29 June, 2007

Dolphin Prison

Betrayed. We now begin to see why Chief Minister Osborne Fleming was able so confidently to announce at the Park on Anguilla Day that the Dolphin Fantaseas facility was not going to be allowed to be constructed on the Mariners property at Sandy Ground. We all mistakenly assumed that he had developed principles. He had, we thought, at last got a social conscience. There had been so many public protests at the planned relocation of the dolphinarium from Barnes Bay to Sandy Ground.

Anguilla Dolphin

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The Planning Department had earlier given permission for the relocation. This had been done in the face of warnings from the Anguilla National Trust. It was already under construction by the Mexicans. Retired Chief Minister, Sir Emile Gumbs, and opposition member the Hon Eddison Baird, had teamed up to oppose the move. They held meetings with Osborne, even as the Mexicans beavered away at Sandy Ground building the proposed new facility.

But, the Chief Minister was not going to allow the dolphin prison to pollute the beach at Sandy Ground.

He had taken a stand. They were going to have to close up shop and move back to Mexico. So we hoped. How wrong we were, we now know.

Word has just reached me that the dolphin people have been given official permission to construct their new dolphin facility at the Sandy Point to the west of Blowing Point village.

Generations of Anguillians accustomed to using the location for family picnics and safe swimming will now find their access blocked. The planned facility will not make a nice adjunct to the million dollar homes that have gone up to the lee of the Sandy Point. It is almost certain that they will be impacted adversely. In any other country, there would be an immediate application to the High Court for an injunction. The grounds? There has been no environmental impact study, as required by planning. There has been no consultation with the public, as would be normal before such a major development was put down in a residential neighbourhood. Besides, this facility would constitute what the lawyers call a nuisance. The neighbours will be concerned that they are going to be harmed in the enjoyment of their premises. That is not allowed. Not even when government gives permission. A rash and impulsive permission, offered as a sort of bribe. A craven and secret permission, given in the dead of night. A promise in exchange for the Mexicans moving quietly and without protest away from their intended development at Sandy Ground. And, all just to shut up Eddie and Emile.

Are you, look a wuk!


  1. Not only is it unfair for the residents abutting the proposed new site, I also feel sorry for the dolphins.

    Just look at the surface of the water in the video clip; the bubbles don't even break! That water mustn't be very clean, even though one supposes the tanks are open to the ocean to allow fresh water to filter through. What qualified entity checks on the dolphins to see that they are treated humanely?

  2. The water in the dolphin prison used to be tested by the water lab at Environmental Health, but as has been noted earlier on this blog we no longer have a functioning water lab and the reasons for this are a State Secret.

  3. Eddie Baird said that dolphin poop from the proposed pen at Sandy Ground will be swept north along the shore line "and many people will die." Let us now see if he cares as much about the people of Blowing Point, who don't vote in his district.

  4. Talking about dolphin prison?
    The inmates of Her Majesty's prison have a problem with clean water too.
    Police thought it smart to drop some teargas to agrivate matters some more.
    Feeling is believing.

  5. I have just heard this morning (Saturday 7 July) on the local news of Heartbeat Radio that there will be a public meeting about the DOLPHINS and relocating to Sandy Point on TUESDAY, July 10th at 7pm, at Kirkleys Place.( Where is that? Does anyone know?) The radio said that the Government of Anguilla will have a person there recording the meeting.

    There will also be a discussion about another Chinese fast food (yuck!) place at the corner of Rendezvous Hotel turn off there on the main road.

  6. Did you read in the Herald that the Dolphinarium has been told to get an EIA done by the LDCC? This is further to the community meeting at Blowing Point. The management thinks the EIA should be ready within a week. They hope for a response / approval to move their show to Blowing Point soon (till then they remain at Barnes Bay). They say that if Blowing Point is rejected they will pull out of AXA.


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