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By Keith Archibald Forbes (see About Us) exclusively for Bermuda Online
Once a separate island in St. George's Parish. It was originally one of the six principal, separate, Bermuda islands. It was called St. David's by one of the early colonists from Wales who knew about St. David (Dewi Sant), the patron saint of Wales. He lived in the 6th century AD. His mother was St. Non. He was an abbot and bishop and credited with the establishment of twelve monasteries. His own monastery stood at what is now St. David's in Pembrokeshire, Wales - and has been called that for over 1,000 years. Today, it is the smallest cathedral city in Britain, dominated by its beautiful cathedral (dating from the year 1180) to honor St. David, whose national (in Wales, UK) and international feast day is March 1. His religious friends - and possibly, confessors - included St. Justinian and St. Brynach, a Celt from Ireland whose 6th century church is in Nevern, Wales. He and St. David both spoke Ogham, the oldest known form of Gaelic. Welsh regiments of the British Army still celebrate St. David's Day by eating a raw leek. While there are a number of Welsh people in Bermuda, including Senator Walwyn Hughes, whose father the late Idwyl Hughes was from Wales, no specific mention in St. David's, Bermuda, is given to current Welsh personalities such as Charlotte Church, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Katherine Jenkins, Tom Jones, former part-time Bermuda resident Catherine Zeta-Jones, or late Welsh personalities such as Richard Burton. In Britain, twenty three churches are dedicated to him including Little and Much Dewchurch in Herefordshire. Another connection in name only - between St. David's in Bermuda and St. David's in Wales in the Royal St. David Golf Course in Wales's Snowdonia).
What is still referred to as St. David's Island was originally 503 acres. It was connected in the 1930's to the mainland by the Severn Bridge, since dismantled. It was enlarged in 1942 by 750 acres to build the (now decommissioned) Fort Bell (US Army), then Kindley Air Force Base (USAF), then USNAS. See US Military Quits Bermuda. It was joined to the Main Island of Bermuda in the 1970s. Today, the vastly-changed and now civilianized area is part of the mainland, connected by a perimeter road skirting St. George's Harbor and is mostly urban residential. The once-large US military base, which from 1941 to 1995 had famous American military names on all its streets and roads, now houses shops and a medical centre and much of St. David's where the US military base was has reverted to its original name of Southside,.
St. David's Islanders do not recognize St. David as having any religious or spiritual connection with them. St. David's in Bermuda does not celebrate the Welsh national holiday of March 1 in honor of St. David. Nor do they eat the leek, the national symbol of Wales since Welshmen fought with Henry V at the Battle of Agincourt. (In his Henry V work, Shakespeare made St. David's emblem the leek instead of the usual dove).
Photo taken at St. David's Cathedral, Wales by the author exclusively for Bermuda Online.
St. David's Islanders have a unique character and flavor. Some are descended from American Indians once imported as slaves or, in the 19th and early 20th centuries, to build the railway and other high or difficult structures, and carry the same features. Once isolated from the mainland, St. David's Islanders remain the main outlaws in some respects yet the most law-abiding in others. St. David's Islanders have always been different to most other Bermudians. Some still have distinct characteristics of American Red Indian heritage. See the books:
It was once revered as one of Bermuda's most close-knit communities where everyone knew each other. Some St. David's Islanders who were born and bred there and proudly claim kinship with American native Indian tribes regard those who do not as incomers. Nowadays, there are many incomers from other parts of Bermuda. More so in St. David's than in any other part of Bermuda, St. David's Islanders use nick-names for many of their folk.
Well worth visits are the Great Head Battery and Park and, when open (usually on a Wednesday), Carter House, on the former US Naval Air Station, an excellent example of an historic Bermuda homestead saved from destruction when the US military arrived in 1941. It is a living museum of Bermudian history. Clearwater Beach and Park at Annie's Bay on Cooper's Island off St. David's is a 36 acre site with two public beaches closed to the public from 1941 to 1995 (during the 54 years Cooper's Island was a US Navy reserved area). It has nature trails and fine views of Nonsuch Island and Castle Harbor.
Since 2007, Constituency 3 has been represented by the Progressive Labour Party’s Lovitta Foggo after she defeated Suzann Roberts-Holshouser by 90 votes. In 2012, she secured a second term defeating challenger Gaylenne Cannonier 511-384. An educator, Ms Foggo taught at institutions including St George’s Secondary, Whitney Institute, and CedarBridge Academy. She was a biology teacher at The Berkeley Institute when she was first elected as a Member of Parliament. This year, she will be challenged by One Bermuda Alliance candidate Andrea Moniz-DeSouza. Ms Moniz-DeSouza was among the final four candidates unveiled by the party at a press conference on June 30. The daughter of blue collar immigrant parents, Ms Moniz-DeSouza received much of her education in Bermuda from the public school system. She studied law abroad before returning to the island to practice as a member of the Bermuda Bar. Currently, she is the Honorary Consul of Portugal, as well as an executive committee member with the AG Show. According to Ms Foggo, the issues central to her constituents largely depend on their age. For younger families, Ms Foggo said education is the number one issue. She said she has worked very closely with the schools in the area, and promised along with her party “to ensure that we provide our children with the 21st-century education that they are most deserving of.” Families with older members, she said, are most concerned with healthcare. Ms Foggo said that constituents are worried about the inability of pensions to cover necessities, including medical matters. “They find that they are having to make a choice between ‘Do I buy these pills?’, ‘Do I get these types of groceries?’,” she said. “‘What is it I can afford to let leave by the wayside, for now, so that I can make sure that I manage?’” Ms Foggo said there had been an “outcry” over management of the topography and road works in Constituency 3. “People definitely feel that has been very much neglected,” she said. Ms Moniz-DeSouza echoed the concerns heard by Ms Foggo from constituents over community upkeep. The main concern of constituents, she said, related to maintenance of public areas — including tree trimming, lighting, and access to public transit — which they feel have been disregarded. “People generally feel as if they are ignored by their current representative,” Ms Moniz-DeSouza said. If elected, she said her prioritizes over the next five years would include providing assistance to seniors and vulnerable members of the community, addressing “much needed” facilities improvements for residents at Gulfstream, and investigating what can be done to increase adult education, job training and employment opportunities for area residents. “This is particularly important as it will help residents of Gulfstream transition into non-emergency housing,” she said. Ms Moniz-DeSouza said that the biggest challenge she would face in making her priorities realities would be getting all relevant government resources to “co-operate and co-ordinate”. Residents, she said, had been critical of the job done by their elected PLP representative. “According to the constituents I have spoken to, Ms Foggo has underrepresented her constituency and has not actively addressed their concerns,” she said. “Many residents feel as if the only time they see her is just before an election.” Ms Foggo said she prided herself on being an MP who is responsive to the voices and cries of her residents. “I have tried at every step of the way to definitely act on those issues they felt needed to be tended to,” she said. Pointing to concerns over the possible closure of St David’s Primary last year, Ms Foggo said she was there with the constituents to ensure that Government heard the position of community. “Many of my constituents have said — even on both sides of the fence — that they are very grateful to the fact that I am a very visible MP, that I come out to hear their concerns, and that I have, as best I can, responded to the requests that have been given to me.” According to Ms Moniz-DeSouza, a lifetime of community service has provided her with the tools to represent the people of St David’s “actively and faithfully. I don’t shy away from difficult tasks and pride myself on the ability to get things done. I’m not comfortable being passively involved in something — if I take on a task, I see it through until the job is done. After meeting with the residents of St David’s and hearing their concerns, I’m more determined than ever to get to work.” Ms Foggo pointed to her record working with the community as her best qualification for re-election. “I have been there every step of the way with them, for them. I have never seen myself as a separate entity — I have seen myself as a fellow community member and I understand that the job gets done best when we’re working together as a team.”
Waller’s Point Road, St David’s
2017. June 7. The island’s first crematorium is up and running after more than three decades of planning and setbacks. The facility on has already undertaken more than a dozen cremations since it opened its doors at the end of April. The state-of-the-art crematorium, which is run by Amis Memorial Chapel, will be officially opened with a ribbon cutting on June 24. “It is very rewarding to see this facility up and running after such a long time in the making,” Martha Amis told The Royal Gazette. “Everything has gone very well so far and we have already done more than a dozen cremations since we first opened our doors to the public. It is great that we were allowed to build this structure and invigorating that all our hard work has come to fruition. It’s important that we are able to provide the community with a service that they desire and one that is becoming more popular in Bermuda.” The Amis Crematorium will hold an open house on June 25 between 2pm and 4pm for residents to find out more about the facility and the process of cremation. The structure and equipment for Bermuda’s first crematorium were specially constructed in the United States and shipped to the island last year. The retort, which is the machine that carries out the cremation, came from Florida, while the structure itself was made in Colorado. The most recent planning application to build the crematorium was submitted in May 2015 and was the fourth time that Amis had tried to get permission to build such a facility in Bermuda. Previously, the funeral home had proposed building a crematorium at Well Bottom in Warwick, next to its funeral home in Warwick, and most recently on Industrial Road in Southampton. However, all three proposals were rejected by the Development Applications Board.
Once Mis' Annie's Bay, believed to be after Ann Fox, widow (1835) of Copeland Fox.
Stokes Road, Southside. Telephone 293-2222.
2015. June 26. The gems of St David’s will be in easy reach of summer visitors, thanks to a bus service that will link up with the new “beach bus” shuttling guests around the fringe attractions of St George’s. The service, which starts up in July 2015 and will run in tandem with the ferry schedule until October 2015, was created by East End entrepreneurs in partnership with the Bermuda Tourism Authority (BTA). "Call it cultural tourism or adventure tourism" according to venture partner Belcario Thomas, the aim is to connect visitors with “experiences they’re not going to get elsewhere.” “Bermuda is an open-air resort where you can safely get lost,” he added — and St David’s teems with quintessentially Bermudian experiences that are not always easy to reach. The $6 bus will collect guests from the Visitor Information Centre in St George’s, taking them to the Carter House Museum, St David’s Battery, St David’s Lighthouse and finally Clearwater Beach. Pat Phillip-Fairn of the BTA said the St David’s tour bus circuit “addresses a long standing issue with transport — it connects St George’s with sites in St David’s that have not necessarily had the foot traffic and visitor traffic.” “What we really like is fulfilling the mandate of creating opportunities for jobs,” she said. The BTA has partnered with the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation with the goal of linking tourists with vendors of authentic Bermudian merchandise. “Our customers want to connect with us culturally,” Ms Phillip-Fairn said. “It’s about helping Bermuda to present itself in an authentic way.”
Southside Road. Named after Christopher Carter, a survivor off the shipwrecked flag ship "Sea Venture" in 1609 who remained in Bermuda in 1610 when the castaways sailed to Virginia. He became one of the three "Kings" of Bermuda for many months. He believed there was buried gold on this island. On the former US Naval Air Station on St. David's Island, it is historic, probably built in the 1720s, by John Hayward and his wife Martha, reputedly a descendant of Christopher Carter. It was originally a private house. It was saved from destruction when the US military arrived in 1941 and took over all the land nearby including this house. Then, until 1995, it was used as a beauty parlor. Now the St. David's Historical Society Museum. Photo by author Keith A. Forbes. Also see Settler's Cottage nearby, made from Bermuda cedar and clay mortar using early 17th century Bermudian building techniques.
The society, which does not have Internet access, is a museum of Bermudian history.
2017. May 5. A Bermudian icon is set to be celebrated later this month in St David’s — the Bermuda Onion. Onion Day will take place on May 27 at Carter House in St David’s, with festivities beginning at noon and continuing until 4pm. The event, organised by the St David’s Island Historical Society, will give attendees a look and taste of Bermuda’s past with traditional food and tours through the preserved Carter House. Rick Spurling of the St David’s Island Historical Society said the event began after the organisation decided they wanted to do something for Heritage Month. “It was Larry Mills, who built our Settlers Dwelling in 2012, who suggested Onion Day to celebrate the infamous Bermuda Onion, which was exported for years until competition from a similar onion in Texas put us out of business. It’s also to celebrate Bermudians who are known as onions. Onions are harvested in May each year which enables us to have lots of donated onions which we sell. We have the ‘biggest onion’ contest and hope to have an onion-eating contest for which we have a trophy — but it is not that easy to get at least two willing participants.” Several St David’s staples will be available for purchase, including onion soup, Gary Lamb’s fish chowder and a range of onion products and pulled “hog” sandwiches. Meanwhile, Mr Spurling will be on-scene with Mr Mills and traditional doll maker Ronnie Chameau, all dressed in period costume and ready to answer questions. “We ask Bermudians to come and celebrate their Heritage and visitors to come and learn a little about St David’s and Bermudian culture — the Bermuda Onion — and the largely unknown, fascinating yet un-presented (except at Carter House) history of St David’s.”
Named after Christopher Carter, one of the trio who stayed behind when the Deliverance sailed to England with the body of Admiral Sir George Somers aboard.
Not a city at all, nor even a town or a village. But interesting as an out of-the way rural coastal place chiefly for its two small public beaches mostly visible at low tide and the unique Dennis's Hideaway rustic seafood restaurant just before you get to the beaches. Not far is the St. David's Primary School.
See St. David's Chapel of Ease.
Southside. At Annie's Bay on Cooper's Island. Not accessible by public transport. A public beach since 1995 after having been a strictly US military beach from 1941 to 1995. It is a 36 acre site actually with two nice public beaches (Clearwater and Turtle beaches). They were not around prior to 1941 and are not natural but man-made, created from landfill used to make the runway at the late US Army Air Corps base. When the USAF took over from the US Army Air Corps in 1948, it was decided in 1952 by the USAF to (a) have a central beach facility closer to Cooper’s Island, in an area far enough away from the runway to meet airfield safety criteria and (b), in September of that year, to give this beach its name, after the famous area in Florida.
Later, a beach house, picnic area and canteen were built here, subsequently joined by an outdoor roller skating rink and dance pavilion. Through the years additional improvements were made by the US military authorities. It became a very popular summer time spot for USAF, later USN people and their families.
Now that is public land again, there are nature trails, playground equipment, and beautiful views.
Cooper's Island, located at the extreme south-east point of Bermuda, used to house the NASA tracking station (see above). The Nature Reserve opened in 2010 as a restored area after much hard work. The entire Island, totaling 77 acres, will take 15 to 20 years before it has all been returned to its original state before settlement. Over the next ten years the plan is to transform it into Bermuda's largest eco-destination and an essential extension to the living museum of the internationally recognized Nonsuch Island Nature Reserve, just off the coast of this island. There has been extensive planting of native and endemic plants. This is one of the best spots in Bermuda for viewing both longtails and cahows coming to roost on Nonsuch Island and other small islands to the south. It is also one of the best habitats for the Bermuda skink. Close by are two once-US military only, now-public beaches, Clearwater Beach (see above) and Turtle Bay (see below). The area at the far end of Cooper's Island is now a traffic-free oasis of quiet wilderness where Bermudians and visitors alike can now go to enjoy peace and tranquility and simply relax or observe nature. The lonely pyramid-shaped mount at one of the remotest points of Cooper's Island once supported a radar tracking station that monitored the progress of spacecraft lifting off from Florida's Cape Canaveral. It was one of the critical parts of the space programme, helping to track everything from the Gemini missions all the way to the space shuttle launches. It was hollow inside. Now there are placards with information on humpback whales and cahows. It's a great place to see humpback whales, which can swim nearby as it is so close to the reef line and the open sea. It is also a perfect spot to view birds such as longtails and cahows. There is now a wildlife watch tower, on the approximate site of historic Fort Pembroke. Earlier, it served as the base of a radar tower when the Cooper's Island NASA Tracking Station was in operation. In addition to Cooper's Island, the tower boasts views of Nonsuch Island and Castle Island Nature Reserves. It allows the public to experience up close the annual migration of the humpback whale, the Bermuda petrel or cahow and the longtail. The area is internationally recognised for its importance to bird species, notably the rare cahow, with the entire world population living within one kilometer of Nonsuch Island. Around half of all longtails that visit Bermuda each year also nest in the area. It is an ongoing project, like Nonsuch Island, although Cooper's Island is five times bigger. There are no vehicles in the area so people can get away from everyday noise and walk and picnic in an area that's totally natural.
Where there were once seven whale houses, one incorporated into Dolly's Bay House. At one time - from 1941 - Dolly's Bay was the officers’ bathing beach of the US Army, US Army Air Corps, USAF and USN from the former US military bases built from 1941. An old notice for transient officers points out that the bay is in "front" of the officers’ club, and notes that "swim suits are available from the club officer." It is not known when the use of Dolly's Bay was discontinued for this purpose.
Named for the fact that many St. David's Islanders have Fox as their surname.
Cooper's Island, once the home of John Grazbury.
Number 71 on your free listing of Bermuda National Parks and Reserves.
Great Head Battery is a purpose-built local military gun emplacement. Restoration work on two 100-year-old breech loaded guns was completed in October 2006. They were constructed in the United Kingdom in 1910 to defend the entrance to the Narrows Channel that leads into St. George’s Harbour. The Battery here was in use until 1957. It was armed with two 9.2-inch and two six-inch breech loading guns. The 9.2-inch guns were the largest guns ever mounted in Bermuda and had a range of seven miles.
During the Second World War the two six-inch guns were one of Bermuda’s only coastal defenses to protect against enemy invasion and as such are an important part of the Island’s heritage. Both the Battery and Park are splendid walking areas for the healthy and stretch for miles but because they have narrow, uneven and sometimes hilly walking paths, are not recommended for anyone with any physical disability.
There is also a Figurehead Memorial - see Royal Gazette photo below - for Bermudians lost at sea. Resident artists were asked by the Ministry of Transport to produced sketches and plans. It is on a wind-swept point at Bermuda’s eastern most edge, as a memorial to those lost at sea. Amongst them were three generations of descendants of Warwick resident Elma (Paynter) Joynes who died when the sea liner bringing her home from North America was torpedoed by a submarine at the height of the Second World War.
Ms Joynes was only 24 when she was amongst hundreds who died after the Canadian liner SS Lady Hawkins was hit in January 1942. Bermudian artist Bill (Mussey) Ming created the memorial in England after salvaging a 100-year-old boat from near a busy motorway road and using it as the basis for his sculpture, which contains nautical items including dividers, a life-belt, paddle, sand timer hourglass and an open book reproducing a section of Allan E. Doughty’s poem “The End of Time.”
The 12-ton structure was inspected by Prince Andrew, Duke of York, in 2005.
Those commemorated include Alan Edness whose death alongside Micah Battersbee at sea during a storm in January 2003 provided the impetus to create a lasting memorial to all those taken by the sea; and Leonard (Sam) Outerbridge who died in 2003 while out on a solo fishing expedition near Castle Island. His boat was found but the 57-year-old has never been seen since he set out on that final fishing trip. Then-Premier Dame Jennifer Smith set up in 2003 the Memorial for Those Lost at Sea Committee to steer the idea.
St. David's Battery Memorial, Royal Gazette photo
Originally Stock's Harbour, a place where the remains of an executed slave and convict were hung on poles at adjacent Stock's Point. It was renamed after British Army members came here by boat to drink. Several died from drinking, found in fishing nets the next day.
Royal Gazette photo
A new $34 million low-cost/affordable housing development of 86 units comprising 2, 3 and 4-bedroom units on Southside. Formally opened in September 2011, most with nice water views. Constructed from four buildings on the former US military base. Each building is named after prominent St David's Islanders; businessman Arthur Pitcher, deputy pilot warden Harold Millett, School principal Hilton C. Richardson and Minister of Evangelism Constance Mello. It is a Bermuda Housing Development Corporation development which specifically wanted to make affordable housing available to Bermudians only - those in a specific income bracket via a lottery process. The unexpected discovery of a 540,000-gallon underground storage tank containing oil and sludge had delayed building work. In February 2012 it was announced that all have been sold out.
2018. May 3. Business owners in St George are joining a team effort in the East End to market new features the town has to offer while also embracing its history. The Hub 1 Steering Committee, which involves multiple organizations in promoting the cultural and visitor attractions of St George’s and St David’s, has garnered significant buy-in from the business community. Kristin White, the Hub 1 tourism manager of St George’s, discussed the importance of each business and their role in telling their own historic story to enhance the unique experiences the town has to offer. “The new generation of people coming along and some of the old ones who are already here are now seeing the town differently,” Ms White said. “We are ushering in an era of celebrating stories in a new way. I think that’s what’s making St George’s and what’s to come really exciting.” Entities such as the Corporation of St George, the Bermuda Tourism Authority and the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation are all involved in making the town more marketable for both visitors and locals. With transportation being identified as a problem in the past for both St George and Dockyard, the Corporation of St George has moved to address the issue. “The Corporation has stepped up by investing in Hunter’s Wharf, by creating a transport hub, which will be a space for multiple ferries, a space to sell tickets for guests, and new initiatives there,” Belcario Thomas, chief experience officer of Beach Boys Ltd, said. The BEDC supports the east, as parts are within the economic empowerment zone with its micro loan programmes, entrepreneurial workshops and business advice. Historic signage and event calendars for visitors will be placed to identify the history of buildings and discover St George’s in a 360-degree view including being able to know what events and entertainment will be in the area. “There is plenty to do in St George’s,” Ms White said. “We have different tours such as my Bicycle Food Tour, where I take a group around St George’s and teach them about the culture and history of the island while sampling different foods. Belcario is doing tours that walk you from the town to Tobacco Bay which gives you history and the beach. Wild Herbs and Plants does a tour as well.” Besides the tours the town has more to offer including new shops, a weekly calendar of events such as daily horseback riding and jet skiing. “The BTA has been really helpful to the destination as well. There are activities for everyone, adventure seekers, active families, and the luxury market. St George’s can meet all the demands,” Mr Thomas said. Facilities have been upgraded at Clearwater Beach, where there is now wi-fi availability, improved restrooms and a gift shop. When asked what makes St George’s different, Ms White said: “St George’s is both a huge residential and visitor area. Tourists say we don’t want to go where the visitors go, we want to go where you go. People who drive the industry live and work at their business in the town. The owners are very involved within their shops and restaurants. It’s a different energy. You don’t find that in other places.” Mr Thomas added the area was fertile ground for start-ups. “St George’s is a great place to kick-start people’s hobbies and turn them into a business,” he said. “We want more residents here in St George’s. You don’t have to have all the answers, you can come live here and have a hobby that you can turn into a business.” The friendly nature and support of the St George’s community is evident and they would love to see more locals enjoy the experience as well as tourists. “You can ‘staycation’ on island if going away is not within your budget. It is a good getaway,” Mr Thomas said. Ms White added: “The amount of places down here you can go — I think people are not seeing the full potential of St George’s.”
|Bremen||Number 68 on the list of Bermuda National Parks and Reserves. 0.25 acre, east of Smith's Island, St. George's Harbor.|
|Brook's||0.85 acre, north of St. David's Island, St. George's Harbor.|
|Burt's||North of St. David's Island, St. George's Harbor.|
|Cooper's||77.5 acres, south east of St. David's. Historically significant. Now joined (since 1941) to and part of St. David's Island in St. George's Parish. So-called after a William Cooper from London, one of the original colonists in 1609. In 1612 it was claimed by Christopher Carter in payment for his share of ambergris forfeited to the Bermuda Company. He spent years there digging in vain for what he thought was buried treasure. In 1614, Governor Moore had built the Pembroke Fort at the south eastern end. It had two cannons mounted on it. The fort was destroyed by US forces building Fort Bell from scratch and in the process destroying many Bermuda islands for the war effort, during World War II. Then, both all of Cooper's Island and much of St. David's Island were taken over by the US Army at Fort Bell which created a road linking this island with St. David's Island. In 1945 Fort Bell was replaced initially by the United States Army Air Force, later the United States Air Force. As Kindley Air Force Base, the lovely Cooper's Island beaches were a hugely popular attraction exclusively for USAF personnel. In 1960 part of Cooper's Island was occupied by a purpose-built NASA space tracking station to gather tracking and scientific data from all its spacecraft, satellites and planetary probes. Personnel from NASA used the beaches. In 1970, the USAF was replaced by a USA Naval Air Station but the NASA tracking station continued. In 1995, the US bases left, NASA also left and the superb once-exclusive to US Forces beaches became public. Afterwards, Bermuda's weather radar system was located on Cooper’s Island. Now the area is a lovely nature and wildlife reserve.|
|Goat (2)||Off Cooper's Island, near Nonsuch Island, southeast of St. David's Island, St. George's Parish.|
|Governor's||Number 68 on the list of Bermuda National Parks and Reserves. 1 acre, St. George's Harbor, near St. David's Island, between Peggy's Island and Paget Island. Its old ruined fort was once the dominant feature. It was named for Governor Moore who in 1612 to 1613 began the fort as a way to command the vulnerable but then strategically important channel nearby. By the time Moore's term ended, 11 guns were in the fort. One of the publicly inaccessible forts but historically important.|
|Grasbury's||0.75 acre, southeast of Annie's Bay off Cooper's Island, Castle Harbor.|
|Little Oswego||0.73 acre, east of Oswego (Great), off St. David's.|
|Little Scaur||Between Grazbury's and Long Rock, south of Annie's Bay, St. David's.|
originally Nonesuch Island, of 14.5 acres, is in Castle Harbour, west of
Cooper's Island, south of St. David's. An old English name, given by
first settlers, after a former Royal palace in Surry, England. It has
small, pristine, untouched beaches and a fresh-water marsh. Bermuda
Government-owned and approachable only by sea, specific permission from
the Bermuda Government agency involved is needed to visit, primarily for
educational environmental purposes. Its trees are mostly Olivewood,
Palm, Bermuda Cedar and casuarina. Its main occupants are the cahow bird
(but no nests), butterflies, skinks, silk spiders and the longtail bird. It
was privately owned from 1700 to 1860 and variously used as a grazing
land once for deer then other animals. When it was acquired by the
Bermuda Government in 1865 it served as a mostly or exclusively
civilian-built yellow fever quarantine station, ships' quarantine
station and hospital, for yellow fever, cholera and smallpox victims,
with a dock and various buildings including a mortuary and cemetery on
the eastern side of the islander. It continued as the quarantine station
for quite some time, officially until 1905 but unofficially for longer
as shown below in 1922.
In September, 1922 - as told by the late Bermuda-based author and nun Sister Jean de Chantal Kennedy - the Royal Mail steam packet ship Chignecte sailed towards Hamilton with six Sisters and Mother Fidelis aboard, all of whom were intending to take up teaching duties at Bermuda's Roman Catholic school of Mount St. A. Agnes Academy in Hamilton. Two days into the trip two of the seamen came down with a rash and therefore could not proceed into the port of Hamilton but had had to run up the yellow flag and await the medical officer. He diagnosed the sailors’ ailment as small pox and although the ship’s doctor disagreed the passengers were ordered into quarantine. Parents and their children were brought to Coney Island for quarantine where the conveniences were far better, but twenty-one other passengers, including the Sisters, were required to endure hardships of many kinds at Nonsuch Island. Because Nonsuch Island had been abandoned seven years earlier the weary passengers arrived to see empty, deteriorating buildings, small and inadequate, the dreary graves of former victims of the disease and the keeper’s cottage on this desolate rock. There was not even a tree except by the morgue. Fortunately for them, Dorothy Tucker, a trained nurse, whose mother was on the ship, accompanied Doctor Percy Shelley to Nonsuch Island where she believed her mother to be. However, her mother actually was quarantined on Coney Island but Dorothy had to now stay at Nonsuch Island because of her exposure to the sick. Doctor Shelley visited the island daily and found no signs of smallpox among his patients but nevertheless, he assigned two of the Sisters to take the temperature of all the patients once a day. These infirmarians were Sister Lucia and Sister Theophane. Supplies came regularly from the mainland and Dorothy assisted by two of the Sisters prepared meals and washed the dishes. As if the crowded, cramped quarters, lack of sufficient fresh water and the monotonous daily existence were not enough, a hurricane struck but the shark oil’s turmoil caused preparations to be made and by the time the hurricane struck all had been secured. They sought what shelter they could get in the corners and closets and awaited the dawn. With the lulling of the storm, a temporary canvas covering was put over the roof and held down by blocks of stone, and life resumed its even tenor – for a while. On the Sunday after the hurricane Mother Fidelis asked Sister Marie Louise and Sister Rita Vincent to play their mandolins for recreation. Before long the other passengers were making their way nearer to the sounds of music and Mother invited them to join the Sisters and soon all were together around the cottage balcony. Some asked for their favorite hymns and be- fore the recital was over most of the familiar hymns, both Catholic and Protestant, had been played. When the time of their exile was about to come to a close, a further three weeks were added to the quarantine because a young man coming to teach at a boys’ school was discovered with the rash. Mother Fidelis, an accomplished artist who had her water colors and art paper with her, decorated one of the plain paper napkins with which they were provided, painting wild roses around the border and printing in gold ink the names of the passengers to celebrate Dorothy Tucker’s birthday. Mother Fidelis also painted a greeting card with the following words: “A heartfelt wish for Dorothy, who, imitating her patron saint showered on the quarantine exiles the roses of kindness, thoughtfulness and self sacrifice. God bless you, Dorothy. God keep you. God love you and give you many happy returns of your birthday. The Nonsuch Exiles." Mother Fidelis evidently had her own ideas about the particular manner in which God was to bless Dorothy before the recurrence of her birthday. She thought she saw - and very much approved of-a budding romance between Dorothy and the Doctor. Dorothy had confided to Mother that she was engaged to marry a man in the army but Mother dismissed the military man without even a thought. She had picked Doctor Shelley and apparently Dorothy agreed for they were engaged by Christmas and married at Easter. Community annals tell us that Dorothy cherished the paper napkin and card given her on that memorable day. Finally the days of isolation drew to a close and the Quarantined sailed into Hamilton Harbor in early October 1922 and the Sisters prepared for the delayed opening of their school.
From 1928-1931 the island was on loan to the New York Zoological Society as a marine research station. It was was occupied by Dr. William Beebe and Dr. John Tee Van and it was from this base that the historic deep descents by the famous bathysphere were organized and accomplished by Dr. William Beebe and staff. They used the island and - once they were disinfected lest any traces of the diseases were still present - its buildings for their deep water diving experiments. An Admiralty water barge, a surplus-to-requirements former Royal Navy pinnace earlier sunk was re-floated, moved to the island and was again sunk, this time near the north shore to serve as a breakwater and for fish-holding tanks. It became known as the Sea Fern. When they left, the island then became a British-type Borstal - a junior training school for delinquent boys, after which it was abandoned for 12 years. During World War 2 the island, then completely uninhabited, was rendered even less accessible with the building on islands nearby from massive Castle Harbour dredging entirely at US taxpayers expense of what was first the US Army's Fort Bell, than the USAAF then USAF then US Naval Air Station base (that lasted until 1995). After that base was built but before the end of that War, the island is believed to have been silently - with no publicity - and infrequently used as a graveyard for a small number of non-British, including German, seamen killed from ships sunk by German submarines in the Battle of the Atlantic and brought to Bermuda for burial, but with limited space left on the mainland for enemy corpses.
In 1951, it was the site of the rediscovery of the endemic Bermuda petrel or cahow (Pterodroma cahow) once common on the island when it and other islands nearby were discovered in 1609 when British colonists first arrived, but disappeared from being eaten by colonists. It was thought to have been extinct for over 300 years. The entire island was acquired by the Bermuda Government in 1964, as part of its nature reserve, bird and wildlife system, through funds donated by the New York Zoological Society. The Cahow project was begun here by Dr. David Wingate (he retired in 2000 as Government Conservation Officer after an amazing career, having devoted his entire working life to conservation generally and the re discovery in particular of the cahow), thanks mostly to him, which created world headlines. His wife Anita, also a conservationist, died in the effort and is buried on the island. Now the Nonsuch Island Nature Reserve is a living museum, a re-creation of Bermuda's native flora and fauna, of huge ecological importance. Limited escorted field trips, for special-interest groups only, began in 2000, from the-then named Bermuda Biological Station for Research (BBSR) for $75 per person. There is also a week-long Nonsuch Island Natural History Camp every year (usually in June) for local high school students, at the nature reserve. Students camp out under the stars, sleep on lilos or camp beds, bathe with solar showers or cold water from a bucket. The camp, offers students aged 15 to 18 a unique opportunity for hands-on learning about natural history from local experts. Students are based on Nonsuch Island and learn about Bermuda’s terrestrial and marine environments with field trips to a wide range of habitats. The camp is run by Bermuda Audubon Society and Bermuda Zoological Society with the support of the Department of the Environment and Natural Resources, which allows use of Nonsuch Island as the camp base. Visitors can access the island’s surrounding waters by kayak and by snorkeling. The shipwreck on the north edge of the island is one of the only shipwrecks accessible to snorkelers rather than scuba divers, and interesting to explore. Snorkelers can free dive through openings the ship’s hull and find an impressive range of reef fish.
|Oswego||Also known as Great, 2.5 acres, St. George's Harbor.|
|Peggy's||Off Smith's, St. George's Harbor. Number 65 on the list of Bermuda National Parks and Reserves.|
|Pudding||Small and barren. South of Stocks Harbor and west of St. David's. Its position saved it from destruction when the USA military bases were built from 1941. This was when it once again got the unofficial name of " Grog Island" - from the fact that a lot of drinking went on here, as it used to 300 years earlier.|
|Smith's||61 acres, in St. George's Harbor, St. George's Parish. Named for Sir Thomas Smith or Smythe, the first Governor of what later became the Somers Isles Company, an office he still held at the time of his death in 1625. He was an empire builder of immense energy and ability. The island is historically very significant, Bermuda's first settlement. It was here that Carter, Chard and Waters, who got the reputation of being the three "Kings of Bermuda" from 1610 to 1612, settled when they were the first accidental permanent colonists in Bermuda. They built cabins of palmetto, planted beans, watermelons, tobacco, maize, fished of the coast, hunted wild hogs, salted bacon and fish they caught and even made a fresh water catch. When the Plough arrived from England on July 11, 1612 with the first party of planned colonists, it went first to St. David's to discharge them then went two days later to an anchorage on the south shore of Smith's Island. Carter, Chard and Waters proudly displayed to Governor Richard Moore the varieties of garden produce they had grown. Moore was delighted because the Somers Isles Company in London had supplied him with 81 varieties of seed to try in Bermuda. Many of the first crops Virginia and the later American colonies had ever seen were planted on Smith's Island. It was the original home in Bermuda of the first planned settlers and they even made rock ovens for their food from the local limestone until they moved to St. George's Island and the Town of St. George in the summer and autumn of 1612. Twenty three acres on the western one third of the island are now a recreational area for Bermuda youth, owned jointly by the Bermuda Government and the Bermuda National Trust. It comes under the National Parks Act 1986. The Bermuda National Trust bought the acreage for $850,000 and the Bermuda Government paid the Trust $200,000 for a 23.5 percent share in the acreage. Thanks to local residents Mr. and Mrs. Robert Basist, the Trust was able to reforest certain areas it owns of the island with cedar trees.|
|Whaler's||Near Smith's Island, St. George's Harbor.|
Named after a freed slave by that name who lived nearby.
A Bermuda National Park. Named after Captain Field E. Kindley, US Army Air Force, after whom this road, the former US Kindley Air Force Base in Bermuda - see Former US military bases in Bermuda - and more landmarks are named. Number 53 on your free listing of Bermuda National Parks and Reserves. This is to the east and north of the airport with marine views of Ferry Reach.
Southside. Phone 293-5791. Named after Captain Field E. Kindley, US Army Air Force, after whom this road, the former US Kindley Air Force Base in Bermuda - see Former US military bases in Bermuda - and more landmarks are named. At the former Officers' Club at the former Kindley AFB/USNAS military base, now civilianized. There are 4 asphalt courts, fees. Tennis attire is mandatory.
Built on the site of the old US Hospital
Southside. Opened April 2009. On site of former US Military Hospital. So-named after St. David's surnames of two prominent local families. With treatment rooms, a lab and radiography, pharmacy, nurses station, reception area, staff lounge, information technology room and ambulance station. Normally 9 am to 5 pm daily. On the former US baseland at Southside on land leased to the Bermuda Hospitals Board by the Bermuda Land Development Corporation. Offers offer close-to-home care for people who have minor accidents or sudden illnesses in the East of Bermuda. Patients with major medical and surgical emergencies will still need to attend the Emergency Department at King Edward VII Memorial Hospital because of the far greater array of support services that will continue to be offered there. Managed by the Bermuda Hospitals Board to ensure it dovetails into the Island’s overall emergency service. Basic diagnostic equipment (such as ultrasound and x-ray), pharmacy and laboratory (blood test) services are provided. It will also serve as a 'disaster centre' in the event of a natural catastrophe or air crash at the Bermuda International Airport close by. In that scenario, three to four disaster recovery tents for emergency medical procedures will be set up in the car park in the event of a disaster situation such as hurricane or an airport crash at or near the airport. The facility is staffed by up to five full-time medical staff and three ancillary staff, providing outpatient emergency care plus triage for patients on their way to King Edward VII Memorial Hospital. Ambulances access the centre from Southside Road, with all other vehicles entering off Hall Street.
2019. January 4. X-ray service has resumed at an East End hospital, it was announced this afternoon. The Bermuda Hospitals Board said that the service had resumed after repairs had been completed to equipment at the Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre in St David’s. Members of the public had been directed to the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital during the closure.
2016. October 19. St George’s South MP Suzann Roberts-Holshouser is encouraging medical professionals to take advantage of “a golden opportunity” in the East End. It comes after the Bermuda Hospitals Board announced that it was seeking ideas about how to optimize the “underutilised” Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre and improve community health. According to Ms Roberts-Holshouser, the facility would be an ideal business location that could help fill healthcare gaps in St David’s and St George’s. However, Lovitta Foggo, the Progressive Labour Party MP for St David’s, said that while she was keeping an open mind about the development, any attempt to reduce “what little services” the facility still offers would be met with opposition. Ms Roberts-Holshouser said: “I would certainly encourage anyone within the medical industry to take a serious look at the opportunity that is now being offered to them of having maybe a secondary location or perhaps their one and only location. I think it’s a golden opportunity. St David’s will continue to always grow. It’s not stagnant whatsoever and its an ideal location for a business to establish itself.” She added: “Clearly we need to keep the clinic open, that is not even a question.” She said this is directly based on the needs and wishes of the St David’s and St George’s communities. But she also stressed the need to “utilise to our best ability what we have”. Ms Roberts-Holshouser suggested that a dialysis unit in the East End would be “extremely beneficial”. She added: “While one would use it on a regular basis, it’s also there in case of an emergency. I do know that there are individuals in St David’s that would love to have an opportunity to have their dialysis at the clinic. If we are shut off for any unknown reason, it just means that there is one more safeguard, one more thing we don’t have to think about.” A presence by asthma charity Open Airways could also be beneficial, she said, as well as a private pharmacy. “Although there is a pharmacy in St George’s, the pharmacy that we had at White and Sons was, as far as I am aware, well utilised.” The BHB announced on Monday that it had started a request for information process to improve the UCC’s use. The facility had been earmarked for closure in 2013, with BHB stating at the time that it was servicing only a small handful of patients and losing money every year. About 100 protesters marched on the House of Assembly in a bid to save the centre, and the Government ordered the BHB to keep the facility open for the next six months while an arrangement for an alternative facility were worked out. However, in November 2014, Michael Dunkley, the Premier, indicated in Parliament that it would remain running for at least another year. Scott Pearman, the chief operating officer at King Edward VII Memorial Hospital, this week described the facility as “a prime yet under-utilized healthcare facility”. “There is a clear opportunity for primary care, specialist physicians or allied health providers to make recommendations that would add value and improve the health and well-being of the East End and the community in general.” Mr Pearman said that making the facility’s spare capacity available to entrepreneurs would increase “the productivity of existing healthcare resources”. And he added that the RFI process would help BHB develop an effective and focused request for proposal because it will have a much clearer idea of potential market solutions. The BHB also stated that it was committed to maintaining the present remit of the UCC, including the out-of-hours urgent care service, the opening of the facility when the Causeway is closed, and the use of the facility in the event of a disaster in the East End or at the airport. And while it is open to all responses and ideas, provided they are consistent with its corporate strategic plan and healthcare mandate, the BHB will not consider proposals that compromise the existing standard of out-of-hours services available to residents. Ms Foggo told this newspaper that she would be “watching carefully” how the situation unfolds, with some members in her community having already raised concerns that they would lose “what little services” the facility still offers. “At this point in time, we are standing back and observing with a watchful eye, with hopes that whatever develops is going to be a win-win situation both for the community of St David’s and for the BHB. We’re hoping that at the very least, the urgent care centre can return to operating from 8am to midnight as it used to do. But anything that will look towards reduction in services provided to the public by the urgent care facility will be met with opposition.” The RFI document can be obtained from Anthony Hunter, director of commercial procurement, by e-mailing Anthony.Hunter@bhb.bm by October 21. The closing date for respondents is November 1.
2013. November 22. Government overruled a decision by hospital bosses to shut down the Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre, saying the facility will now remain open until an acceptable and financially viable alternative arrangement is in place. Health Minister Patricia Gordon-Pamplin said Government decided to step in following a public outcry over the controversial closure, which was announced by the Bermuda Hospitals Board at the end of last month. Yesterday Mrs Gordon-Pamplin said Government had initially endorsed that decision because data suggested the facility was being used for non-urgent patients who could be treated elsewhere more cheaply. "The clinic has been operating at a loss since it opened four years ago. With our commitment and mandate to reduce the cost of healthcare, there was not much option but to support that line of reasoning. With that said, having seen the public outcry and recognizing how important it is to them to have something available then I am not afraid to admit if I have to have a rethink in response to what people are demanding. That is what we do as a Government. The Government's primary mission and priority is to ensure the safety and security of the people of Bermuda. Integral to this mission is the need to make sure our healthcare system provides everyone with access to good quality care. The decision by the Bermuda Hospitals Board to close the Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre on November 29 challenges the tenets of this mission. And the public outcry that has followed in its wake reflects it. It also reflects the very difficult challenge we face as a community between meeting peoples' healthcare needs while doing so in ways that are financially sustainable. My colleagues and I have paid very close attention to what people have been saying about the planned closure of the clinic. We have listened to their concerns. We recognize their needs and we understand their fears particularly as they relate to the needs of the east end in the event of a natural disaster that cuts off access to medical and hospital-based resources." Flanked by Premier Craig Cannonier and the Governments three east end MPs Kenneth Bascome, Nandi Outerbridge and Suzann Holshouser Ms Gordon-Pamplin added: "As a result, and in consultation with my colleagues, I have directed the Bermuda Hospitals Board to keep the Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre open until an alternative plan is worked out that meets the needs of the people of the east end. An alternative facility could be in operation within six months. I want the people of the east end to rest assured that the facility will continue to be there for them until an acceptable and financially viable alternative arrangement is in place that meets their needs. We are going to make this situation work. "Earlier this month, Mrs Gordon-Pamplin said Government will continue to evaluate any recommendation put forward by the BHB and its Executive team to ensure that the health needs of our entire community are well served on an equitable and sustainable basis. But at yesterday's press conference, Premier Cannonier insisted that closure without alternative options, is not an option. "This Government has made a pledge to this country to leave no one behind and that means everyone, including the people of St David's, who have traditionally been left behind, he said. As you know, I'm from St David's and I grew up in St David's. I know what it feels like to be forgotten. Well today, your Government is here to restore that hope. I've said it before and you'll continue to hear me say it and demonstrate it we are all in this boat together we are all our brother's keeper. As we have taken a look at this particular situation I, without conscience, could not allow closure of the clinic without options. There will be no closure of the clinic without alternative options." Dismissing claims by the Opposition Progressive Labour Party that the clinic had made a profit last year, Mrs Gordon-Pamplin confirmed that the BHB will now be forced to operate the facility at a loss until an alternative can be found. Last night a BHB spokesman said the initial decision to shut down the clinic had been difficult, but that the Board was now working to meet the directive to keep the facility running. "The BHB made its decision to close in an effort to better manage the costs of BHB as we face grave financial difficulties. Keeping the urgent care service running will add more pressure, both financial and with regards to resources, as staff had been informed and arrangements entered into to implement the closure. We will work to meet the directive, however, and will continue to seek more efficient ways to continue the service." Shadow Health Minister Zane DeSilva said that the reversal was good news but expressed disappointment that it was only for six months. And last night Deputy Opposition leader Derrick Burgess confirmed that a planned protest march on Parliament today was still going ahead. "The people have spoken, the Premier has responded but the people have only won a temporary opportunity to keep Lamb Foggo open. The protest is set to continue in recognition that a permanent solution be found. The people of the east end deserve to be heard and when they march at noon to present their petition and push for a permanent solution, we believe that the OBA will be convinced of the need to keep this urgent care centre open permanently."
1913. November 5. East End residents were left in the cold by Governments failure to speak out over the closure of the Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre, the Opposition has charged. The Bermuda Hospitals Board announced last week that the centre will shut by the end of the month due to the high cost of running the facility and low usage. St David's MP Lovitta Foggo yesterday challenged One Bermuda Alliance MPs for the East End, Kenny Bascome, Nandi Davis, and Suzann Roberts-Holshouser, to speak up for the community over the closure. She claimed that, while the East End had provided the margin of victory for the One Bermuda Alliances Election campaign, the OBA had turned its back on the community. The Progressive Labour Party MP added that the OBA had last year promised to move more Government services to Southside, as well as accusing the PLP of neglecting the East. Saying the OBA had made petty promises before the election in a bid to win votes, she called on OBA MPs to stand up for the residents of the East End. She also said the closure had been undertaken with no explanation, consultation or consideration of any alternatives for residents. She said: "Bermudians deserve better. They deserve a Premier that wont turn his back on his community. They deserve better than Members of Parliament who can pose for photo-ops but are silent when the urgent care centre is taken from their constituents." Mrs Roberts-Holshouser, MP for St Georges West, last night said that as a St David's resident she and her family had used the Centre on a few occasions. "The convenience of having the clinic at our doorstep and not having to wait to be helped has certainly been a luxury and indeed I am saddened to have learned of the necessity of the Bermuda Hospitals Board to close the facility. But it is important to establish that such a matter as healthcare is not to be undermined by making political hay, but should lead us into further consultation and an action plan as how to best facilitate the needs of the community moving forward. I'm encouraged that the BHB said there was still an opportunity for the building to be used as a medical facility. The closure could provide an opportunity for a new private medical practice. As suggested in the recent press statement The Bermuda Hospitals Board will support Government in seeking solutions that best meet the country's needs, and as one of the Members of Parliament in the area, I look forward to working on an initiative with my fellow colleagues to see how we can make the best of this situation." Mr Bascome who represents St Georges North meanwhile said he had arranged to meet with Mr Brewin regarding the closure and would refrain from commenting until he had all the facts.
Mentioned on the listing of Bermuda National Parks and Reserves.
See new name of Ship's Wharf.
See details below
2018. November 6. American space agency Nasa opened its new tracking station yesterday. The station, on Cooper’s Island in St David’s, will be used to monitor Nasa space missions as a predecessor did from the same site in the 1960s, when rockets from Cape Canaveral in Florida were tracked by radar from the island. Constance Dierman, the US Consul General, said: “Now, as then, Bermuda is helping make possible new advances in space flight and in advancing science, engineering, technology and maths education objectives. We are delighted they are here to recognize and further our important US-Bermuda relationship,” The ribbon-cutting ceremony was watched by Walter Roban, the Deputy Premier, Sir John Swan, a former UBP premier, as well as representatives of Nasa. These included Sam Scimemi, the director of Nasa’s international space station, Bill Wrobel, director of the Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. Mr Scimemi and Mr Wrobel will take part in a series of events organized by the US Consulate to highlight Nasa’s contribution to space exploration, science technology and aeronautics to schools and other groups, Other Nasa officials will speak to civic leaders on how the station will support the agency’s work.
2012. March 7. NASA Signs Agreement With Bermuda For Tracking Station. NASA and the government of Bermuda signed an agreement today to establish a temporary mobile tracking station on Cooper's Island to support launches from the agency's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia including future commercial missions. Deputy Premier and Transport Minister Derrick Burgess and NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver signed the agreement. The mobile tracking station will be provided and operated by Wallops under NASA's Research Range Services Program. The station can provide telemetry, meteorological, optical, and command and control services. It will support the launch of commercial rockets carrying supplies to the International Space Station or satellites to low-Earth orbit. "This tracking station will help facilitate NASA's partnership with commercial companies and support operations aboard the International Space Station," Garver said. "We're grateful to the government of Bermuda for its ongoing support to NASA." Bermuda has been a long-time partner of NASA in supporting space exploration. The British territory hosted a radar tracking station from the Mercury Project in the early 1960s through most of the Space Shuttle Program. For more information on NASA's Commercial Orbital Transportation Services, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/offices/c3po/home/cots_project.html.
Earlier in 2012, the Bermuda Government signed a four-year agreement allowing NASA to use the land. It was announced in March 2012 that missions to the international space station by the US will be monitored by a new NASA tracking station in Bermuda. The US and Bermuda governments signed a four-year agreement for the temporary mobile station to be sited at Cooper’s Island Nature Reserve. NASA deputy administrator Lori Garver said the Island was geographically in the “perfect spot” for tracking launches from the Wallops Flight Facility and the agreement could be extended. She said the mobile tracking unit was expected to be used two to four times a year by NASA personnel, with the first mission expected in the summer. A “handful” of local jobs for maintaining the facility will be created. The station would have a small footprint and the site would be restored to its original condition after NASA’s departure. There is an educational component to the agreement between the two governments, which would link NASA tracking experts with local schools interested in the agency’s scientific activities here. The mobile system can be used not only to support supply missions to the International Space Station, but also launch satellites to low-Earth orbits. During launches, a team of ten personnel travel to Bermuda to configure the mobile tracking system, conduct the operation, and then pack the systems to be returned to Wallops. NASA’s second-in-command Lori Garver said that the agency was working with private partners in US industry to send launch vehicles to the International Space Centre to help with supplies and logistics. Steven Kremer, NASA Wallops deputy range manager, explained: “Owning, deploying, and controlling our own assets means control over scheduling. “It gives us higher confidence in promising range availability to our customers when they come to Wallops for services. In addition, our services offered from Bermuda will benefit other customers who launch from other ranges such as the United States Air Force’s Eastern Range in Florida.”
ESA Bermuda under construction, Royal Gazette photo
2011. October. An European Space Agency (ESA) station was set up there to monitor the launch of a Soyuz rocket, set off on December 16. 2011, from Kourou in French Guiana, near Cayenne. Bermuda's Ministry of Environment, Planning and Infrastructure confirmed the local ESA tracking station will receive and send on telemetry data from the rocket once it loses contact with Kourou, and before it makes contact with another tracking station in Canada. Four ESA staff posted to the Island were given immunity from suit and legal process - the the same legal immunities as diplomatic consuls, according to Government. Bermuda granted the immunities under the Consular Relations Act of 1971 after the ESA has requested that Bermuda allow them to set up their Transportable Station on the Island and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), as required, consented to Bermuda making bilateral agreements with them on their requested mission project. France’s four space centres around the world monitor the launch and tracking of the rocket. The Bermuda station at Cooper’s Island consists of a 4.5 meter parabolic antenna, its transport container and a technical shelter to store operational electronic equipment, including a no-break power system, and a power shelter housing two generators and a fuel tank. It resulted from the spring 2011 agreement between the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Government of Bermuda which authorized ESA to establish and operate a transportable and temporary station on Cooper's Island to track and receive telemetry data for ESA launch vehicles. As a result, Bermuda played a key role in tracking a rocket launch to put six satellites in orbit around the Earth. The French space agency Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES) implemented this agreement on behalf of ESA. “Bermuda is an ideal location to track ESA launch vehicles heading north after lift-off,” explained Michel Starozinski, New Stations Project Manager at CNES. “We always need a downrange tracking station after the loss of the signal by the Kourou station in Guiana, which occurs about 1,800km away from the launch pad. When we launch to the North what is the only island after the West Indies between South and North America? Bermuda!” The launch was successful because its goal to place six satellites in orbit at the correct locations, pointing the correct directions and at the correct times, was reached. Several stations are used to receive, process and transmit in real time the telemetry data sent by the launcher (or ‘rocket’) to the Control Centre in Guiana. Telemetry data provides information on the rocket’s trajectory, including its position, velocity and acceleration, and its performance parameters in particular pressure, temperature, voltage, currents and flight control computer data, as well as main events such as separations of stages and satellites, ignitions and shutdowns of the engines. Bermuda was one of the ‘main stations’ during this launch as it was from there that technicians saw the first ignition of the upper stage of the launcher (Fregat) after its separation and the entire boost of the engine until its shutdown about four minutes later. The Cooper’s Island station tracked the launcher during this first pass from the South West on the horizon, about nine minutes after the launch, to the North East at the level of the St David's Lighthouse. About 90 minutes later, the station tracked the launcher for a second pass from the South East to the North East. Other stations used for this launch were Kourou in French Guiana, Lucknow in India, Jeju in South Korea, Perth in Australia and Saskatoon in Canada.
Between 1961 and 1997, Coopers Island housed a NASA tracking station as part of its Manned Space Flight Network. During that period, the station tracked every manned NASA space flight including those used during Project Mercury, the first US manned space flight project, and the Apollo Mission to the moon in 1969. Use of the station ended due to technological improvements in space tracking systems. In 2008, NASA Wallops briefly returned to the station for tracking purposes, and last year the European Space Agency established a temporary station on Cooper’s Island as part of an agreement to track missions from Europe’s spaceport in French Guiana.
Old NASA Station in Bermuda
Right photo shows the antennas facility of the Town Hill, Flatts, Smith's Parish unit, 6 miles away, of the NASA station at Cooper's Island built in 1960
1941-1945. Use of what later became the NASA station was part of the US Army's then USAAF's then USAF's then the USA's USNAS military strategy in Bermuda. Robustly constructed buildings, totaling approximately 32,000 sq ft, plus several three-storey radar mounts and three ammunition bunkers were created. From 1941 until 1995 all of Cooper's Island was included in initially the US Army base here in St. David's, initially Fort Bell, which from 1944 became occupied by the USAAF, then USAF and finally USAF before closure in 1995. See US Forces in Bermuda 1941-1995 and related websites on who was stationed there.
After Victoria Hayward (1876-1958). As an adult, she lived abroad as a writer and wrote the text for Romantic Canada, a travel book illustrated by photographer Edna Watson. But she kept her Bermuda property in Emily's Bay Lane.
At Southside, created in 2005. For motor cyclists, scooters and more. Its annual season ends on October 31.
|Black Horse Tavern, Restaurant & Bar||Phone 293-9742. 101 St. David's Road, DD 01. Lunch or dinner. $$$$|
For others in Bermuda, see Restaurants
See "Great Head Battery."
A local landmark on a local bus route. It was built specifically for St. David's Islanders who were then much more geographically remote from Bermuda than they are today. In 1848 the Chapel of Ease church was established at St. David's, governed by St. Peter's in St. George's. It was built to replace Mission House, a private house originally Mount Airy bought by Bishop Spencer and used as a place of worship, dwelling house and Sunday School. It was the last Anglican church built from scratch in Bermuda. In 1949 it was consecrated by Bishop Feild The bishop and other clergy were rowed from St. George's across the harbour to Church Wharf by the rector's four sons. The annual Blessing of Boats dates from this locale and consecration. Added to with the church tower in 1957. Has its own graveyard (as shown in part of the Royal Gazette photo below). In a tranquil setting on a hilltop above a small hidden cove. Lots of St. David's Islanders are buried here, the only place for them to do so irrespective of the religious affiliation of most.
A tradition dating back to 1849, it's Blessing of Boats takes place at the Chapel of Ease dock in St George’s Harbour. In June 2016 The Right Rev Nicholas Dill, Bishop of Bermuda, and the Rev David Raths conducted the blessing after being rowed respectively by the Bermuda Pilot Gig Club in Harry Fox, and by members of the St George’s-based TS Admiral Somers Sea Cadets in Lady Stockton. Parliamentarian Suzann Roberts-Holshouser helped to conduct the service, along with Demi Wight, Dylan Holshouser and Henry Hayward, while music was provided by members of the St George’s Corps of the Salvation Army. The event dates back to the consecration of the Chapel of Ease. With no bridge connecting St George to St David’s, four sons of clergymen volunteered to row the bishop across the harbour. As he passed through, the bishop blessed the boats that had gathered to watch. The tradition is now carried out every year, usually accompanied by a codfish breakfast. Visiting boats are invited to take part in the event, but are asked to first collect a flag from the Visitors Information Centre in St George’s. Each boat in attendance is blessed and receives a Certificate of Blessing saying, “Bless o lord this vessel and all who sail in her; may she be a trustworthy and safe servant.”
St. David's Chapel of Ease (Royal Gazette photo)
Carter House, Southside Avenue, Southside, St. David's. Phone (441) 293-5960. Fax (441) 297-0329. Open April to October on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays 10 am-4 pm and 2nd Sunday each month 12 noon to 4 pm. Admission charge. Registered charity 506. Located in Bermuda's oldest house. Its main purpose is to preserve the once-unique culture and history of this separate island in the Bermuda archipelago, which included farming, piloting whaling and close association many St. David's Islanders still have with with American Native Indians.
An organization of St. David's Islanders claiming descendents from Pequot and other American Indian tribes. It aims to promote Bermuda's Native American connections. There is a bi-annual St. David's Island Indian Festival with the first one held in 2002 and the most recent Bermuda Powwow on June 9 and 10 from 2pm to 6pm on the St David’s Cricket Club grounds in St David’s. Admission was $10 for adults and $5 for children and seniors. It includes native Americans from the Naragansett, Wampanoag, Mashantucket Pequots, Cherokee and other tribes. Some St. David's Islanders claim descent from these tribes. They are descendants of Native American Indians who were brought to Bermuda as slaves in the mid and late 1600s and early 1700s and later settled in St. David's. They were often captives from various wars fought between Europeans and Native Americans. Many Bermudians today are descended from these people. In recent years some Bermudians with such heritage have been reconnecting with people from tribes in New England. They have attended pow wows in the United States, and held several pow-wows in Bermuda. In late 2007 a high-ranking delegation from the Mashentucket Pequot Tribal Nation made a lightning visit to Bermuda, with a short tour of St. George's and St. David's, including a visit to the slave graves.
The organization's mission is to teach interested people about Native American ancestry. It often speaks at schools about it, with a talk and show them one dance. They are always well received. In January 2012 they created a new blanket, traditionally used by Native Americans to keep warm in cold climates, to raise funds for the group. It was designed by Kevin Watson, a chef, graphic artist and a trustee of the group. It replaced an old blanket. The new one is made in Montana. The colors, blue and white, represent the colors of tribes of the northeast, and of St David’s. It includes designs of Bermuda rockfish, turtles and suck-rocks (a marine mollusc, chiton tuberculatus) all items used once by St David’s Islanders for food, plus the Bermuda Longtail. The clasped hands in the logo represent Bermuda's reconnection with relatives in New England after 300 plus years. Trees shown are the Bermuda cedar and the Bermuda palmetto. Each corner of the blanket has a cahow. The blanket sells for $75. To place an order telephone 541-7777.
St. David's Islanders and Native Community Blanket, Royal Gazette photo
Lighthouse Road at Mount Hill, St. David's Island, St. George's Parish. Phone (441) 297-4481. For further details on access contact the Bermuda Government's Department of Marine and Ports, or Bermuda's Ministry of the Environment.
Overlooking the South Shore, this famous 131+ years old lighthouse, completed in November 1879, then on nearly seven acres of land in the national interest, is owned by the Bermuda Government.
It was constructed to eliminate luring ships with other kinds of lights to come too close to the reefs and get their bottoms torn out. Local St. David's Islanders were notorious for plundering cargoes. When the lighthouse defeated their illegal activities, they became fishermen and excellent pilots.
A landmark, it is not made of iron but sturdy Bermuda Stone (limestone of a type unique to Bermuda and then commonly used in building construction as a cheap local source of building materials. The structure is 55 high to the lantern. It shows a fixed white light of the second order, about 30,000 candlepower, 208 feet above sea level. Since then it has been warning ships.
It was deliberately constructed inland, on a hill, not on the shore line, to be seen from afar. Since then it has undergone many changes and improvements. Instead of the original kerosene burner of the ordinary wick type it had a hood petroleum burner installed in June 1922. In 1943, during World War 2, Bermuda issued a postage stamp (shown right) depicting the lighthouse.
Well worth a visit, especially if already in the St. George's/St. David's area (to avoid a miles-long detour). With an interesting historical backdrop and also, from the lighthouse, an appreciation of the very high population density of Bermuda of about 3,400 per square mile.
One of the only two lighthouses in Bermuda, the second and smaller. Its light enabled navigators to take cross bearings with the flashing beacon emitted by Gibb's Hill lighthouse in Southampton Parish.
Views from the balcony are superb, looking east over land and water and also westward. In Tall Ship races since 1976 and numerous Newport to Bermuda and other bi-annual yacht races, it provides sailors with their first impressive glimpses of Bermuda.
Southside, built at a cost of $2.8 million and opened on time in January 2007.
Proposed, not yet built
2017. July 6. A vacant lot of land opposite from the former St David’s post office building will remain undeveloped. Francis Mussenden, CEO of the Bermuda Land Development Company Limited (BLDC), said the organisation was thankful for insight provided by the community on the property. “We are pleased to have been able to engage with the community and gather their insights on how they would like to see Southside developed,” he said. A survey was distributed at a consultation meeting held in April, as well as posted online. Responses were accepted until May 12. Concepts for the parcel included creating a park, a commercial development, and leaving the land undeveloped. “We understand that the community would like to see tourism, transportation and retail facilities expanded within St David’s,” Mr Mussenden said. Building concepts presented for the lot were intended to complement the adjacent building and dock, he said. Based on feedback, the lot will be left undeveloped, a release provided by BLDC said. “BLDC acknowledges the importance of green space.” The presentation made at the April meeting can still be viewed online at www.bldc.bm. Another public meeting is expected to be held later this year.
2017. April 26. A new shopping centre could be constructed on land earmarked for development in St David’s.
The Bermuda Land Development Company is hosting a public meeting tomorrow to invite input from locals on a vacant lot opposite the former St David’s Post Office. Among the options being considered for the land are a shopping centre or a memorial, with the meeting viewed as an opportunity to receive input and suggestions from the public. Francis Mussenden, BLDC CEO, said the body are excited to discuss potential development opportunities with the public. “We look forward to hearing any ideas and receiving input that may benefit BLDC, the St David’s community and Bermuda, in general,” he said. The BLDC said the quango was confident in the future of St David’s and Southside, saying that a number of opportunities are coming that could provide a boost for the community. “Several upcoming construction projects will certainly bring a boost to St David’s, with workers requiring amenities and services in the area,” a statement said. “Additionally, with the uptick in tourism, increased cruise ship calls in St George’s and the BTA’s vision, more visitors are coming to the East End. Likewise, Clearwater Beach is primed for this uptick in visitor traffic, with the BLDC increasing its service offerings there.
A Southside waterside dock area facing the Town of St. George that from 1941 to 1995 was constructed as the principal dockside for military equipment, goods and services shipped to what was initially the US Army's Fort Bell, St. David's Island, then the United States Army Air force, then Kindley Air Force Base, then the United States Naval Air Station. The Dockside also then had a regular boat service connecting this US military base with the US Navy's Operating Base in Southampton. After 1995, when the base became civilianized and both the base and dock were taken over by the Bermuda Government's Bermuda Land Development Company (BLDC) quango, it was used for various commercial marine and other activities and for storage. In late 2014 potential developers were given additional time to submit proposals on how Marginal Wharf can be redeveloped. The BLDC has already received a raft development proposals from local and overseas firms to rejuvenate Marginal Wharf. At present, the land around Marginal Wharf is occupied by a handful of boatyards and tradesmen, and large areas of the site have become overgrown and have fallen into disrepair. The berth itself is blighted by the rusting hull of the one-time gambling ship Niobe Corinthian. The name was later changed to Ship's Wharf.
2018. April 28. The deadlines for requests for qualifications for two major construction jobs at Ships’ Wharf in the East End have been extended. Bermuda Land Development Company Limited announced yesterday that applicants will be able to submit their qualifications for the cargo port until June 29 and until October 23 for a power station. Francis Mussenden, BLDC chief executive officer, said: “To date, the interest in these projects has been significant. “Following recent meetings with registered proponents, we have determined that extending the deadlines is in the best interest of both the projects and Bermuda as a whole.”
2018. April 17. Contracts worth more than $300 million to redevelop a rundown wharf in St George’s are to be financed by their developers. But the Bermuda Land Development Company declined to be specific on whether the deals would be funded through a public-private partnership like the controversial contract to redevelop the island’s airport. A BLDC spokeswoman said the RFQ was seeking “developers and investors to finance the development whereby BLDC leases the land to investors/developers who will finance the project themselves”. Government wants the area developed to provide a power plant and cargo port. Each project will cost more than $150 million to build. The power plant is expected to generate at least 20 megawatts of power — a fraction of the island’s capacity last year of 160 megawatts. The news came as the watchdog Regulatory Authority puts together an integrated resource plan, expected to be completed later this year, to create a blueprint for future energy production in Bermuda. The spokeswoman said bidders for the energy plant contract were expected to provide “input to the RA for consideration for inclusion in the integrated resource plan in the near future”. A spokeswoman for the RA said that the authority had liaised with the BLDC over its plans for Marginal Wharf, also called Ship’s Wharf, which is now largely unused. He added: “We hope to be in a position to launch public consultation on the integrated resource plan shortly.”
2018. March 28. A new $300 million-plus power plant and cargo port could generate a fresh role for Marginal Wharf in St David’s. The two schemes, expected to cost more than $150 million each and take several years to complete were announced yesterday by Lieutenant-Colonel David Burch, the public works minister. Colonel Burch said: “Our island’s current energy infrastructure is nearing the end of its life cycle and more energy resources are needed to improve stability and reliability, especially during times of peak demand and energy situations. He added the new power plant would provide at least 20 megawatts of power, compared with Bermuda’s capacity of 160 megawatts in April last year. Colonel Burch said the Marginal Wharf area, also known as Ships’ Wharf, was “the last commercial port available for redevelopment and was “a great opportunity for all of Bermuda”. He added that the Bermuda Land Development Company had launched two requests for qualifications to help explore the redevelopment ideas. Colonel Burch said: “Through these RFQs, BLDC will invite local and international investors to submit their qualifications for the design, build and operation of these two major infrastructure projects.” The announcement marks the end of a 3½-year “exploratory period” for the BLDC. The BLDC called in 2014 for expressions of interest to develop the dock at Southside largely unused for several years. Colonel Burch said redevelopment of the dock area, handed back to Bermuda by the United States Navy in 1995, would boost shipping capacity and “allow diversification into other services”. He added: “The location could also accommodate bonded warehouses on site that would facilitate the breakdown of containerized goods at the port, enabling the transporting of goods in smaller vehicles on Bermuda’s roads.” Fish processing, suggested as another possibility for Marginal Wharf, has been branded an eyesore by area MPs. The minister was joined by Francis Mussenden, CEO of the BLDC, who said the request for qualifications would be open until May 23. Mr Mussenden did not give details on the type of fuel for the new power plant and said that financing would be sought “locally and internationally”. Grant Gibbons, the Shadow Minister of Economic Development, said the BLDC’s redevelopment plans went back several years. He added: “Any proposal would have to be included in the overall integrated resource plan.” Dr Gibbons said: “The size of the facility and the cost of electricity would need to be included in that. Obviously there are issues with the kind of fuel to be used.” Dr Gibbons said there was “nothing new here” and called it “a continuation of the process”, other than the request for qualifications. Marginal Wharf’s potential as an alternative to Hamilton docks was suggested earlier this month after the island’s primary port was forced to close for repairs. Mr Mussenden said the East End wharf may need to be dredged to accommodate cargo vessels. A handful of businesses and boatyards operate at Marginal Wharf and the BLDC said it planned to meet its tenants tomorrow. The tenants’ meeting will be followed by a community meeting at Clearwater Middle School at 6.30pm on April 5.
See Former US military bases in Bermuda and
Connects St. David's Island with St. George's.
Enter and exit St. George's Island and the town of St. George, via this bridge located in St. David's, north of Kindley Field Road, not far from the airport. It is the bigger of the two swing bridges, so-called because they swing up to allow marine traffic to pass below, about a mile from Longbird Bridge to the west. It is periodically completely or partly closed, including for marine traffic, for construction, resurfacing and repairs. An nice place for taking photographs
2018. September 25. New designs for Longbird and Swing Bridges will be unveiled tomorrow. The Ministry of Public Works described the designs as “unique landmark structures which will reflect Bermuda’s welcoming culture”. They will on display at an information session at Penno’s Wharf, St George’s, from 6pm. British firm Ramboll is being paid $400,000 to design the replacements for the two bridges which are both expected to reach the end of their useful life in 2021. Swing Bridge, linking St David’s to St George’s, was built in the 1960s and has fallen into disrepair in recent years. The bridge no longer opens for passing boats. Longbird Bridge, a 60-metre twin-carriageway bridge at the eastern end of the Causeway, was built in the 1950s. It closed to traffic ten years ago when it was bypassed with twin Bailey bridges.
2017. December 8. British firm Ramboll will be paid $400,000 to design the replacements for Longbird Bridge and Swing Bridge, Lieutenant-Colonel David Burch said today. The public works minister revealed both bridges have a lifespan until 2021, and that he expects Ramboll’s study to be completed by January so that rebuilding can begin. Colonel Burch also assured MPs that the Causeway is sound, adding: “There is no structural or economical argument to support the construction of a new Causeway.” Swing Bridge, the gateway to St George’s built in the 1960s, has fallen into disrepair in recent years and no longer opens to shipping. Longbird Bridge, a 60-metre twin carriageway bridge at the east end of the Causeway, was built in the 1950s. It closed to traffic ten years ago, when it was bypassed with twin Bailey Bridge structures. Colonel Burch told the House of Assembly: “Over the past decade, there has been an increased awareness of the significance of bridges to our nation’s economy and the safety of the traveling public. At all levels of government, a concerted effort has been made to reduce the number of structurally deficient bridges that require significant maintenance, rehabilitation, or replacement. Corrosion is a serious threat to the long-term function and integrity of a steel bridge. This is true for all bridges, but it is more serious in Bermuda where salt water and warm weather are the perfect storm to accelerate corrosion on a steel structure.” Colonel Burch said the typical lifespan is 50 years for bridges such as Swing and Longbird. He said: “Our latest studies on the Swing Bridge show that this bridge will have to be replaced within five years. The work completed earlier this year will allow us to extend its lifespan until 2021, but it is time to rebuild this essential piece of infrastructure.” He said of Longbird Bridge: “It was condemned several years ago. Two single spans of Bailey bridge were erected to accommodate traffic as a temporary solution. This temporary solution was put in place in 2007. Accelerated corrosion on these bridges forced us to change deck plates earlier this year. In ordinary climate conditions, these plates should last 25 years, but in Bermuda they lasted only ten years. This bridge is safe, but its lifespan is similar to that of the Swing Bridge.” He said of the Causeway: “Several inspections were performed on the Causeway and various scenarios were also looked at to see what would be the best improvement, for both safety and investment for the taxpayer. The Causeway is an old structure, but I am pleased to advise that the Causeway is sound.” Colonel Burch said the design contract was tendered in February this year. He described Ramboll as an award-winning, experienced engineering company which has completed many successful bridge projects around the world. He said with modern technology the target lifespan of the new bridges will be 100 years. Colonel Burch added that Ricardo Graham-Ward, a young Bermudian engineering trainee, will undergo a six-month secondment with Ramboll as part of the contract. He said: “This secondment will allow this young Bermudian civil engineer the opportunity to work on this project at the very beginning and be trained by the best moveable bridge engineers in the world. I am certain this attachment will provide him with invaluable training and experience that would otherwise not be available to us.”
2017. December 5. Replacements for Swing Bridge and Longbird Bridge (in Hamilton Parish) are in the pipeline after a contract for design work was handed to a British team. Both of the East End structures have suffered major deterioration in recent years, and Swing Bridge was subject to emergency repair work under the One Bermuda Alliance government. A press release from British firm Double Unit announced a contract for full design services has been awarded to lead consultant Ramboll, Knight Architects and Eadon Consulting after an international tender. The two bridges form a critical link in the infrastructure of Bermuda, connecting LF Wade International Airport with Hamilton to the west and the Town of St George to the east. Longbird Bridge was originally constructed in the 1950s as a 60 metres-long twin carriageway steel swing bridge at the east end of the Causeway connecting the island with the airport. However, the bridge closed to traffic ten years ago and was temporarily bypassed with twin Bailey Bridge structures. Swing Bridge spans 120 metres across Ferry Reach, linking St George’s Harbour with the west of the island, and is a critical link for both vehicular and marine traffic. The 1960s swing bridge has received extensive refurbishment and remains open to vehicles but no longer opens to shipping. According to the press release, the design team will undertake studies to determine the most appropriate solutions for the new bridges, including fixed and moveable structures. It added that robustness and durability are key factors as both existing bridges have suffered accelerated deterioration in the tropical climate, which is particularly aggressive to steel structures. In addition, the structures and their mechanisms must be designed to withstand the hurricane-force winds that Bermuda periodically suffers. The design team have collaborated on many bridge projects and between them are responsible for award-winning moveable structures, including the Twin Sails Bridge, Poole (Britain), Gateshead Millennium Bridge (Britain), Lower Hatea Crossing (New Zealand) and Merchant Square Bridge (Britain). Commenting on the appointment, Peter Curran, bridges director at Ramboll, said: “We are all delighted to be working on such an exciting project with the Government of Bermuda. We look forward to collaborating to deliver a strong and lasting landmark for the island, one which inspires, connects and can endure the heavy weather conditions that Bermuda has previously suffered.” Martin Knight, director at Knight Architects, said: “Bermuda is a beautiful and inspiring location for any designer, and it is clear how important these connections are in the everyday life in the island. These bridges are also the entry point for countless tourists every year and they offer an opportunity for gateway structures which reflect the culture and identity of a truly unique place.” Work on the project will start immediately.
2017. April 25. Rehabilitation work on the Swing Bridge in St George’s is nearing completion, according to the Ministry of Public Works. The bridge can now safely carry one lane of vehicles with loads of 10 tonnes per axle and a 29-tonne gross vehicle weight, the ministry advised. It is expected to open to two-lane traffic immediately after the contractor removes the remaining scaffolding, which is estimated to take seven days.
2016. August 2. Repairs to the St George’s swing bridge are under way, the Ministry of Public Works has said. Last week, materials for a Bailey bridge which had sat in Kindley Field Park since January — gathering rust from the elements and criticism from the Progressive Labour Party — was removed in time for Cup Match festivities. A Ministry spokeswoman did not answer a request on what had happened to the Bailey bridge, which had initially been intended to allow vehicles access across Ferry Reach while the damaged swing bridge was fixed. “The repair contract is now under way. The Ministry will provide an update in the near future,” she said.
2016. June 17. Replacing the crumbling Swing Bridge with a hydraulic counterpart could provide a “50-year fix”, Craig Cannonier suggested last night at a town hall meeting in St George. “I am very much in favour of a hydraulic bridge,” the Minister of Public Works said, citing benefits such as its simple mechanisms and quiet functionality. The Swing Bridge — which links St David’s to St George’s — has been closed to ships for two years. Motorists can cross it one lane at a time, and a weight limit is in place due to the structure’s fragile state. Fixing the problem has been estimated at $20 million. “The maintenance of the Swing Bridge is going to be astronomical as we move forward. It is an old bridge with old technology,” Mr Cannonier said. “If we fix the Swing Bridge, we’ll probably have a maximum of 30 years [lifespan]. I’d much prefer we get a 50-year span for a few million more dollars and a little more time.” In the meantime, Mr Cannonier said that a steelwork contract would be awarded in the next week for a company to strengthen the undercarriage of the Swing Bridge. He estimated that the fortification works would take eight to ten weeks, adding that the weight limit would be lifted once they were finished. To fix the traffic issue, the minister said that he was looking into the possibility of transferring outbound traffic from St George’s via the Severn Bridge at Stokes Point. Another feasibility study involved the removal of one of the Swing Bridge’s pillars to increase its 63-foot span, allowing larger ships to pass through. Hosted by Quinell Francis, the Mayor of St George, the meeting at Penno’s Wharf also featured presentations by Jeff Baron, the Minister of National Security, and Michael Fahy, the Minister of Tourism, Transport and Municipalities.
2016. June 2. The rusted building materials by the St George’s swing bridge are a “precautionary measure” while strengthening work takes place, the Ministry of Public Works has said. A spokeswoman added that although the Bailey bridge materials were originally intended to relieve the weight restriction on the corroded infrastructure, engineers had since developed a better alternative. Instead, the fortification work will be done from below, helping to reduce traffic build-up and improving emergency vehicle access. “This also frees the Bailey bridge to be used for its intended purpose — for emergency situations during the hurricane season,” she said. The swing bridge — which links St David’s to St George’s — has been closed since April 2014, allowing motorists across but not opening for ships attempting to pass through. Minister of Public Works Craig Cannonier has described the structure as “seriously compromised” and promised that the issue has been assigned priority status. February’s 2016-17 Budget statement revealed that $20 million has been set aside to fix the swing bridge. The spokeswoman added that the construction parts did not rust due to being left outside since January, but that the disassembled Bailey bridge was more than 30 years old, having been acquired from the British Army. “Some components now require refurbishment or replacement,” she said. Regarding the upcoming strengthening work, the spokeswoman added: “A contract for these interim works is expected to be awarded shortly, and will take roughly eight to 12 weeks to perform. Requests for proposal are in development for the replacement of the actual bridge, and a temporary bypass route to allow the work to take place.”
2016. May 31. Building materials intended to fix the St George’s swing bridge have rusted after sitting outside for five months, The Royal Gazette has discovered. Dennis Lister, the Shadow Minister of Public Works, called the matter “symptomatic of the Government’s approach to repairing our infrastructure”. In January, a section of Kindley Field Park was set aside as a storage area for a Bailey bridge being constructed for the swing bridge across Ferry Reach, which is badly damaged by rust. But since then the materials have remained seemingly untouched while being exposed to the elements. Mr Lister told this newspaper: “One would think that once you’ve acquired the building materials, the next step is to make the installation and repairs. They were raced down there and now they’re sitting there rusting. If the materials have deteriorated enough that they can’t be used, then it will obviously be a waste of money.” The bridge — which links St David’s to St George’s — has been closed since April 2014, allowing motorists across but not opening for ships attempting to pass through. Last December, traffic was reduced to a single lane and a weight limit of ten tonnes was put in place after an engineering survey. The Minister of Public Works, Craig Cannonier, said the bridge had become “seriously structurally compromised” and that some supports were so corroded they would “crumble away” when touched. In January, as Bermuda Government engineers awaited structural reports, Mr Cannonier insisted that the bridge was safe for single-lane traffic, despite its rusting traverse beams. He added that the matter was a “Government priority” and that a Bailey bridge would be erected over the structure while work was carried out. February’s 2016-17 Budget statement revealed that $20 million was being set aside to restore the bridge. In late March, the Ministry of Public Works performed a structural inspection of the bridge, swinging it open twice for testing purposes. A fortnight later, the Government put out a request for proposal for repairs — calling on tenders by April 22 for “installation of interim repair measures” at the bridge in a Royal Gazette notice. The notice added: “The project involves the procurement and fabrication of structural steel elements and their installation to the underside of the Swing Bridge Bridge Deck in St George’s.” In mid-April, the plan to erect a Bailey bridge was abandoned in favour of strengthening the bridge from below, with Mr Cannonier citing concerns over traffic build-up and emergency vehicle access. At the time, a spokeswoman for the Ministry of Public Works said work on a full-scale remediation for the bridge had already begun. The Ministry of Public Works did not respond to requests for comment on the issue.
2016. April 15. A plan to erect a Bailey bridge over the St George’s swing bridge has been abandoned in favour of strengthening the bridge from below. A spokeswoman for the Ministry of Public Works said work on a full-scale remediation for the bridge had already begun. “We will be concentrating initially on the swing span which is presently the limiting section of the bridge,” the spokeswoman said. “Solutions have been reviewed and the ministry has prepared a recommendation for cabinet which will be reviewed in due course.” The bridge — which links St George’s to St David’s — was reduced to a single lane of traffic in December after an engineering survey found the bridge was seriously structurally compromised. Craig Cannonier, the Minister of Public Works, announced shortly after that a Bailey bridge would be erected over the structure while work was carried out. However, he said that some concerns were raised about how it would affect traffic in and out of St George’s. “This would have required periodic closures of the bridge and, consequently, some level of service disruption to commuters wishing to traverse the bridge,” the spokeswoman said. “This was understandably of some concern to local St George’s residents, especially with regards to access to emergency services. However, following a detailed inspection and assessment of the bridge, it was determined that it may be possible to strengthen the bridge from underneath without having to close the bridge to traffic. Accordingly, this solution was determined to be the preferable option.” While a public meeting was told there was a limit of two months to have a Bailey bridge in place, the spokesman said there are no safety concerns with the bridge with the weight restrictions imposed. “The strengthening works will enable us to remove the weight limit and will keep the bridge safe in the medium term while a long-term solution is developed. Had the Bailey bridge approach been appropriate, then we believe that the two-month period would have been reasonable, however we believe that this is a more measured and correct response to the situation.” A request for proposal was put out in The Royal Gazette this week, and the ministry expect responses by April 22 and a contract soon after. “The weight restriction will be lifted once the works are complete but the single-lane traffic will remain,” she said. “The start and completion dates for the works will be determined from the bidders’ responses.”
2016. April 12. Government has put out a request for proposal for repairs needed at the St George’s Swing Bridge. In a notice appearing on page 26 of yesterday’s edition of The Royal Gazette, the Department of Works and Engineering has called on tenders for “installation of interim repair measures” at the bridge. The Swing Bridge — which links St David’s to St George’s — has been closed for two years, allowing motorists access but forcing larger ships to take alternate routes. Last December traffic was reduced to a single lane and had a weight limit put in place after an engineering survey was carried out. Craig Cannonier, the Minister of Public Works, said the bridge had become “seriously structurally compromised”. A new swing bridge for the site could cost between $10 and $15 million, according to some estimates. The Government notice states: “The project involves the procurement and fabrication of structural steel elements and their installation to the underside of the Swing Bridge Deck in St George’s.” Full details and tender documents are available at the Ministry’s office in the Government Post Office Building on Church Street, with competed tenders due by April 22.
2016. January 27. Government engineers are keeping all options open as they wait for structural reports on the St George’s swing bridge to be completed. Preliminary studies on the bridge have been done and the results are expected to be received by the Ministry of Public Works by the end of next week. Craig Cannonier, the Minister of Public Works, said he had been alarmed by the level of rust on the traverse beams under the bridge. He said fixing the bridge was a “Government priority” and vowed to ensure that a long-term solution for the bridge would be found as quickly as possible for East End residents. “I was alarmed by the state of the bridge,” Mr Cannonier said. “The rust was falling from the beams into the water. Having said that, the bridge is absolutely safe for single traffic. It is the traverse beams that are rusting. We are taking this extremely seriously and will keep the people of St George’s updated as and when we have more information.” Earlier this month a section of Kindley Field Park was set aside as a storage area for a Bailey bridge being constructed for the swing bridge across Ferry Reach. The East End crossing has been reduced to a single lane since December due to serious corrosion, which has also meant vehicles heavier than ten tonnes are off limits. Mr Cannonier said that the department had not ruled out the idea of a completely new bridge. “The preliminary studies have been done by contractors and we are waiting for the report in about two weeks,” he said. “There will be another public meeting shortly afterwards. We want to move towards a long-term solution. I know it’s inconvenient as I am a resident of St George’s too and I apologize for that. We want to see it swing again and we need it up and running so that we can get the concrete in for the marina project and obviously the new hotel. What exactly it is going to take to make it work again I still don’t know, but we are keeping all options open.”
2015. December 22. Serious corrosion to the swing bridge across Ferry Reach means that the East End’s crossing will be reduced to a single lane down the middle as of today. Vehicles heavier than ten tonnes could cause the bridge to list, and will thus be off limits. Buses will still be safe to cross, but certain types of fire trucks and construction vehicles will be unable to use the bridge for perhaps two months, until a prefabricated bridge can be laid across it. Last night, angry residents of St George’s told Craig Cannonier, the Minister of Public Works, that the bridge had been allowed to deteriorate after languishing for years. “The swing bridge has been a challenge for quite some time now,” Mr Cannonier told the town hall meeting at Penno’s Wharf. “About two years ago, it was decided that we could no longer have the bridge swinging, getting open and then not being able to close.” The bridge has remained static since, he said. However, engineers examining the bridge in recent weeks found that it had become “seriously structurally compromised”, leaving some of its supports so corroded that “if you just touch it, it’s crumbling away.” While the steel running north to south on the bridge is intact, the supports going across it from east to west “are in really, really bad shape”, Mr Cannonier said. The minister told a crowd of about 30 that it was vitally important that the bridge be permanently restored, and said he held out hope for the swing mechanism to be restored. Elizabeth Christopher, a councilor for St George’s, told him that a swing rather than a fixed bridge was imperative for the economic well-being of the Olde Town, but Mr Cannonier said it was impossible to guarantee. Asked to take a guess on how much a new swinging bridge would cost, government engineer Richard Crossley took a guess of $10 to $15 million. Miles Outerbridge, a retired structural engineer, said bridges needed an annual inspection — something that had not been carried out on the swing bridge in years. “I have seen appalling conditions underneath the bridge for years,” Mr Outerbridge said, to applause. “That appalling situation didn’t happen in the last six months. “It’s years and years of shameful neglect. I don’t know what the mindset of this Government is — we don’t seem to be able to fix anything. This is not good enough.” Mr Cannonier said: “I live in St George’s myself. It’s a major concern for me to know that we have a bridge in this bad shape.” The public would be kept informed with regular town hall meetings as the ministry worked with the Governor to get a replacement bridge put in place with the help of the Royal Engineers. There is a limit of two months to have a Bailey bridge in place: a prefabricated truss bridge that would run over the existing structure, which would do away with the emergency weight restriction. While that bridge was being laid down, St George’s will be completely cut off, but the closure could be as short as 12 hours, Mr Crossley said. After six months at the most, a technical team would be procured to bring back an accurate assessment of the bridge, and a definitive plan for a long-term fix would be done within a year. The news was scant consolation for Jerry Correia, the operator of a charter vessel that once made regular use of the swing bridge. He said he felt “upset that everyone has dropped whatever they were doing to save the bridge. Two years ago, in the first month it was closed, I lost $14,000,” Mr Correia told the gathering. "Here I am, in debt up to my ears because of that flipping bridge.” Mr Correia told The Royal Gazette that his business had just weathered “the worst season I’ve ever had”, with substantial costs piled on to his operations because of detours forced on him by the closure of the swing bridge. Mr Correia also blamed the closure of the swing for accelerating corrosion, because the bridge had formerly oiled its mechanisms by opening and closing. “They closed it and left it to corrode, and we’ve watched it turn into a bucket of rust,” he said.
At the eastern end, not far from St. David's Lighthouse. It is more of a neighborhood than a road as it also includes Lighthouse Road. Include land bought and used for the relocation of local families made homeless by the construction of Fort Bell, later the US Army Air Force, later US Air Force, later the United States Naval Air Station, before it was decommissioned in 1995 and became civilian Southside. The replacement homes in the neighborhood were built by the same US military construction units. Wartime residents there bestowed the name Texas in honor of natives from Texas, USA, many of whom were construction workers and US servicemen. Their laid-back manners and ways were especially appreciated by displaced St. David's Islanders and were mostly responsible for bringing Bermuda's once most-isolated community into the 20th century.
The only street on the former US base nearby named for Henry Mortimer Fox (1860-1942), a local landowner of considerable property, whaler and grower of arrowroot.
Next to Clearwater Beach. A nice swimming area., once reserved solely for the US Armed Forces, but public since 1997, two years after the US bases left.
Until 1995 the site of the Officer's Mess at the former US Base, named from the fact that the hill was a look-out point for sighting whales or for seeing returning whaleboats.
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