HC Deb 02 March 1955 vol 537 cc269-70W
59. Sir R. Robinson

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what progress has been made with the rehabilitation of English Harbour, Antigua; and to what extent it is proposed to use Colonial Development and Welfare funds to complete this work.

Mr. Hopkinson

Considerable progress has been made. Below is the list of repairs done during 1954. As regards the second part of the Question, it is in the first place for the Government of Antigua, taking into account their development plans as a whole, to consider whether they wish to apply for colonial development and welfare assistance for this particular project.

Progress of repairs

1. It is estimated that the cost of rehabilitating English Harbour will be £50,000. £9,160 has so far been raised by the local Society of Friends of English Harbour in Antigua, which was established in 1951,and by the English Harbour Appeal Committee in the United Kingdom. The following major works were undertaken during 1954:

  1. (1) the first bay of the second Mast House was completely reconstructed, using the original stone pillars and providing a new shingled roof. (The additional space under cover will be of great value in connection with the increasing use being made of the dockyard by yachts);
  2. (2) a start was made with the sealing of the tops of the walls of the canvas, clothing, and cordage store. (The walls of this enormous building—100 ft. square—are mainly intact, but the roof collapsed some years ago; the Society intends to maintain the walls in good condition);
  3. (3) the roof of the Engineer's offices (a three storied brick building—70 ft. by 30 ft.) was completely re-built and new window frames and shutters were installed on the top two floors. (This was the major work of the year—as a result of which the structure of this building has been preserved for many years to come);
  4. (4) the decayed roof of the Admiral's Kitchen was removed; and the walls were rebuilt and repaired, using the original stones. (The roofing will be completed in 1955, and no further work will then be required on this building);
  5. (5) decayed timbers in the Porter's Lodge and Gate House were replaced; one wing of the roof of the Porter's Lodge was re-roofed; and extensive repairs were carried out to the Guard House;
  6. (6) the south end of the principal Mast House was re-shingled, and the roof was repaired;
  7. (7) further progress was made with the re-pointing of the copper and lumber store.