Simultaneous to the visit of Britain’s Prince Harry to Jamaica, in St. Kitts, a royal couple delivered sentiments from Queen Elizabeth II on the occasion of her Diamond Jubilee and 60th year of reign.
While her grandson tested his mettle against Usain Bolt, the fastest man on earth, her youngest son and his wife, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, Prince Edward and Princess Sophie visited the former British colony in the eastern Caribbean.
Greeted by the twin-island federation’s Governor General, Sir Cuthbert Sebastian, and Prime Minister, Dr. Denzil L. Douglas, the royal pair toured historic sites including Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park.
A cultural performance brought to life the island’s heritage with a calypso rendition composed specifically for the Queen’s jubilee celebration.
Hundreds of visitors and nationals gathered to watch the royal couple.
In Jamaica, Prince Harry honored his challenge to the Olympic sprinter and technically beat him twice at his race. In actuality, Bolt yielded to the crown prince when an ignored false start allowed him to forge ahead as Bolt watched, laughed and clapped the young monarch.
During a second attempt, Bolt coasted slowly allowing the prince victory and at least a story for the BBC to tout in his homeland. The prince also visited the headquarters of the Jamaica Constabulary Forces, the Victoria Jubilee Hospital (named for Queen Victoria) and King’s House, the residency of the — governor general — the queen’s representative on the island.
Later this month in St. Kitts, travelers and residents will have the opportunity to witness the re-enactment of the famous 1782 Great Siege of Brimstone Hill. On March 29 and 30, the British Soldiers Fund and the Brimstone Brigade re-enactors from Massachusetts will join with select local residents to recreate the historic battle.
The event will be open to the public and staged twice daily at 11:00 am and 2:00 pm for a total of four performances.
Dressed in period regalia, they will use real weaponry, including authentic muskets and bayonets, to stage the battle for maximum dramatic effect. In the actual battle, the French forces attacked St. Kitts with 8,000 soldiers and 31 warships, forcing local militia to retreat to Brimstone Hill Fortress where with the garrison (altogether numbering less than 1,000) held out for four weeks of heavy artillery fire before they surrendered.
On the evening of March 30, the group will also re-enact a capture of high-ranking French officers by the St. Christopher Corps of Embodied Slaves.