Dec/Jan/Feb 1997/8                    111
It submitted our Islands to more that usual a number of events, that past year 1997: sad ones, dramatic ones, funny - and commonplace ones, as life is just one thing after another. Our selection reminds of some of them.
Quite a bit of fresh window-dressing, inside as well as outside improved the shopping quality for islanders and touists. The Hamilton Gallery however closed down. 
A message received by Falmouth Costguard on 26th March 1997 3.35 am; "Vessel Cita aground in position Lat 49.54.7N; Long 06.16.7W" St Mary's Lifeboat was launched and got the crew of 9 Polish seamen safely ashore.
 After the wreckage local boatmen seized the opportunity offering wreck trips to the tourists. 
A bigger problem was the aftermath of the Cita cargo: her owners and insurance failed to acknowledge the damage caused by tons of polyester film in several of her 170 lost containers. To prevent pollution to IoS Environmental Trust had to organise and pay for a difficult rescue operation which up to now has brought 218 rolls ashore.
On Sunday 18th May the Scillonian III had to take the largest ever amount of luggage on board to bring 504 cruise-passengers from the damaged luxury liner 'Albatross' to Penzance.
10,000 tons of Penryn granite rocks had been landed to boost the coastal defences of the islands.
Houses were built, others improved - and the largest vessel since 1871, the 'Seahorse' was built and launched on St. Mary's
The only public clock on St. Mary's got a fresh splash of blue paint and golden hands.

A new book on the photographs by the Gibson family "A Century of Images" by Rex Cowen contains an elaborate study in the Gibson Family history and their work by the author John le Carre

The power station's chimney gave the workmen painting it a splendid view over the archipelago.
A lone Yellow-browed Warbler attracted crowds of birdwatchers as late as November.
 ......and there was more to record, for example:

that the Council is publishing a newsletter, the first one in April, titled "Scene on Scilly", the second in June called "Island's Council" and the next one due about now, perhaps, with the new name "Lighthouse". Should anyone want to propose another title, please contact Carmen Mallon on 422537;

that Mrs Kathryn Harvey has become shared Headteacher for the two schools on St. Mary's;

that the work on the new Health Centre has begun.

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