Thursday, April 25, 2024

Culloden Farm shame


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That was the way chairman of the Preservation (Barbados) Task Force and Preservation Trust Senator Sir Henry Fraser described the current state of Culloden Farm, the official residence of first Prime Minister of Barbados Errol Barrow in Culloden Road, St Michael.

The once dazzling Georgian suburban villa has run to ruins over the years much like his birthplace at The Garden, St Lucy.

Sir Henry blamed the current state of the house, squarely on the shoulders of both the Democratic Labour Party and the Barbados Labour Party.

“We were met by a promise by Mr Owen Arthur as Prime Minister that the house would be restored as a protocol house . . . and we had hoped that in this administration (DLP) which Mr Barrow founded, it would be given priority attention by the Government, but the Government appears to be leaving it to the philanthropists,” the heritage historian said.

On a visit to the property on Errol Barrow Day, on Thursday, a SUNDAY SUN team was met by overgrown bush on all sides of the property. It was also visible that Barrow’s former official residence had also fallen victim to the scourge of illegal dumping, as a discarded mattress and sofa were spotted.

Along with the restoration of the Carnegie building on Coleridge Street which once housed the Bridgetown Library, Sir Henry said Culloden Farm was high priority for the Preservation Trust as restoration of the property was feasible.

“The house structurally is in a reasonable condition although there is one portion where a bit of wall has been crumbling,” he said. The roof is in a terrible state, but it is perfectly feasible to restore it.

“I cannot understand why either government has had no appreciation for either the architecture or the modern history of Culloden Farm. Many Bajans like new things, they have little respect for heritage, for old buildings, and often for old people.”

Sir Henry said he was saddened by its current state and pointed out that in its heyday, it was a “wonderful place” and a “warm home” which had expansive lawns for entertaining guests.


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