NATCOM (SKN) – Basseterre: November 26, 2012: Charles Fort, located on the coast just below Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park was the focus of a special meeting held at the headquarters of the National Commission for UNESCO on Friday November 30.
The Fort was being recommended for consideration to be listed on the National Tentative List of Historical Sites for future submission to UNESCO as a Site of Outstanding Universal Value. Inclusion on the National List is a requirement of UNESCO for any such nomination.
The addition of Charles Fort as part of the National Tentative List was suggested by Cameron Gill, member of the National Commission and General Manager of the Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park. Mr. Gill explained that the submission to UNESCO in this case would be as part of a Serial Nomination of Eastern Caribbean Coastal Forts of outstanding value. Mr. Gill said he would put things in motion to present his nomination at a UNESCO meeting scheduled for early 2013.
According to Mr. Gill in his nomination summary, “The strategic value of trade through this anchorage (Fort) leads to the creation of the most powerful system of fortification in the English Speaking Americas, Brimstone Hill Fortress, now a World Heritage Site, was created because of Charles Fort.”
He further added that “the Network of Eastern Caribbean Forts including Fort Charles portray the adaptations, inclusions and extensions of forts, fortified systems and related cultural landscapes, displaying mixed military technology and human strategic development and endurance during a period of great human exploration. This network of sites is testimony to the skill of the occupying forces’ engineers and the enslaved Africans.”
Also included in the discussions at the National Commission Meeting was an update on the “Memory of The World Registry” which is considered the library counterpart of “World Heritage Sites”.
Director of the National Archives and National Commission Member Mrs. Victoria Borg- O’flaherty reported on the submission of the Registry of Enslaved Africans as part of a serial nomination of such documents in the Eastern Caribbean. She also intends to submit a Record of Stipendiary Magistrates” in similar fashion in the near future.
Additionally, Mrs. Borg O’Flaherty explained that these individuals could be considered the forerunners of the Movement which emerged later on as the protectors of workers’ rights. She spoke passionately about moving forward on activities with the assistance of the National Commission for the Development of an advisory committee. That would do preparatory work on advancing the Federation’s valuable documents and sites of historical value for International Recognition by meeting the requirements.
Secretary General for the National Commission for UNESCO Mr. Antonio Maynard, commended both Mr. Gill and Mrs. O’flaherty for their commitment and dedication to their roles on the National Commission referring to them as exemplary members. He added that his office stood ready to empower them and further increase their scope of influence by way of greater International participation in UNESCO meetings.