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St. Philip, Barbados in the 1950’s & 60’s. A very brief recollection of the people and events. — 11 Comments

  1. I remember the 1970 flood when Joseph Goddard’s red sports car was swept off the road by the flood waters from in front what is now Three Houses Park into the spring and ended up by the “Low Yard”

  2. My father, Louis Webster, was factory manager at Haggats when it was closed. We were at Haggats for 8 1/2 years. When Bruce Vale closed, he moved some of their equipment (including the gantry hoist) over to Haggats for an expansion. The engineer attending was a Mr Vernon Corbin. The sugar store room was enlarged over an external water tank. Some years we made sugar, placed in bags, other years we made “fancy molasses”. Haggats never had a bulk sugar bin. For fancy molasses the flat platforms of the trucks were replaced by tanks. Occasionally syrup would spill on Spring Vale hill causing slippery problems for motorists. Making syrup requires the use of Sulfuric acid. This was shipped to the factory in steel drums in a high concentrate form (over 90% H2S04). The acid was transferred to a large glass demi-john in a wooden frame, and carried up a flight of steps to the vacume pans. On one occasion, the bottom of the frame gave way, the demi-john fell and broke on the steps, soaking the lower man in acid. He was quickly tossed in the hot lime tank to neutralize the acid. (Lime is used to sublimate impurities in the cane juice). I’m not sure which was worse. I did not get to see the man.

    Haggats had two trucks made by Commer (of the UK) that had a unique (and noisy) diesel engine. It is know as a Commer TS3, a two stroke, 3 cylinder diesel. However, it had 6 pistons, arranged as two opposing pistons in each cylinder. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commer_TS3, and esp. http://www.oldengine.org/members/diesel/rootes-listerts3/ts3.htm for technical info.

    When we first arrived at Haggats the was no BL&P electricity. The fridge ran on kerosene, the stove on bottle gas, and the laundry was “manual”. Lights were by a battery in the cellar, recharged during the day from the generator in the factory. We got BLP power around 1960, a new fridge, a stereo, and a washing machine.

  3. Interesting and informative article. Lee Batson was my father. He died in Aug. 2012.

    The co-op mentioned is the St.Mark’s Co-op Credit Union Ltd. It celebrated its golden anniversary in June 2013 and still operates based at the St. Mark’s Community Centre opposite Volley’s minimart.

    The cooling pond behind the factory was a good place for tilapia fishing in the “hard time “

  4. I got married to a Bajan in 1968 and her Dad was a Plantation Manager so my early experiences were to a lot you have described. Going to town was a big experience , we spent most of our time at St Georges, St Johns and East Coast

    East Coast to me is the best of Barbados for relaxation and enjoying the sea

    Can remember our daughter’s first words were ‘fire … fire ‘ in Barbados as she saw the cane burning

    Yes, it is sad to see all that tonnage of cane reduced to what it is today 2017

    Street lights in the rural area were only near the standpipes while now it more all over

    Thank you , all memories I can relate to

  5. The manageer of Coco Cola was not Charlie Ray. It was Noel Hunte. Charlie Ray was manager of Bottler’s Ltd on bay Street. They bottled Ju-C, Pepsi and 7 Up

  6. William….

    re the Ice Follies at the Globe, Daddy was at Bottlers at that time not Coke and it was Ju-C cola that was used…RED!!!!

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