Saint Helena (//) is a remote volcanic tropical island in the South Atlantic Ocean, belonging to the United Kingdom. The island lies some 1,950 kilometres (1,210 mi) west of the coast of southwestern Africa, and 4,000 kilometres (2,500 mi) east of Rio de Janeiro on the South American coast. It is one of three British Overseas Territory grouped as Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha. Saint Helena measures about 16 by 8 kilometres (10 by 5 mi) and has a population of 4,534 (2016 census). It was named after Saint Helena of Constantinople. It is one of the most isolated islands in the world and was uninhabited when discovered by the Portuguese in 1502. It was an important stopover for ships sailing to Europe from Asia and Southern Africa for centuries.
"Loyal and Unshakable"
|Anthem: "God Save the Queen"|
|Unofficial anthem: "My Saint Helena Island"|
Map of Saint Helena
Location of Saint Helena in the southern Atlantic Ocean
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Crown colony||22 April 1834|
|Current constitution||1 September 2009|
|Largest city||Half Tree Hollow|
|Government||Devolved parliamentary dependency under a constitutional monarchy|
|Government of the United Kingdom|
|121 km2 (47 sq mi)|
|Highest elevation||2,684 ft (818 m)|
• 2016 census
|37.5/km2 (97.1/sq mi)|
|Currency||Saint Helena pound (£) (SHP)|
|Time zone||UTC±00:00 (GMT)|
|ISO 3166 code||SH-HL|
The island was the place of imprisonment of Napoleon by the British from 1815 to his death in 1821. Dinuzulu kaCetshwayo was imprisoned there (for leading a Zulu army against British rule), along with more than 5,000 Boers taken prisoner during the Second Boer War, including Piet Cronjé.
Saint Helena is United Kingdom's second-oldest overseas territory after Bermuda.
History of Saint Helena
Early history (1502–1658)
Most historical accounts state that the island was sighted on 21 May 1502 by Galician navigator João da Nova sailing in the service of Portugal, and that he named it Santa Helena after Helena of Constantinople. A paper published in 2015 observes that 21 May is probably a Protestant rather than a Catholic or Orthodox feast day, and the date was first quoted in 1596 by Jan Huyghen van Linschoten, who was probably mistaken because the island was discovered several decades before the Reformation and the start of Protestantism. An alternative discovery date of 3 May is suggested as being historically more credible; it is the Catholic feast day of the finding of the True Cross by Saint Helena in Jerusalem, and cited by Odoardo Duarte Lopes and Sir Thomas Herbert.
Another theory holds that the island found by da Nova was actually Tristan da Cunha, 2,430 kilometres (1,510 mi) to the south, and that Saint Helena was discovered by some of the ships attached to the squadron of the Estêvão da Gama expedition on 30 July 1503 (as reported in the account of clerk Thomé Lopes). Thomé Lopes mapped St Helena's geographic position with reasonable accuracy when he quoted its distance and direction with respect to locations such as Ascension, Cape Verde, São Tomé and the Cape of Good Hope. The island's map location with respect to Ascension and the Cape of Good Hope was likewise described following the 1505 Portuguese expedition led by Francisco de Almeida.
When Linschoten arrived on 12 May 1589 he reported seeing carvings made by visiting seamen on a fig tree that were dated as early as 1510. The Portuguese probably planted saplings rather than mature trees, and for these to be sufficiently large by 1510 to carry carvings suggests the plants were shipped to the island and planted there some years earlier, possibly within a few years of discovery.
A third discovery story, told by the 16th-century historian Gaspar Correia, holds that the island was found by the Portuguese nobleman and warrior Dom Garcia de Noronha, who sighted the island on his way to India in late 1511 or early 1512. His pilots entered the island onto their charts and it has been suggested that this event was likely decisive in leading to the utilization of the island as a regular stopover for rest and replenishment for ships en route from India to Europe, from that date until well into the seventeenth century. An analysis has been published of the Portuguese ships arriving at St Helena in the period 1502–1613.
The Portuguese found the island uninhabited, with an abundance of trees and fresh water. They imported livestock, fruit trees and vegetables, and built a chapel and one or two houses. The long tradition that João da Nova built a chapel from one of his wrecked carracks has been shown to be based on a misreading of the records. They formed no permanent settlement, but the island was an important rendezvous point and source of food for ships travelling by Cape Route from Asia to Europe, and frequently sick mariners were left on the island to recover before taking passage on the next ship to call at the island.
Englishman Sir Francis Drake probably located the island on the final leg of his circumnavigation of the world (1577–1580). Further visits by other English explorers followed and, once Saint Helena's location was more widely known, English ships of war began to lie in wait in the area to attack Portuguese India carracks on their way home.
In developing their Far East trade, the Dutch also began to frequent the island. The Portuguese and Spanish soon gave up regularly calling at the island, partly because they used ports along the West African coast, but also because of attacks on their shipping, the desecration of their chapel and religious icons, destruction of their livestock, and destruction of plantations by Dutch and English sailors.
The Dutch Republic formally claimed Saint Helena in 1633, although there is no evidence that they ever occupied, colonised, or fortified it. By 1651, the Dutch had mainly abandoned the island in favour of their colony at the Cape of Good Hope.
East India Company (1658–1815)
In 1657, Oliver Cromwell granted the English East India Company a charter to govern Saint Helena and, the following year, the company decided to fortify the island and colonise it with planters. The long tradition that the early settlers included many who had lost their home in the 1666 Great Fire of London has been shown to be a myth. The first governor, Captain John Dutton, arrived in 1659, making Saint Helena one of Britain's earliest colonies outside North America and the Caribbean. A fort and houses were built. After the Restoration of the English monarchy in 1660, the East India Company received a royal charter giving it the sole right to fortify and colonise the island. The fort was renamed James Fort and the town Jamestown, in honour of the Duke of York, later King James II of England.
Between January and May 1673, the Dutch East India Company forcibly took the island, before English reinforcements restored English East India Company control. The company experienced difficulty attracting new immigrants, and sentiments of unrest and rebellion arose among the inhabitants. Ecological problems of deforestation, soil erosion, vermin and drought led Governor Isaac Pyke in 1715 to suggest that the population be moved to Mauritius, but this was not acted upon and the company continued to subsidise the community because of the island's strategic location. A census in 1723 recorded 1,110 people, including 610 slaves.
Eighteenth-century governors tried to tackle the island's problems by planting trees, improving fortifications, eliminating corruption, building a hospital, tackling the neglect of crops and livestock, controlling the consumption of alcohol and introducing legal reforms. The island enjoyed a lengthy period of prosperity from about 1770. Captain James Cook visited the island in 1775 on the final leg of his second circumnavigation of the world. St. James' Church was built in Jamestown in 1774, and Plantation House in 1791–1792; the latter has since been the official residence of the Governor.
Edmond Halley visited Saint Helena on leaving the University of Oxford in 1676 and set up an astronomical observatory with a 7.3-metre-long (24 ft) aerial telescope, with the intention of studying stars from the Southern Hemisphere. The site of this telescope is near Saint Mathew's Church in Hutt's Gate in the Longwood district. The 680-metre (2,230 ft) high hill there is named for him and is called Halley's Mount.
Throughout this period, Saint Helena was an important port of call of the East India Company. East Indiamen would stop there on the return leg of their voyages to British India and China. At Saint Helena, ships could replenish supplies of water and provisions and, during wartime, form convoys that would sail under the protection of vessels of the Royal Navy. Captain James Cook's ship HMS Endeavour anchored and resupplied off the coast of Saint Helena in May 1771 on its return from the European discovery of the east coast of Australia and the rediscovery of New Zealand.
The importation of slaves was made illegal in 1792. Governor Robert Patton (1802–1807) recommended that the company import Chinese labour to supplement the rural workforce. The coolie labourers arrived in 1810, and their numbers reached 600 by 1818. Many were allowed to stay, and their descendants became integrated into the population. An 1814 census recorded 3,507 people on the island.
British rule (1815–1821) and Napoleon's exile
In 1815, the British government selected Saint Helena as the place of detention for Napoleon Bonaparte. He was taken to the island in October 1815. Britain also took the precaution of sending a garrison of soldiers, with an experienced officer (Edward Nicolls), to uninhabited Ascension Island, which lay between St. Helena and Europe.:87
British East India Company (1821–1834)
After Napoleon's death, the thousands of temporary visitors were withdrawn and the East India Company resumed full control of Saint Helena. Between 1815 and 1830, the EIC made the packet schooner St Helena available to the government of the island, which made multiple trips per year between the island and the Cape, carrying passengers both ways and supplies of wine and provisions back to the island. Napoleon praised Saint Helena's coffee during his exile on the island, and the product enjoyed a brief popularity in Paris in the years after his death.
The importation of slaves to Saint Helena was banned in 1792, but the phased emancipation of over 800 resident slaves did not take place until 1827, which was still some six years before the British parliament passed legislation to ban slavery in the colonies.
Between 1791 and 1833, Saint Helena became the site of a series of experiments in conservation, reforestation, and attempts to boost rainfall artificially. This environmental intervention was closely linked to the conceptualisation of the processes of environmental change and helped establish the roots of environmentalism.
Crown colony (1834–1981)
This section needs additional citations for verification. (October 2017)
Under the provisions of the 1833 India Act, control of Saint Helena passed from the East India Company to the British Crown, and it became a crown colony. Subsequent administrative cost-cutting triggered a long-term population decline: those who could afford to do so tended to leave the island for better opportunities elsewhere. The latter half of the 19th century saw the advent of steamships not reliant on trade winds, as well as the diversion of Far East trade away from the traditional South Atlantic shipping lanes to a route via the Red Sea (which, prior to the building of the Suez Canal, involved a short overland section). So the number of ships calling at the island fell from 1,100 in 1855 to only 288 in 1889.
In 1840, a British naval station established to suppress the African slave trade was based on the island, and between 1840 and 1849 over 15,000 freed slaves, known as "Liberated Africans", were landed there.
In 1858, the French emperor Napoleon III purchased, in the name of the French government, Longwood House and the lands around it, the last residence of Napoleon I (who died there in 1821). It is still French property, administered by a French representative and under the authority of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
On 11 April 1898 American Joshua Slocum, on his famous and epic solo round-the-world voyage, arrived at Jamestown. He departed on 20 April 1898 for the final leg of his circumnavigation, having been extended hospitality by the governor, His Excellency Sir R A Standale. He presented two lectures on his voyage and was invited to Longwood by the French Consular agent.
In 1900 and 1901, over 6,000 Boer prisoners were held on the island, notably Piet Cronjé and his wife after their defeat at Battle of Paardeberg. The resulting population reached an all-time high of 9,850 in 1901.
A local industry manufacturing fibre from New Zealand flax was successfully re-established in 1907 and generated considerable income during the First World War. Ascension Island was made a dependency of Saint Helena in 1922, and Tristan da Cunha followed in 1938. During the Second World War, the United States built Wideawake airport on Ascension in 1942, but no military use was made of Saint Helena except maintenance of its defences.
During this period, the island enjoyed increased revenues from the sale of flax, with prices peaking in 1951. However, the industry declined because of transport costs and competition from synthetic fibres. The decision by the British Post Office to use synthetic fibres for its mailbags was a further blow, contributing to the closure of the island's flax mills in 1965.
From 1958, the Union Castle shipping line gradually reduced its service calls to the island. Curnow Shipping, based in Avonmouth, replaced the Union-Castle Line mailship service in 1977, using the RMS (Royal Mail Ship) St Helena which was introduced in 1989.
1981 to present
The British Nationality Act 1981 reclassified Saint Helena and the other Crown colonies as British Dependent Territories. The islanders lost their right of abode in Britain. For the next 20 years, many could find only low-paid work with the island government, and the only available employment outside Saint Helena was on the Falkland Islands and Ascension Island. The Development and Economic Planning Department (which still operates) was formed in 1988 to contribute to raising the living standards of the people of Saint Helena.
The Saint Helena Constitution took effect in 1989 and provided that the island would be governed by a Governor, Commander-in-Chief, and an elected executive and legislative council. In 2002, the British Overseas Territories Act 2002 granted full British citizenship to the islanders, and renamed the dependent territories (including Saint Helena) the British Overseas Territories. In 2009, Saint Helena and its two territories received equal status under a new constitution, and the British Overseas Territory was renamed Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha.
Located in the South Atlantic Ocean on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, more than 2,000 kilometres (1,200 mi) from the nearest major landmass, Saint Helena is one of the most remote places in the world. The nearest port on the continent is Moçâmedes in southern Angola; connections to Cape Town in South Africa are used for most shipping needs, such as the cargo boat that serves the island, the MS Helena.
The island is associated with two other isolated islands in the southern Atlantic, also British territories: Ascension Island about 1,300 kilometres (810 mi) due northwest in more equatorial waters and Tristan da Cunha, which is well outside the tropics 2,430 kilometres (1,510 mi) to the south. The island is situated in the Western Hemisphere and has the same longitude as Cornwall in the United Kingdom. Despite its remote location, it is classified as being in West Africa by the United Nations.
The island of Saint Helena is 122 km2 (47 sq mi) in area, and is composed largely of rugged terrain of volcanic origin (the last volcanic eruptions occurred about 7 million years ago). Coastal areas are covered in volcanic rock and are warmer and drier than the centre. The highest point of the island is Diana's Peak at 818 m (2,684 ft). In 1996 it became the island's first national park. Much of the island is covered by New Zealand flax, a legacy of former industry, but there are some original trees augmented by plantations, including those of the Millennium Forest project, which was established in 2002 to replant part of the lost Great Wood and is now managed by the Saint Helena National Trust. The Millennium Forest is being planted with indigenous gumwood trees.
When the island was discovered, it was covered with unique indigenous vegetation, including a remarkable cabbage tree species. The island's hinterland must have been a dense tropical forest but the coastal areas were probably also quite green. The modern landscape is very different, with widespread bare rock in the lower areas, although inland it is green, mainly due to introduced vegetation. There are no native land mammals, but cattle, cats, dogs, donkeys, goats, mice, rabbits, rats and sheep have been introduced, and native species have been adversely affected as a result. The dramatic change in landscape must be attributed to these introductions. As a result, the string tree (Acalypha rubrinervis) and the Saint Helena olive (Nesiota elliptica) are now extinct, and many of the other endemic plants are threatened with extinction.
There are several rocks and islets off the coast, including: Castle Rock, Speery Island, the Needle, Lower Black Rock, Upper Black Rock (South), Bird Island (Southwest), Black Rock, Thompson's Valley Island, Peaked Island, Egg Island, Lady's Chair, Lighter Rock (West), Long Ledge (Northwest), Shore Island, George Island, Rough Rock Island, Flat Rock (East), the Buoys, Sandy Bay Island, the Chimney, White Bird Island and Frightus Rock (Southeast), all of which are within one kilometre (0.62 miles) of the shore.
The climate of Saint Helena is tropical, marine and mild, tempered by the Benguela Current and trade winds that blow almost continuously. The climate varies noticeably across the island. Temperatures in Jamestown, on the north leeward shore, are in the range 21–28 °C (70–82 °F) in the summer (January to April) and 17–24 °C (63–75 °F) during the remainder of the year. The temperatures in the central areas are, on average, 5–6 °C (9.0–10.8 °F) lower. Jamestown also has a very low annual rainfall, while 750–1,000 mm (30–39 in) falls per year on the higher ground and the south coast, where it is also noticeably cloudier. There are weather recording stations in the Longwood and Blue Hill districts.
Saint Helena is divided into eight districts, with the majority housing a community Centre. The districts also serve as statistical divisions. The island is a single electoral area and elects 12 representatives to the Legislative Council of 15.
|Half Tree Hollow||1.6||0.6||1,140||901||984||633.2|
NOTE: The difference between the figure for the total number of people found in the Administrative Districts and the population recorded in the 2016 Census is accounted for by the fact that the census included figures for the number of people on board the RMS St. Helena (183) and the number of people who were on yachts in the harbour (13).
Saint Helena was first settled by the English in 1659. As of January 2018[update], the island had a population of 4,897 inhabitants, mainly descended from people from Britain – settlers ("planters") and soldiers – and slaves who were brought there from the beginning of settlement – initially from Africa (the Cape Verde Islands, Gold Coast and west coast of Africa are mentioned in early records), then India and Madagascar. The importation of slaves was made illegal in 1792, thus preventing any further increase in their numbers.
In 1840, Saint Helena became a provisioning station for the British West Africa Squadron, preventing the transportation of slaves to Brazil (mainly), and many thousands of slaves were freed on the island. These were all African, and about 500 stayed while the rest were sent on to the West Indies and Cape Town, and eventually to Sierra Leone.
Imported Chinese labourers arrived in 1810, reaching a peak of 618 in 1818, after which numbers were reduced. Only a few older men remained after the British Crown took over the government of the island from the East India Company in 1834. The majority were sent back to China, although records in the Cape suggest that they never got any farther than Cape Town. There were also a few Indian lascars who worked under the harbour master.
The citizens of Saint Helena hold British Overseas Territories citizenship. On 21 May 2002, full British citizenship was restored by the British Overseas Territories Act 2002. See also British nationality law.
During periods of unemployment, there has been a long pattern of emigration from the island since the post-Napoleonic period. The majority of "Saints" emigrated to Britain, South Africa and in the early years, Australia. The population had been steadily declining since the late 1980s and dropped from 5,157 at the 1998 census to 4,257 in 2008. However, as of the 2016 census, the population has risen to 4,534. In the past emigration was characterised by young unaccompanied persons leaving to work on long-term contracts on Ascension and the Falkland Islands, but since "Saints" were re-awarded British citizenship in 2002, emigration to Britain by a wider range of wage-earners has accelerated due to the prospect of higher wages and better progression prospects. By 2018 Swindon, Wiltshire, had a concentration of people originating from Saint Helena, and therefore it got the nickname "Swindolena".
Other Christian denominations on the island include the Roman Catholic (since 1852), the Salvation Army (since 1884), Baptist (since 1845) and, in more recent times, the Seventh-day Adventist (since 1949), the New Apostolic Church, and Jehovah's Witnesses (of which one in 35 residents is a member, the highest ratio of any country).
The Roman Catholics are pastorally served by the Mission sui iuris of Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha, whose office of ecclesiastical superior is vested in the Apostolic Prefecture of the Falkland Islands.
|This article is part of a series on the|
politics and government of
Executive authority in Saint Helena is vested in Queen Elizabeth II and is exercised on her behalf by the Governor of Saint Helena. The Governor is appointed by the Queen on the advice of the British government. Defence and foreign affairs remain the responsibility of the United Kingdom.
There are 15 seats in the Legislative Council of Saint Helena, a unicameral legislature, in addition to a Speaker and a Deputy Speaker. Twelve of the 15 members are elected in elections held every four years. The three ex officio members are the Chief Secretary, Financial Secretary and Attorney General, currently Susan O'Bey, Dax Richards and Allen Cansick respectively. The Executive Council is presided over by the Governor and consists of three ex officio officers and five elected members of the Legislative Council appointed by the Governor. There is no elected Chief Minister, and the Governor acts as the head of government. In January 2013 it was proposed that the Executive Council would be led by a Chief Councillor who would be elected by the members of the Legislative Council and would nominate the other members of the Executive Council. These proposals were put to a referendum on 23 March 2013 where they were defeated by 158 votes to 42 on a 10% turnout.
One commentator has observed that notwithstanding the high unemployment resulting from the loss of full passports during 1981–2002, the level of loyalty to the British monarchy by the Saint Helena population is probably not exceeded in any other part of the world. King George VI is the only reigning monarch to have visited the island. This was in 1947 when the King, accompanied by Queen Elizabeth (later The Queen Mother), Princess Elizabeth (later Queen Elizabeth II) and Princess Margaret were travelling to South Africa. The Duke of Edinburgh arrived at Saint Helena in 1957, followed by his son, Prince Andrew, who visited as a member of the armed forces in 1984, and his daughter, the Princess Royal, in 2002.
In 2012, the government of Saint Helena funded the creation of the St. Helena Human Rights Action Plan 2012–2015. Work is being done under this action plan, including publishing awareness-raising articles in local newspapers, providing support for members of the public with human rights queries, and extending several UN Conventions on human rights to St. Helena.
Child abuse scandal
In 2014, there were reports of child abuse in Saint Helena. Britain's Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) was accused of lying to the United Nations about child abuse in Saint Helena to cover up allegations, including cases of a police officer having raped a four-year-old girl and of a police officer having mutilated a two-year-old.
A government report was published on 10 December 2015. It found that the accusations were grossly exaggerated, and the lurid headlines in the Daily Mail had come from information from two social workers, whom the report described as incompetent.
Same Sex Marriage
In 2017, a St Helenian made an application to the Registrar to get married to his same-sex partner on St Helena. The laws at the time had referred to marriages between men and women and it was not clear whether same-sex marriages were lawful. After consultation events, endorsement by the Social and Community Development Committee and Executive Council, the Marriage Ordinance was updated and agreed by Legislative Council in December 2017. Registrar Karen Yon oversaw the first same sex wedding between the original 2017 applicants, Saint Helenian Lemarc Thomas and Swedish national Michael Wernstedt in a ceremony at Plantation House on December 31 2018.
Saint Helena has long been known for its high proportion of endemic birds and vascular plants. The highland areas contain most of the 400 endemic species recognised to date. Much of the island has been identified by BirdLife International as being important for bird conservation, especially the endemic Saint Helena plover or wirebird, and for seabirds breeding on the offshore islets and stacks, in the north-east and the south-west Important Bird Areas. On the basis of these endemics and an exceptional range of habitats, Saint Helena is on the United Kingdom's tentative list for future UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Artist Rolf Weijburg produced various etches on Saint Helena, picturing various of these endemic birds.
Saint Helena's biodiversity, however, also includes marine vertebrates, invertebrates (freshwater, terrestrial and marine), fungi (including lichen-forming species), non-vascular plants, seaweeds and other biological groups. To date, very little is known about these, although more than 200 lichen-forming fungi have been recorded, including nine endemics, suggesting that many significant discoveries remain to be made.
Various flora and fauna on the island have become extinct. Due to deforestation, the last wild endemic St Helena olive tree, Nesiota elliptica died in 1994, and by December 2003, the last cultivated olive tree died. The native St.Helena earwig was last seen in the wild in 1967.
- Note: Some of the data in this section have been sourced from the Government of St Helena Sustainable Development Plan.
Saint Helena's economy is now developing, but is almost entirely sustained by aid from the British government. The public sector dominates the economy, accounting for about 50% of gross domestic product. However, the commencement of regular air services has meant that there has been a rise in tourism, and the Government is encouraging investment on the Island, as can be shown by their Investment Policy and Strategy and the Investor Prospectus for potential investors. In 2019, St Helena achieved its first ever ‘Investment Grade’ Credit Rating, a Credit Rating of BBB- (stable), from global credit-rating agency Standard & Poors (S&P).
St Helena's Sustainable Economic Development Plan, 2018-28, was developed through over 6 months of local and international consultation in 2017-18, led by the Head of the Economic Development Committee, Hon Lawson Henry, and the Chief Government Economist, Nicole Shamier. The document represents a 10 year plan to kick start the economy after air access and fibre connectivity and moved away from relying purely on Tourism for growth, to a mantra to "increase exports, and decrease imports". The SEDP stated that the Island's comparative advantages are its Natural Resources and Geography, its status as a British Overseas Territory, its currency the Pound, £, relatively inexpensive labour and property costs and low crime. Targeted export growth sectors include Tourism, Fisheries, Coffee, Satellite Ground Stations, Work from Home Jobs (Digital Nomads), Academia, Research and Conferences, Liquor, Wines and Beers, Ship Registry and Sailing Qualifications, Traditional Products, Honey and Honey Bees and Film Location. Growth sectors for Import Substitution include Agriculture, Timber, Bricks, Blocks, Minerals and Rocks and Bottled Water. The SEDP is likely to see some tweaks in 2020-21 to include Company Registry and Digital Nomads.
The tourist industry is heavily based on the promotion of Napoleon's imprisonment as well as nature activities such as scuba diving, swimming with whale sharks, whale watching, bird watching, marine tours and hiking. A golf course also exists and there is a possibility for sportfishing. Several hotels, B&Bs and Self-Catering apartments operate on the island, and the arrival of tourists is linked to the Saint Helena Airport (and in the past, the arrival and departure schedule of the now-retired RMS St Helena).
Saint Helena produces what is said to be the most expensive coffee in the world[permanent dead link]. It also produces and exports Tungi Spirit, made from the fruit of the prickly or cactus pears, Opuntia ficus-indica ("Tungi" is the local St Helenian name for the plant), and Coffee Liqueur, Gin, and Rum in its local distillery. Due to the absence of parasites and disease in bees, beekeepers collect some of the purest honey in the world.
St Helena has a small fishing industry, landing mostly tuna. The fishery is committed to one by one fishing using the motto 'one pole one line one fish at a time'. Some of St Helena's exported tuna has been served in restaurants in Cape Town.
Like Ascension Island and Tristan da Cunha, St Helena is permitted to issue its own postage stamps, an enterprise that provides an income. St Helena also issues domains under .sh.
Between 2009 and 2017 St Helena’s HDI increased from 0.714 to 0.756; this places St Helena in the ‘high’ category of human development, according to the classification used by the United Nations. Compared to other countries around the globe, St Helena’s HDI ranking rose from 93rd (out of 190 countries ranked) to 83rd in the world – an improvement of ten places.
The average (median) annual wage on St Helena in 2018/19 was an estimated £8,410. The median male wage was higher than the median female wage. The gap between the two grew in 2013/14, but narrowed in 2017/18 as male wages fell on average and the median female wage level grew. This is probably due to the completion of the construction of the Airport, since workers employed on the Project were predominantly male and many of them either left St Helena or found alternative employment during 2016/17 and 2017/18. Nonetheless, both female and male median wage levels fell sharply in 2018/19.
The overall Retail Price Index is measured quarterly on St Helena by the SHG Statistics Office. The RPI was measured at 105.9 in the first quarter of 2020. This is unchanged from the rate of the fourth quarter of 2019, and an increase from 104.1 in the first quarter of 2019. This means that retail prices rose, on average, by 1.7% over the past year, between the first quarter of 2019 and the first quarter of 2020. As most of the goods available in retail outlets on St Helena are imported from either South Africa or the United Kingdom, St Helena’s prices are heavily influenced by price inflation in those two countries, the value of the St Helena pound compared to the South African Rand, the cost of freight, and import taxes. In the UK, the annual price inflation rate (using the Consumer Price Index) was 1.7% for February 2020, down from 1.8% in January 2020. In South Africa, the Consumer Price Index was 4.6% for February, up from 4.5% in January 2020. In addition, since early 2019 the value of the South African Rand has steadily weakened, from around 17 Rand per pound to around 20 at the end of March 2020; this has a counter effect to the South African inflation, and in some cases may even have made South African goods cheaper to buy. This will mitigate against some pressures which might cause prices to rise, such as increasing freight prices on the MV Helena.
Between January 2010 and March 2016, just before the first 40 people arrived by air in April 2016, the average number of arrivals per month by sea (excluding day visitors arriving on cruise ships) was 307, with an average of 245 arriving on the Royal Mail Ship (RMS) St Helena. Between October 2017, when the first scheduled air service began, and September 2019, an average of 432 passengers arrived per month, with 314 of those passengers arriving by air. Since October 2017, a total of 3,337 people have arrived by air in the first 12-month period and 4,188 in the second. The increase in the second year follows the introduction of a mid-week flight during the peak period of December 2018 to April 2019. Arrivals by air were higher in the second year in every month apart from May and June.
Banking and currency
In 1821, Saul Solomon (the uncle of Saul Solomon) issued 70,560 copper tokens worth a halfpenny each Payable at St Helena by Solomon, Dickson and Taylor – presumably London partners – that circulated alongside the East India Company's local coinage until the Crown took over the island in 1836. The coin remains readily available to collectors.
Saint Helena has its own currency, the Saint Helena pound, which is at parity with the pound sterling. The government of Saint Helena produces its own coinage and banknotes. The Bank of St. Helena was established on Saint Helena and Ascension Island in 2004. It has branches in Jamestown on Saint Helena, and Georgetown, Ascension Island and it took over the business of the St. Helena government savings bank and Ascension Island Savings Bank.
For more information on currency in the wider region, see pound sterling in the South Atlantic and the Antarctic.
Before the completion of the airport, the primary tourist groups were dedicated hikers and retirees, as the required ship voyage on the RMS St Helena would consume about two weeks roundtrip, making it unattractive to average tourists with regular jobs; the hikers were willing to use about two weeks of leave to get to/from St Helena and the retirees would not be concerned with voyage times. After the completion of the airport, the island has the potential to attract a broader range of tourists.
St Helena Tourism updated their Tourism Marketing Strategy in 2018. This outlined the targeted markets, St Helena's Strengths Weaknesses Opportunity and Threats. It also outlined the unique selling points of the Island including Nature (Whale Sharks and Wirebirds), Saint Culture (Safer Environment), Walking and Hiking, Diving, Arts and Crafts, Twin Destination with South Africa, Photography, Running, History and Heritage (Napoleon), Stargazing, Running, Arts and Crafts, and Food & Drink.
Up until the COVID-19 global pandemic, St Helena has been on track to meet its tourism targets of 12% growth a year, which is required to achieve over 29,000 leisure visitors by the 25th year of the service operating.
Most arrivals to St Helena are non-Saint tourists, followed by returning Saints (visiting friends and relatives), followed by returning residents and then business arrivals. Non-Saint tourists tend to stay for a week, whilst Saints visiting friends and relatives tend to stay for about a month. Around 37% of tourists are British, 21% South African, 13% European other than British, German or French and 9% American or from the Caribbean. Most non-Saint tourists are over 40 years of age, with around 40% being 40-59 and around 40% being 60+. In 2018 tourism contributed approximately £4-£5m to the economy, and in 2019 this increased to around £5m-£6m.
A freight ship, M/V Helena, handles all freight to the island (some express mail is transported by air). It sails from Cape Town to Saint Helena and Ascension Island, from the beginning of 2018. It uses a wharf at Ruperts Bay which was built to assist the airport construction. It can take a few passengers.
Until 2017, the Royal Mail Ship RMS St Helena ran between Saint Helena and Cape Town on a five-day voyage, then the only scheduled connection to the island. She berthed offshore in James Bay, Saint Helena, approximately 30 times per year, and passengers and freight were transferred by small boats ashore. AW Ship Management had a package deal where passengers could travel in one direction on the RMS and in the other by taking British Royal Air Force flights to or from RAF Ascension Island and RAF Brize Norton in Brize Norton, England.
St Helena receives around 600 yachting visitors a year. During 2020, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, it was advised that yachting passengers should not leave port to travel to St Helena, however those seeking entry on humanitarian grounds can be granted entry after a 2 week quarantine in Port in James Bay.
In March 2005, the British government announced plans to construct the Saint Helena Airport. On 22 July 2010, the British government agreed to help pay for the new airport. In November 2011, a deal was signed between the British government and South African civil engineering company Basil Read, and the airport was scheduled to open in February 2016 with flights to and from South Africa and the UK. The cost was £250 million. This is aimed at helping the island become more self-sufficient, encouraging economic development while reducing dependence on British government aid. It is also expected to kick-start the tourism industry, with up to 30,000 visitors expected annually.
The first aircraft landed at the new airport on 15 September 2015, a South African Beechcraft King Air 200, prior to conducting a series of flights to calibrate the airport's radio navigation equipment. The airport's opening was scheduled for May 2016, but it was announced in June 2016 that it had been delayed indefinitely due to high winds and wind shear. In 2017, South African airline Airlink became the preferred bidder to provide weekly air service between the island and Johannesburg. The first commercial flight ever to land at Saint Helena was a charter flight carried out by Airlink of South Africa on Wednesday, 3 May 2017 from Cape Town via Moçâmedes, Angola, using the Avro RJ85 ZS-SSH (msn 2285). The flight picked up passengers of RMS St Helena stranded on the island when St Helena suffered propeller damage.
On 14 October 2017, Airlink began a weekly service between Johannesburg, South Africa, and Saint Helena Airport using an Embraer E190-100IGW, the first scheduled airline service in Saint Helena's history. With 78 passengers aboard, the airliner arrived at Saint Helena Airport after a flight of about six hours from Johannesburg with a refuel stop at Windhoek.
In April 2020, UK charter airline Titan Airways became the first operator to land an Airbus airliner on St Helena, following the arrival of an A318. The narrowbody (G-EUNB) was chartered by the UK government to carry medical staff and 2.5t of “essential medical supplies” for the residents of its overseas territory.
The airport is situated such that at times serious wind shear makes it difficult to land from the north. It is safe to land from the other direction, but it is plagued by tailwinds, which increase landing ground speed, and thus imposes a weight restriction, which translates to fewer passengers. Nevertheless, only a few flights were delayed to next day during the first half-year. This happened a little more often during the second half-year during the local winter. Fog is a bigger problem than wind shear.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the lockdown in South Africa the commercial air service between South Africa and St Helena was temporarily ceased from 21 March 2020. Private and charter jets shall be accepted only with permission from the Governor. All arriving air passengers are required to quarantine in Bradley's Camp near the airport to reduce the risk of Covid-19 reaching the Island and spreading amongst the population.
A minibus offers a basic service to carry people around Saint Helena, with most services designed to take people into Jamestown for a few hours on weekdays to conduct their business. Car hire is available for visitors. There are also a number of taxi companies available including V2 Taxis and Crowie's Taxis.
Media and communications
Radio Saint Helena started operations on Christmas Day 1967, and provided a local radio service that had a range of about 100 km (62 mi) from the island, and also broadcast internationally on shortwave radio (11092.5 kHz) on one day a year. The station presented news, features, and music in collaboration with its sister newspaper the St Helena Herald. It closed on 25 December 2012 to make way for a new three-channel FM service, also funded by St. Helena Government and run by the South Atlantic Media Services (SAMS), formerly St. Helena Broadcasting (Guarantee) Corporation.
SAMS provides two radio channels to St Helena. SAMS Radio 1 is a music and entertainment channel; SAMS Radio 2 is a relay of the BBC World Service. SAMS also produces a weekly newspaper, The Sentinel, and a weekly TV news broadcast.
Saint FM provided a local radio service for the island which was also available on Internet radio and relayed in Ascension Island. The station was not government-funded. It was launched in January 2005 and closed on 21 December 2012. It broadcast news, features, and music in collaboration with its sister newspaper the St Helena Independent, which continues.
Saint FM Community Radio took over the radio channels vacated by Saint FM and launched on 10 March 2013. The station operates as a limited-by-guarantee company owned by its members, and is registered as a fund-raising association. Membership is open to everyone and grants access to a live audio stream.
St Helena Local offers a news service and online user forum offering information about St Helena. This website is run from overseas but is open to contribution from anyone who has an interest in St Helena.
Friends of St Helena is a UK-based charity that provides information about St Helena, including its history, culture, environment and current affairs plus practical support to the St Helenian community. In addition to its regular meetings, it publishes magazines focused on the island's current affairs and history and a major online genealogical facility to research St Helenian ancestry.
Saint Helena Government is the official mouthpiece of the island's governing body. It includes news, information for potential visitors and investors, as well as official press releases and pages from the major government departments.
Saint Helena Tourism is a website aimed squarely at the tourist trade with advice on accommodation, transport, food and drink, events and the like. Saint Helena Islands Property Finder – St Helena online accommodation offering self-catering, bed and breakfasts, hotels and property news.
Sure South Atlantic Ltd (Sure) offers television for the island via 17 analogue terrestrial UHF channels, offering a mix of British, US, and South African programming. The channels are from DSTV and include Mnet, SuperSport, and BBC channels. The feed signal from MultiChoice DStv in South Africa is received by a satellite dish at Bryant's Beacon from Intelsat 20 and Intelsat 36 in the Ku band.
SAMS formerly produced a weekly TV news broadcast, Newsbyte, which was also published on YouTube.
Sure provides the telecommunications service in the territory through a digital copper-based telephone network including ADSL broadband service. In August 2011 the first fibre-optic link was installed on the island, which connects the television reception antennas at Bryant's Beacon to the Cable & Wireless plc Technical Centre in the Briars.
A satellite ground station with a 7.6-metre (25 ft) satellite dish installed in 1989 at The Briars is the only international connection providing satellite links through Intelsat 707 to Ascension island and the United Kingdom. Since all international telephone and Internet communications are relying on this single satellite link, both Internet and telephone service are subject to Sun outages.
Saint Helena has the international calling code +290, which Tristan da Cunha has shared since 2006. Saint Helena telephone numbers changed from four to five digits on 1 October 2013 by being prefixed with the digit "2", i.e. 2xxxx, with the range 5xxxx being reserved for mobile numbering, and 8xxx being used for Tristan da Cunha numbers (these are still shown as four digits).
Sure South Atlantic has an exclusive public telecommunication licence until 31 December 2022. Considering the onset of new fibre capacity to the Island from 2022, and the new licence period, a consultation was undertaken which gathered public expectations of telecommunications and electronic communications post 2022. This is leading to a new Policy on Communications Networks and Services to be developed in 2020.
Saint Helena was granted the use of .sh as its own Internet country code top-level domain (ccTLD). This is formally shared with Ascension Island and Tristan da Cunha, British Overseas Territories. Registrations of internationalized domain names are also accepted under this TLD so, for example, the German federal state of Schleswig-Holstein uses the .sh domain for some quasi-governmental sites. In practice several sites dedicated to aspects of life on Saint Helena are run from elsewhere in the world, so use other TLD's, such as the Saint Helena Web site which is based in Sweden.
St Helena had a 10/3.6 Mbit/s Internet link via Intelsat 707 (deactivated January 2011) provided by Sure. Serving a population of more than 4,000, this single satellite link is considered inadequate in terms of bandwidth.[by whom?]
By September 2014, ADSL broadband service was provided with maximum speeds of up to 1,536 kbit/s downstream and 512 kbit/s upstream offered on contract levels from lite at £16 per month to gold+ at £190 per month. There were a few public wi-fi hotspots in Jamestown in 2010, which were being operated by Sure (formerly Cable & Wireless).
The South Atlantic Express, a 10,000 km (6,214 mi) submarine communications cable connecting Africa to South America, as planned in 2012 by the undersea fibre optic provider eFive, was planned to pass St Helena relatively closely. At the time, there were no plans to land the cable and install a landing station ashore, which could supply St Helena's population with sufficient bandwidth to fully leverage the benefits of today's information society. In January 2012, a group of supporters petitioned the UK government to subsidize the cost of landing the cable at St Helena. On 6 October 2012, eFive agreed to reroute the cable through St Helena after a successful lobbying campaign by A Human Right, a US NGO working on initiatives to ensure all people are connected to the Internet. In 2013, Islanders sought the assistance of the UK Department for International Development and Foreign and Commonwealth Office in funding the £10m required to bridge the connection from a local junction box on the cable to the island. The UK government announced in early 2013 that a review of the island's economy would be required before such funding would be agreed.[needs update]
In 2017, St Helena Government developed its Digital Strategy, drafted by the Assistant Chief Secretary at the time, Paul McGinnety. The Digital Strategy outlined intentions to connect to a Fibre Optic Cable to achieve developments in Education, Telemedicine and Digital Business.
In 2018, in Brussels SHG UK Representative, Mrs Kedell Worboys MBE, along with Director for Latin America & Caribbean, Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development, Jolita Butkeviciene, signed a Financing Agreement for the Territorial Allocation of the 11th European Development Fund (EDF 11). As a result, €21.5 million was allocated to St Helena to support the delivery of the SHG Digital Strategy through the realisation of the submarine cable to enable faster and more reliable internet connectivity on the Island.
On Christmas Eve in 2019, SHG announced that they had signed a contract with Google to land a branch of the Equiano Cable, named after Olaudah Equiano, an African Author who had been enslaved as a child. The main trunk of the cable will connect South Africa with Portugal. The press release explained that the branch between the main trunk of the Equiano cable and the Island will be 1140km long and that the target is to deliver the cable and associated high-speed Internet to St Helena by early 2022; providing the cable laying, landing station and associated planning permissions and works to start the service proceed on time. The landing of the Fibre Optic Cable will help to develop the satellite ground station and work from home sectors, as was set out in St Helena's 2018 Sustainable Economic Development Plan. The Labour Market Strategy also set out the willingness to attract Digital Nomads to live and work on St Helena.
Satellite Ground Stations / Earth Stations
In February 2018 St Helena Government launched the project to attract operators of satellite ground stations to the island who would lease capacity on the planned submarine cable for backhauling and so contribute to the operational costs of the latter. Satellite ground stations on St Helena could support communications with satellites in low Earth orbit, including those in polar, equatorial and inclined orbit and with high-throughput satellites in medium earth as well as Geostationary orbit.
In 2020, the Policy Statement on Licencing Permanent Earth Stations and Receive Only Earth Stations was endorsed by Executive Council.
Culture and society
The Education and Employment Directorate, formerly the Saint Helena Education Department, in 2000 had its head office in The Canister in Jamestown. Education is free and compulsory between the ages of five and 16 At the beginning of the academic year 2009–10, 230 students were enrolled in primary school and 286 in secondary school. The island has three primary schools for students of age four to 11: Harford, Pilling, and St Paul's.
- St Paul's Primary School in St Paul's, formerly St Paul's Middle School, has both first and middle levels as it was formed by a 1 August 2000 merger. As of 2020[update] it has 134 students and serves, in addition to St Paul's, Bluehill, Gordons Post, New Ground, Sandy Bay, and Upper Half Tree Hollow. In 2002, in addition to St Paul's it served a portion of Half Tree Hollow as well as the communities of Blue Hill, Guinea Grass, Hunt's Bank, New Ground, Sandy Bay, Thompson's Hill, and Vaughn's.
- Harford Primary School in Longwood, with Governor James Harford as its namesake, opened as a senior school in 1957 and became Hardford Middle School in September 1988. It merged with Longwood First School in 2008. It It also serves Alarm Forest and Levelwood.
- Pilling Primary School is in Jamestown. Occupying a former garrison, the school was established in 1941 and became Pilling Middle School in 1988. Jamestown First School, located next door to Pilling Middle, merged into it in May 2005 as a result of declining enrollment. The merged school initially used both buildings, but as the enrollment continued its decline, the ex-Jamestown First Building, constructed in 1959, was no longer in use after 2007. In addition to Jamestown it serves Alarm Forest, Briars, Lower Half Tree Hollow, Rupert's, and Sea View. As of 2020[update] it had 126 students.
It formerly had separate first schools catering to younger students (ages 3-7 as of 2002):
- Half Tree Hollow First School, originally a primary school, opened as such in 1949 with its current name and year configuration in place since 1988. In addition to Half Tree Hollow it served Cleugh's Plain, New Ground, and Sapper Way.
- Jamestown First School, originally Jamestown Junior School, opened as such in 1959 with its current name and year configuration in place since 1988.
- Longwood First School, originally a primary school, opened in 1949 in a former mess hall for military officers that had been constructed in 1942; this building had an expansion in 1977, and there are four classrooms in a separate building that was built in 1958. Longwood became a "first school" in 1988.
The Education and Employment Directorate also offers programmes for students with special needs, vocational training, adult education, evening classes, and distance learning. The island has a public library (the oldest in the Southern Hemisphere, open since 1813) and a mobile library service which operates weekly in rural areas.
The English national curriculum is adapted for local use. A range of qualifications are offered – from GCSE, A/S and A2, to Level 3 Diplomas and VRQ qualifications:
- Design and Technology
- Business Studies
- A/S & A2 and Level 3 Diploma
- Business Studies
- English Literature
- Building and Construction
- Automotive Studies
Saint Helena has no tertiary education. Scholarships are offered for students to study abroad. St Helena Community College (SHCC) has some vocational and professional education programmes available.
Historically, the St Helena Turf Club organised the island's first recorded sports events in 1818 with a series of horse races at Deadwood. Saint Helena has sent teams to a number of Commonwealth Games. Saint Helena is a member of the International Island Games Association. The Saint Helena cricket team made its debut in international cricket in Division Three of the African region of the World Cricket League in 2012. The Saint Helena football team first tournament was the 2019 Inter Games Football Tournament after which it was ranked tenth out of ten.
The Governor's Cup is a yacht race between Cape Town and Saint Helena island, held every two years in December and January.
In Jamestown a timed run takes place up Jacob's Ladder every year, with people coming from all over the world to take part.
There are Scouting and Guiding Groups on Saint Helena and Ascension Island. Scouting was established on Saint Helena island in 1912. Lord and Lady Baden-Powell visited the Scouts on Saint Helena on the return from their 1937 tour of Africa. The visit is described in Lord Baden-Powell's book, titled African Adventures.
In 2017 Julia Buckley of The Independent wrote that due to the lack of nouveau cuisine, the food is "Pretty retro, at least by London standards." Fish cakes in a St Helena style, with egg binding and chilli; and a risotto with curry dish called pilau or plo, are what Buckley describes as "staple[s]".
- Daniel Caldwell (1816–1875), colonial official
- Sir John Doveton (1768–1847), East India Company military officer
- Napoleon Bonaparte, French Emperor, exiled in St Helena
- Saul Solomon, liberal politician of the British Cape Colony
- Khalid bin Bargash, deposed Sultan of Zanzibar
- List of islands
- Wildlife of Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha
- Manatee of Helena
- Outline of Saint Helena
- Saint Helena Police Service
- Healthcare on Saint Helena
- The St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Constitution Order 2009 Archived 11 May 2011 at the Wayback Machine "...the transfer of rule of the island to His Majesty’s Government on 22 April 1834 under the Government of India Act 1833, now called the Saint Helena Act 1833" (Schedule Preamble)
- "Census 2016 – summary report" (PDF). St Helena Government. Archived (PDF) from the original on 17 October 2016. Retrieved 21 September 2016.
- "Constitution of St. Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha". UK Archives. 2009. Archived from the original on 12 March 2010. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
- Knight, Ian (2004). Boer Commando 1876–1902. Osprey Publishing. p. 56. ISBN 978-1-84176-648-5.
- Ian Bruce, 'St Helena Day', Wirebird The Journal of the Friends of St Helena, no. 44 (2015): 32–46. Archived 16 October 2015 at the Wayback Machine
- Jan Huyghen van Linschoten, Itinerario, voyage ofte schipvaert van Jan Huygen Van Linschoten naer Oost ofte Portugaels Indien, inhoudende een corte beschryvinghe der selver landen ende zee-custen... waer by ghevoecht zijn niet alleen die conterfeytsels van de habyten, drachten ende wesen, so van de Portugesen aldaer residerende als van de ingeboornen Indianen. (C. Claesz, 1596).
- Jan Huygen van Linschoten, John Huighen Van Linschoten, His Discours of Voyages into Ye Easte [and] West Indies: Divided into Foure Bookes (London: John Wolfe, 1598).
- Duarte Lopes and Filippo Pigafetta, Relatione del Reame di Congo et delle circonvicine contrade tratta dalli scritti & ragionamenti di Odoardo Lope[S] Portoghese / per Filipo Pigafetta con disegni vari di geografiadi pianti, d’habiti d’animali, & altro. (Rome: BGrassi, 1591).
- Thomas Herbert, Some Yeares Travels into Africa et Asia the Great: Especially Describing the Famous Empires of Persia and Industant as Also Divers Other Kingdoms in the Orientall Indies and I’les Adjacent (Jacob Blome & Richard Bishop, 1638), 353.
- article: Tristan da Cunha (distance)
- A. H. Schulenburg, 'The discovery of St Helena: the search continues'. Wirebird: The Journal of the Friends of St Helena, Issue 24 (Spring 2002), pp. 13–19.Full Paper
- Duarte Leite, História dos Descobrimentos, Vol. II (Lisbon: Edições Cosmos, 1960), 206.
- de Montalbodo, Paesi Nuovamente Retovati & Nuovo Mondo da Alberico Vesputio Fiorentino Intitulato (Venice: 1507)
- The Voyage from Lisbon to India, 1505–06, being an account and journal by Albericus Vespuccius, translated from the contemporary Flemish [by George Frederick Barwick and Janet M. E. Barwick], and edited with prologue and notes by C. H. Coote. [With the text of the original entitled "Die reyse va Lissebone" in facsimile.], Published by B. F. Stevens in 1894.
- Linschoten, Jan Huygen van, A. C. (Arthur Coke) Burnell, and Pieter Anton Tiele. The voyage of John Huyghen van Linschoten to the East Indies : from the old English translation of 1598 : the first book, containing his description of the East. London : Printed for the Hakluyt Society, 1885. https://archive.org/details/voyagejohnhuygh02tielgoog/page/n279.
- Disney, A.R. (2016). The Portuguese in India and other studies, 1500-1700 (Ch. XVII - The Portuguese and Saint Helena). Routledge. pp. 217–219. ISBN 978-1-138-49378-0.
- Rowlands, Beau W. ‘Ships at St Helena, 1502-1613’. Wirebird: The Journal of the Friends of St Helena No 28 (Spring 2004): 5–10.Full Paper
- Schulenburg, Alexander H. ‘Joao Da Nova and the Lost Carrack’. Wirebird: The Journal of the Friends of St Helena 16 (Autumn 1997): 19–23.Full Paper
- Knowlson, James R. (1968), "A Note on Bishop Godwin's "Man in the Moone:" The East Indies Trade Route and a 'Language' of Musical Notes", Modern Philology, 65 (4): 357–91, doi:10.1086/390001, JSTOR 435786
- Drake and St Helena, privately published by Robin Castell in 2005
- "Historical Chronology". St. Helena Foundation. Archived from the original on 16 July 2012. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
- St Helena and the Great Fire of LondonFull Paper
- Gazetteer – p. 7. MONUMENTS IN FRANCE – page 338 Archived 16 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine
- Beaglehole, J.C., ed. (1968). The Journals of Captain James Cook on His Voyages of Discovery, vol. I:The Voyage of the Endeavour 1768–1771. Cambridge University Press. p. 468. OCLC 223185477.
- Cox, Dale (2015). Nicolls' outpost : a War of 1812 fort at Chattahoochee, Florida. Old Kitchen Books. ISBN 9780692379363.
- Roberts, Andrew (2014). Napoleon : A Life. New York: Viking. pp. 778, 781–82, 784, 801. ISBN 978-0-670-02532-9.
- New research published on http://sthelena.uk.net Archived 6 May 2013 at the Wayback Machine; shortened extract published in the Saint Helena Independent on 3 June 2011.
- Richard Grove, Green Imperialism: Colonial Expansion, Tropical Island Edens and the Origins of Environmentalism, 1600–1860 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995), pp. 309–379
- Royle, Stephen A. ‘Alexander The Rat – F. W. Alexander, Chief Censor, Deadwood Camp, St Helena’. Wirebird: The Journal of the Friends of St Helena 15 (Spring 1997): 17–21.Full Paper
- Clements, Bill. ‘Second World War Defences on St Helena’. Wirebird: The Journal of the Friends of St Helena 33 (Autumn 2006): 11–15. Full Paper
- Natural History of Saint Helena Archived 13 August 2011 at the Wayback Machine
- Bird Watching, St Helena Tourism, archived from the original on 17 September 2010, retrieved 17 January 2011
- Our Flag, Moonbeams Limited, archived from the original on 15 October 2014, retrieved 11 November 2014
- "St. Helena, Ascension, and Tristan da Cunha", CIA World Factbook, Central Intelligence Agency, archived from the original on 28 December 2010, retrieved 21 July 2012
- About St Helena, St Helena News Media Services Archived 20 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine
- BBC Weather Centre Archived 9 February 2011 at the Wayback Machine
- St Helena Independent, 3 October 2008 page 2
- "Constitution". St Helena. Archived from the original on 18 July 2014. Retrieved 14 June 2014.
- "Census 2016- Summary Data". St Helena Government. Archived from the original on 23 September 2016. Retrieved 21 September 2016.
- "2008 Population Census of St Helena" (PDF). St Helena Government. Archived (PDF) from the original on 28 December 2016. Retrieved 21 September 2016.
- St Helena 2016 Population & Housing Census (PDF). Jamestown, St Helena: St Helena Statistics Office. 6 June 2016. p. 9. Archived (PDF) from the original on 20 October 2017. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
- "STATISTICS UPDATE: POPULATION, ASCENSION POPULATION, PRODUCTION, BENEFITS AND EXCHANGE RATES « St Helena".
- St Helena celebrates the restoration of full citizenship Archived 10 November 2017 at the Wayback Machine, Telegraph, 22 May 2002
- Angelini, Daniel (24 August 2018). "St Helena expats from 'Swindolena' to gather for sports day this weekend". Swindon Advertiser. Retrieved 7 January 2020.
- Hearl, Trevor W. ‘St Helena’s Early Baptists’. Wirebird: The Journal of the Friends of St Helena 12 (Autumn 1995): 40–46.Full Paper
- 2017 Service Year Report of Jehovah's Witnesses
- "CONSTITUTIONAL POLL – RESULTS". The Islander. 25 March 2013. Archived from the original on 27 October 2014. Retrieved 14 August 2013.
- Smallman, David L., Quincentenary, a Story of St Helena, 1502–2002; Jackson, E. L. St Helena: The Historic Island, Ward, Lock & Co, London, 1903
- "humanrightssthelena.org" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 27 October 2014. Retrieved 10 June 2014.
- "The Equality & Human Rights Commission • Introduction". humanrightssthelena.org. Archived from the original on 15 April 2016. Retrieved 28 March 2016.
- "The Equality & Human Rights Commission • Introduction". humanrightssthelena.org. Archived from the original on 15 April 2016. Retrieved 28 March 2016.
- "St Helena child abuse: Foreign Office 'was warned British island couldn't cope 12 years ago'". Telegraph. 2015. Archived from the original on 19 January 2015. Retrieved 19 January 2015.
- "St Helena child abuse: 'a lot of dark things do happen on this island'". Telegraph. Archived from the original on 19 January 2015. Retrieved 19 January 2015.
- "St Helena child abuse: how did sex abusers get away with it for so long?". Telegraph. Archived from the original on 19 January 2015. Retrieved 19 January 2015.
- "The St Helena Independent - Saint FM". 13 August 2014. Archived from the original on 6 December 2017. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
- "HC 662 The Wass Inquiry Report" (PDF). 10 December 2015. Archived (PDF) from the original on 27 January 2016. Retrieved 15 December 2016.
- "Government inquiry concludes Daily Mail was misled over child abuse and corruption on St Helena". Press Gazette. 10 December 2015. Archived from the original on 14 December 2015. Retrieved 15 December 2016.
- "St Helena child abuse claims dismissed as 'gross distortion of reality'". The Independent. 10 December 2015. Archived from the original on 18 January 2018. Retrieved 5 December 2017.
- "Important Bird Areas", BirdLife data zone, BirdLife International, 2012, archived from the original on 30 June 2007, retrieved 9 November 2012
- "Tentative Lists: St. Helena". UNESCO. 27 January 2012. Archived from the original on 2 August 2012. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
- "Artists of Saint Helena". Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. Retrieved 2 November 2017.
- Rolf Weijburg’s website: http://www.weijburg.nl Archived 3 July 2018 at the Wayback Machine
- Aptroot, A. "Lichens of St Helena and Ascension Island". Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, 158: 147–171, 2008
- "10 Plants Lost to History". HowStuffWorks. 11 May 2016. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
- "Millennium Forest . St Helena Island". St Helena Island. 21 August 2015. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
- "The St Helena Tuna One By One Philosophy". YouTube. 2018.
- "Stats Bulletin HDI" (PDF). 2019.
- "Stats Bulletin Wages" (PDF). 2020.
- "Stats Bulletin RPI". 2020.
- "Stats Bulletin Arrivals" (PDF). 2019.
- About Us: History of the Bank of St. Helena, Bank of St. Helena, archived from the original on 7 February 2012, retrieved 21 July 2012
- Buckley, Julia (18 December 2017). "Why you should visit St Helena, home to the 'world's most useless airport'". The Independent. Retrieved 6 January 2020.
- "St Helena's Tourism Marketing Strategy" (PDF). St Helena Tourism.
- "Visitor Statistics" (PDF). St Helena Government. 2020.
- "Economic Development Committee Meeting Summary". St Helena Government. April 2020.
- Rosenberg, Zach. "Tiny, Remote St. Helena Gets Its First Airport Archived 27 September 2015 at the Wayback Machine" Air & Space/Smithsonian, 18 September 2015. Accessed: 26 September 2015.
- "RMS St. Helena Schedule & Fares". RMS St. Helena. Archived from the original on 26 April 2010. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
- "RMS St Helena Brochure" (PDF). AW Ship Management. p. 18. Retrieved 6 January 2020.
- "RAF Flights Fly with the RAF and meet the RMS en route". AW Ship Management. Retrieved 6 January 2020.
- "Saint Helena to get first airport". BBC News. 15 March 2005. Archived from the original on 15 October 2017. Retrieved 4 July 2017.
- Daniel McElroy & Christopher Hope (22 July 2012). "Britain to pay for St. Helena airstrip backed by Lord Ashcroft". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 14 November 2012. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
- "Remote UK island colony of St Helena to get airport". BBC News. 3 November 2011. Archived from the original on 25 April 2012. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
- England's St Helena exiles welcome island airport project, BBC News Online, 21 April 2012, archived from the original on 26 April 2012, retrieved 21 February 2012
- "History Made as First Ever Plane Lands at St Helena". Archived from the original on 16 September 2015. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- "St Helena airport too windy to open". BBC News. 9 June 2016. Archived from the original on 25 December 2016. Retrieved 21 June 2018.
- "St. Helena sees maiden commercial pax flight". CH Aviation. 4 May 2017. Archived from the original on 4 May 2017. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
- "First flight lands on remote St Helena". BBC News. 14 October 2017. Archived from the original on 20 June 2018. Retrieved 21 June 2018 – via www.bbc.com.
- "Remote Atlantic runway opens up Napoleon's hidden island". 24 August 2015. Archived from the original on 13 October 2017. Retrieved 13 October 2017.
- "Sure Telephone Directory" (PDF). 2019.
- Simon Pipe (14 June 2012). "Media saga takes new twist as Mike plans more radio stations". St. Helena Online. Archived from the original on 20 November 2012. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
- "SAMS Home". www.sams.sh. Archived from the original on 5 October 2016. Retrieved 6 August 2016.
- "Saint FM Homepage". Saint FM. Archived from the original on 18 July 2012. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
- "Saint FM Live Stream". Saint FM. Archived from the original on 7 June 2012. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
- "About Saint FM". Saint FM. Saint FM Community Radio. 18 August 2014. Archived from the original on 6 May 2015. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
- Moonbeams Limited. "Saint Helena Island Info: All about St. Helena • Saint FM Community Radio". sainthelenaisland.info. Archived from the original on 14 January 2015. Retrieved 20 April 2015.
- "Saint Helena Island Info: All about St. Helena, in the South Atlantic Ocean • Amateur ("Ham") Radio". sainthelenaisland.info. Archived from the original on 1 April 2016. Retrieved 28 March 2016.
- "Saint Helena Online". Archived from the original on 14 July 2012. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
- "St Helena Local". St Helena Local. Archived from the original on 30 May 2016. Retrieved 22 May 2016.
- "Saint Helena Island Info". Saint Helena Island Info. Archived from the original on 27 May 2016. Retrieved 22 May 2016.
- Friends of St Helena
- "Saint Helena Government". Saint Helena Government. Archived from the original on 17 May 2016. Retrieved 22 May 2016.
- "Saint Helena Tourism". Saint Helena Tourism. Archived from the original on 21 June 2016. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
- "Public Information on the Television Delivery on the KU-BAND" (PDF). Cable and Wireless. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 December 2011. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
- "Cable & Wireless Carries out Major Mechanical Maintenance" Archived 10 May 2013 at the Wayback Machine The St Helena Independent Volume 1, Issue 37 Friday 21 July 2006, p. 8
- "Telecommunications network". cwi.sh. Archived from the original on 14 February 2012.
- www.itu.int Archived 2 March 2014 at the Wayback Machine
- "RMS St Helena to make last voyage". Independent Online. Archived from the original on 10 May 2015. Retrieved 11 May 2015.
- "Telecommunications Needs and Delighters Paper" (PDF). St Helena Government. 2019.
- .SH IDN Policy Archived 25 September 2014 at the Wayback Machine, NIC Archived 28 July 2005 at the Wayback Machine, Saint Helena.
- "St Helena". The St Helena Foundation. Archived from the original on 4 June 2016. Retrieved 22 May 2016.
- Sure South Atlantic Ltd (9 January 2014). "Sure South Atlantic Ltd – Increased Internet bandwidth in St Helena" (PDF). The Sentinel. 2 (40). Jamestown: South Atlantic Media Services, Ltd. p. 16. Archived from the original (PDF) on 13 April 2016. Retrieved 6 March 2019.
- "Broadband packages" (PDF). sure.co.sh. 1 February 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on 17 January 2015. Retrieved 3 September 2014.
- "WiFi". 30 June 2010. Archived from the original on 30 June 2010. Retrieved 6 December 2012.
- Christian von der Ropp. "Connect St Helena". Connectsthelena.org. Archived from the original on 28 October 2012. Retrieved 6 December 2012.
- Dave Lee (3 January 2013). "Island community St Helena renews plea for Internet cash from UK". BBC News Online. Archived from the original on 3 January 2013. Retrieved 2 January 2013.
- "St Helena Digital Strategy" (PDF).
- "SHG SIGNS FINANCING AGREEMENT FOR THE TERRITORIAL ALLOCATION OF 11th EDF". St Helena Government. 20 June 2018. Retrieved 6 May 2020.
- "St Helena Government signs contract with Google to land subsea cable". St Helena Government. 24 December 2019. Retrieved 6 May 2020.
- "St Helena's Sustainable Economic Development Plan 2018-28" (PDF). St Helena Government.
- "St Helena's Labour Market Strategy". St Helena Government. 2019.
- "St Helena South Atlantic Earth Station Project". article. St Helena Government. 5 February 2018. Archived from the original on 7 February 2018. Retrieved 7 February 2018.
- "St Helena South Atlantic Earth Station Project". website. St Helena Government. 5 February 2018. Archived from the original on 8 February 2018. Retrieved 7 February 2018.
- "St Helena Independent". Saint.fm. 17 April 2015. Archived from the original on 4 September 2015. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
- "SAMS The Sentinel". Soth Atlantic News Media Services Ltd. Retrieved 22 December 2016.[permanent dead link]
- "Home". St Helena Education Department. 26 January 2002. Archived from the original on 26 January 2002. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- "Education Ordinance 2009" (PDF). Retrieved 30 April 2013.[dead link]
- Government of St Helena. "Number of schools, enrolment and teachers:by category of school" (PDF). Retrieved 30 April 2013.[dead link]
- "St. Paul's Primary School". Saint Helena Government. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- "Home". St. Paul's Middle School. 14 January 2002. Archived from the original on 14 January 2002. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- "St. Paul's Primary School". Saint Helena Government. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- "Home". Harford Primary School. 7 March 2002. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- "Pilling Primary School". Saint Helena Government. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- "Home". Pilling Middle School. 6 February 2002. Archived from the original on 6 February 2002. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- "Home". Half Tree Hollow First School. 6 February 2002. Archived from the original on 6 February 2002. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- "Home". Jamestown First School. 5 February 2002. Archived from the original on 5 February 2002. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- "Home". Longwood First School. 14 December 2001. Archived from the original on 14 December 2001. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- "Community". Saint Connect. Archived from the original on 26 September 2012. Retrieved 30 April 2013.
- "Public Library Service". St Helena Education Department. 6 February 2002. Archived from the original on 6 February 2002. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- Government of St Helena. "Education and Employment Directorate". St Helena Government. Archived from the original on 30 December 2012. Retrieved 30 April 2013.
- Prince Andrew School. "Sixth Form". Prince Andrew School. Archived from the original on 28 October 2013. Retrieved 30 April 2013.
- "Community college". Saint Helena Government. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
- ‘Derby Days’ at Deadwood: Highlights of Horse-racing at St Helena – Part 1 and Part 2
- Island Games Archived 3 February 2011 at the Wayback Machine St Helena profile
- "Jacob's Ladder". sainthelenaisland.info. Retrieved 27 November 2016.
- ScoutBaseUK A Scouting Timeline Archived 14 February 2010 at the Wayback Machine
- "A Baden-Powell Bibliography". July 2007. Archived from the original on 13 August 2012. Retrieved 7 July 2009.
- Heaver, Stuart (22 February 2014). "Flagrant harbour: the sordid affair that cemented Hong Kong's reputation for vice and corruption". South China Morning Post. Archived from the original on 4 July 2018. Retrieved 4 July 2018.
- Aptroot, Andre. Lichens of St Helena, Pisces Publications, Newbury, UK, 2012, ISBN 9781874357537
- Brooke, T. H., A History of the Island of St Helena from its Discovery by the Portuguese to the Year 1806, Printed for Black, Parry and Kingsbury, London, 1808
- Bruce, I. T., Thomas Buce: St Helena Postmaster and Stamp Designer, Thirty years of St Helena, Ascension and Tristan Philately, pp 7–10, 2006, ISBN 1-890454-37-0
- Cannan, Edward Churches of the South Atlantic Islands 1502–1991 ISBN 0-904614-48-4
- Chaplin, Arnold, A St Helena's Who's Who or a Directory of the Island During the Captivity of Napoleon, published by the author in 1914. This has recently been republished under the title Napoleon’s Captivity on St Helena 1815–1821, Savannah Paperback Classics, 2002, ISBN 1-902366-12-3
- Clements, B.; "St Helena:South Atlantic Fortress"; Fort, (Fortress Study Group), 2007 (35), pp. 75–90
- Crallan, Hugh, Island of St Helena, Listing and Preservation of Buildings of Architectural and Historic Interest, 1974
- Cross, Tony St Helena including Ascension Island and Tristan Da Cunha ISBN 0-7153-8075-3
- Dampier, William, Piracy, Turtles & Flying Foxes, 2007, Penguin Books, 2007, pp 99–104, ISBN 0-14-102541-7
- Darwin, Charles, Geological Observations on the Volcanic Islands, Chapter 4, Smith, Elder & Co., London, 1844.
- Denholm, Ken, South Atlantic Haven, a Maritime History for the Island of St Helena, published and printed by the Education Department of the Government of St Helena
- Duncan, Francis, A Description of the Island of St Helena Containing Observations on its Singular Structure and Formation and an Account of its Climate, Natural History, and Inhabitants, London, Printed For R Phillips, 6 Bridge Street, Blackfriars, 1805
- Eriksen, Ronnie, St Helena Lifeline, Mallet & Bell Publications, Norfolk, 1994, ISBN 0-620-15055-6
- Evans, Dorothy, Schooling in the South Atlantic Islands 1661–1992, Anthony Nelson, 1994, ISBN 0-904614-51-4
- George, Barbara B. St Helena — the Chinese Connection (2002) ISBN 0189948922
- Gosse, Philip Saint Helena, 1502–1938 ISBN 0-904614-39-5
- Hakluyt, The Principal Navigations Voyages Traffiques & Discoveries of the English Nation, from the Prosperous Voyage of M. Thomas Candish esquire into the South Sea, and so around about the circumference of the whole earth, begun in the yere 1586, and finished 1588, 1598–1600, Volume XI.
- Hibbert, Edward, St Helena Postal History and Stamps, Robson Lowe Limited, London, 1979
- Hearl, Trevor W., St Helena Britannica: Studies in South Atlantic Island History (ed. A.H. Schulenburg), Friends of St Helena, London, 2013
- Holmes, Rachel, Scanty Particulars: The Scandalous Life and Astonishing Secret of James Barry, Queen Victoria's Most Eminent Military Doctor, Viking Press, 2002, ISBN 0-375-5055-63
- Jackson, E. L. St Helena: The Historic Island, Ward, Lock & Co, London, 1903
- Janisch, Hudson Ralph, Extracts from the St Helena Records, Printed and Published at the "Guardian" Office by Benjamin Grant, St Helena, 1885
- Keneally, Tom, Napoleon's Last Island, ISBN 978 0 85798 460 9, Penguin Random House Australia, 2015
- Kitching, G. C., A Handbook of St Helena Including a short History of the island Under the Crown
- Lambdon, Phil. Flowering plants and ferns of St Helena, Pisces Publications, Newbury, UK, 2012, ISBN 9781874357520
- Melliss, John C. M., St Helena: A Physical, Historical and Topographical Description of the Island Including Geology, Fauna, Flora and Meteorology, L. Reeve & Co, London, 1875
- Schulenburg, A. H., 'St Helena Historiography, Philately, and the "Castella" Controversy', South Atlantic Chronicle: The Journal of the St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Philatelic Society, Vol. XXIII, No.3, pp. 3–6, 1999
- Schulenburg, A.H., '"Island of the Blessed": Eden, Arcadia and the Picturesque in the Textualizing of St Helena', Journal of Historical Geography, Vol.29, No.4 (2003), pp. 535–53
- Schulenburg, A.H., 'St Helena: British Local History in the Context of Empire', The Local Historian, Vol.28, No.2 (1998), pp. 108–122
- Shine, Ian, Serendipity in St Helena, a Genetical and Medical Study of an isolated Community, Pergamon Press, Oxford, 1970 ISBN 0-08-012794-0
- Smallman, David L., Quincentenary, a Story of St Helena, 1502–2002 ISBN 1-872229-47-6
- Van Linschoten, Iohn Huighen, His Discours of Voyages into ye Easte & West Indies, Wolfe, London, 1598
- Weider, Ben & Hapgood, David The Murder of Napoleon (1999) ISBN 1-58348-150-8
- Wigginton, Martin. Mosses and liverworts of St Helena, Pisces Publications, Newbury, UK, 2012, ISBN 9781874357-51-3