Philip Kendall attends May 2024 meetings and events.

The Administrator in London

Report and photos from Tristan da Cunha Administrator Philip Kendall

Following some leave with my family, I have had a very productive couple of weeks of meetings in London.

It was strange to travel back into London on a busy train, knowing that there were many more people on my train then there are on Tristan!

Walking out of Westminster tube station felt very familiar, though I'm sure there are more tourists than there used to be. Or I have just become used to the tranquillity of our beautiful island in the South Atlantic.

Philip Kendall with Lord Ashcroft

My first meeting on 13th May 2024 was with Lord Ashcroft, who recently gave a generous donation to the Tristan da Cunha Association (TDCA) which makes grants to help the island community. I was able to thank him for his generosity as we discussed matters of mutual interest. Lord Ashcroft recently travelled to Tristan on aboard the cruise ship Ambience but was unfortunately unable to land. I hope that he will be able to visit us again soon.

I had several meetings in the Foreign Office with Senior Officials to discuss support for Tristan. I came away with the recognition that colleagues value the importance of our island and will continue to support us as much as they can.

Tristan da Cunha Administrator Philip Kendall, left,
with His Excellency Inigo Lambertini, centre,
and Alessandro Gaglione who chairs London's Committee of Italians Abroad.

The Italian Ambassador invited me to speak at an event on 15th May at his residence, where I met representatives of the town of Camogli and extended members of the Repetto family from Italy and the UK. The event was organised by Alessandro Gaglione and the Italian Community in the UK. The relationship between Camogli and Tristan is as close now as it has ever been since the day that Andrea Repetto and Gaetano Lavarello arrived on Tristan in 1892.

Philip Kendall is flanked on the left by Gianfranco Repetto and to his right by Alessandro Gaglione.
Also in the photograph are Tristan islanders now living in the UK with Ian Brown (far left),
Avril Repetto-Tinoco, far right, and Debbie Elsmore.

See more about this event on:

Tristan Government UK Representative Chris Carnegy and TDCA Co-Chair John Cooper were also at the Italian event, so we grabbed a coffee afterwards to discuss current issues and the Association. It was so good to see them both and to be able to thank them for everything they do for Tristan in the UK. Chris also joined me for some other meetings. His wisdom and knowledge are always a bonus!

Other meetings have included discussions on the lobster concession, banking, road projects and improving the internet on island. On the latter point I made the point strongly that improving the internet was a priority for me as it would give us more opportunities for further education, telehealth, and would make us more efficient. This can only be a good thing! I feel that I have made progress and that we will see steps forward on this very soon.

BGS Board Chair Sir Keith O'Nions speaking at the BGS Annual Stakeholders Meeting

I also attended the Annual Stakeholders' Meeting of the British Geological Survey (BGS) in the hallowed halls of the Natural History Museum on 23rd May, where I discussed the rockfalls and floods of 2nd February 2024 and how we can mitigate these in the future.

Philip Kendall being shown display boards which include recent BGS fieldwork on Tristan da Cunha