We await the decision of the Governor on funding from his Discretionary Fund for amenity improvements at the Forest. Early summer rains have brought relief to the trees and their “guardians”, the forest workers. Concern about the trees had been heightened because the water, piped from the waste stabilization ponds, had been unavailable due to technical problems, for months. No large scale tree planting took place in 2003 due to the lack of rains and piped water and consequently limited seedling production. However we are hoping that the new Robert Scipio plantation will be filled this year, with the assistance of seedlings from the Environmental Conservation Section of ANRD. Our Christmas Newsletter generated much welcome support, together with suggestions for funding, a generous donation and some voluntary help from visitor Vince Thompson, for all of which we are extremely grateful. Vince, concerned about our root mealy bug problem, spent two days grubbing out creeper from around the gumwoods. He has also kindly offered to promote the forest at the St. Helena Reading Sports Day in UK. So – look out for him, and buy a gumwood tree to support the Millennium Endemic Gumwood Forest and keep your “roots” in St. Helena!
Curator, Lucy Caesar is seconded from Education Department, and has teaching commitments to fulfill until the GCSE exams in May, so she is very busy. Clive Stewart is still working on his model of the Ladder. Lucy has produced the museum’s Business Plan, and continues with children’s activities – especially during the holidays. She is planning the next exhibition to succeed the present one on island names, which has been very successful and attracted over 800 visitors. The museum funds are in a critical state, and the Heritage Society also needs to identify a source of running costs. The Friends of St. Helena have been a great help in the past, and continue to be so, but we seek a more permanent commitment to ensure the ownership of this important asset to community life on St. Helena. Islanders are proud of their new museum.
R – New Curator, Lucy Caesar, and L-Liz Young – former Broadway House museum curator, and still an invaluable help at the new museum.
The Museum’s Lift!
The museum’s wheelchair lift has been its most talked about donation. Funds for this wonderful piece of equipment were raised by the RMS Charity Fund under the leadership of Captain Martin Smith, who delivered it personally to the museum on the 5th of October 2003. Since November 2003 the sound of banging, drilling, and dragging have echoed through the wall of the museum, as Tommy, Bert and David smash through concrete ceilings and wooden floors. Next time you see these men give them a pat on the back because some of them are volunteers; yes they are installing the lift for free! PWSD deserve a special thank-you for the loan of specialized equipment that aided the initial stages of the lift’s installation.
Once the lift is in place and fully operational the museum will be fully accessible to individuals of all ages and all abilities.
Bert, Tommy and David in museum
Project Reports May 2003
Projects Reports October 2003
Projects Reports April/May 2004
Projects Reports August 2004
Projects Reports November 2004
Project Reports Feburary 2005
Project Reports June 2005
Project Reports July 2006
Project Reports December 2006
Project Reports May 2007
Newsletter 17 Dec 2007
The excitement generated by the positive reply from SHDA to our proposal to restore Scott’s Mill as a flax museum was short lived. The first step was for SHDA to return the building to SHG and we have not yet heard SHG’s position on this proposal. However, the Director felt confident that we could put forward a strong Bid to OTEP, to fund this, since complementary funding, in the shape of the machinery, was being donated. However, as mentioned earlier, the new OTEP fund does not cover the built environment, so that Bid, which could perhaps have influenced the decision, could not go forward.
Since then there has been a meeting of the Flax Mill Committee, and the outcome of that was to agree a much less ambitious program, either incorporating the Flax Story into the museum displays, with machinery outside nearby, or pressing SHG again for the Pipe Building in town which has an engine in place, and could be used as an extension of the museum. This Committee will visit the Pipe Building soon, and decide the next step, in consultation with the museum curator. They are all eager to make a start, and indeed the OTEP Bid mentioned already includes display Boards for the Flax Mill Story.
(original YOUTH PROJECT )
Sarah Holland, the former museum curator, was very busy before she left and did not quite manage to finish the first pack, so Director has taken charge of these now, and has several almost ready to go to schools. In consultation with Mrs. Elaine Benjamin, Head of Pilling Middle School, we agreed that the main thing is to have something on hand NOW and improve upon them as we go along, rather than waiting till they are perfect. This means that we have packs on:- The 1890 Rock fall and Fountain; The Market; The Boers; Settlements and Dinizulu ready.
There is always something more which could be added, but I am pleased with them, and enjoy this work very much. The years I spent researching in the Archives have been a great help, as has all the information sent over many years by Trevor Hearl. There are lots of others almost finished, and I have been spending time checking old photographs in albums at the Archives and museum, to enhance all these.