BREAKING NEWS: Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary Up For Sale !

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Maybe The Sanctuary Didn’t Pay Enough “Consulting Fees” ?

We heard news this morning that is both frightening and sad. Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary is up for sale.

For those of you who have never been there Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary is one of the most magical places in Barbados. It is a world class conservatory dedicated to preserving the indigenous flora and fauna of our country while at the same time working to preserve endangered species of Caribbean birds and fish.

Ecotourists from all over the world consider it the major attraction in Barbados. Our schoolchildren have all been there (so have we) and have marveled at the various exhibits while learning about conservation and nature. It has been the backdrop for many romantic moments and countless weddings and special events.

It will be sad if Barbados loses this wonderful treasure. Because of where it is and what it is if it is lost it is irreplaceable. We shudder to think that it might soon be just another location where a condo developer has his way.

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Why Is Barbados Losing This Precious Natural Asset?

The frightening part of this story is the reason this is all happening. The Nature Sanctuary was financed and built entirely our of the pocket of a Canadian philanthropist, Peter Allard. Reports are that he donated $32 million dollars of his own money and years of his own time to provide Barbados with this jewel and asked nothing in return except maybe a vote of thanks from all of us and a promise to treat this gift to the country with the respect it deserves so that it will last even after Mr. Allard is no longer with us.

Lately Mr. Allard was gracious enough to offer a further gift to the country by donating adjacent land, some twenty acres, to the creation of a National Park in the Graeme Hall area. We are told he has now sat by for 9 months while he waited a response, or even an acknowledgement, that the government of our country was giving this offer and possibly the fate of the Nature Sanctuary itself the consideration it deserves.

Government Didn’t Even Reply To Mr. Allard’s Offer Of Free Land For A National Park !!!

Instead the government is going ahead with a plan to allow another developer to build a waterpark upstream from the nature sanctuary. In other words a noisy, polluting (lots and lots of chlorine flowing downhill will kill fish and other creatures) business that will generate lots of ‘consulting fees’ – $2,000,000 so far – and other advantages for our politicians and their friends is being installed where it is almost sure to ruin everything Mr. Allard has built.

We Weep Today For Barbados

Losing an asset like Mr. Allard is bad enough (he never asked for anything in return except the satisfaction of knowing he was helping our country). Losing a once in a lifetime opportunity to do something good for future generations by creating a park and preserving the nature sanctuary is shameful.

As we learn more we will keep you informed.

Nothing has appeared yet on the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary’s website (link here)

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153 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Environment, Offshore Investments, Politics & Corruption

153 responses to “BREAKING NEWS: Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary Up For Sale !

  1. Wishing in Vain

    Mr Allard is a true gem to Barbados and Barbadians, he may well be annoyed at the developments at the Kingsland land deal as he is involved in that matter on on behalf of Mrs Knox

  2. Anonymous

    This is terrible. Why wouldn’t the government accept Alard’s offer of free land? What the h*** is going on?

  3. Treebeard

    Or maybe just exasperated about the way it has been going in Barbados.

    Placing a root in his shoes I would say I could put forth leaves with a drop of corruption, but that would have to incorporate an environmental plan, of any sort.

    Watching a corrupt government with no development responsibility or plan for the plant kingdom along with its dependant animals is more than enough to turn a sincere patron off.

    We have only ourselves to blame.

  4. Anonymous

    Great news! Now we can get our Water Park.

  5. akabozik

    Yes! we can have our Water Park, our parking lots and our condos!

    No more school children coming to see nature!

    Barbados will be much better off when this entire site is paved like everything around it. Look at the photo: what a horrible shade of green that park is! And all those noisy birds will have to find a new place.

    Good for the Prime Minister! What good judgment he has shown for Barbados.

  6. Anonymous

    The Water Park will be a great addition to what we have to offer our citizens and visitors. It will be great success.

  7. akabozik

    Anonymous,

    Do you think that Kerins will have to pay more bribes to the Prime minister or will the 2 million suffice?

  8. Jason

    this is exactly what happaned wit the aids clinic. No bribes so the government wouldn’t let the private aids clinic be built.

  9. North lady

    Well airfares at outrageous prices, guess government saw this happening so they have to provide us with something new to keep us happily occupied. YEAH RIGHT!!!

  10. RRRicky

    Another case of greedy bastard politicians fouling up a good thing for Barbados. Mr. Allard didn’t understand how things work here in BIM. You have to pay the consulting fees even to give something for free to Bajans.

    Fukcing politicians. greedy fukcing bastards

  11. Somebody Help Barbados

    This land should have never been out of government control in the 1st place….

    places such as this in Dominica are owned by the goverment…somebody check to see if we still own Farley Hill….

    this sanctuary is an important one for birds and other parts of the barbadian ecosystem…..

    now asswer my stupid question….does this not leave laughlin to purchase the property and waterpark it if he so desires?

  12. Warrior

    Again I wonder if these politicians are sons of this soil.

    They don’t have to care anyhow, cause them, their children, their wives and concubines, and their extended families can now pay to go to Dominica, St. Lucia, Disney, Miami, Florida, England, France, Spain, even China to see the natural wonders that those countries have, why would they want to preserve anything that we have.

    Whilst we stay here and flood out every time it rains because they paving everything and changing the entire environment of this Nation.

    If it don’t mek money fuh them, then to hell with it. They really make me want to cry.

  13. RRRicky

    Jason said “this is exactly what happaned wit the aids clinic. No bribes so the government wouldn’t let the private aids clinic be built.”

    What are you talking about Jason?

  14. Red Lake Lassie

    Anonymous said “This is terrible. Why wouldn’t the government accept Alard’s offer of free land?”

    Why wouldn’t government accept the offer of free land for a National Park?

    Stupid question.

    Because if Owen $ Arthur and the gang accept Allard’s offer of free land only for a National Park, then they can’t sell it and personally make millions for their Swiss bank accounts.

    Really really stupid question

  15. Wishing in Vain

    Red Lake Lassie you really got these guys figured out good for you I hope all the rest of the voting public got them figured out to!!!!

  16. Peltdown Man

    Anonymous

    The Water Park will be a great addition to what we have to offer our citizens and visitors. It will be great success.
    __________________________________

    Yeah. I remember how MacDonalds was crowded out for the first month or so, then the novelty wore off. It will be the same with the water park. When it fails financially, as it surely will, who will pay to have it dismantled and to restore the site? The same people who subsidized it in the first place, that’s who. The Bajan taxpayer.

  17. So are you going to shrug your shoulders and transfer blame to the corrupt, or are you going to do something ?

    I’ve been posting here for over a month now. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it and feel I’ve learned quite a lot.

    My expressed aim of encouraging people to join our Env Hum group has been a resounding failure, as not one person from this blog has contacted us to make enquiries. One chap thought my real aim was to foment Muslim extremism in the Caribbean. (scooby doo?!?)

    Prior to this post I have made 3 provocative statements challenging readers to do something for the environment. This is a lively blog, and the fact that no one has shouted me down probably speaks volumes.

    One chap made me laugh; he criticised a discussion on the environment and said he signed the anti whaling petition – he didn’t waste time talking, he is a “man of action”!!! Kudos to the chap for signing the petition, that’s a good thing, but that post from the man of action gave me the biggest chuckle since coming here.

    Please take a look at our website, consider it, if its not for you then perhaps kindly pass it to others whom you think it might interest.

    Whinge or work – the choice is yours.

    Thankyou
    gareth

  18. Thistle

    Gobeithio: I am one of the signatories to the anti-whaling petition. I am sitting here practically crying over what might happen with Graeme Hall, and if there is a petition, or if there is some way that I can put in my two cents worth to stop Graeme Hall being developed – in whatever way – I am willing to do so. But by golly, I am not going to wade through lengthy diatribes of boring (to me) literature to get to the meat of the matter. Jinx appealed in a couple of sentences to persons to sign the anti-whaling petition. It was right there in your face, straightforward and to the point. I happen to be a member of the WWF and I read their articles which don’t put me to sleep. Enough said.

  19. Thistle

    Gobeithio: I am one of the signatories to the anti-whaling petition. I am sitting here practically crying over what might happen with Graeme Hall, and if there is a petition, or if there is some way that I can put in my two cents worth to stop Graeme Hall being developed – in whatever way – I am willing to do so. But by golly, I am not going to wade through lengthy diatribes of boring (to me) literature to get to the meat of the matter. Jinx appealed in a couple of sentences to persons to sign the anti-whaling petition. It was right there in your face, straightforward and to the point. I happen to be a member of the WWF and I read their articles which don’t put me to sleep. Have yourself a good chuckle. Enough said.

  20. Peltdown Man

    It is related in a way, so check out the excellent and insightful “Living in Barbados” of today’s date.It’s amazing that someone who has lived here such a short time has nailed the situation.

  21. Anonymous

    What’s all this about “Consulting fees, Swiss Bank accounts”, you guys are believing your own lies.

    We are, at last, going to get our Water Park.

  22. J. Payne

    There’s more than one way to skin a cat you know…..

    Say would anyone here be interested in forming a New party in Barbados???? It is time to take Barbados back to their neighbourhood level. These fat cats feel they are invincible and they all want kicking out come the next election…..

  23. J. Payne

    Everything under the BLP needs to be put under commission of inquiry…. All jokes aside these people getting-on stink-stink-stink.

  24. Wishing in Vain

    The BLP represents gross misconduct in office.

  25. Yardbroom

    Anonymous

    You said:
    “Great news! Now we can get our Water Park”

    You will also perhaps get the “colonization you” wished for in years past, and you hoped Barbados had today, as you said in your post of earlier today.

    Barbadians, citizens I hope you can clearly see the type of people who say they have our interest at heart.

  26. notesfromthemargin

    Not having heard the news today….

    Is there any word if it is being sold as a going concern or as real estate?

    Makes all the difference in the world.

    Would be a shame for it to be lost.

    NotesFromTheMargin

  27. BFP- You normally cite a reference as to where your information was obtained, with a link.

    I know you would not have broken this sickening news without good reason and hard facts, but what are they? Has a “For Sale” ad been placed somewhere?

    Those of us who have wholeheartedly supported the National Park initiative will be aghast at the news. Over 6,000 residents have signed the petition against Caribbean Splash and in favour of Graeme Hall National Park. This is a slap in the face for them, and with an election just around the corner we must now slap back, in the hope it will not be too late.

    Will the Opposition not come forward and let us have their views on this? Surely they cannot be blind money-grubbers like Owing and crew, and realise what longterm advantage keeping this whole area green will have for visitors and locals for generations to come?

  28. Wishing in Vain

    This was on the VOB news at 8.30am this morning as well

  29. John

    Earlier today I reckoned the resignation of the senator in Jamaica for taking money and depositing it to his own account would not apply to a PM.

    Google Thailand and Prime Minister and see what can happen!!

    The man even get banned from politics!! The Advocate today says he and the wife have assets worth US$1.2billion, I mean Billion!!

    OK, OK so a set of judges did that and here the judges, well at least the CJ gets appointed on the advice of the PM, but it just goes to show you what is possible when people set their minds to do something!!

  30. WishfulThinkin

    “Say, would anyone here be interested in forming a New party in Barbados????”

    Bin there. Done that.
    That Tshirt got-in HOLES,den!

    Richie tried dat, and failed. (NDP)

    You got more pull…more money…more savoir fair dan Richie.??
    Best of luck.

    Barbados (like most countries) LOVES its “six of one//half doz.of the other” politrix.
    LOVES!

    If they didn’t, they’d do something about changing the system they find themselves mired in.

  31. BigBux

    Let the six thousand who signed the petition
    each put a thousand dollars: that would be six thousand thousand dollars
    – and buy it fuh WE.
    Put your money where your mouth is.
    If wunnuh doan like being bought and sold, just so,
    DO some buying of your own! Buy it and secure it.
    Doan wait on Trini to buy it: out-bid him!
    BFP itself will start the ball rolling
    by down-paying the first ten thousand, I’m sure.
    Or talk to C.O.W.

    **********************************

    BFP Comments…

    Six hundred thousand dollars wouldn’t even touch the value of the parking lot at Graeme Hall. On behalf of the citizens of Barbados, the Government of Barbados has turned down an offer of land worth tens of millions of dollars.

  32. bajejun

    Yet again another prime property in this country shot to hell, this government seem to care less and less about us, and our children. Financial gain seems to be the driving force behind everything they do, they motto seem to be Sell, Sell, Sell.
    I casted my vote to for them before, I can assure you, that CAN NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN!!!!

  33. can never happen again?

    don’t forget if you don’t have strict integrity laws it doesn’t really matter what you think.

    David Thompson just said he doesn’t want as tough as laws as Trinidad? Excuse me? We want tougher laws so these people go directly to jail and have their monies confiscated offshore.

    By the way where is the DLP on the status of this National Park or are they going to continue to frustrate 6000 citizens?

  34. SAD

    Peter Allard wanted to donate $500,000. to the Govt to build an AIDS Hostel. He was invited to the Ministry, left waiting for 45 mins after he got up and went home. Three years ago The Sanctuary offered to replace the sluice gate at Worthing beach free of cost. After 10 months without a reply from the Ministry of Public works, Sanctuary management connected the Ministry & arranged a meeting.
    As a result The Sanctuary paid for 2 Govt people, one from Ministry of Public Works and one from Drainage Unit to visit the South Florida Water Management District, had the Sanctuary’s consultant meet and take these people around. Result NADA nothing was ever done offer never offically accepted or refused:nor did Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary get a report from the Ministry on their representatives visit.

    SomebodyhelpBarbados, where do you live ??? up until 15 years ago Graeme Hall was owned by barbadians, and what was it? a place where barbadians dumped garbage. Peter Allard came and saw the protential, had the vision, commitment and resources to transform it from a swamp to a Sanctuary, has a bajan manager and bajan staff who run and maintain a world class faciltity, name me ONE BAJAN who would do that. The previous owner was a Mr. Corbin whose plan was to build Condos around the Lake, thankfully he was turned down. Regarding Dominica who do you think it was who donated US$250,000 for the Govt of Dominica to buy land and proclaim a National Park, hello by jove it was the said Peter Allard!

    I seriously believe that Barbados has turned its back on someone who single handed has the made the most significant contribution to the environment in Barbados.
    In a few weeks Parliment will debating and voting on the NPDP which now seeks to change the land useage at Graeme Hall by declaring, against the advice and recommendation of every study done at GH, to allow housing on the agricultural land. IF this is allowed to happen, this land will cut up and sold off not for low cost housing but for up scale housing. Not a “poor black man” will be able to afford a house spot.
    But rest assured that the “gang” will have another opportunity to swell their coffers again. If we allow this to happen then we deserve the Govt we have.

  35. lawrence loughlin

    What a FANTASTIC OPPORTUNITY for THE FRIENDS of GRAEME HALL to buy this pristine property. You stated in your proposal that you could raise large sums for the National Park so this should be a no brainer for you. I think the property has great potential !! When are you going to buy it ?? Make a great Water Park addition.

  36. lawrence loughlin

    No final decision has been made on the Water Park.

  37. Hants

    There will be no water park at Graeme Hall and the sanctuary will be preserved until after the next election.
    If the BLP wins. ????

  38. one who cares

    The government has not figured it out yet but they will eventually when it slaps them in the face.
    Not until then.

  39. John

    There is something magic about being able to walk or drive from an overcrowded asphalt road with concrete and other structures up and down both sides into the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary.

    It is like an oasis in a desert.

    It would be sad if local stakeholders, Government included, could not find a way to preserve this for future generations.

    It is a real diamond, quite unlike the falsehood and fraud of the GEMS we see on the South Coast.

  40. SAD

    Govt cannot operate the Sanctuary, just look at the condition of the eastern lands or the sluice gate.
    Laurence, maybe your nephew should buy it since it would make a great addition to a water park, and he said at the townhall meeting how concerned it was aboutthe Sanctuary

  41. J. Payne

    Listening to all this about putting water park in Grame Hall reminds me of when the Government in Trinidad wanted to pave over parts of the Queens Park Savannah.

    As much as the government seems to hate G.H. they better rememeber everything has a place. G.H. might be insignificant to them however G.H. is also acting as an flooding overflow catchment in Barbados. If you disrupt that you transport the flooding back to habitated parts of Barbados in the long run when water can no longer be diverted to G.H. This has been seen before. Again going back to the example of Trinidad. The GOB need only go as far as to ask the people living on parts of the Caroni lands about flooding. That too was once a swamp land. It was never meant to house people. And with a vengence whenever too much ran hit. All those houses get hit by flooding.

    Whatever you put up in G.H. may be hit by flooding. And communities around G.H. also may be hit by increased flooding if this park is approved.

    Also as a swamp G.H. as one of the last semi-unspoiled parts of Barbados, this would be one of the larger areas of Barbados which probably returns clean water back into the anequafurs underneath Barbados which are used for drinking water. Swamp plants are natural cleaners of water pollution and again if that is upset it may also have huge future reprocussions to Barbados in the form of the underground aquafirs.

    As my grandmother used to say. If it ent trouble them. Leave it alone.

    The Government seem bent on mashing up Graeme Hall I just hope when other unforseen things occur as result of the destruction of Greame Hall that this same little politicians will be willing to auction off their big expensive houses to pay for the fix and not come asking the public to come clean up- and restitute for a fix for their mess.

  42. sad

    should read how concerned he was about the Sanctuary

  43. Wishing in Vain

    lawrence loughlin you are one sick depraved person.
    THERE WILL BE NO WATER PARK IN GREAME HALL you got the message yet???

  44. Waterboy

    June 13th, 2007 at 12:43 am
    What a FANTASTIC OPPORTUNITY for THE FRIENDS of GRAEME HALL to buy this pristine property. You stated in your proposal that you could raise large sums for the National Park so this should be a no brainer for you. I think the property has great potential !! When are you going to buy it ?? Make a great Water Park addition.
    ————————————————————–
    lawrence laughlin, check the dictionary. NATIONAL means belonging to the NATION. When a government declares a NATIONAL PARK on land owned by government /NATION you think they buy it from themselves?

    In this instance:

    GOVERNMENT = NATION = CITIZENS OF BARABADOS.

    Now if a private entity wants to build a water park on this land then they will need to buy it.

    Pretty simple.

  45. lawrence loughlin

    You mean the NATIONAL WATER PARK ( For all the peaple )??? Read the proposal since the Friends of Graeme Hall stated emphatically that they could raise the necessary funds via various sources to build . So whats the problem ? Are you a revisionist ? In reality, a few people self appointed themselves to speak for all of Barbados. This is contrary to the great majority wanting a Water Park at Graeme Hall. Unfortunately, you do not believe in a demacrascy. I offered a vote on the subject but you all run for cover knowing full well that you would lose by a lanslide.

    Now you have the golden opportunity to take action and buy the bird sanctuary. You should be doing back flips . I wish you the best.

  46. Wishing in Vain

    lawrence loughlin please stop from insulting us with your nonsense about a vote showing that you would win by a landslide what utter rubbish, where and how was this vote going to be taken in a rumshop, in St.Lucy at East Point surely this vote would not have sought the opinion of the residents of Greame Hall or the area around Greame Hall as based on the evidence of their petition with over 6,000 names on it you would have had a terrible time getting any support from anyone around there but that is your dishonesty coming to the fore once again you are a total stranger to the truth no wonder you and Owing make good bed pals cut from the same cloth liars without an equal.

  47. lawrence loughlin

    Buy, lease or rent is fine with me. We will do whatever the Government wants. If we buy, we own the land forever, a lease eventually gives the land back to thr Government and rental is having a landlord ( Government ). When I figure it out financially it comes out the same so it really does not matter. I prefer to own the land for my own reasons. This is in contrast to many uninformed statemants I have read.

  48. John

    lawrence loughlin
    June 13th, 2007 at 3:48 am

    I offered a vote on the subject but you all run for cover knowing full well that you would lose by a lanslide.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    The only people I ever seen run on this site regularly are William Duguid and Lynette Eastmond.

    RR disappears for a time. He can’t really take the heat.

    Think the Piggies at the Trough award also ran some real people.

    By the way, how you plan on organising a National referendum where you hope to get 93% support?

    Please give us a credible explanation of how you will go about it.

    Have you organised such a vote before in any country?

    All the same we can do like Patrick Porter and ask the UN to send some observers.

    Thanks for showing us that neat trick Patrick!!

  49. lawrence loughlin

    WIV I never had the great pleasure of meeting, seeing or speaking with Prime Minister Owen Arthur in my entire life. I am sure he has more pressing matters of State.

    You want all of the people of Barbados to pay hundreds of millions of dollars in lost value and income and NOT have a voice in the matter. Are you going to have the Bajan people buy the bird sanctuary for you too. Hey. why not, Bajans are very generous.

  50. lawrence loughlin

    Yes, but only in the U.S.A.. If the Government thinks it is a important matter than it is put to the people for a vote. It can be done on a local, state or federal level.

  51. SoLarry

    Lawrence, if you like to own land so much, why not buy the land for the waterpark? Do you really think for a second that government would consider selling Graeme Hall land to you and the likes of Kerins? Do you think you and Kerins could convince Allard to sell to you?

    Why do you feel the need to patronise the readers of BFP?

  52. Hants

    Graeme Hall must remain a Nature sanctuary.

    In the spirit of CSME why can’t the Government send Kerins and his waterpark to one of the other Islands. How about a water park in Guyana?

  53. Yardbroom

    If I was minded to support the Water Park – and I am not – the intended proprietor who seems hell bent on insulting the citizens of Barbados on this blog, and his supporters would have changed my mind.

    Their posts, and responses to others who disagree with the Water Park proposal, has given me an insight into their thinking, and what I see is not pleasant.

    They have failed in any convincing fashion, to put forward a point of view that is in the “long term” interest of Barbados. Great expenditure coupled with rape and pillage of pleasant lands, reminds me of the actions previously taken by this Government and its henchmen, which has brought our country to its knees.

    In every part of the world today, Governments are thinking of the beauty of nature and what can be preserved for future generations, and yet here the Government is so blinkered and shortsighted they seem hellbent on covering acres of natural beauty with concrete. When this wanton vandalism is complete, what will our people have left to enjoy.

    It is true a mottley crew of corrupt politicians will have their collection of trinkets, plastic beads, reflective mirrors and US dollars spirited away in some far off bolt hole, but if we do not have the courage to prevent this continuing rape and pillage, we have only ourselves to blame.

  54. cheesecutter

    water park in a 14 by 12 piece of rock? wa we got nuf water all round we.wa more water ya want.why wud a tourist leave his homeland to come to an island with a waterpark?i mean first thing he wud do is relax at our nice beach ,then if he really wants to, he wud ralex by the hotel pool,not at a water park where de only got bout 20 people if daa much dey.
    why is the g.h.s for sale?who is it owned by.obviously not by the govt.

  55. Yardbroom

    John
    Sorry I missed you question of June 6th on a another topic regarding my comment.

    …”The US has oulawed corrupt payments to foreign politicians since 1977.”

    Source background information as published in Guardian Newspaper UK in reference to a story about BAE payments to a Saudi Prince. The UK has outlawed such payments to foreign Officers since 2002.

    Sorry I missed your question at the time.

  56. sad

    The developers of the water park stated publicly that the project WAS NOT feasible (profitable) unless they leased the land now Larry says “buy, lease or rent, its fine with me”

  57. Peltdown Man

    Lawrence Laughlin, obviously you know very little about democracy. In Barbados, that means electing a government every five years or so, on the basis of a manifesto outlining their plans. Governments don’t run to a referendum every time a matter requires a decision. Heck, they won’t even have a referendum on the forming of a Republic. It is part of the government’s DUTY to ensure that the interests of ALL its citizens are protected. In any normal situation, if it is decided that some citizens will have to inconvenienced or damaged, then government should arrange to compensate them. This is where we fall down in Barbados. In the indecent haste to develop at all costs, citizens and residents are being left in the dust. This is the recipe for social unrest, and people like you, Lawrence, don’t give a damn about that.

  58. I think I am misssing something. What is the reasons that the sanctuary is being sold? Does it have to do with the fact that it has become an increasingly difficult venture to finance. I had started to wonder what was going on when they started hosting events (merry men ect) and when they offered land I thought- Hmm, free land? Or land before the end of financial year in exchange for a tax break. Selling for less than the amount invested? Wow.

    I really hope that at the end of all of this: land being offered for sale, people not wanting a water park near to their residences, concern about the environment, and allegations of curruption; that G.H. is preserved for the people of Barbados. It would be nice if the ‘lovers of GH’ stepped up and match their actions to the verbal commitments. All the talk about how they would raise money and how profitable the expanded venture would be. Yeah. The funny thing is that the same government that is supposed to be corrupt and incompetent is now the only saviour available. Life is truly funny. Please prove me wrong folks. Step up and do something.

    I look forward to hearing the plans of the GH petition signers and supporters of the proposed expansion.

    It would also be nice if Mr Allard or a representative would tell us some more about the plan and the motivation.

  59. Marcus2

    Get over it. The Hospitality Industry needs this Water Park desperately. Barbados needs this Water Park.
    The Guests to this country are tired of the same old “attractions”. They keep telling me that. I am delighted at the fact that the Water Park might be a step closer. The sooner we get it the better.

  60. Roots

    The Barbados Labour Party needs this Water Park – badly

  61. Thistle

    Marcus2: Want a Water Park that bad, huh? Then ask your people to erect it up by Gregg Farm or Apes Hill.

  62. John

    lawrence loughlin
    June 13th, 2007 at 4:24 am
    Yes, but only in the U.S.A.. If the Government thinks it is a important matter than it is put to the people for a vote. It can be done on a local, state or federal level.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    You are telling me that you lawrence loughlin have organised a national referendum in the USA?

    WOW!

    What was the referendum on?

  63. New Site proposed!

    I know a GREAT spot, right along Bay Street, opposite the Esplanade,
    where Kerins’ Water Park could go.
    It could go over the road(14 ft. clearance) and dump visitors into scenic blue-water Carlisle Bay, from whence the re-circulating sea water is pumped through the system,anyway.

    It’s the MINISTERIAL BUILDINGS, that awful 1950s eyesore where public servants lurk and play while awaiting their month-end salary checks(if Gov’t has any money left)

    This locale is spacious, once the bldgs/ are demolished, central, within sight of the visitors’ cruise ships, whaddya say, fellas?

  64. John

    New Site proposed!
    June 13th, 2007 at 11:40 am

    I have seen an article by Peter Laurie in the paper expressing the opinion that the site on Bay Street is a total waste of a prime development area.

    His solution was to move these offices to the now vacant Glendairy site in Station Hill, thus freeing up this prime site for development.

    This I think is a really good idea. The offices are ready built ….. and the Police Station is directly opposite.

  65. John

    New Site Proposed!

    Your idea about going over the road and dumping visitors in the Caribbean sea is not as far fetched as some people may think.

    Take a look at the indoor ski slope in Dubai.

    http://www.snopes.com/photos/architecture/indoorski.asp

    If the developer of the Water Park is smart, he might be also able to throw in a ski slope too to improve the attraction of the Water Park to Barbadians.

    After all, snow is just water and 93% is still a ways off from 100% .

    In one fell swoop, skiing in Barbados will also be revolutionised.

    This will appeal to Minister Lynch.

    He will not be able to say enough on the subject.

    Concessions will be a breeze.

  66. Peltdown Man

    Marcus2
    Tired of the same old attractions, eh? Every year some new activity comes on the scene – this season it was the speed boats. So the waterpark will end up the same way in 2 years’ time, right? Then what – a permanent Coney Island that the hospitality industry needs desperately? Two years later, then what? I suggest a garbage theme park at Greenland, but two years later, then what? Tourists will not come to Barbados for a waterpark. The fare is cheaper to Orlando, where there are at least three of them plus other attractions. Have we even done the research to find out what attracts visitors that already come here? Have we even defined our tourist product? Countries like Greece were doing this 4o years ago. Right now the approach of people like Marcus2 and Lawrence Laughlin is to throw enough “stuff” at the wall and see if some of it sticks. If we have problems in the tourist industry, it’s because of lack of planning – pure and simple.

  67. Plover

    On reading the many comments about Graeme Hall let me ask the many contributors expressing dismay about the probable sale of this “environmental” gem these questions.

    Why do you believe if this story is correct that it is a big deal? Barbados has about 285,000 or more people inhabiting their island how many of these do you believe even know about this breaking news and more importantly how many show that they even care? This is the tragedy of most of these situations in Barbados. The majority do not care or are disconnected. When you have a society like that the Government, Foreigners or anyone else can take advantage knowing full well that the few that do complain are voices crying in the wilderness.

    Not even politicians speak out because obviously their Constituents are not sending them letters of outrage suggesting that if they let these things happen they will not get their vote. This my friends is the problem that must be fixed before you will get results to the many things you feel are unjust to the majority in Barbados. And here is another thought.

    If you say the “majority” is outraged over this or that and only a handful complain or write to their MP’s about it, what does that say. It says your claim that the “MAJORITY” is outraged is unsupported because the “majority” are silent! Am I wrong?

    Was it not long ago that the BTA and BHTA were advocating Eco Tourism which I think properly developed in Barbados has good potential for selling abroad. The East Coast, Harrisons Caves, Animal Flower Cave, the Scotland District, etc. But then in contrast to all of this one of the most important eco jewels complementing the ones I listed is being allowed to be put in danger of destruction. Where is the logic or the intelligence in this. Graeme Hall if developed and nurtured to its fullest by experts could be the greatest eco attraction in Barbados. But also think about this where have you seen anyone from the BHTA or BTA expressing concern about this proposed sale or water park? Yet these are the same people advocating a eco tourism as a viable product.

    But then look at the garbage problem too which is destroying the landscape of Barbados including the dumping of vehicles in some of the most sensitive areas of the island and which visitors to the island are finding very disturbing. Is anyone concerned about that either? Does not look so!

  68. Peltdown Man

    John
    The ski slope is amazing. The hospitality industry needs a ski slope desperately! And the aesthetics! So beautiful, so fitting-in to any landscape! We need it, and we need it now!!

  69. Waterboy

    So true Plover. See Letter to the editor Nation June 13, 2007 by Carl More. Sums it up nicely.
    However he is a voice crying in the wilderness. I don’t think it could be said any better.

    http://www.nationnews.com/editorial/351825398912878.php

  70. John

    Peltdown Man

    So long as it is built outside the limit observed by the airport for flying kites it will be a revolution to the hospitality industry.

    This is another plus for the Bay Street Site which Graeme Hall might not have as it is not far from the flight path of arriving planes.

    For too long the Caribbean has suffered without snow.

    Now we can have it and make ourselves even more appealing to the North American traveling public.

    With the increased airlift out of the US I could see longstay visitor arrivals easily topping the one million mark by 2010!!

    ….. maybe we could get the sea to St. George ….. and St. Thomas too!!

    These parishes have been deprived for too long as well.

  71. Peltdown Man

    John
    That would be great! The sea up to St Thomas! Man, we could have a jet ski racing circuit at Vaucluse. Never mind them NIMBYS up there that can’t take a little noise. So long as Bajans want it, to hell wid dem boy. The hospitality industry desperately needs a jet ski racing circuit. Let’s get the sea up there soon!

  72. It’s in today’s Nation, very small, in a right hand corner! BFP needs to check the print as much as the ‘Net. 😉

  73. If true, this is truly sad news for Barbados, unless it can be made into an opportunity. And no, I don’t mean getting the government to take it over — if they handle it the way they seem to be handling everything else, that would be a disaster. No, I’m wondering if anyone has thought to talk to The Nature Conservancy or Conservation International or WWF — they sometimes buy lands to keep them preserved and well-maintained, or if they can’t do it themselves, can find a foundation or benefactor that will.

    JPayne is right in that this is more than just a place to bird watch or escape the concrete/asphalt jungle, and Plover is right in that if marketed correctly, it can be a solid eco-tourism draw.

  74. Red Lake Lassie

    “BFP needs to check the print as much as the ‘Net.”

    Why give them a penny?

  75. Peltdown Man

    Couldn’t this be a perfect project for the Barbados National Trust? Now is the time for them to make a statement on this unfortunate turn of events. They have the means to raise the money, and they have experienec of running heritage sites. However, I remember their sorry silence over Greenland, so I’m not holding my breath.

  76. re –
    Red Lake Lassie
    June 13th, 2007 at 6:03 pm

    “BFP needs to check the print as much as the ‘Net.”

    Why give them a penny?

    Has merit, but it allows for less confusion, I did a story on George Lamming on Saturday, then later that same day saw in print an answer to a query I posed on my Blog – my face was red, so I now try to vet all possible sources to avoid a repeat

  77. J. Payne

    I agree the Barbados National Trust should try to secure The Grame Hall park….

    Barbados National Trusts’ website.
    http://trust.funbarbados.com/

  78. cruisecritic.com

    http://boards.cruisecritic.com/forumdisplay.php?f=124
    will take you to a CruiseCritic message board
    specifically about BARBADOS, as a cruise destination.
    Read all about us. Our good, our bad, our ugly,
    as seen through the 1-day-people, off cruise ships that pass through Bridgetown Harbour.

    Our number one attractions are
    Harrison’s Cave
    and swimming with the TURTLES.

    Haven’t seen anyone griping about our lack of a Water Park.

    But still, go take a look…
    http://boards.cruisecritic.com/forumdisplay.php?f=124

  79. Stuart Heaslet

    As many of you are aware, the advertisement for the sale of the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary is currently in the London Times and International Herald Tribune. Details are at http://www.graemehall.com/sale.pdf

    The general mood on our part is one of sadness, as Peter Allard, owner of the Sanctuary, has spent years attempting to do good environmental work in Barbados. For the past ten years I have provided design, construction, programming, oversight and philanthropic services for Mr. Peter Allard at Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary. My job has been to support and execute his mission of environmental preservation and education, not just for the lands owned by the Sanctuary, but for the surrounding environmentally sensitive buffer lands owned by Government, and a few private owners.

    It has been our experience that national legacies of environmental conservation and preservation must stem from government-led initiatives and policies that reflect the national pride in those lands which are most significant. We have experience supporting other governments and organizations in this regard, notably the Morne Diablotin National Park project in Dominica, which was successfully declared by Parliament after 27 months of cooperative effort and fundraising.

    Over the past 14 years there has been significant offshore investment in the Sanctuary by Mr. Allard, under the mandate that responsible offshore investment should be socially and environmentally appropriate and ultimately transfer technologies to Barbados, to be run by 100% Barbadian management and staff. We have complied with the spirit and intent of this mandate.

    In regard to philanthropic position, we respect the sovereign responsibility of Barbados for its environmental legacy, and generally disagree with those who seek to transfer the responsibility for preserving the Barbados environment to private, for-profit interests. Progressive national environmental preservation, as well as cultural, recreational and agricultural opportunities, must belong to, and be managed directly by, the people and Government of Barbados.

    In this case, we fear that profit motives for the land at Graeme Hall outweigh those for preservation and the health and welfare of citizens on the South Coast.

    Unfortunately, here in Barbados we have not received any substantive response or engagement from the Government of Barbados for well over a decade in regard to multiple, formal offers of land, finances, technical and management support for Government-led environmental preservation and national park initiatives.

    Therefore, we are seeking, and investing in, alternative uses for Allard Family philanthropy.

    We commend the efforts of The Friends of Graeme Hall (www.graemehallnationalpark.org) and trust that they will continue to actively seek a partnership with the Government of Barbados to form, and manage, the proposed Graeme Hall National Park. That said, we are of course open to any last minute discussions with those in Government if they include a well thought out plan and commitments from the highest levels.

    Stuart Heaslet
    Board Representative
    Oversight and Philanthropy
    Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary (Barbados)

  80. Farmer

    Just so that the accountants at BFP know six thousand thousand is actually $6million, not six hundred thousand

  81. BFP

    Yup… needed coffee that early in the morning to do all that fancy math.

    But is doesn’t matter because 6 million wouldn’t touch the value of the place either. Sold for condos, it might yield 10 times that when all is done and sold to end users.

  82. Thistle – your remark still makes me chuckle, and I’m happy with my comment, but please do contact me offline at popeth[removethisbit]@gmail.com if you wish to discuss, as I don’t want to detract from the thrust of this post.

    There’s an outside chance someone might get wound up into actually doing something here.

  83. Well, ideally the Barbados government would make it all a national preserve but let it be managed by someone like the Barbados National Trust, or the Trust just acquire it outright. But if neither is going to step up, and no other national body or group will arise to the challenge (I’m hoping someone will), then I would argue that bringing in international groups like Conservation Intl or Nature Conservancy is preferable to letting it all be converted into condos and water slides.

  84. Observer

    From previous post by Waterboy:

    …….See Letter to the editor Nation June 13, 2007 by Carl More. Sums it up nicely.
    However he is a voice crying in the wilderness. I don’t think it could be said any better.

    http://www.nationnews.com/editorial/351825398912878.php

    From Carl More’s letter in The Nation:

    So we trudge along, merrily oblivious that we are trashing the 166 square miles we inhabit.

    Not to worry, we know how to fix the problem. When our tourism collapses, we will throw a few million dollars at the problem. The Barbados Tourism Authority, headed by its voluble minister, will mount a campaign to woo the visitors back.

    They will board planes (the minister will go first-class, of course) and fly around the United States and Europe with a 20-member retinue including the Cultural Ambassador Gabby, Alison Hinds, Rupee, the Merrymen, some fire-eaters, stilt-walkers and limbo dancers, and beg the visitors to come back to “Beautiful Barbados, our island in the sun”. All at the expense of the Barbadian taxpayers.

    We are not serious about securing and protecting our environment. Just a lot of lip-service as we adopt whatever is the latest cliché; these days it’s “green”. Everything is going to be “green”. /end quote

    Now ain’t that the truth. Honest to God, if I was Emile Straker I would be shame to stand up today in front an audience and sing “Beautiful Barbados” (knowing how Bajans trashing up the place).

  85. Waterboy

    Quoting from Carl Moore’s letter “We are not serious about securing and protecting our environment. Just a lot of lip-service as we adopt whatever is the latest cliché; these days it’s “green”. Everything is going to be “green”. /end quote”.

    If you need an example of the sentiments above try to get hold of The National Strategic Plan (NSP) of Barbados 2006-2025. Take a look at Goal Four. It is titled “Building a Green Economy – Strengthening the Physical Infrastructure and Preserving the Environment”. A lot of wonderful objectives and targets. For example Target 4.8 is “Substantial increase in the area of land allocated to, and managed as green spaces.

    Now contrast that with the reduction in green spaces proposed by the Physical Development Plan Amended 2003 which is on the order paper to be debated in Parliament very soon. The PDP Amended 2003 has radically reduced the areas originally classified as Recreational Open Space and Nature Reserve at Graeme Hall. It now recommends predominately residential development in the upland agriculture area.

    A similar classification change is on the cards for Chancery Lane.

    These are just 2 examples and there may be more.

    So one document (NSP) is full of laudable objectives and the other (PDP Amended 2003) is a direct contradiction. Far from increasing the area of land allocated to, and managed as green spaces the PDP Amended 2003 will reduce the area substantially

  86. Stuart Heaslet

    The Allard family has had a long relationship with the The Nature Conservancy (TNC), and is known personally by the current head of TNC.

    Unfortunately, sometime in late 2005/early 2006 TNC declined our our invitation to manage the Sanctuary and to engage a fundraising campaign with the local donor base. TNC’s best projects tend to be near their donor constituencies, which is why they counter-offered an opportunity for Peter Allard to participate in the Great Bear initiative, which comprises 25% of the world’s temperate rain forests in western Canada and southeastern Alaska.

    Conservation International (CI), compared to TNC, is involved more in the equatorial tropics, but because of funding limitations prefers to stick with those sites that have the highest concentration of endemic species per unit area.

    As to WWF, they are similar to CI in that they focus on 19 areas of biodiversity which do not include Caribbean island ecosystems.

    All three organizations rely heavily on government participation in these projects. If a government is not on board, manifesting and enforcing environmental policies that will protect public and private investment in conservation initiatives, they won’t come in.

    Island nations with high concentrations of biodiversity often fall through the cracks because these organizations are trying to get the “best bang for the buck” and therefore concentrate on those areas that are big (like the Amazon) and diverse. This is why it is so difficult to raise money for island-based biological hotspots, such as Dominica. It’s not impossible, just difficult.

    In our case, Barbados and Graeme Hall in particular is not a “biodiversity hotspot” in the worldwide definition, however Graeme Hall is the only significant remaining wetland in Barbados, and is the last environmental legacy of its type in the nation.

    Peter Allard knew this a long time ago, and was trying to help. But ultimately it is not up to him whether Graeme Hall, as an ecosystem and a Park, will survive.

    Stuart Heaslet

  87. Thanks, Mr. Heaslet, for the explanation. That clarifies a lot, why those 3 particular organizations are sitting this one out. Sigh. There must be another way…

  88. Mr. Heaslet, a thought occurs to me. My blog has a regional focus. Perhaps you, or someone you can recommend, can do a guest post on this problem in Caribbean island conservation efforts, using Graeme Hall as an example, and making the case for an international effort to get the Barbados government to make it a permanent protected area?

    I’m not sure how much attention it might bring to bear, but I am willing to give it a go.

  89. Margaret Knight

    ioman01,

    As a matter of interest, I have e-mailed WWF, of which I am a member, expressing concerns about Graeme Hall in the hopes that they may be able to help, even if only with suggestions.

    The following sentence forms part of their reply: “We have forwarded your comments to the appropriate group at World Wildlife Fund for review and consideration.”

    We shall wait and see what happens.

  90. asphalt the island

    my understanding is that the PM in over 10 years has never visited Barbados most important biologically diverse site despite many, many millions of foreign dollars having been spent to improve and upgrade this critical green space for children, tourists and all Barbadians.

    What does this tell you about Barbadian government concern for the environment?

    More importantly what does this tell you about the citizens of Barbados who are prepared to sit back and take it from both parties?

    These international agencies will only give support when every one is pulling in the same direction.

  91. Red Lake Lassie

    Allard made two mistakes

    1/ He failed to provide some juice for the powers that be.

    2/ He is white.

  92. Red Lake Lassie

    I meant to say:

    Allard made two mistakes that caused the PM to avoid the nature sanctuary:

    1/ He failed to provide some juice for the powers that be.

    2/ He is white.

  93. John

    RLL

    Think about it, this is an investor whose investment is not for profit.

    There is no need to grease anybody’s palm.

    He must have driven the jokers we have as politicians crazy trying to figure out how to milk this rich white Canadian for a dollar.

    The same jokers must have really exposed themselves and Barbados to him in their efforts to get their piece of the action, never really understanding that here was an investor with a different motive.

  94. lawrence laughlin

    Look guys, I like Graeme Hall Bird Sanctuary as much as anybody. I have been there four times and find the place wonderful. As John stated above it was not done for profit which is my opinion also. I have never seen more than four people present whilst I was there enjoying its scenery etc.. Therefore, it was most likely having a annual operating loss. On the surface the transaction looked like a win/win for both parties. Mr. Allard gets relief from the operating burden and a charitable gift deduction and The Government gets land that is developed, supposedly for free. This is just my assumption which could be totally wrong. In any case, the devil is in the details which only a few are privy to know.

    More importantly, this is a private business that is zoned for tourism. We have no interest in the property but some other entity could have a strategic interest in said property for reasons that are not compatible with your interest.

    I understand that there were some steps to broaden its appeal by having The Merrymen play at the sanctuary which is good. I think the name ” Graeme Hall Bird Sanctuary ” is to benign. It should be changed since it does not fire up the imagination of people who are not dedicated bird watchers. I give you one example, suppose you had a advert stating jeep tours of the island. It really does nothing for you but when you say, Adventure Safari tours it fires up the imagination. I do not know the geological history of Barbados but when I was at the bird sanctuary it reminded me of the Juraissic period. So, how about ” Juraissic Bird Sanctuary ” with a asterisk stating that you guarentee nobody will be eaten by dinosaurs. Just my two cents of input.

  95. broadband

    On matter of attractions is Concorde Museum on track for annual 70,000 visitors as predicted by Minister of Tourism?

  96. concorde

    broadband

    aside from the fact that number of 70,000 was taken out of the air by a delusional Minister of Tourism the issue is not simply visitors but rather
    paying visitors and the net discounted
    fare per visitor.

    You will never get the truth anyway because their is no integrity, no accountability and certainly no legislation.

  97. Yardbroom

    Lawrence laughlin

    When a visitor pays his hard earned cash for entry to your so called “Juraissic” Bird Sanctuary and ask what is the connection with “Juraissic,” what would you say,oh! that is just spin to deceive people.

    Typical! say anything to obtain ones ends.

    I fear I have heard that line with regard to another enterprise.

    Thanks, but no thanks.

  98. Justasking

    lawrence loughlin
    June 13th, 2007 at 12:48 am
    No final decision has been made on the Water Park.
    —————————————————————–
    lawrence laughlin, you are basically confirming that Town and Country Planning made a recommendation against placing the water park at the proposed Graeme Hall location and that the developer asked for and is going through a process of appeal or hearing and no final decision has been made on the Water Park.

    Is this statement correct?

  99. lawrence laughlin

    Water Park is moving along just fine, thank you. I am positive about recent developements.

    Wishing in Vain neglets to tell the Bajan people that his grand idea of putting a so called National Park in a farm field along with a sewage treatment plant will cost every living soul ( 280.000 bajans ) at least $ 1,000.00 each. You are asking the Bajan people a awful lot to satify your own personal needs. My suggestion is to turn your houses around and buy that farm field. It will be less costly for the Bajan people and they won’t get that lovely aroma. Your verbiage stinks enough and common sense dictates that there will never be a National Park in that area. You should be more interested in saving the bird sanctuary because without it you have naught !!

  100. Anonymous

    Who is this Laughlin bloke?

  101. Peltdown Man

    Anonymous
    I dunno, but looks like he’s beginning to lose it.

  102. curtissss

    We are not civilized to appricate Greening
    We cut trees down daily, we never replant, we let land sit and do nothing, we don’t farm, we don’t want agriculture, we love concrete. We are a very sorry nation and we want to know where we are heading, nowhere
    People travel and don’t see, governments, preach and don’t practice, we digress not progress.
    god Help us

  103. John

    lawrence laughlin
    June 14th, 2007 at 11:30 am

    Look guys, ……………………………
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Patrick Porter got himself in big trouble for using fellas, even bigger than for writing the Canadian PM and advising him not to go to Barbados!!

    Take care LL.

    Ladies are on this site too and you better not incur their wrath!!

    “Hell hath no fury ……”

    The Water Park will pale to insignificance!!

  104. Hey!
    Check out the cool waterslides!
    We got to get some of these!

  105. Justasking

    lawrence laughlin
    June 14th, 2007 at 5:15 pm
    Water Park is moving along just fine, thank you. I am positive about recent developements.
    ————————————————————-
    lawrence laughlin, with that reply you have confirmed that Town and Country Planning made a recommendation against placing the water park at the proposed Graeme Hall location and that the developer asked for and is going through a process of appeal or hearing and no final decision has been made on the Water Park.

    Barbadians will take note of your comment that “You should be more interested in saving the bird sanctuary because without it you have naught !!” Excellent suggestion! In light of your exhortataion Barbadians will now redouble their efforts to save the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary from the damage that will be caused by placing the water park in the upland buffer of the watershed.

    Tell us, lawrence laughlin, did the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary oppose placing the water park at Graeme Hall?

    They must have responded to the Social Impact Survey that was part of the EIA. What was their position?

    Anonymous, on a radio call in program last year there was a Lawrence Laughlin that said he was the investor or the person arranging the financing of the water park. It seems to be the same person.

  106. Wishing in Vain

    Anonymous

    Who is this Laughlin bloke?

    Peltdown Man Anonymous
    I dunno, but looks like he’s beginning to lose it.

    You nailed it Peltdown Man you nailed it, I am not to sure why we even entertain people that are so corrupt to set about paying politicians for favours and then bother to complain when these same politicians take their money and run and do not deliver the goods lawrence laughlin and Keirns are part and parcel of the feeding of these corrupt politicians and it is from people like these that the Owings and the Nicholls and the Shoreys and the Bannisters and the Lynchs and the Mottleys feed.
    Keep the good work up laughlin keep his bank account filling maybe then he will feel it necessary to steal from anyone else while you satisfy his needs.

  107. Unsinkable Molly Brown

    Hey, John,
    I know you’re taking the mickey, but hell hath no fury indeed, and from now on I’m going to address everyone on here as “Hey, gals!”, see how you men respond. Tek da.

  108. John

    Unsinkable Molly Brown
    June 14th, 2007 at 7:25 pm

    …. it is all part of the fun of BFP.

    Would not have it any other way.

    …. and what I said did actually happen.

    It was True Native and True Native’s Mother that put Patrick in his place after a couple of other posters had taken objection (gentle I have to admit) to Patrick’s use of fellas.

    ….. ok, ok so maybe I exaggerated when I implied that what happened to Patrick when he wrote the PM of Canada paled to insignificance with his use of the word fellas.

    The result was he apologised to all the ladies on the site, his wife and other significant ladies in his life, ….. and he did it , well , ….. kind of very fast.

    Patrick, if you are seeing this, hope you are ok. Guess we can’t not think about you. Take care.

  109. John

    …. and I apologise for the use of the “Hell hath no fury …” remark too.

  110. Unsinkable Molly Brown

    No need to apologise, John – I was being a bit tongue-in-cheek.

  111. Think about it

    Mr. Heaslet,

    Maybe we can be a bit more like humans, the way humans should be. Here we are discussing the future of the beautiful graeme hall sanctuary, and that is quite understandable. But have any of us taking part in these discussions given thought to the future of the infrastructure, the workers and the beautifully landscaped grounds? What will become of all of these components that have made the sanctuary what it is? Will homes be found for these innocent animals and will assistance in placement for workers in other fields of endeavor be offered? What about the grounds and ensuring that all of those plants and beautiful lawns are not lost? This is the perfect eco-site.

    It would be a complete disaster should condos go there, as was previously discussed. As for the government, what are their plans for this sanctuary? It would definitely say a lot about the government and their standards if they don’t help the sanctuary. They better make a move fast. Afterall it’s in the best interest of Barbados.

    This Canadian guy did not have to invest in and save the sanctuary making it what it is today. He didn’t, and he must be disappointed. Hell, I would be FURIOUS. He invested a lot.

    Barbados does not need a water park. This is a wonderful island SURROUNDED BY THE OCEAN. More of the citizens need to voice their concerns about this matter.

    I’ve been to the sanctuary lately and I must say, AWESOME! IT’S BEAUTIFUL. My family and I had a great time, fabulous.

  112. Think about it

    And if anyone from the ruling government is reading, this applies to you too. What are your plans for the sanctuary?

  113. John

    … just being on the safe side!!

  114. Hants

    Think about it…… you seem to forget that it is a natural environment.
    Prehaps the best thing to happen to Graeme Hall is to let Nature take its course.

  115. Think about it

    Hants you may be right. After all the money and effort and the years your suggestion would be best. Just “let Nature take its course”. Some time could elapse, the land would become overgrown by swampland flora and some foreign investor would purchase and place lovely condos on the property -IF NOT THE GOV’T. Nice! Another piece of the rock GONE

  116. Two Sides

    Larry is very well connected…..Warrens business connections. I personally think Larry you have lived in New York too long and forget what island life is all about.

  117. natural?

    Hants

    Graeme Hall hasn’t been natural for over a hundred or more years.

    the government filled the natural flow of the sea into the mangrove with highway 7 many many years ago. Fifty years ago it composed several shooting
    venues and then lay empty and a dump site for about 25 years.

    What has been created at Graeme Hall over the past 10 years in terms of education, conservation and eco-tourism is priceless to thousands of Barbadians but obviously not by the people we elect?

  118. John

    Hants

    I am going to put my interpretation on your comment.

    Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary is like a living child waiting to be born. We who have felt it kicking and wondered at its appearance and possibilities cannot imagine what it would be like to have it disappear.

    Until its family, theBarbados Public, takes it on as its own its future is in jeopardy.

    If the Barbados public does not take it on as its own then it will get aborted because it is an unwanted child. Abortions happen every day, perfectly natural.

    Both outcomes are in fact natural and can be described as nature taking its course.

    After all, man is a part of Nature!!

  119. Green Monkey

    Think about it
    June 15th, 2007 at 12:24 am

    Hants you may be right. After all the money and effort and the years your suggestion would be best. Just “let Nature take its course”. Some time could elapse, the land would become overgrown by swampland flora and some foreign investor would purchase and place lovely condos on the property -IF NOT THE GOV’T. Nice! Another piece of the rock GONE
    ————————————————————–

    Think about it,
    You forgot to mention, that while”reverting to nature” it would probably quickly take on its earlier role of unofficial garbage dump and waste disposal site which, if you wanted a positive spin on it, could have some benefit in taking some pressure of the new Greenland landfill. {/sarcasm off}

  120. Waterboy

    Contrast the western side which is owned and managed by the Sanctuary with the eastern side that is owned by government (vested in BADMC) and I think “managed “by the Ministry of Health in conjunction with Ministry of Public Works.

    Consider that the sluice gate (again controlled by Ministry of Public Works) has not worked for years and a backhoe has to be used to dig the sand from in front of it and allow the water to flow out.

  121. Think about it

    Green Monkey,
    I didn’t want to include the disposal of waste although I had it in mind. I wanted to keep it as NATURAL as possible. But your point is well taken.
    But really, this is a very difficult time for those who are connected to the sanctuary in one way or the other. This is a grave situation and not knowing the outcome doesn’t help. I hate the suspense. The sanctuary has enormous potential. Just a couple weeks ago gov’t boasted about ecotourism ventures. I hope they see this as a MAJOR OPPORTUNITY.

    ********************

    BFP comments

    Major opportunity? For What?

    The government doesn’t want the site for free. Why would they want to purchase it?

    Answer: Because if they are given it for free it will be with the condition that they cannot sell it and make money. They would have to preserve it for our nation’s and our children’s future.

    No way they would do that.

  122. Hants

    It is sad that some Barbadians are so nasty and disgusting that they dispose of Garbage without regard to the environment.

    I understand the point you are all making but it is sad that Bajans must be “Policed” to stop them from destroying the natural beauty of our country.

    I was privilaged to have grown up at a time when we had swamps around the Island and Tarpon, Snooks and other fish and birds had natural breeding grounds.

  123. John

    BFP comments

    Major opportunity? For What?

    The government doesn’t want the site for free. Why would they want to purchase it?

    Answer: Because if they are given it for free it will be with the condition that they cannot sell it and make money. They would have to preserve it for our nation’s and our children’s future.

    No way they would do that.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    I do not know the details but I think a former Australian Ambassador donated Joes River Woods, part of Joes River Plantation, to the Government and people of Barbados on condition it be reafforested.

    Think it was in the 1960’s.

    It actually was reafforested, naturally and by design. Hope this isn’t the biomass the effingall plant is eyeing up.

    There has been talk of a tour company (with some serious connections) leasing it at a pepper corn rent for 99 years but that has been for some time and doesn’t seem to have materialised. Not sure if the conditions of the gift have someone peeved or if it died a natural death.

    The GOB actually can do good things when it sets its mind to it.

    I suspect the part about not being able to put the land into play and make a dollar is putting them off.

    How many people know Joes River Woods is a gift to the Government and People of Barbados? Until a couple of years ago, I did not either.

  124. Stuart Heaslet

    There seems to be a misunderstanding that Peter Allard has received significant tax and other benefits from the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary.

    Mr. Allard has received no tax benefits of any consequence from the Sanctuary investment.

    While Mr. Allard has received personal non-resident tax benefit as many
    other Canadians have in Barbados, funding of the Sanctuary came from
    personal funds. It was always to have been a personal philanthropic
    endeavor, with the mandate to the Barbadian management team to make the
    Sanctuary operationally self-sufficient.

    There is no Allard-controlled company to post write-offs from the Sanctuary
    capital or operations investment.

    According to the Government of Barbados, the Sanctuary qualifies for some, but not all, benefits under the Special Development Areas Act.

    VAT and import duty refunds ended up being nominally beneficial for building materials. For various reasons it took up to three years to receive these refunds. It would have been more expedient and generally cheaper to pay the taxes, and save the costs of accounting, added customs broker costs, and VAT appeals.

    The temporary waiver of corporate income tax under the terms of the Act is a moot issue. There have been no profits.

    Despite being qualified under the Act for VAT refunds, Government has disallowed property tax waiver under the Act, apparently because the Act was not ratified until after the Sanctuary property was acquired by Mr. Allard. This is being appealed.

    Because of his tax status, Mr. Allard cannot use available charitable deductions accruing from his philanthropic donations.

    His past offer to donate 25 acres of Sanctuary lands, plus financial, technical and management support if Government actively supported formation of Graeme Hall National Park, was made with full knowledge that the donation would have no charitable tax benefit whatsoever.

    Mr. Loughlin and others should know that the Sanctuary endeavor has little in common with an amusement park, and has special challenges that do not conform to normal business models. It is true that any business can improve and optimize its operations, and we are fortunate that under the day operations leadership of Harry Roberts, break-even operations are not far away.

    But as I have mentioned before, Roberts is faced with a highly conflicted situation: Ensure that the Sanctuary is an oasis of tranquilty, but make it operationally sustainable. Most business models require lots of customers, which means density, and this is the heart of the conflict.

    The current sale price of the Sanctuary is substantially below the actual investment, in order to encourage well-meaning responses from those who understand and will support the fact that this is a Barbadian heritage site that must be preserved for many generations to come. We trust this will happen.

    Stuart Heaslet
    Board Representative
    Oversight and Philanthropy
    Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary (Barbados)

  125. Waterboy

    Stuart Heaslet
    June 15th, 2007 at 4:27 am

    But as I have mentioned before, Roberts is faced with a highly conflicted situation: Ensure that the Sanctuary is an oasis of tranquilty, but make it operationally sustainable. Most business models require lots of customers, which means density, and this is the heart of the conflict.
    —————————————————————
    So I guess larry laughlin’s suggestion to rename the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary “……. Juraissic Bird Sanctuary ” with a asterisk stating that you guarentee nobody will be eaten by dinosaurs. Just my two cents of input”, may not be quite the right marketing approach to making it operationally sustainable?

    Hopefully your comments will have enlightened Mr. Laughlin and his nephew Matthew Kerins.

  126. lawrence laughlin

    Why don’t you talk about the great financial burden you are so generously bestowing on your fellow countrymen ?? My figures are at least $ 350,000,000.00 for a plot of farm land with a sewage dump in the middle !! What a deal !!!

  127. mebajan2

    allan, and the friends of graeme hall put your money were your mouth was

    just asking!!!!!

  128. John

    lawrence laughlin
    June 15th, 2007 at 12:33 pm
    Why don’t you talk about the great financial burden you are so generously bestowing on your fellow countrymen ?? My figures are at least $ 350,000,000.00 for a plot of farm land with a sewage dump in the middle !! What a deal !!!
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Tell us how many and who will benefit from the $350 million you speak of ….. and how you get the number.

    If all you see is a sewage dump then it could hardly be the place to put Condos for people to live.

    Can’t then figure out how you get the $350 million figure for what is according to you a worthless piece of real estate!! You are getting like Minister Lynch.

    Ok, I guess you will spend $600 million on sewering the area to justify the $350 million in revenue you can get.

    See, anybody can imitate this guy!!

  129. Peltdown Man

    John
    I have noticed how Laughlin’s comments have become more and more strident, more petulant, and apparently uncontrolled. Like I said in a previous post, it looks like he’s losing it.

  130. Wishing in Vain

    A complete idiot with a self serving motive and a one track mind based on greed.

  131. bajanman4ever

    I live in Christ Church and welcome the water park coming to Graeme Hall because of its accessanility. I also speak for many of my neighbors who look forward to this healthy and exciting venue for local bajans and tourist alike. I have read in your blog that the Graeme Hall Bird Sanctuary is slipping away from the National Park proponents. I believe this is very good since it presents you with a very sticky wicket. So perhaps the great majority here will get there water park finally.

  132. lawrence laughlin

    The following figures are what the Bajan people will suffer as a result of the personal fiefdom you are creating for yourselves. First, The value of the land is approximately $100 million which goes poof or up in smoke since it does NOT go into the general coffers of the Government, hence the people. Seconly, the cost to build your park is probably $40 million. You plan on borrowing these funds which will put the bajan people further in debt. Third, the operating costs are going to be huge. You will need a large security force to prevent drug dealing and users, especially at night. I would imagine this park would have to be lighted at night or you will have a great amount of crime coming to this area. The upkeep will be very significant. I would say $10 million per year or $150 million over 15 years and counting, perhaps much more. I did notice in your plan that you plan on making a fortune selling flowers. Fourth, if that farm land is developed properly the people of Barbados would get a positive cash flow from various taxes of perhaps $ 10 million per year or $ 150 million over 15 years and counting.

    What do The Great People of Barbados get in return for your boundless generosity. A plot of farm land with a sewage dump in the middle. May I have the concession for gas masks since I know they will be in great demand.

  133. bajancitizen4ever

    I live in Barbados and do not welcome the water park coming to Graeme Hall because it may damage our environment. I also speak for many of my neighbors who do not look forward to this carbuncle on our landscape that will be an eyesore for local Bajans and tourists alike. I have read in your blog that the Graeme Hall Bird Sanctuary is being put up for sale. We remain hopeful that The Sanctuary owner will remain open to any last minute discussions with those in Government if they include a well thought out plan and commitments from the highest levels. So perhaps the great majority here will get our National Park finally.

  134. John

    So if you lease the land form Government, tell me exactly how will the $100 million value appreciation be realised?

    Poof – gone.

    As for the positive cash flow on on taxes, if Govt owns the land already it will be kind of hard to collect taxes from itself. Its reputation for paying is notorious. Look at the VAT refund Stuart Heaslet spoke of above.

    Poof – gone

    … and then there will probably be the remediation work to mitigate the sewage dump in the middle of the now $100 million worth of land. Lets say $600 million.

    This could be bad or good depending on whether you look at it from a financial or economic point of view.

    Once the cost streams are kept separate from the revenue streams it could make sense, to those sitting next to the revenue streams.

    Financially your alternative use doesn’t make sense, you need to do some more convincing.

    …. however in terms of GDP and the economic advantage, the $600 million that comes into the economy (say $5 billion) represents growth which would do any economist’s heart proud!!

    What’s more if the local component of the debt to finance this investment is high, the debt will not matter …….. ask Clyde Mascoll.

    Blarney Lynch, you got real competition!! Between me and Lawrence we goin run you from bout here.

  135. Think about it

    I guess hants is right. Nature will take its course. I say this because no one has even responded to the concerns of those persons who will be affected by the sale of the sanctuary. Everyone’s caught up in the HOW MUCH$$$$$$, THE WHO, THE CONDOS and the WATERPARK. Hasn’t anyone realised how many people are losing jobs in this country due to the sale or closure of companies? This is a worrying trend and particularly so for a site which is I understand is the only one of its type on the island. From the moment the place was put up for sale the gov’t should have stepped in with a plan, even if it wasn’t totally satisfactory to the owner(s). And what is the public saying about this sale? Nothing. Nothing because they probably don’t even know the place exist or won’t bother about voicing their concerns because hey, it’s not affecting them directly. Those concerned are of a certain bracket in the society. This shouldn’t be.

    We have become hard-hearted, selfish,greedy and ungodly. This is why so many people across the world are poverty stricken, hungry and unemployed. I pray for this country.

  136. bajanman4ever

    TO BAJAN CITIZEN FOREVER better knowm as PETER SIMMMONS . Thank you for confirming my suspicions that a FEW people take MANY names on this blog in order to perpetuate a false impression/fraud that many people do not want this water park. In actuallity 260,000 people are excited about this lovely project.

    My dear PETER SIMMONDS how can anyone forget your horrid description of housing as CARBUNCLES or festering sores/boils. You were indignant about the possibility of looking down at such CARBUNCLES ( housing ). I remembered your despicable description of housing very well indeed Peter Simmons. Their are people who are in desperate need of housing but you do not care. I know you are ensconced in your comfortable private ESTATE on Graeme Hall Ridge so in essence you are saying to the Bajan people, ” Let Them Eat Cake “!!! Shame on you Peter Simmons !!

    Come out come out where ever you are Mr. Citizen Simmons. THE TRUTH IS NOW KNOWN !!! IT IS A CONSPIRACY TO CONVOLUTE THE TRUE FACTS !!!

  137. reality check

    Peter Simmons has the integrity among many others to stand up and be counted when it comes
    to green spaces and the environment.

    He knows the chaos that will be created by up to 5,000 cars a day in this already congested area, not to mention the potential environmental catastrophe.

    Like you Peter Simmons can sign in under whatever moniker he chooses, as can anyone else.

    He should be given an award for his efforts to make Graeme Hall a National Park and green space for all Barbadians.

    Anyone who thinks that a waterpark will work at Graeme Hall rather than Ocean Park is at best delusional.

  138. Tudor

    Lawrence, isn’t it a greater crime for the Govt to turn agricultural land into housing which poor people will not be able to afford? and only their cronies will benefit from the sale of the land?
    If everyone thought like & your lot then there be no Central Park in the US nor Hyde Park in the UK.

    Just so you remember Govt already owns the land, so your comment about the value of land going poof is rather difficult to understand, just like the remainder of your comment.
    But in the other hand keep talking so that Bajans can see exactly what you are.

  139. Tudor

    Bajanman4ever, I am not aware that Peter Simmons is a contributor to BFP; knowing the man like I do I would expect that he would do so under his name.

  140. DFX

    Just asking a stupid question… Is this sudden sale in anyway related to the fact that one of the workers at the GHNS recently contracted eColi from working in the swamp?

  141. Warrior

    Noticed something very strange on Tuesday night. Several flocks of Egrets at around 9:00pm seemingly flying towards Graeme Hall.

    Can anyone explain, I have never seen it before.

  142. Stuart Heaslet

    DFX wrote: “Just asking a stupid question… Is this sudden sale in anyway related to the fact that one of the workers at the GHNS recently contracted eColi from working in the swamp?”
    ———-

    DFX, it’s not a stupid question, it’s a legitimate question in this climate of distrust associated with developers. It is totally understandable.

    The answer to your question is “No.” The reason(s) behind the sale have already been articulated in this thread, and it’s important to understand that we honor our employees, and not abdicate responsibility for them. This ethic is critical, as these men and women give their time, skills and strength to the Sanctuary, day in and day out.

    Please note it has not been established that the e.coli infection originated from the wetland, as there are other possible sources, including overseas, as this employee was the only one to be off-island just prior to the report. Also, other employees have worked in the wetland without getting e.coli.

    Lastly, the Sanctuary is not a pollution sourcepoint. All pollution comes from developed lands uphill from the Sanctuary.

    Stuart Heaslet

  143. Stuart Heaslet

    Meant to say, “…and do not abdicate.”

    The egrets go home every night to Graeme Hall from various points of the island, sometimes as late as you saw.

    Stuart Heaslet

  144. Think about it

    I believe there was an outbreak of ecoli just recently in Canada and or the US?????

  145. Think about it

    Warrior,

    On my way to work some evenings I see them heading in the graeme hall direction as late as 7-7:30 but never as late as 9pm. Interesting. They sure do know their way around huh!

  146. DFX

    Thanks for the info Stuart. I was a little concerned as I was made to understand that a sample was taken from the employee and it was just at the level where the “protective” gear ends ie about chest level, I was also made to understand that the employee was prevented from traveling before the results of the sample were obtained.

    Thanks for clearing it up for me 🙂

    DFX

  147. BFP guys- May I call your attention to the post of “bajanman4ever” on June 15 on this blog.

    Please compare it with the post of “mebajan2” on another blog, also taking Peter Simmons to task about “carbuncles”.

    Isn’t it uncanny how similar these blogs are UNDER DIFFERENT NAMES?

    You will be able to tell if they are one and the same sender, as I suspect. Do you think he should get away with it?

  148. Pingback: » BLP makes incongruous promise to buy Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary after refusing most of same as a gift! Keltruth Corp.: News Blog of Keltruth Corp. - Miami, Florida, USA.

  149. NICK & ANN HOUSTON

    We visit Barbados every year and visiting this park is one of the highlights of our stay. We don’t want to visit a water park. If we were particularly looking for that type of activity, we would go to Spain or USA. We looked on the website today with great excitement to view the park in readiness for our visit in three week’s time. The park’s website gave no indication that they might be sold for development so we talked about which days we would visit and what we would see.
    You cannot imagine our dismay in seeing this report that our beloved park might be sold off. The reason we come to Barbados is for the sea and beaches, lovely people and sights that differ from every other Caribbean Island we have visited. We do not come for the extreme night life or for organised themed venues. There are so many other places in the World who cater for such acvities and probably do them better… Barbados is the jewel of the Carribean and it would be a tragedy if it chooses the path lesser Islands have followed…
    ANN & NICK HOUSTON

  150. Ann & Nick Houston- Do not despair….yet!

    We who live in Barbados are continuing the battle to save not only the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary, but also to incorporate the surrounding lands, most of which “belong” to the Ministry of Agriculture, into a larger National Park so that this last remaining area of open green space can be preserved for future generations.

    We have known with dismay that Mr Allard put his Nature Sanctuary up for sale in disgust at the bad manners and lack of breeding of our previous Prime Minister, Owen Arthur and his ministers.

    These so-called representatives of the people snubbed Mr Allard by not even having the courtesy to acknowledge his generous offer to donate the greater part of his nature sanctuary to the people of Barbados if Government would incorporate it into the larger Graeme Hall National Park.

    Small wonder Mr Allard took offense at such stink behaviour even though he was well aware that there were vested interests in these lands which involved suspect “consultancy” fees, i.e. bribes.

    The Friends of Graeme Hall committee and those 7,000 of us who signed the petition against Caribbean Splash which mutated into a campaign for the Park, have not yielded in our desire to see this dream come true.

    It my hope, and that of all clearheaded Barbadians, that with new and, hopefully, enlightened leadership there will be a change of heart on this issue. We hope the Powers that Now Be will resist the temptation to use this unique area for commercial exploitation for their own ends. We are praying that they will seize this unique chance to provide future generations with the benefits of the proposed Park.

    We hope, also, that you will continue to be able to enjoy such natural, uncommercial pleasures on our island, and will return soon to do so.

  151. MeToKnow

    I dont kno everyting everyone was talkin bout… but in my opinion on this is that the swamp should be left with Mr. Allard… i find he is doing a good job, and also.. THANKS GOODNESS the waterpark was not built there… i woulda dead. That swamp is one of the remaining natural places in Barbados… besides Harrisons Cave, but Greame Hall Swamp is were many birds migrate.. also did yall kno that there is a bird that is only found in Barbados… and almost all of them are found in that sanctuary, therefore removing Greame Hall could make them extinct… and yall may be wondering why i would care for an old dirty swamp… but its only murky due to mangrove… everyting there is natural besides the walkways…
    if i could, i would give Mr. Allard the entire ting…
    cause i am SURE that he would put it to good use 🙂 but thats my word against yalls…