Community Focus: Clarke's Town

by

June 06, 2017
The Long Pond Sugar factory.
Hyde Hall Great House
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WESTERN BUREAU:

Clark's Town, located 15 miles from Trelawny's capital of Falmouth, was once the parish's major economic hub, especially in the era when the Long Pond Sugar Factory was alive and vibrant and churning out good-paying jobs.

"In times gone by, Clark's Town was an economically vibrant township," said renowned cane farmer Delroy Anderson. "Unfortunately, times have changed. Today the gate to the factory is closed and the future of sugar is no longer certain."

Clark's Town began life as a community in 1843 when plantation owner G.M. Clarke donated 30 acres of land near his estate to establish a free village.

However, it is believed that the town got its name from the Reverend John Clarke, who was an influential figure at the time.

With the noose of poverty now threatening to strangle Clark's Town, many residents are saddened by the deterioration that has taken place as a result of the demise of sugar.

"For the longest while we want some beautification ... several groups have tried, but the authorities need to come on board to assist. The town needs regulation," said Calvin Seivwright, an outspoken resident of Clark's Town. "The aesthetics of the town could use a massive facelift."

Today, the major landmarks in Clark's Town, which is the birthplace of decorated Olympian Veronica Campbell-Brown, remain its most distinguished feature.

Buildings such as the primary school, which was started by the Anglican Church in 1832; the St Michael's Church, which was built in 1843; the Long Pond Sugar Factory; and the Hyde Hall Great House are still viewed with admiration.

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