NIA (May 18, 2016) – The Nevis Historical and Conservation Society (NHCS) in collaboration with the Ministries of Tourism and Agriculture, on Wednesday May 18, commemorated International Museum Day with a tour of the historical New River Estate on the island’s east coast.

The theme for this year’s International Museum Day is “Museums and Cultural Landscapes.” The objective is to raise awareness of the importance of museums as an avenue of cultural exchange, cultural enrichment and aiding in the development of mutual understanding, cooperation and peace among people.

The tour was open to students, members of the Senior Citizens Group from the Ministry of Social Development’s Seniors Unit and the members of the NHCS. The event also formed part of the Ministry of Tourism’s first Exposition Nevis, a month of activities designed to draw awareness to the island’s tourism product which forms an integral part of the island’s economy.

During the opening ceremony, Product Development Officer at the Ministry of Tourism, Nicole Liburd spoke to the importance of recognising International Museum Day on Nevis and the reason for the tour.

“This gives consideration to the fact that museums are an important part of our cultural exchange, our heritage, our enrichment and the development of cultures…

“I am going to encourage as much persons as possible…to visit all three museums and have a good feeling of what each museum has to offer,” she said.

Liburd noted that International Museum Day was established by the International Council of Museums (ICOM) in 1977, to unify the creative aspirations and efforts of the museums and to draw greater attention to the services museums provide.

The Tourism official also encouraged persons to familiarise themselves with the history of the estate.

“I encourage you to get as much information, New River is a fantastic site, so much of our history and heritage is tied to it as part of the last operating mill,” she stated.

The ceremony, which was chaired by member of the NHCS Board Shefton Liburd, also included a dramatic presentation by Adela Meade depicting a day in the life of a slave at the New River Estate.

Following the ceremony, the tour was conducted by Theodore Kelly, one of the last individuals to see the sugar mill in operation before the end of sugar production in 1958.