On Tuesday 18 February, Year 9 students together with their parents and guardians were invited to an Options Evening at Prince Andrew School. The evening was well attended, with almost all students represented.

Two weeks prior to the evening, students had listened to detailed talks from their teachers on the various courses available to them. These included GCSE courses, vocational options, the new range of ICT courses and those GCSE courses provided through the Distance Learning programme. 

This is an important stage in the educational development of students. The choices students make now will have an impact on their opportunities for continuing education through to employment.

Following a welcome by Headteacher Paul Starkie, Deputy Headteacher Barbara Osborne spoke about the importance of the options process and factors to consider when making their choices. Advisory Teacher for Science and Curriculum Manager Kerry Lawrence explained the process for students when making their choices and the timelines involved. Head of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Philip Francis then gave a brief outline of the course choices in ICT which, for this year, will be compulsory for all students in year 10. Philip explained the importance of ICT literacy for all students and the various courses that will provide access to recognised ICT qualifications for all.

Headteacher Paul drew the presentations to a close by informing students, parents and guardians of the various levels of support that will be available to them, from Head of Year 9 Nicky Plato and the tutorial teams who will be there to help and, of course, their subject teachers and the school leadership, who will guide and advise students through the options process over the coming weeks.  The presentations were brought to a close with a short interview with Crystabelle Greentree, a student in Year 11, who talked to the audience about the challenges of transition from Year 9 to Year 10 and the start of GCSE courses. She spoke of the importance of being committed to study both at school and at home and the opportunities that studying hard can give you for your future. 

It was then time for the students, parents and guardians, to view the displays and speak with the subject teachers leading the courses. This was perhaps the most important part of the evening. The feedback about the Options Evening was extremely positive from all.

Prince Andrew School


25 February 2014

Chief of Police, Trevor Botting, this afternoon stated:

‘It was wrongly reported this morning on Saint FM that the St Helena Sea Rescue Boat was out of service and unavailable for emergencies. This seems to be linked to an incident on Friday morning (21/02/14) when a yacht slipped its moorings in James’ Bay and was drifting out to sea.

‘The yacht in question was recovered by the WideAwake and returned without incident to its moorings. The Sea Rescue Team had deployed to support the WideAwake, but stood down when it was established that this was no longer necessary.

‘Saint FM suggested that the Sea Rescue Boat was not fit for purpose and that no consultation was carried out before its purchase.  Again, this is incorrect, and was broadcast without checking the facts. There was wide consultation with a range of stakeholders before the purchase of the current craft, including with local fisherman, divers and harbour authorities.  Such consultation is critical to ensuring that the most suitable craft is obtained to suit local sea conditions and the types of rescue the boat may have to carry out.

‘Similar work is currently being undertaken to establish what sea rescue craft may be required to enhance our capability prior to the opening of the Airport.

‘To conclude, let me be absolutely clear.  Contrary to the entirely wrong and irresponsible report on Saint FM this morning, the Fire and Sea Rescue Service remains fully prepared to deploy in response to incidents in the waters around St Helena. The safety of Saints, visitors and those passing by remains our top priority.’  

Trevor Botting

Chief of Police

 24 February 2014

The public is reminded that they have just two days to submit candidate Nominations for the 12 March Bye-Election. The closing date for Nominations is this Wednesday, 26 February 2014, at 12 noon.

All Nominations should be delivered within this time to Returning Officer Mrs Gillian Francis at the Castle, Jamestown.

Do not leave it until the last minute to submit your Nomination – the forms will need to be checked by the Returning Officer and you should give yourself enough time to make any corrections if the form has not been properly completed.

Remember candidates nominated for Election must:

  • Be over the age of 21 and,
  • Be named on the Register of Electors dated 7 February 2014.


Nomination forms are available from any of the Assistant Registration Officers in the different districts around the Island, who can also provide assistance when completing forms. The names of Assistant Registration Officers were printed in the newspapers dated 13 and 14 February 2014.

Further details on nominating candidates can be obtained from Registration and Returning Officer Gillian Francis on telephone numbers 22470 or 22314, or via email: deputychiefsec@sainthelena.gov.sh


24 February 2014


Baton at Rosemary

The Commonwealth Queen’s Baton completes its busy schedule on St Helena today as it comes to the end of its visit.

Today’s programme, organised by the National Amateur Sports Association St Helena (NASAS), saw the Baton visit Pilling Primary School, Plantation House to meet Jonathan the Tortoise, Cape Villa Sheltered Accommodation, Prince Andrew School and the General Hospital – before a final walk through Jamestown.

Louise Martin CBE, Hon Secretary of the Glasgow Commonwealth Games Association, who is accompanying the Baton, said:

“Words really can’t describe the reception we’ve had while on St Helena, it’s been second to none and more importantly for us it’s the community spirit that’s here. This is one place that has actually shown what we want to do – take the Baton to the communities and let everyone, see it, feel it and touch it.

“I can’t believe what we’re seeing on St Helena, it’s absolutely fantastic. All I can say to everybody is thank you very much for everything you’ve done for us since we’ve been here and we’ll be very sorry to leave.”

The Queen’s Baton and the Relay Team will depart St Helena this afternoon bound for its next stop at Ascension Island.

Seven photos are attached to this release.


21 February 2014

Open to the Public from 9.30am Executive Council will meet on Tuesday 25 February 2014 in the Council Chamber.

Starting at 9.30am, the meeting will be open to the public for the one open agenda item: An information paper on The Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women.

Executive Council Members are: Ian Rummery, Cyril George, Christine Scipio-O’Dean, Leslie Baldwin and Lawson Henry.


21 February 2014

At the Public Accounts Committee meeting held on 10 February 2014, the Financial Secretary gave an undertaking to issue a press release on the differences between Qualified and Unqualified Opinions. This follows the audit of SHG’s Financial Statements for 2011/12 by the Chief Auditor.

What is an Audit Opinion?

An Audit Opinion is a statement by the Auditor as to whether or not the financial statements are materially correct.There are four types of opinions: Unqualified, Qualified, Adverse and Disclaimer.

What is an Unqualified Opinion?

An Unqualified Opinion is the best result, and is often referred to as a ‘Clean Opinion’.  It means that the financial statements are materially correct.  This can be described as either ‘presented fairly’ or ‘true and fair’.

What does Qualified mean?

A Qualified Opinion means that the financial statements are materially correct, except for one or more specific errors (with the rest of the financial statements being fairly presented).

What about Adverse and Disclaimer?

An Adverse Opinion means that there are so many errors that the financial statements are not materially correct.

A Disclaimed Opinion means that the Auditor has not been able to obtain enough evidence to come to a conclusion.

What does this mean for St Helena Government?

SHG’s 2011/12 accounts were Qualified on two matters – the Eligibility of Social Benefit Payments and the Pension Cost Disclosure.  An Adverse Opinion was given in regards to the Non-consolidation of Subsidiary Bodies.

Future Improvements

The Qualification for the Pension Cost Disclosure should disappear in 2012/13, but the other two Qualifications will remain. Work will be carried out on pension legislation in mid 2014 – to remove the Qualification of Pension Costs.  The Adverse Opinion on consolidation requires a detailed review, including of the cost v benefits of such a consolidation and the benefits of this to the general public.

Want to Know More?

SHG’s Financial Statements for 2011/12, the Chief Auditor’s Opinion and his Management Letter can all be found on the SHG website at: http://www.sainthelena.gov.sh/finace/ or by calling into Corporate Finance at the Castle and requesting a copy.


21 February 2014 


Invited to SAMS Radio 1 this morning, HE Governor Capes commented on the Queen’s Baton Relay, the problem of litter and the anniversary of SAMS Radio 1. Here is an excerpt of his comments:

Queen’s Baton

‘It’s important that we recognise our sports on St Helena. We are a part of the Commonwealth, of the 70 Nations, and that’s important, but it’s also about profiling St Helena as a very special place. There’s a BBC film crew accompanying the Baton and I’m sure St Helena will feature in their final cut, because everywhere else they go they will be arriving by airplane mostly and next time the Baton comes here it will be by air. So it was really nice to capture the RMS event yesterday – an historic occasion.

‘The schoolchildren made it.  They were very well behaved and patient, a little bit excited, and it all looked very good for St Helena with lots of atmosphere.’


‘Rubbish is something that has been irritating me. I love going into Plantation Forest and it’s nice to have it on your doorstep to take a walk, but when you see how a few thoughtless people can throw glass bottles into a beauty spot where people go with their children and dogs, you think well, what goes through their mind? What does somebody think when they’re throwing a glass bottle into a public place? Do they really want to hurt and injure people? It’s a minority, but I think it will help if we all make an effort to show that it is not acceptable behaviour, to spoil our beautiful places around St Helena and also to endanger people’s safety and health.  It’s unacceptable that people who do it don’t care about their fellow Saints and their neighbours, it just shows a lack of respect for our community and for St Helena. And if you look at the bigger picture, we were talking about the Baton coming here and a chance to showcase Helena for what it is – a beautiful Island with lovely people – if when they’re filming they see old beer cans and broken wine bottles in a corner, what does that tell you about St Helena?

‘If we’re serious about developing tourism, and that’s what we are doing, then we have to care about our community and our environment. It doesn’t take much to put a bottle, a crisp packet or a cigarette packet in a plastic bag and take it home, so I think we all have a duty to try and encourage the idiots who throw this litter and glass around to persuade them that actually there’s a better way of living.’

SAMS Radio 1

‘You’ve had a very successful year since you kicked off just over a year ago, so congratulations on that and well done – I think you’ve made a huge difference. The people have a choice of listening, a choice of opinion and I think you’ve done a great job in attracting a young audience. A lot of younger people enjoy what you do.  You’ve also had your flagship programmes like Sunrise and Juicy Mango, and Second Chance Sunday is very useful. The outstanding thing you did last year was the Election coverage where you broke some ground with very thorough interviewing of candidates, which was very good. So Happy Birthday to everyone involved in SAMS Radio 1. May there be many more.’


20 February 2014




Commonwealth Queen's Baton at St Helena Airport Site, Prosperous Bay Plain

National Amatuer Sports Association St Helena with Commonwealth Queen's BatonCommonwealth Queen's Baton at Napoleon's House in LongwoodBaton at Harford Primary School

The Commonwealth Queen’s Baton continues on its busy schedule of events today as it journeys around the Island.

The Island programme, organised by the National Amateur Sports Association St Helena (NASAS), will today see the Baton making various stops at Ladder Hill and Half Tree Hollow, Levelwood, Sandy Bay, Blue Hill and St Paul’s, before touring the streets of Jamestown this afternoon.

Chairman of NASAS, Eric Benjamin said today:

“We are very happy to have received the Queen’s Baton on St Helena for a third time and have been much impressed by the enthusiasm of the local people in welcoming the Baton here. The Team accompanying the Baton have also praised the tremendous reception they have received since their arrival.

 “Although the team were exhausted at the end of a long day yesterday, they are enthusiastic and eager to get out again today and explore the rest of the Island with the Baton and to see as much as possible of the St Helena community.”

Four photos are attached to this release. Further photos will follow as the Baton makes its way around the Island.


20 February 2014



The Baton is relayed up Jacob's Ladder

Queen's Baton arrives at St HelenaChairman of NASAs Eric Benjamin andLouise Martin CBE, Hon Secretary of the Glasgow Commonwealth Games AssociationGovernor Capes with Louise Martin CBE, Hon Secretary of the Glasgow Commonwealth Games Association and NASAS Chairman Eric Benjamin

The Commonwealth Queen’s Baton has this morning arrived at St Helena Island, the fortieth stop in its impressive relay around the 70 nations and territories of the Commonwealth.

The Baton stops at the Island en-route from Cape Town to Ascension Island and has already begun a busy schedule of events (organised by the National Amateur Sports Association St Helena (NASAS)) during its two day stay on the Island.

Accompanied by Pam Young, NASAS Secretary, Louise Martin CBE, Hon Secretary of the Glasgow Commonwealth Games Association, Queen’s Baton Relay team member Shona Purves, plus three members of a BBC team and a Queen’s Baton Relay photojournalist, the Baton was brought ashore from the RMS St Helena and received by HE Governor Capes at the Wharf this morning, with schoolchildren and members of the public looking on.

The Baton was then transferred to participants of past Commonwealth and Island Games at the seafront, before the Primary Schools relayed the Baton across the Wharf to Jacob’s Ladder. Prince Andrew School students relayed the Baton up the 699 steps of the Ladder before it was brought back to Jamestown by members of St Helena youth group, New Horizons.

The Queen’s Baton was then officially received in the Governor’s Office and by Members of St Helena Legislative Council.

HE Governor Capes commented:

“The people of St Helena are delighted to be included in the Queen’s Baton Relay and I am sure that the team accompanying the Baton will receive a warm welcome as the Baton tours our Island. And after the pleasant five day journey from Cape Town on the RMS St Helena, I have no doubt that our visitors will be excited to see the beauty of St Helena and to meet as many as Saints as possible.”

The Baton is now making its way around various assembly points on the Island where the community are encouraged to take part in this international event by touching and viewing the Baton.In its journey around St Helena, the Baton will visit all Schools, Longwood House, the Airport site, the Community Care Complex and Sheltered Accommodation, SHAPE, the General Hospital, and Plantation House to visit the Island’s oldest resident, Jonathan the tortoise. 

The Baton will leave on the RMS St Helena on Friday 21 February, bound for her next stop at Ascension Island.

Note for Editors

This is the third time St Helena Island has participated in the Queen’s Baton Relay celebrations. The first Baton visited the Island in May 2005 and the second in February 2010.

The Queen’s Baton Relay is a much loved tradition of the Commonwealth Games and symbolises the coming together of all Commonwealth nations and territories in preparation for the four-yearly festival of Sport.

The Glasgow 2014 Queen’s Baton Relay is the curtain-raiser to the 20th Commonwealth Games. Over a period of 288 days the Baton will visit 70 nations and territories, cover 190,000 kilometres and involve a third of the world’s population, making it the world’s most engaging relay.The finish line is in the host nation Scotland just in time for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony in Glasgow on 23 July 2014, where Her Majesty The Queen will read aloud Her Message to the Commonwealth.


19 February 2014

Footage will be shown of the assembly of the massive Liebherr LR1200 Crawler Crane at Rupert’s on Local TV channel 1.

Voyage 22 of the NP Glory 4 (which arrived on 24 January 2014) brought the crane in 33 separate section, which were assembled after the arrival of two Liebherr technicians.

The footage will be broadcast on Local TV 1 at:

  • Wednesday 19 February – 8:30pm
  • Thursday 20 February – 8:30pm
  • Friday 21 February – 8:30pm
  • Saturday 22 February – 8:30pm
  • Sunday 23 February – 8:30pm


18 February 2013