Tuesday, 27 December 2016

Barbados - 50th Anniversary of Independence - Film Premier

This year, 2016, is the 50th anniversary of independence for the Caribbean island of Barbados. I have been to Barbados half a dozen times, each time reliving the hospitality and friendliness of the local people.

Over 50 years ago Barbados was finding the sugar cane that had once sustained them was a dying industry and tourists seemed to be coming to the island paradise for their holidays.  Tourism is now the major industry on the island as well as many other Caribbean islands.  The Barbadian people have embraced this life however it was not always the case.  Their life was difficult, many people not being able to afford medicine or send their children to school.

Errol Walton Barrow was a key player in the push for independence ending up as the first Prime Minister of an Independent Barbados.  Step by Step Productions, spearheaded by Dave and Marcia Weeks has made a film called 'Barrow: Freedom Fighter' telling the story of Errol W  Barrow leading up to the independence.

The aim of this film is to entertain and inform both children at home in Barbados and people worldwide about the struggles and triumphs facing the country and how the nation was born.
I was invited to the launch of the film recently at an intimate screening room in central London.  I felt like a film star having my photo taken and being interviewed after the film as well.
Hey there was even pop corn on offer - every great film needs popcorn!!
Sir Garfield Sobers, a hero to the people of Barbados, gaining fame and a knighthood from the UK through his life as a major player on the international cricket scene was there.  Affectionately known by those who know him as 'Sir G', he was featured in the film and is a great supporter to his homeland.
Following on from the film launch I was pleased to see the Barbados team at the World Travel Market at the beginning of November where the atmosphere was charged with excitement and emotion as a testament to the 50th year of independence.  Sir Garfield Sobers was there as well to pass on his enthusiasm for his homeland with visitors.
The music was enthusiastic and the smiles welcoming and happy. Just like being on the island - I can't wait to go back!
The people of Barbados are rightly proud of their island and their independence and I am really looking forward to visiting again soon!!

I was a guest of the film premier of 'Barrow: Freedom Fighter' and was not required to write a positive review.  As usual all opinions and photos are my own.

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