A six-person team from RAF Akrotiri have returned to British Forces Cyprus this week in celebratory mood after finishing second in the prestigious Alpine Ski Championships in Austria.
The RAF event, which took place in Saalbach-Hinterglemm between January 12-26, saw a total of 21 teams fighting for the top prize and more than 800 competitors battling for individual honours in a range of categories.
The overall award was calculated after the RAF Akrotiri skiers completed the slalom and giant slalom team races and the fastest three times from each team in both downhill events were aggregated and counted towards the result.
Members of the Akrotiri Environmental and Education Centre and the Cyprus Game Fund, released two pelicans on the salt-lake last week after they had landed close to the RAF Akrotiri runway in November.
The birds – one of which had sustained injuries – were given time to leave the area but after two hours, the environmental team removed the birds, assessed them and they were subsequently taken to the game Fund’s rehabilitation Centre in Nicosia.
After two months of treatment and rest, the birds were back to full-strength and taken back to the salt-lake to be released.
When Michael Georghiou leaves his barber shop in Dhekelia today he will be closing the door on more than 50 years of history with the British Forces in Cyprus.
The 79-year old refugee from Famagusta has become one of the most well-respected members of the BFC community in the Eastern Sovereign Base Areas since he opened his first shop on camp, on September 27, 1974 – shortly after the Turkish invasion.
But whilst he has been working there for close to 45 years, speaking this week from his premises in the heart of the Dhekelia Amenities Centre, he revealed his close association with the British military existed long before that.Reflecting on what he described as “happy times”, he detailed his relationship with the military: “My very first job was working for the British at the Golden Sun Barracks in Famagusta, where I was working as a barber. But in 1960 when the British left, I worked for a business in Famagusta and I was lucky enough to keep a lot of British clients who quickly became my friends.”