As a result of partnership between the National Trust, Enterprise St Helena (ESH) and the Education Directorate, Christen Yon will be leaving the Island on Monday 22 December 2014, to undertake a seven-month training course at West Dean College, near Chichester in the UK – where he will study many aspects of furniture restoration and preservation.
This bespoke course, designed to suit Christen’s needs, will see him receive the excellent specialist training available at West Dean College. Christen is currently working at the Longwood workshops, where he is deeply involved in the restoration and repair of many Napoleonic pieces of furniture. Christen said:
“I am delighted to have been given this unique opportunity and I’m really looking forward to the training.”
Colin Moore, Director of Education, added:
“I am delighted that West Dean College has been able to offer Christen a place for his studies. I’m confident that this will be of benefit not only to Christen but to the Island as a whole. I wish him well with his studies.
“We would also like to thank Michel Martineau, the French Consul, for providing an Apprenticeship for Christen over the past year.”
David Goodrick of ESH commented:
“This is the final piece in an extensive Apprenticeship that Christen has undertaken. It will not only provide him with the skills to look after the Island’s antiquities, but will also enable him to teach the next generation of furniture restorers – thus safeguarding these items for the future. I wish him well on this venture.”
Jeremy Harris, Director of the National Trust, said:
“There is so much beauty and history in the hundreds of pieces of antique furniture on St Helena. I’m thrilled at this opportunity for Christen to continue developing, as he is so keen to do, his considerable skills, so he can preserve this invaluable part of the Island’s heritage. I hope that, when he returns, we can build on his experience to bring others into this vital area of work.”