Beautiful Virgin Islands

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Abandoned ‘Cultural Centre’ serving as 'home' for mentally challenged person?

Abandoned ‘Cultural Centre’ serving as 'home' for mentally challenged person?

There may be no coming back for the Sir Rupert Briercliffe Hall, which was severely damaged by hurricanes Irma and Maria in September 2017; however, in the meantime, it appears to be a place of refuge for at least one person to rest their weary head at nights.

This was confirmed by an individual who works in the vicinity of the damaged building referred to as the Cultural Centre’.

“Yes, a man lives in there but he is not someone of sound mind,” the individual told our newsroom.

A visit to Sir Rupert Briercliffe Hall on February 17, 2022, resulted in proof that indeed someone uses the facility to maybe just sleep at nights.

There were lots of clothes strewn on the ground as well as in shopping carts and some hung on doors. There were also a number of cardboard boxes and a pram.

Notably on the ground was an opened bible.

Building likely to be demolished


Sir Rupert Briercliffe Hall was built in memory of Sir Rupert Brierclife CMG, OBE, MD, FRCP for the benefit of residents of Tortola in accordance with the terms of a Trust established under the will of the late Briercliffe, who was born in Bolton, England on January 27, 1889, and died at Pasea, Tortola on December 2, 1975.

The architect for Sir Rupert Briercliffe Hall was Mr Ira L. Smith and the building contractor was Mr Milton Smith.

Minister for Education, Culture, Youth Affairs, Fisheries and Agriculture, Dr The Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley (R7) had said in August 2019 that a recommendation was made for Sir Rupert Briercliffe Hall to be torn down.

According to the Minister, he envisions a performing arts center, national library and museum to be constructed in the area once the Sir Rupert Briercliffe Hall is demolished.

Inside the lobby area of the now abandoned Sir Rupert Briercliffe Hall.

Inside the lobby area of the now abandoned Sir Rupert Briercliffe Hall.

Sir Rupert Briercliffe Hall was once the place for performing arts, weddings and other events.

Inside the abandoned Sir Rupert Briercliffe Hall.

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