Tourist hot spot call . . .
There is a call for Speightstown to be made into a tourist hot spot.
Operator of the famous restaurant Fisherman’s Pub, Clement Armstrong, issued the call today following the announcement that the Barbados Tourism Product Authority (BTPA) would be hosting its free Speightstown Alive festivities there this Saturday, in an effort to attract more visitors and locals to the area.
Stating that Speightstown was poised to “take off”, Armstrong proposed that more activities be held in that town at least once a month, and at least one boat or cruise ship come to the area on that day.
“If tourism is to take off in this country we have to make some big bites. Speightstown should be the tourist spot of the north. It eases the pressure off Bridgetown when it comes to traffic eight o’clock in the morning when the cruise ships come in,” said Armstrong.
“After eight or 12 hours on the sea, then to get hooked up in traffic three and four hours is not fair to tourists. We need to get the boats in Speightstown with events like [Speightstown Alive] so they can enjoy the quaintness of Speightstown,” he said.
Acknowledging that such a plan would not come to fruition overnight, Armstrong said he was expecting that “at least one boat” could go to Speightstown once per month on a day that an event such as Speightstown Alive was held.
This, he said, would lead to more people visiting the area, pointing out that the northern town had some of the most beautiful spots and all the necessary amenities to meet the needs of patrons.
“We need to get real in Barbados and think about our grandchildren and great-grandchildren. We need to do substantial things that will last another 50 years, not only ten or 15 years to suit people that are in power,” he said, while lauding the BTPA for hosting the Speightstown Alive project.
Pointing out that some programmes were introduced to the area in the past but later taken to other places, Armstrong said: “We are not begging. We have the products here that can [hosts these events]. We just need the support of the agencies.”
Pointing to the dilapidated jetty in Speightstown, Armstrong expressed disappointment at some of the officials involved in the cruise tourism industry, saying they wanted all the business for themselves.
“These people get concessions to do everything in tourism, but it don’t help us,” he lamented, pointing out that some tour buses only passed through the area and did not stop.
“What we are doing is damaging our grandchildren and children’s children because we are going to cluster them in Bridgetown and Oistins, and down here nothing don’t happen. So we need to spread our wings,” said Armstrong.