Safety First

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


Earlier this year the Advocate headlined “SAVE OUR BUILDINGS” and proceeded to list among other efforts at restoration - “The Garden” in St. Lucy and “Culloden Farm” - residences of importance in the life our first Prime Minister and National Hero, Errol Walton Barrow. Forgotten from that list is the little known fact that our National Hero in the early 1960s also had and regularly resorted to a wooden beach house at Road View, St. Peter on the spot now occupied by the defunct Kings Beach Hotel. This hotel is now up for sale, ahem, ahem (if it ever gets out of court), but the urgency here is the beach itself which brought Barrow to the area again and again, which beach is now rapidly being destroyed by the sea. That destruction is being hastened, as predicted by this blog last summer, by the groins recently erected by the neighboring St. Peter’s Bay condo development. Photos above taken recently show a beach that is now almost completely eroded. Rows of coconut trees that once fringed a wide beach and shaded Barrow’s beach house are toppling into the sea before our very eyes. The beach is now completely impassable at high tide.

This was the very spot where Barrow came for rest and reflection, where he brought his family and friends and others to play, relax and be revived. He came by land and often by sea for the beach. This is the spot where undoubtedly his celebrated ideas for the independence of Barbados and free education for the masses, etc., were inspired, cradled and honed. Should we not preserve this spot for all Barbadians now and in the future? If we can spend millions to restore and exhibit what we are now calling George Washington House (not to subtract anything from that great American hero nor the worthy venture), how much more are we responsible for preserving this spot where our own national hero came for healing. This blog is not calling for the rebuilding of Barrow’s beach house or anything like that although certainly some sort of marker would be appropriate but undoubtedly what we should do very urgently is to halt further destruction of the beach now being hastened by the groins of St. Peter’s Bay. In the humble opinion of this blog, these obstructions should be removed and a program of re-sanding the whole area including St. Peter’s Bay instituted posthaste.
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