26 Nov 2003

Britain considers upgrade of Pitcairn infastructure

8:24 am on 26 November 2003

Britain is looking at ways of improving links to Pitcairn in a possible bid to increase its population of fewer than 50.

The British High Commissioner, and Governor of Pitcairn Richard Fell, and three engineers are due to arrive in Pitcairn tomorrow, to carry out a survey on the viability of an airstrip and upgrade infrastructure.

The deputy governor, Matthew Forbes, says a survey will determine how things will proceed.

"One thing that we are looking to do is to try to increase revenue streams on Pitcairn so there is a more sustainable future for the islanders. If there was an air strip built it would enable tourists to come in. It would also enable us to get casualties off the island if there were any medical emergencies as well, which I think is obviously of quite some benefit for the islanders, we also hope that having better access might encourage more Pitcainers to actually return to the island as well, numbers are down to about forty seven at the moment."

Matthew Forbes.