Sunday 29 November, 2020

Red House, Arima Dial in final stages of becoming heritage sites

Well-known landmarks such as the Red House, Arima Dial, Knolly’s Tunnel, and others have been recommended to be added to the National Trust of Trinidad and Tobago's list of protected heritage sites and are in the final stages. 

Margaret McDowall, Chairman of the National Trust, said at a media briefing on Wednesday that this historic moment is a positive step in preserving the country’s cultural heritage.

“This recognises heritage properties and will allow citizens and visitors to celebrate them and…protect these valuable assets,” she said.

She said initially 62 sites were recommended but so far, 30 have been recommended to be listed as Heritage Sites. Once listed, in accordance with the National Trust Act, the property is deemed a heritage property and is entitled to legal protection.

“It was an arduous (task)…I want to applaud the staff of the National Trust…a lot of us worked hard to ensure we could get this going.”

(Photo: Knolly's Tunnel, via the National Trust of Trinidad and Tobago)

Some of the recommended properties include San Fernando Railway Station, Tobago Main Ridge Forest Reserve, Knollys Tunnel, Old Police Headquarters, the Arima Dial, Shiva Mandir (Gasparillo), and the Red House.

Of special note is the Pointe-a-Pierre Wildfowl Trust which is the world’s second oldest wildfowl trust.

McDowall said the listing process is set out under the Act, and includes recording details for properties of interest.

The first process included nominations which can be done by both staff and citizens.

McDowall said most of these recommendations were suggested by citizens and urged the public to continue to submit their recommendations.  

She said the Listing process is in the final stages and soon these properties will be protected by law as per the National Trust Act.

A list of the recommended Heritage Site properties are as follows:

58 Piccadilly Street, Port of Spain – Grade 2

All Saints' Anglican Church – Grade 2

Arima Dial – Grade A

Boissiere House – Grade 2

Briarend (Audrey Jeffers House) Grade 2

Conquerabia Grade D

Exchange Village Shiv Mandir – Grade 1

Holy Trinity Cathedral - Grade 1

Knollys Tunnel – Grade A

Laventille Water Trough – Grade A

Main Ridge Forest Reserve – Grade C

Nelson Island – Grade B

Old Fire Station Building (POS) – Grade 3

Old Police Headquarters (POS) – Grade 3

Old Public Library (POS)- Grade 3

Petroglyphs, (Caurita Stone)n – Grade A

Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church – Grade 2

Sangre Grande Old Post Office – Grade 2

Sarah Morton Dormitory – Grade 3

Shiva Mandir, (Gasparillo) Grade 1

St. Francis of Assisi R.C. Church – Grade 2

St. John’s (London) Baptist Church  - Grade 1

St. Joseph R.C. Church, St. Joseph – Grade 2

St. Vincent Jetty Lighthouse – Grade 1

TGR No. 11 (Train Engine) - Grade A

The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception – Grade 2

The Red House - Grade 3

The San Fernando Railway Station Grade 4

Trinidad Building and Loan Association Building – Grade 4

Wild Fowl Trust – Grade C

At the end of this process there would be a total of 43 Heritage Sites under the state’s protection.

(Photo via Wikipedia commons)

To date, the National Trust has listed 13 sites:

The Old Mayaro Post Office, Tranquility Methodist Church, Banwari Trace Archaeological Site, The Royal Victoria Institute (National Museum & Art Gallery), Fort King George, Fort Picton, Archbishop’s House, Mille Fleurs, Killarney (Stollmeyer’s Castle), Ambard’s House (Roomor), Queen’s Royal College, Whitehall, and Hayes Court.

The National Trust said beginning this next phase of the ‘Listing’ process is an important step towards guaranteeing future generations the opportunity to experience the legacy of the country’s rich history.

It also ensures that the current property owners and managers, some of whom will be in attendance, can play a more supportive role in heritage education and management and be part of the National Trust’s drive for a thriving Heritage economy.

For more information visit the National Trust at 

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