My first letter of concern.

Copied to the Honorable Prime Minister, the Honorable Deputy Prime Minister, The Honorable Lord Vaea and the Minister of Commerce, Tourism and Labor.

Friday 16th Nov. 2012

To: His Royal Highness Crown Prince Tupouto’a Ulukalala

Your Royal Highness

We refer to the recent raising and removal of a centuries’ old ships anchor, from Ha’apai, on Tuesday the 14th Nov. 2012. This priceless piece of Tongan heritage, which could even be considered as a “National Treasure”, is believed to have originally come from the historic wreck of the “Port Au Prince”, so well known through out the world because of the “William Mariner” story. It was apparently delivered to and received in Nuku Alofa on Wed.15th Nov. 2012. Following our meeting late last month I know you have a keen interest in these issues.

We humbly wish to express our deep shock and profound sadness, at the way this operation appears to have been carried out, with no apparent regard to international standards of Archeological responsibility and with no underwater survey/mapping or photographic panorama of the surrounding area. This information is now lost forever. The anchor was first discovered in 2009.

There appears to be no evidence, suggesting that world’s best practice in handling and conservation for this fragile and delicate treasure has been used so far, or is even being considered in the future. Unbelievably, the cultural sensitivities of the local people of Ha’apai, also appear to have not been considered.

We can only hope that the Government of Tonga is fully aware of all the activates surrounding this potentially damaging action and that Government Ministers at least now have some control over it and may consider mitigating some of its effects. We fear for the future of this Anchor. If the Government can take action ,we would humbly request and hope, that this anchor now be given the care, respect and critical consideration it surely deserves and which the international heritage community may look to Tonga to provide.

As you know, in the months ahead, our company Tonga Blue Ltd , following two years of preparation and with the committed support of a growing number of Tongans who care about lost Tongan Maritime History, Heritage and the Environment, will make an application to the Government of the day, (on behalf of the people of EUA and Nomuka), for permission to among other things, commence investigating, surveying and documenting known wrecks in their waters. If granted permits by Government, be assured that Tonga Blue Ltd. will operate to world’s best practice in archeological and conservation standards. We will always take into account cultural and environmental sensitivities. We will also operate in a transparent manner. We now seek to divorce ourselves from the company and people responsible for operating in this manner, in the recovery of the anchor from the “Port Au Prince”.

Tonga Blue Ltd. and it’s directors, could never support activities carried out in that way.

Sincerely yours,

Don McIntyre & Mark Belvedere

Directors; Tonga Blue Ltd.

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2 Comments

  1. Reply portauprince

    Are you two not the two guys who are treasure hunting? Are you guys not the ones who are rebuilding the kalia for Tonga, and one of you got an island in Tonga and did not pay for it? Now you want to help Tonga with its maritime history. Get a life. It seems like the Tongans (all Tongans) beat you two to the treasure.

    • Reply bluetreasure2

      Hey nice to see you here….Thanks for your offer to sell the anchor to me on email!!…anyway it really is good to get more comments…yes we are treasure hunting…BLUETREASURE,,,,which is the ocean and everything on it and in it…BUT we do that with care and responsibility..Yes mark is spending hundreds of thousands of his own money to rebuild the Kalia given to him by the late KING as no tongans wanted it…and yes Mark has an island that he paid $350,000 for just half ..more than the market price ,so the Tongan owner was very happy..and NO Tongans did not get there first, a Palangi did in 2009 and asked the Govt. to declare it a heritage site to perserve it,…but no one cared…but it became a tourist attraction and THEN the Tongans..But not all Tongans , Got to the Port au Prince anchor NEXT, and ripped it appart decreasing the values of everything??..so was that clever??? I doubt it…

      I am happy to help Tongans if asked to do so, as I like Tonga and the Tongan people….simple as that…so thanks for your comment….I want all Tongans to follow what is happening…if no one wants us to help…we will not be doing anything….friends help each other..and the good people know…..Don

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