Anguilla Architecture & Archetypes
ANGUILLA ARCHITECTURE & ARCHETYPES
For those of you whose email addresses I added since my first newsletter of the 2019 / 2020 season, please know that my introductory Blog (as well as numerous other articles I’ve written over the years) can be found on https://prorealtyanguilla.com/blog/ and is entitled “Anguilla Awakens Again”—reading it may put some perspective on this newsletter and the ones that follow. For those of you who were (fortunate enough?) to receive my first newsletter of the season, onward into my second: Anguilla Architecture & Archetypes.
There is a fundamental dichotomy between Anguilla architecture as it has developed since Hurricane Donna in 1960 and the archetypal vision of West Indian design—with reference to Anguilla design and destructive Donna, Colville Petty (Anguilla’s preeminent historian) wrote:
“…on Sunday 4th September 1960, to be precise, came the fearsome Hurricane Donna, with 125 mph winds. It swept across Anguilla leaving much damage, distress and bereavement in its wake. Four persons were killed instantly: George Carty, Margaret Hodge and Elizabeth St John and her two-year-old granddaughter, Lilian Fleming. A fifth person died later in St Kitts as a result of injuries sustained. A total of 250 persons received minor injuries. Some 500 houses were destroyed and over 1,000 people were left homeless. Donna wiped out the island’s entire merchant fleet comprising some 14 schooners (including the Rose Millicent, loaded with sugar) and sloops. Only the Ilva Primrose at Road Bay and the Betsy R at Forest Bay remained afloat. At Sandy Hill, the Linda was smashed to pieces… It was after Donna that there was a revolution in building technology in Anguilla. Many of the wooden houses (covered with shingles or galvanise) were replaced with concrete houses. The gable end and tray roofs were replaced with flat roofs of concrete. Not aesthetically pleasing. But strong.”. (underline added)
Essentially it is the wooden houses (covered with shingles or galvanise) that are the archetypal West Indian design in most people’s mind and constitute the romantic vision of Caribbean architecture in general—as noted above, however, examples of such architecture are very rare on Anguilla…both with regard to remaining traditional buildings and with reference to the buildings designed over the last number of years by Anguillans and Expats alike.
A marvelous example of a standing humble traditional building is the pink home attached whereby a few examples of more extravagant (and hence still standing) traditional styled building examples would be The Old Factory (within which my office is located, as per http://designanguilla.com/old-factory/), The Wallblake House (opposite The Old Factory on the Catholic Church grounds, as per http://designanguilla.com/wallblake/), and The Wardens Place (formerly housing the Koal Keel restaurant and now housing The Butchery, as per http://designanguilla.com/koalkeel/) – all worth a visit when next on island.
With the above in mind, for those with a love of the archetypal, a few examples of recently built homes of West Indian design that are currently being offered for sale include Aerie Villa as per https://prorealtyanguilla.com/property/aerie-villa/ / Manna Magic as per https://prorealtyanguilla.com/property/manana-magic/ / West’s Wonderland as per https://prorealtyanguilla.com/property/wests-wonderland/ / Hage’s Haven as per https://prorealtyanguilla.com/property/hages-haven/ — if any might be of interest, please let me know…a pleasure to assist.
Scott L. Hauser, Director
ProRealty (Anguilla) Ltd
Office Phone: 264.498.0123