7 May 2004

Britain rejects claims it has lost interest in Pitcairn Island

4:13 pm on 7 May 2004

The deputy governor of Pitcairn has rejected claims that Britain has lost interest in the territory.

Matthew Forbes was reacting to a report from California, which was released on behalf of islanders, which said no head of state has ever visited the island, since it was settled by Fletcher Christian and his mutineers.

Mr Forbes believes a new court case about Pitcairn, and the EU for projects to improve the infrastructure there, has drawn interest.

But he says, both he and the governor have visited the island several times over the past few years, and the High Commission in Wellington, is in regular contact with Pitcairn.

"We now have a full-time diplomat stationed on the island as well, and to provide better communication with the island counts and the islanders generally. So I think that the sort of improved communications we have now with the islanders is paying off in some respects in that we're able to look forward to some of these development projects taking place."

Matthew Forbes, the deputy governor of Pitcairn.