Unprecedented worldwide coverage on St Helena over the weekend

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Just about every country and territory covered the historic landing in its media over the weekend.

Here is just a snippet of how the international press covered the story

BBC

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-41620003

The first scheduled commercial airline service to the remote British island of St Helena in the south Atlantic has touched down safely.

The virgin flight, an SA Airlink service from South Africa, ends the island’s long-standing reliance on a ship which sailed every three weeks.

It is hoped that the service, funded by the UK, will boost tourism and help make St Helena more self-sufficient.

Tears and joy on Britain’s St. Helena as ‘world’s most useless airport’ finally opens

http://townpress.co.za/live/2017/10/tears-joy-britains-st-helena-worlds-useless-airport-finally-opens/

JAMESTOWN, St. Helena- One of humanity’s most isolated outposts joined the 21st century on Saturday when the British island of St. Helena, home to “the world’s most useless airport”, welcomed its first commercial flight.

As the inaugural plane from Johannesburg touched down on the forbidding volcanic outcrop in the middle of the south Atlantic, the travel and history buffs on board clapped and cheered.

“I’ve never felt so emotional in all my life,” said Libby Weir-Breen, a British travel operator who has been bringing tourists to the island, 1,200 miles (1,900 km) west of the African nation of Angola, for the last 12 years.

She had flown in specially from Scotland to be on the plane, and dabbed away tears as it touched down on the spectacular cliff-side runway. “I never thought I’d see this day,” she said.

The 4,500 people living on St. Helena, a British colony since 1658 – most famous as the windswept outpost where French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte breathed his last – might also be forgiven for thinking the day would never come.

There has been talk of building an airport on St. Helena since the 1930s. The best site – one of the few flat spaces on the notoriously craggy island – was ruled out because of a nearby breeding ground for the wirebird, an endangered species of plover.

An airport at the new site, on top of a valley filled in with 8 million cubic metres of rock, suffered numerous setbacks and delays as costs ballooned to 285 million pounds, to the horror of the British government.

Governor Lisa Phillips dismissed the critics and said that even before it accepted its first commercial flight, the airport had proved its worth in the last 18 months by enabling several life-saving emergency medical evacuations, including a newborn child.

“I’ve seen the headlines about the world’s most useless airport, but for St. Helenans this has already been the most useful airport,” she told reporters after greeting them on the tarmac. “It’s priceless.”

LONELY PLANET

https://www.lonelyplanet.com/news/2017/10/12/first-commercial-flight-st-helena/?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=travel+news&utm_term=st+helena+to+be+reunited+with+the+rest+of+the+world+with+first+commercial+flight

THE TIMES

Belt up for the nerve-shredding first flight to St Helena airport- http://www.newssummedup.com/a/ndzfb9

St Helena appeared suddenly through the clouds — jagged, gloomy, as forbidding as Napoleon first saw it 202 years ago. Within seconds the Barn, one of the most fearsome sea cliffs, appeared metres away. Suddenly I saw the cliff edge and the white runway markings. Seconds later, at 13.57, the wheels touched down serenely on the smooth new runway — a textbook landing. Applause broke out among those on board the historic first scheduled flight to the…

CITY AM

Commercial flights finally take off at St Helena airport- http://www.cityam.com/273875/commercial-flights-finally-take-off-st-helena-airport

THE INDEPENDENT

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/africa/st-helena-first-commercial-plane-remote-british-territory-south-africa-a8001061.html

GOOD MORNING AMERICA

WATCH: First commercial flight lands in St. Helena, a South Atlantic island previously only accessible by boat:

EWN SOUTH AFRICA

http://ewn.co.za/2017/10/15/tears-and-joy-on-st-helena-as-world-s-most-useless-airport-finally-opens?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

SOUTHERN AFRICAN TOURISM UPDATE

Destination opens up with special interest for British, French, Boers and Zulus

http://www.tourismupdate.co.za/article/127343/News-destination-opens-up-with-special-interest-to-British-French-Boers-and-Zulus

DER SPIEGEL

Flughafen St. Helena eröffnet mit erstem Linienflug

http://www.spiegel.de/reise/aktuell/flughafen-st-helena-im-suedatlantik-eroeffnet-a-1172838.html

ABC NEWS 

One of world’s most remote islands gets commercial flights

http://abcnews.go.com/Lifestyle/wireStory/worlds-remote-islands-commercial-flights-50477584

DAILY MAIL

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/afp/article-4979594/St-Helenas-isolation-end-air-link-opens.html

DEUTSCHLANDFUNK

http://www.deutschlandfunk.de/st-helena-erster-linienflug-zur-einstigen-verbannungsinsel.2850.de.html?drn:news_id=803865

FAZ

http://www.faz.net/aktuell/gesellschaft/menschen/erstes-linienflug-auf-st-helena-gelandet-15247463.html?GEPC=s2

ITV

https://www.itv.com/news/2017-10-14/first-commercial-flight-touches-down-at-st-helena/

IOL

https://www.iol.co.za/weekend-argus/sa-airlink-celebrates-first-st-helena-flight-11581103

SRF

Anschluss an die Aussenwelt: In Napoleons Verbannungsort wurde der erste Flughafen eröffnet

There are hundreds more…

 

 

 

 

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