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The Seven Wonders of St Helena

Or maybe there are eight…

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If name be needed, wonder names them both: From wonder into wonder existence opens.{1}
Laozi

The ancient world is not alone in having Seven Wonders - and these are ones you can see today!

This page is in indexes: Island Structures, Island Place, Island Activity, Island Detail

The Seven Wonders of St Helena [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

In May 2008 the Tourist Office suggested that the island should identify ‘Seven Wonders of St Helena’ and invited submissions from the public as to what these wonders might be. The aim was to “showcase seven iconic or historic places on St Helena.

An initial list was advertised in the St Helena Independent on 1st August 2008, being (in alphabetic order):Ann’s Place;Asses Ears,Sandy Bay;Banks Battery;The Bellstone;Black Rocks, Blue Hill;The Boer Cemetery;The Briars Pavilion;Castle Gardens;Diana’s Peak;Fairy land;Fishers Valley;Flagstaff;Geranium Valley/Sane Valley;Great Stone Top;Green Hill;Heart Shaped Waterfall;High Hill;High Knoll Fort;Horse Pasture;Jacob’s Ladder;James Bay;Jamestown;Ladder Hill Fort;Lemon Valley;Longwood Green;Longwood House;Lot;Lot’s Wife;Lot’s Wife Ponds;Man & Horse Cliffs;Manati Bay;Mundens;Museum of St Helena;Napoleon’s Tomb;Needle’s Eye;Old School House;Paradise Point/Burnt Rock;Plantation House;Prince Andrew School;Prosperous Bay Plain;The Public Library;Rock Rose;Rosemary Plain; Rupert’s;Sandy Bay Beach;Sharks Valley;Speary Island;St. Andrew’s Church;St. John’s Church;St. Paul’s Cathedral;St. James’ Church;St. Matthew’s Church;Stone Tops;Sugar Loaf;The Barn, Longwood;The Friar;The Run;Thompson’s Wood;Trap Cot; andTurks Cap.

After an initial round of voting this was cut down to a shortlist, as follows:

Banks’s Battery [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

The Barn [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Diana’s Peak [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

The Heart Shaped Waterfall [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

High Knoll Fort [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Jacob’s Ladder [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Longwood House [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Lot [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Lot’s Wife [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Lot’s Wife Ponds [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Napoleon’s Tomb [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Plantation House [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

St. James’ Church [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

St. Paul’s Cathedral [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Turk’s Cap [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

A formal voting procedure was enacted and by the end of September the results had been collated. The selected seven were:

Below: Jacobs LadderThe Heart Shaped WaterfallDiana’s PeakHigh Knoll FortNapoleon’s TombLongwood HouseSt. James’ ChurchAnd maybe an eighth wonder: Jonathan the tortoiseRead More

Jacobs Ladder

Jacob’s Ladder [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

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Location Map jacobsladder [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Are you ready to walk up the 699 steps of Jacob’s Ladder? This landmark of the island’s capital, Jamestown, was built in 1832 and stretches 900ft high! If you conquer the ladder then grab yourself a certificate from the Museum of St Helena.

More on our Jacob’s Ladder page.

The following appeal, by local historian Barbara George, was broadcast on Radio St Helena prior to the Seven Wonders voting:

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Click here to listen [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena] (1.0Mb)

The Heart Shaped Waterfall

The Heart Shaped Waterfall [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

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Location Map heartshapedwaterfall [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

A romantic natural wonder, the Heart-shaped Waterfall is an iconic landmark where water cascades through the middle of a heart shaped cliff face.

More on our The Heart Shaped Waterfall page.

The following appeal, by local journalist Vince Thompson, was broadcast on Radio St Helena prior to the Seven Wonders voting:

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Click here to listen [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena] (382.8Kb)

Diana’s Peak

Diana’s Peak [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

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Location Map dianaspeak [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Diana’s Peak is the highest point on St Helena, being an impressive 823m above sea level. The National Park is home to exotic flora and fauna, including many endemic species and dense tree fern thickets.

More on our Diana’s Peak page.

The following appeal, by local conservationist Dr. Rebecca Cairns-Wicks, was broadcast on Radio St Helena prior to the Seven Wonders voting:

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Click here to listen [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena] (332.3Kb)

High Knoll Fort

High Knoll Fort [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

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Built in 1790 as a redoubt for the island population in the event of an invasion, High Knoll Fort features a perfect view across St Helena. High Knoll has a dry moat and drawbridge, with signs of a portcullis, storehouses, tower and embrasures with slit walls.

More on our High Knoll Fort page.

The following appeal, by visiting archaeologist Ben Jeffs, was broadcast on Radio St Helena prior to the Seven Wonders voting:

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Click here to listen [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena] (673.9Kb)

Napoleon’s Tomb

Napoleon’s Tomb [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

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Napoleon’s Tomb in Sane Valley is the place chosen for Napoleon’s final resting place in 1821{2}. Napoleon had come across Sane Valley on one of his walks and was delighted with the peaceful landscapes. In 1840, his body was returned to France and placed in L’Hotêl des Invalides in Paris.

More on our Napoleon’s Tomb page.

The following appeal, by Trevor Magellan, was broadcast on Radio St Helena prior to the Seven Wonders voting:

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Click here to listen [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena] (714.6Kb)

Longwood House

Longwood House [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

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Location Map longwoodhouse [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Longwood House was Napoleon’s home during the last years of his life. He took up residence at Longwood House on 10th December 1815 and died six years later while still a prisoner on the island. Today it is a museum owned by the French Government and, featuring exhibits including his death mask, portraits and original furniture. It’s arguably the best Napoleonic Museum in the world.

More on our Longwood House page.

The following appeal, by Ivy Yon, Joan Thomas & George Thomas, was broadcast on Radio St Helena prior to the Seven Wonders voting:

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Click here to listen [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena] (920.5Kb)

St. James’ Church

St. James’ Church [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

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Location Map stjameschurch [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

St Helena has the oldest Anglican Church in the Southern Hemisphere dating from 1774. This beautiful church is a prominent feature in Jamestown. A visit inside will reveals plaques and tablets depicting the fascinating history of the island.

More on our Churches of St Helena page.

The following appeal, by church elder Cathy Hopkins, was broadcast on Radio St Helena prior to the Seven Wonders voting:

Click on the icon to hear this audio file: 

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Click here to listen [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena] (1.1Mb)

And maybe an eighth wonder: Jonathan the tortoise

Jonathan the tortoise [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

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Location Map jonathanplantationhouse [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Possibly the oldest living land-animal on the planet, having been born in c.1832, he currently resides in the gardens at Plantation House. He is definitely one of our National Symbols.

More on our Jonathan the tortoise page.

Read More

Article: “Seven Wonders of St Helena Announced

Published in the St Helena Independent 26th September 2008{3}

Seven Wonders Badge [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

Last Friday afternoon saw the climax of a four month campaign to find the first ever Seven Wonders of St Helena.

Since St Helena’s Day, Saint’s, and lovers of St Helena, took part in a nomination process on-line, on Saint FM’s website and through the Tourism Office, to identify their favorite iconic, historic, scenic, or built, “place of wonder” which would symbolically represent St Helena in future tourism promotions.

During the first round, some 2,067 votes were received and a total of 60 nominations were suggested and week by week we saw places shuffle back and forth fighting for top places as you continued to vote.

After 80 days of voting the first round closed on Friday 8th August, short listing the 60 nominations with the most votes down to your top 15 finalists. In a last push for votes many of you took part in the St Helena Independent Lucky draw, which allowed readers on island a chance to enter a draw for £25. The draw was done live on Saint FM on Friday 8th August and the lucky winner was Anna Hopkins. The top 15 finalist was announced live on Saint FM the same day.

Round 2 commenced with 6 weeks of voting to establish the final Seven Wonders of St Helena from 8th August to the 18th September and the announcement was made live on Saint FM by Miss St Helena, Nicole Peters and Director of Tourism, Pamela Young.

Two weeks prior to the broadcast the Independent and Saint FM launched a huge sweepstake campaign with co-sponsorship with Printech and the Proud of St Helena Campaign. 1,200 sweepstake slips were printed and distributed to numerous newspaper outlets island wide and a two week publicity campaign began. At just 50p a ticket, participants stood a chance of winning up to £600 in cash. Sweepstake slips doubled as a voting sheet and players participating in the game also inevitably contributed to the final votes in determining the top seven. Sweepstakes closed last Thursday and on the following Friday all monies and slips were collected from outlets and tallied. Following the live announcement of the Seven Wonders, the draw for the winner of the sweepstakes took place, with 896 slips entered into the draw and a jackpot of £457.50 going to Shirley Robinson of Half Tree Hollow.

In the final count, 7,785 votes were cast over the 6 week period via Saint FM webpage, newspaper sweepstakes and at the Tourism Office with only a hand-full of votes separating places from 7th, 8th and 9th places.

Miss St Helena cuts the Seven Wonders cake [Saint Helena Island Info:The Seven Wonders of St Helena]

A thank you to everyone who took part in the campaign and to everyone that voted. To celebrate the Seven Wonders of St Helena, the Tourism Office hosted a Seven Wonders Party at Bayside and voters danced the night away to a glass of Seven Wonders Punch and a slice of Seven Wonders cake and nibbles.

Your top Seven Wonders are: Jacob’s Ladder; the Heart Shaped Waterfall; Diana’s Peak; High Knoll Fort; Napoleon’s Tomb; Longwood House; and St. James’ Church.

The Seven Wonders of St Helena have been selected as a result of 7,785 votes being cast by Saints here and overseas and lovers of St Helena. It has been an incredible journey which started on St Helena Day this year when we launched the ‘Proud of St Helena Campaign’ and you were encouraged to nominate places that you thought should be considered as one of the Seven Wonders.

To all of you, who voted and gave us your support and encouragement, thank you. As a result of the unstinting assistance of Emma-Jane and Saint FM, we were able to reach a much wider audience than we first imagined. To all who promoted the final fifteen, you have re-educated us on some of the most amazing places that St Helena has to offer. Special thanks also to: Mrs Jean Gurr; Michel Martineau; Martin George; Ed Thorpe; Andrew Darlow; Rebecca Cairns-Wicks; Printech; Barbara A George; A&NRD; Basil & Barbara George; Derek Henry; Pat Joshua; Ben Jeffs; Cathy Hopkins; Dale Bowers; Henry Thorpe; Vince Thompson; Trevor Magellan; Ivy Yon; George Thomas; Joan Thomas; Nicole Peters; Ripetungi; Garron Yon; Standard Bar; Rose & Crown; Thorpe’s Emporium; Seale’s Corner Shop; MacKnights; Little Italy; A&D’s Mini-Mart; Andrews Shop; Yon’s Shop; McDaniel’s Shop; Phillip John’s Shop; Thorpe’s Sandy Bay; Maisie’s Shop and Longwood Supermarket.

Although the selection of the Seven Wonders of St Helena has now been finalised, the activities surrounding the Seven Wonders are yet to begin. For starters, the Post Office has agreed to release a Seven Wonders stamp issue and St Helena Tourism will develop a ‘Seven Wonders Trail’.

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Footnotes:

{1} No, we have no idea what it means either.

{2} He actually asked to be buried in Paris but Governor Lowe would not permit that.

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



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