Tristan da Cunha Community News 2005 - 2011
News for 2005 to 2011 from the Tristan da Cunha community.

Flames seen near volcano-
no need to panic!

A group of island children decided to celebrate Bonfire Night by building a bonfire near the 1961 lava flow
on 5th November 2011

Pictures and report of the
Guy Fawkes Bonfire
from Tina Glass

Above:
L to R Linda Green, Leo Glass, Natalie Swain, Nathan Green

Above: L to R Leo Glass and his friend Nathan Swain

Left:
L to R Leo Glass, Natalie Swain, in front Nathan Swain

Anniversary Day 2011
Tristan da Cunha's Anniversary Day on 14th August
celebrates the arrival of the British Garrison aboard HMS Falmouth on 14th August 1816.

In recent years the mid-winter Anniversary Day celebrations are fairly low-key.
In 2011 a public holiday followed on Monday 15th August when many families took
advantage of a mid-week day off to tend their potato patches.

The photo left shows the Tristan flag flying outside the Tristan Admin Building.
Determined to celebrate Anniversary Day at her UK home, Ann Ashworth flew the Tristan flag on Anniversary Day 2011
- see photo right and also the
Tristan Overseas News Page
for the full story and more pictures.

 

 

 

Official opening of children’s playground on Tristan da Cunha
Report from Dawn Repetto and pictures from Tina Glass

On 22nd June 2011 at 1.30pm, after many years of planning and almost a year since starting, a children’s playground was opened. All children at St Mary’s School, Crèche and a few spectators attended the opening.

The opening began with a short talk about the Playground and a few rules which needed to be abided by to ensure safety and tidiness, the Acting Administrator Lorraine Repetto then gave a short speech welcoming everyone present and thanking all those who had donated equipment, funds and who carried out the work to make this playground possible. This was followed with a blessing and prayer by Carlene Glass Green one of the islands Lay Ministers and then much to the anticipation of the children, the ribbon was then officially cut by Sue Kerr, who does lots of voluntary work with the island children.

The gathering to open the new playground

Dawn wants to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to Andrew James and his team at Ovenstone who very kindly donated the Wendy House, table and chairs, to Neil Foster and all his family, Ivey and friends who donated money so that the Jungle Gym could be purchased, to the Enstrom Fund and to all those who donated generally to assist with purchasing the boundary fence and other small items. A special thank you also to Neil Rogers and Charl Moolman from Apple and the Island Men who assisted in the building of the Playground it was appreciated by all especially the children.

Left:
Sue Kerr opens the gate
to declare the playground open
with Dawn and the children looking on

Right:
Exploring the new Wendy House

Roundabout construction is still in progress by Joseph and his Mechanical Team and this should be completed and installed shortly. There is still a small amount of funding left and it is hoped to purchase another small playground item from Cape Town.

The equipment in use
by the children at last!
Finally Dawn wants again to thank everyone who assisted in any way:
donations, labour, ideas - you know who you are - and it was a job well done.

Left:
Inside the new Wendy House
Lorraine Repetto hands out drinks

Right:
Lorraine with teachers Yvonne Glass and Anne Green enjoying a cuppa -
cheers!

Party to welcome new Administrator Sean Burns
Sean Burns arrived on Tristan aboard SA Agulhas on 9th September 2010. A 'Meet the New Admin. Party' was held in the new Post Office and Tourism Centre for Island Councillors, Heads of Department with their partners and other visitors and expatriates on 11th September.

Photos from David Morley

 

Sean Burns (right) meeting Islanders
Above and below:
Scenes at the party

 

David Mackenzie, Conrad Glass, Erik Mackenzie, David Morley
Left: Dental Technician Bob Carse and Director of Medical Services Dr Shridar

Rosemary's Retirement Lunch

On Thursday 12th August there was a retirement lunch held in the Coffee Shop for Rosemary Glass.  It was hosted by her work colleagues from the Finance Department and also present were David Morley, Cynthia and Geraldine from the Administration Department.  It was a total surprise for Rosemary who did not expect a thing.  Her work colleagues gathered here before her and then she was asked to pop in as there was something we wanted to show her in the Museum (or so she thought).  She walked into the building to the sound of Cliff Richard (her favourite singer) and everyone jumped out to surprise her.  Lunch consisted of Fried Lobster accompanied with mayonnaise and lemon, potatoes and other vegetables followed by fresh fruit salad.  After lunch Rosemary was then presented with a gift and a retirement cake.  From here Rosemary went onto an Office party at the Finance Department.  She has worked in Finance for over 30 years and will be missed by all her colleagues.
Photographs above from Iris Green show Rosemary's colleagues enjoying the lunch, and featuring the lovely cake.

Honours for Tristan Islanders

Administrator David Morley published the following Public Notice on 11th June 2010

I am delighted to announce that Connie Glass has been awarded the MBE by HM The Queen, for services to the community of Tristan da Cunha. This will be formally announced in Her Majesty’s Birthday Honours list, to be published on 12 June.

At the same time, and on behalf of HM Queen Elizabeth II, the Governor has awarded the following medals:

Lewis Glass – Colonial Special Constabulary Medal

Lindsay Repetto – Colonial Special Constabulary Medal

Stanley Swain – Colonial Fire Brigades Long service Medal

These awards will also be formally announced on 12 June.

I warmly congratulate all four recipients of these well-deserved awards.

D J Morley 11 June 2010

Official UK Announcement :

The official UK announcement was first made through the London Gazette (Published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office and distributed to other media) of 12th June 2010 :

M.B.E.
To be Ordinary Members of the Civil Division of the said Most Excellent Order:

Conrad Jack Glass. For services to the community in Tristan da Cunha.

Congratulations from the Tristan Association

The Tristan da Cunha Association is delighted to receive news of these awards. The award of MBE to Conrad Glass is published alongside other honours in the UK press on 12th June and so highlights and promotes Tristan da Cunha. President and Chairman Michael Swales sends congratulations to Conrad, Lewis, Lindsay and Stan on behalf of all Association members.

Conrad met Michael Swales last November during his latest UK trip and the Association has valued Conrad's close liaison with the Association as it seeks to support the Tristan community. Conrad has been Head of the Tristan da Cunha Police since 1989 and served as Chief Islander from 2007 - 2010.

There is more information on Conrad's life and work on the Chief Islander and News of Chief Islander's pages
.

We aim to celebrate these awards through an article in the August 2010 Tristan da Cunha Newsletter which will be distributed to all Association members, including all island families.

Anniversary Day for families
Chief Islander and Acting Administrator Conrad Glass reported that the 2009 Anniversary Day on Friday 13th August was an informal holiday this year with no official celebrations. The weather on the day was overcast and very windy accompanied by an heavy swell.
Instead it was a family holiday, with families either spending the day out fishing from the beach, or having a braai by camping huts on the Patches Plain.  
The highlight of the day was Herbert Glass' (Tristan's most experienced guide) 70th birthday celebrations at his home. He had lots of guests wishing him well. It was very fitting occasion for Anniversary Day which celebrates the arrival of the British Garrison on 14th August 1816, as Herbert is a direct descendant of Corporal William Glass who remained behind with his family as the garrison left in 1817 and was the founder of the present Tristan da Cunha community.

Tristan Golf Course News
Robin Repetto manages the unique Hottentot Fence Tristan da Cunha Golf Course on behalf of the Tourism Department. Robin is planning some course improvements ready for the 2009/10 season and hopes for donations of equipment.

Robin is photographed left with visiting consultant Steven Catchpole who generously donated two new sets of golf clubs along with 10 pair of gloves, 1000 tees and 6 dozen new golf balls.

Tourism Coordinator Dawn Repetto (Robin's wife), can arrange a golf package for visitors which includes a famous Tristan Golf Club tie, golf certificate, score card and a play on the course for £20.

Dollywood comes to Tristan

Report from
Deputy Administrator
Tasha Reilly



Photographs of the children
with their new books
from Robin Repetto

All Tristan children under five received a late Christmas present from a surprise source when the Kelso arrived on 20 January. Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library in partnership with the Royal Mail offered to donate a book a month to every island child up until their fifth birthday. Given the logistical impossibility of having a book arrive each month on Tristan it was agreed that the books should be sent in annual bundles.

The Kelso arrived and mysterious packages addressed personally to each child were unloaded. Mario Todeschini, a Cape Town photographer hired by the Royal Mail to document the event, also disembarked. Mario trailed the packages through immigration, to the Post Office and to the Hall via the gong. However the books were kept back when the mail was collected for a special presentation at school.

Chloe Glass, Dylan Green, Julie Green, Callum Green and Chantelle Repetto fought through the well bound boxes to discover mini libraries all of their own. Wonderful, colourful books spilled out all over the classroom and eyes widened as they picked through the various front covers each finding a favourite animal depicted on one book or another – islanders to the core!

Peter Rabbit is the first book that the Imagination Library sends to each child and so everyone was able to follow along as Sheila Glass read the beginning of that familiar tale. Later the preschool children made a thank you card for Ms Parton that was sent back with the Kelso as it returned to Cape Town . More copies of Peter Rabbit and assorted other age specific goodies were unpacked in the crèche later that day by (or on behalf of) the youngest islanders.

Although this scheme is only aimed at under fives the Royal Mail wanted to make sure that older schoolchildren were also given a literary offering and so further boxes are expected when the Baltic Trader arrives in February with an assortment of books for the school library. Meanwhile the magic of Peter Rabbit, brought to us by Ms Parton, has arrived on the island... let’s hope our carrots fare better than Mr McGregor’s!

Power Cuts during August 2008 offloading
The island's temporary generator is unable to provide for all of the Tristan settlement's needs during ship off-loading as much of the available power is required to operate the harbour crane for off-loading. So during off-loading of MV Edinburgh which arrived on 28th August electricity supplies to homes have been cut. This caused problems especially for those using computers and sending emails or accessing the internet, as well as operating home appliances, including TVs and microwaves. These cuts have occurred during the working day, so there have been no problems with essential night-time lighting.
The hospital has its own generator which can be used during the power cuts and the government generator is run for the Administration office and the freezers at the shop as well.

Tristan's New
Crèche & Day Care Centre Opens

Report from
Mike Hentley

Some activities on Tristan require participation from almost all residents - particularly unloading days when supply ships call, and fishing days when school leavers and pensioners are drafted in to expand the usual workforce. 
 
The  Island Council has therefore agreed to establish the Crèche & Day Care Centre to provide a service to those working mothers unable - despite the extended family/good neighbour arrangements which otherwise work so well here - to make alternative arrangements for childcare.
 
Former Community Nurse Hilary Rogers has been appointed to run the Centre, assisted by Care Assistant Maureen Green and Playgroup Teacher Sheila Glass.  The Centre offers all-day care for infants and children under two, and for children aged three to five when not attending the Playgroup.
 
Janice Hentley's photo of the Centre on opening day - Monday 3 September.  Present are (standing - right) Sheila Glass and Nathan Swain,  Maureen (seated -middle) nursing Caitlin Mac Kenzie, and Hilary (seated - left) with grandson Ryan Rogers.

Atlantic Fresh launch Romantic Restaurant

The Atlantic Fresh catering team of Paula Swain, Iris Green, Lorraine Repetto, and Dawn Repetto in the Prince Philip Hall prior to the successful Valentine Day's meal which is featured in full on our 'Love Island' Page. The girls, all employed in the island's treasury department, are wearing uniforms kindly sponsored by Karriem Fowkes of Table Bay Marine, Cape Town.

Click on to Love Island for more lovely treats

International Football Match Success

Picture from Mike Hentley of the salvage tug De Hong and behind MV Kelso at anchor as a background to the football match on 23rd January between a Tristan XI and an International Salvage XI with players from the USA, UK, Netherlands, South Africa and China. 

Tristan's 10-5 win has been relayed to FIFA HQ as the squad checks other countries willing to undertake away fixtures in the world's most isolated community.

Picture right from Claire Volkwyn shows the two teams on the American Fence pitch, which is one of the Settlement's cattle fields, used in rotation, and provides further tests for visiting players after the sloping and uneven ground have been mastered! Behind is the nearby 1961 lava flow and the promontory of Big Point.

Tristan hosts historic HMS Edinburgh visit to Edinburgh of the Seven Seas
HMS Edinburgh arrived on Thursday 30th November

to celebrate St Andrew's Day in Edinburgh, a community founded by the
Scot William Glass.
The two day programme included a circumnavigation of the volcanic island with guests from the island, a lunch aboard HMS Edinburgh at anchor off the Edinburgh Settlement and an early evening Administrator's Reception held on the lawns of The Residency. Unfortunately HMS Edinburgh had to curtail its Tristan visit to evacuate a medevac to Cape Town, so Friday's programme was cancelled. Details of the ship & its voyage on Shipping News Page.
Edinburgh to Edinburgh Presentations
Chief Islander Anne Green is shown presenting a Tristan da Cunha Plaque to the Commander of HMS Edinburgh Scott Verney with Administrator Mike Hentley looking on. In turn Commander Verney presented Anne with a HMS Edinburgh plaque.

See also Oil Rig News Page for photograph from HMS Edinburgh of Sandy Point, the stranded oil rig and Nightingale Island.
The January Tristan da Cunha Newsletter will feature a full report and more photographs of this historic visit which completes Tristan da Cunha's Quincentenary Celebrations.
Halloween Fancy Dress
The Tristan Youth Group held a fancy dress competition in Prince Philip Hall community centre to celebrate Halloween. Shown left to right are :
Rachael Green - Fortune Teller (2nd)
Jade Repetto - Bat (1st)
Danny Swain - Pumpkin Man (3rd)
Natalie Swain - Devil
Kelly Swain - Witch
Emily Jaschinski - Imp
Anniversary Day Celebrated

On 14th August 2006 the Tristan da Cunha community celebrated the anniversary of the island becoming British. On 14th August 1816 Captain Josiah Cleote led a British garrison aboard HMS Falmouth which declared the island a British possession on behalf of His Majesty King George III.
Our correspondent Dr Joerg Jaschinski couldn't resist sending this photograph of a popular side show : ' Pin the tail on the Admin.' with the smiling victim Mike Hentley flanked by Sasha Green on the right and Poppy Lavarello on the left. It is good to see that a sense of humour is maintained by the British Government representative as the island commemorates 190 years of colonial history.

Men's Tug of War

This year the community had lots of fun with various competitions including skittles, darts, fishing, bobbing for apples, and a tug of war.

Shown left is the men's tug of war outside the Prince Philip Hall where a dance was held during the evening.

Ladies Tug of War

Not to be outdone there was also a ladies tug of war. Both tug of war pictures and the photograph of the hall below are provided by Chief Islander Anne Green. Anne reports that the tug of war was the highlight of the day.

Prince Philip Hall ready for the Anniversary Day Dance

The Youth Group decorated the Prince Philip Hall ready for the Anniversary Day Dance.

Mike Hentley back at the helm
Administrator Mike Hentley returned aboard MV Kelso on 17th July after spending time in the UK. His wife Janice will return later in the year. Mike and Janice's and Janice Hentley attended the House of Lords Reception on 23rd May to celebrate the 500th Anniversary of the discovery of Tristan da Cunha (see Association News Page) and travelled to Somerset to visit the Somerton Printery to see the July Tristan Newsletter being prepared (see Newsletter Page). Chief Islander Anne Green has been acting as Administrator during Mike's absence in early May and has taken the lead in liasing with the salvors of the stricken oil rig A Turtle.
Channel Hopping comes to Tristan da Cunha
For over 3 years now, Tristan residents have enjoyed watching live television. Thanks to sponsorship by the Island's crayfish concession partner, South Africa-based Ovenstone Agencies, the local Post & Telecommunications Department were able to purchase and erect satellite equipment to download transmissions by the British Forces Broadcasting Service beamed to members of the Armed Forces serving overseas and rebroadcast to households in the Settlement area.
The popular 'BFBS One' channel carries a mix of BBC and ITV programmes, including news broadcasts, a good range of sports coverage and, of course a daily ration of 'soaps' such as 'Emmerdale', 'The Bill', 'Coronation Street' and East Enders'. 
From today, a sister channel 'BFBS Two' is also available, thanks again to the generosity of Director Andrew James and his colleagues of Ovenstone Agencies.  Andrea Repetto, who had been running P&T Department during the absence on leave of Postmaster Ian Lavarello, was able to install the additional equipment delivered by the MFV Edinburgh which arrived from Cape Town on 2 April. 
Now,  where did I put that remote control thingy.....?
Report from Mike Hentley received 4th April 2006

Re launching the Mabel Clark

The 3 masted barque Mabel Clark, was wrecked on the west coast of Tristan whilst carrying coal from Liverpool to Hong Kong on her maiden voyage in May 1878. The handsome name board has since been proudly displayed in what has been for many years the finest traditional stone house and occupied by the Hagan family.

Carl and Julia Hagan have now built a guest house and are using the original board as a sign for it.  Carl has repainted and re varnished the original for display when visitors are here.The new house follows a trend to provide separate accommodation for visitors. See Organising Visits page.

£2000 raised for Tsunami Fund
Chief Islander Anne Green has reported that £2000 has been raised and donated to the Indian Ocean Tsunami appeal by the tiny Tristan community of 276, itself the recent victim of a natural disaster. Anne adds 'I was very proud of the effort made by everyone here on the island. People were very generous with their donations, even pensioners, who only receive a small weekly sum, and some of those donated almost a third of their weekly pension. I felt very humbled by that.'