The calibration flights at St Helena Airport – led by Flight Calibration Services Limited (FCSL) working with TAB Charters – were completed yesterday Wednesday 23 September 2015, and the Beechcraft King Air 200 aircraft will depart St Helena for Namibia between 5am and 6am tomorrow Friday, ten days after its arrival.
Speaking yesterday evening at a reception at Plantation House, held for the crew (photo attached) and others working on the Airport Project, Governor Mark Capes said:
“Tuesday 15 September 2015 will always be a special day to remember on St Helena. For this entire community it was an exciting day and for some an emotional one.
“For those who have worked so hard on the Airport project, some for many years, it was hugely rewarding to see their work make possible such a momentous event. There are of course too many people to thank but quite a few are here tonight to share in celebrating their contribution to making it possible for the first flight to land on St Helena.
“Thanks of course to Deon de Jager and his Basil Read colleagues, to Janet Lawrence and the Access team, to DFID represented here once again by Nigel Kirby, to Halcrow, to the team that received and processed the flight on landing – Customs, Immigration, Bio-Security, the Emergency Services – and of course to those magnificent men in their flying machine, thank you for that oh so perfect touchdown.”
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.”
Until a full assessment of the communication and navigation findings has been made by various parties, the final outcome of the calibration flights will not be known, including any follow-up actions arising from the flights. Further information will follow in due course.
24 September 2015