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#1 Jan 29, 2020 2:46 pm

New Historian
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We are sitting on a crumbling gold mine: Fort George

Visitors to Grenada complain that there is not much to do, apart from the usual sund sand sea etc. And yet, we are sitting on a historical gem - and ruining it! Excerpt from a report I wrote 5 years ago, to try and get the Fort rehabilitated. Will this ever happen, in my lifetime? I doubt it.


The Fort was built in 1705 by the French, and also was the site of more recent historic events during the People’s Revolutionary Government (PRG) of 1979-1983. Most of the buildings are currently used as the headquarters of the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF). The buildings are very dilapidated from a combination of damage from Hurricane Ivan in 2004, and general neglect. Although reasonably popular with cruise ship visitors, there is little or no historical information within the Fort itself. There are good views from the battlements of the surrounding landscape:

Much of the Fort is still intact and open to visitors. However as a tourist attraction, the Fort leaves much to be desired. Fort George is a diamond in the rough. The areas where Fort George scores highly are its natural attributes: the views, historical significance, etc. The areas where it falls down are its developmental aspects: lack of signage and historical information, general dilapidation, etc.

Fort George is owned and administered by the Ministry of Tourism. It is not currently listed as a national heritage site. Most of the Fort’s premises are occupied by the RGPF. The East Barracks are currently uninhabitable, as the structure is without a floor or roof and is in a dangerous condition. The South Barracks is currently used as a barracks for the RGPF, and also includes the cobbler’s shop – which could be a mini-attraction in itself.

The Fort George restoration project should be given a high priority. It would materially improve the tourism product in Grenada, for both cruise ship and hotel tourists. Although there will be technical challenges in terms of ensuring that the restoration is done in a sensitive, creative and professional manner; the project is eminently doable. Moreover, it fits in with Grenada’s “Pure Grenada” branding and has strong support from all stakeholders – public and private.


Fort-George-derelict.jpg

Fort-George-view-2.jpg

Fort-George-view.jpg

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#2 Jan 29, 2020 7:23 pm

Expat
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Re: We are sitting on a crumbling gold mine: Fort George

New Historian wrote:

Visitors to Grenada complain that there is not much to do, apart from the usual sund sand sea etc. And yet, we are sitting on a historical gem - and ruining it! Excerpt from a report I wrote 5 years ago, to try and get the Fort rehabilitated. Will this ever happen, in my lifetime? I doubt it.


The Fort was built in 1705 by the French, and also was the site of more recent historic events during the People’s Revolutionary Government (PRG) of 1979-1983. Most of the buildings are currently used as the headquarters of the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF). The buildings are very dilapidated from a combination of damage from Hurricane Ivan in 2004, and general neglect. Although reasonably popular with cruise ship visitors, there is little or no historical information within the Fort itself. There are good views from the battlements of the surrounding landscape:

Much of the Fort is still intact and open to visitors. However as a tourist attraction, the Fort leaves much to be desired. Fort George is a diamond in the rough. The areas where Fort George scores highly are its natural attributes: the views, historical significance, etc. The areas where it falls down are its developmental aspects: lack of signage and historical information, general dilapidation, etc.

Fort George is owned and administered by the Ministry of Tourism. It is not currently listed as a national heritage site. Most of the Fort’s premises are occupied by the RGPF. The East Barracks are currently uninhabitable, as the structure is without a floor or roof and is in a dangerous condition. The South Barracks is currently used as a barracks for the RGPF, and also includes the cobbler’s shop – which could be a mini-attraction in itself.

The Fort George restoration project should be given a high priority. It would materially improve the tourism product in Grenada, for both cruise ship and hotel tourists. Although there will be technical challenges in terms of ensuring that the restoration is done in a sensitive, creative and professional manner; the project is eminently doable. Moreover, it fits in with Grenada’s “Pure Grenada” branding and has strong support from all stakeholders – public and private.


https://i.postimg.cc/G4NkCyVb/Fort-George-derelict.jpg

https://i.postimg.cc/hQjjvCQ6/Fort-George-view-2.jpg

https://i.postimg.cc/MXFZtmQZ/Fort-George-view.jpg

It really is a shambles as far as a tourist attraction goes.

I have been inside on business with the stores, while showing my cousin around. I made a point of going round to the tourist entrance and paying what ever the fee was, only to find myself seconds later back in the same courtyard we had been in for free.

No checks, no guidance,no information other than the firing squad plaque, no signs worth a damn, and as an active police location you really do not know where you can or cannot go. Some of the best views etc were where I had initially thought this is not where I should be.

Just doing nothing but a few sensibly located guidance signs would make a hell of a difference to the experience.

Not signage like at lake antoine where you have to actually be in the road up to the lake to see the sign. Bloody stupid. Had I not been there years before, and felt it was the place to turn in I would have gone right past it.

As for the condition of the barracks etc... deplorable. Does nobody take responsibility for anything. How can the police think it alright to dump their old lockers into the crumbling barracks for every tourist to admire. They use police as artisans when they feel like it, I have seen them doing minor chores. Better to use proper tradesmen, but who knows what the police were before they joined up.

Last edited by Expat (Jan 29, 2020 7:28 pm)

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#3 Feb 01, 2020 8:11 am

Slice
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Re: We are sitting on a crumbling gold mine: Fort George

I think maybe the same folks in America, that take care of the tunnel might take control of it.   That is Grenada for you.  Lord the last time ah visited that place ah almost passed out.  I was trying to show me son and wife, that I am truly Grenadian and I can beat them going up those steps.  I had to sit and let them tour the place.  I sat and drank three bottles of water, before I could join the tour.  Another mint, that they have and doh know.

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#4 Feb 02, 2020 10:41 am

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Re: We are sitting on a crumbling gold mine: Fort George

It's a steep climb alright. There was one proposal to build a cable car, directly up from the cruise ship terminal. Tourists, especially of a certain age, love historical sights, in England they do them so well, with old costumes, reenactments, all sorts of fun stuff. They are gold mines.

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#5 Feb 02, 2020 1:59 pm

Expat
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Re: We are sitting on a crumbling gold mine: Fort George

Didn't each successive nation see the ships of the attackers, and mostly walk away instead of fighting.. Bit hard to re-enact people pooping their pants and walking soggily to their ships.... smile

The Brit in me wouldn't mind a few Froggies being made to walk the plank...   LoL.

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#6 Feb 02, 2020 6:10 pm

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Re: We are sitting on a crumbling gold mine: Fort George

As a "Grenadian", you should learn your history. The French stormed and captured the Fort, under the control of your ex-country, in 1779. Plus of course the events that RD knows so well. So yeah, it saw action alright. Plenty of historical material to play act with.

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