Initially from the UK, Peter Hellyer first got here to the UAE in 1975 to make documentary movies in regards to the late Sheikh Zayed’s state visits overseas. He stayed on to carry various positions in authorities communications departments and referred to as Abu Dhabi dwelling for almost 5 a long time.
Hellyer had a profession each distinguished and numerous. Beginning out as a broadcaster, he was instrumental in establishing the Emirates Information Company’s English language service, WOWin 1978.
He was additionally the editor of the official newspaper of Abu Dhabi Emirates Information from 1985 to 1999, after which he turned advisor and head of Exterior Relations on the Ministry of Info and its successor, the Nationwide Press Council.
A person with many pursuits
Lately, Hellyer has spent a substantial period of time following and writing about his pursuits in native birdlife, archeology and the heritage and historical past of the folks of the UAE.
Hellyer has been an lively member of the Emirates Pure Historical past Group since 1985 and edited its journal, Tribulus, for 30 years. He additionally co-founded the Abu Dhabi Islands Archeology Survey, which is answerable for figuring out and excavating archaeological websites on the coast and islands of Abu Dhabi. Most significantly, he led the workforce that made key discoveries such because the 1,400-year-old monastery on Sir Bani Yas Island.
A pillar of the nation’s expat group, Peter was additionally a founding member of the British Enterprise Group in Abu Dhabi – now the British Chamber of Commerce, Abu Dhabi.
Moreover, he suggested the Authorities of Jersey for over 20 years on the event of its relations with the United Arab Emirates. He was awarded the island’s highest honour, the Silver Seal of the Bailiwick of Jersey, for his efforts.
Hellyer was an completed author and authored quite a few articles and books on the nation’s politics, historical past, pure historical past and archaeology, in addition to a number of authorities yearbooks.
Inspire Media Group has had the privilege of working with him over time and publishing lots of the books he has co-authored, together with Fujairah: An Arabian Jewel, Al Ain: Oasis Metropolis and Fifty years of Emirates archaeologyto call a number of.
Honoring his contributions
Ian Fairservice, Managing Accomplice of Inspire Media Group, commented: “It’s extremely unhappy information that we now have misplaced such an exquisite pal and colleague in Peter Hellyer. Now we have labored collectively for a few years, on so many tasks, and his contribution to the analysis and recording of our area’s heritage and tradition is incalculable. Inspire and our archives and library definitely owe Peter an amazing debt of gratitude – as do I for his private assist and encouragement.
“I’ve had the privilege of counting him as one among my closest pals for over 30 years, and I’m deeply grateful to have had the chance to have an extended and significant dialog with him, albeit on the cellphone, only a week. Our ideas and prayers are along with his household. It’s definitely a consolation that future generations will proceed to study from the data and understanding of the Arab world that Peter shared by means of his insightful work as a author, editor and documentary maker.”
Hellyer’s contributions to the UAE have been acknowledged on the highest stage. In 2004, he was awarded the annual Sheikh Mubarak bin Mohammed Prize for Pure Historical past, and in 2010, he was granted UAE citizenship by the then President, the late Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan. In 2013, he was additionally awarded the Abu Dhabi Medal – the very best honor that may be awarded to a civilian within the emirate – for his work figuring out key archaeological websites within the UAE.
As information of Hellyer’s passing unfold, senior officers, moved by his decades-long contributions, expressed their gratitude and admiration on social media.
mansoor abdulhoul, The UAE ambassador to the UK tweeted: “Deeply saddened by the lack of Peter Hellyer, a real pal of the UAE whose legacy will dwell on in our hearts. His immeasurable contribution to our nationwide narrative and pivotal position in our media panorama is testomony to his love for the UAE.”
Salem Khalid Al Qassimi, the UAE Minister of Tradition and Youth, shared a tweet honoring Hellyer’s work.
Right now, we misplaced Peter Hellyer, an amazing historian who devoted greater than 50 years to the environmental and archaeological heritage of the UAE, notably Sir Bani Yas. His devotion to this land will encourage us to protect the environment, monuments and historical past. His legacy lives on. pic.twitter.com/Ag52dyAiIA
— Salem Khalid Al Qassimi | Salem bin Khalid Al Qasimi (@Salemalq) July 2, 2023
Noura Al Kaabi, the UAE minister of state, paid tribute to Hellyer in a tweet: “Peter’s dedication left an indelible mark on our historical past. It was an amazing honor to share each work and friendship with him.”
Right now we bid farewell to a real pal of our nation and a veteran chronicler of its progress because the Seventies. Peter’s dedication left an indelible mark on our historical past. It was an amazing honor to share each work and friendship with him.
Peter Ben Heller, we are going to miss you 🇦🇪 pic.twitter.com/okcelVJw9X
– Noura Bint Muhammad Al Kaabi (@ NouraAlKaabi) July 2, 2023