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Effort to restore bishop residence to former glory

Posted on: January 20, 2014 2:07 PM
Hayes Court
Photo Credit: Hayes Court Restoration Committee
Related Categories: Trinidad & Tobago, West Indies

[Newsday by Angela Pidduck] Hayes Court, the residence of Anglican Bishops since 1910, and also venue for functions hosted by the Diocese in general, has been in a state of disrepair for some years now, to the extent that the last Bishop Calvin Bess remained in his home at Gasparillo, while the incumbent Tobago-born Bishop Claude Berkley is housed on Chancellor Hill.

Many have wondered what was responsible for the decay of one of the Magnificent Seven historic district Monuments of the Greater Caribbean as designated by the Organization of American States Heritage List, as well as the Caribbean Plan for Monuments and Sites (CARIMOS) which classifies it internationally as a building of great heritage value in the Caribbean. Simply put “insufficient funding has led to its present state.” 

Funding is now urgently needed to restore Hayes Court to its former pristine appearance known to those of us who lived in the area, so that it may regain its position as a centre of Anglican excellence, and our Bishops, like the two previous local Bishops Clive Abdulah and Rawle Douglin, could once more reside in what “built heritage historian,” the late Olga Mavrogordato described as “a typical grand house with a pleasant mixture of French and English style with its unusual roof.” A building was conceived as “the house for the Anglican Bishop in 1904 by a Mr Protheroe, construction of which began in 1908 with an anonymous donation for the site on the Queen’s Park Savannah by two gentlemen, and was completed by the firm of Taylor & Gillies in 1910. 

The full article can be found here