Barbados Independence 2010
On November 30th 1966, Barbados was declared an independent island, ending over 400 years of British colonial rule. The Barbados national flag was raised for the first time, with its symbol of the broken trident symbolising the importance of the sea to Barbados and the breaking away from British rule. The Barbados National Anthem was also heard for the first time.
Celebrate with Barbados
Every year this day is a national bank holiday in Barbados, with celebrations, sports events, religious services and community events running throughout November. This year, Barbados celebrates 44 years of independence from Britain.
See the bright lights of Bridgetown
The Independence Day’s celebrations kick off with a colourful parade through Bridgetown, the capital of Barbados. This ends at Bridgetown’s Garrison Savannah where a ceremony will take place. The Parliament buildings in Bridgetown will be lit up with blue and yellow lights, the national colours.
All the nation’s major roundabouts are also highly decorated, with palm trees wrapped in Barbados’ national colours of blue and yellow, and colourful light displays.
National Independence Festival of Creative Art (NFCA)
The NIFCA, first introduced by the late Arden and Jeanette Layne-Clarke in 1973, is a festival where local Barbadians from all walks of life can showcase their talents in art, dance, music, drama, photography, craft and writing. This year, the festival will be running from October 8th until December 5th ending with a gala presentation in which the finalists are featured.
The entries include:
» Drama/ speech
71 entries from 38 individuals – including 16 primary schools, 5 secondary schools, 5 university of the West Indies entrants and 2 professionals.
57 entries from 39 groups – including three professionals, a Catholic School, a primary school, ten solos, four duets and a piece from a trio. Choreographies include Urban, African, Folk, Modern, Mixed media and Ballroom themes.
Music has the most categories- the largest being classical. There are also school bands, steel bands, spiritual and folk entries.
» Visual and Fine Arts, Film and Photography
Over 700 entries have been received for photography.
There are cash awards, funding for continuing education in the arts, special awards and Gold, Silver and Bronze certificates which are presented to successful participants.
For more information please go to: <http://www.ncf.bb/>
A Brief History of Barbados
1625 – 1644
Britain landed in Barbados and started farming. In the 1630’s sugar cane farming was introduced. At first English servants and prisoners were shipped into Barbados to work on the plantations.
Dutch merchants supplied the British with cheaper labour – African slaves shipped in from West Africa.
18th century Barbados – unique factors
» There were three Africans to one British person. This was substantially lower than the other islands.
» Over 60% of the British people on the Island were actually poor, and 35% of these did not own any slaves.
» Barbados had the largest population of permanent British than any of the other islands which prompted better schools, press and social facilities.
» African Barbadians were born locally. This contributed to the development of the Barbadian identity.
» There were more women than men amongst both the British and African populations. This meant the African population reproduced on the island, which meant that the British plantation owners did not need to rely on continuous slave trade from Africa. This contrasted from other English speaking West Indian islands where the mortality rate exceeded the birth rate.
Slavery was abolished, with Barbados being the only British island in the Caribbean that supported the abolition. However the plantation owners introduced an apprentice period of four years whereby workers would have to work without pay in exchange for basic housing and food.
Freedom from slavery was celebrated at the end of the apprentice period.
Independence was granted to Barbados, on November 30th, with Independence Day celebrated for the first time. The first Barbadian Prime Minister was the right Honorable Errol Walton Barrow of the Democratic Labour Party (the other party was the Barbados Labour Party).
Author: Brett Callaghan