. If you can help, please contact us!

{2} However one recommendation of the report was adopted, leading to benefit for St Helena: the establishment of the Meteorological Station (est. 1976).

{3} Sharon had a leading role in the work to meet the Secretary of State’s conditions, until her death earlier in 2011.

{4} The three-letter code that appears on all your boarding passes and luggage labels.

{5} Please first read this warning.

{6} Presumably the Airport Environmental Impact study requirements can be ignored.

{7} Why? St Helena is a tiny dot. You could flatten the place entirely and still probably achieve only inside-page coverage in a national newspaper.

{8} It’s only two days from Ascension Island, but then you have to get yourself onto a Military flight from the UK (Brize Norton) to Ascension, which is not easy…

{9} Reproduced for educational non-commercial use only; all copyrights are acknowledged.



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