2012 Appeal

2012 Appeal for contributions to write your own history of Carriacou.

I see the Carriacou 1968 website as an opportunity for the history of Carriacou to be written through the eyes of ‘ordinary’ people.
I would like to appeal to anyone with anecdotes, memories, photos, videos, poems, music or anything else of interest from Carriacou in the 1960’s (or any other decade) to send them to make up a body of knowledge that could become a history of the island from your perspective.
History is not just about politicians and government, it’s about everyday living, customs and traditions. It’s about keeping alive the things we value. Anyone and everyone who lived, or knows people who lived, in Carriacou will have something of interest to say.
So, if anyone would like to contribute all you need do is:

Just post using the contact box at the bottom of this page and I’ll put it up for you in your name or anonymously (as you wish).

Finally, Best wishes to you all for 2012.


67 Responses to 2012 Appeal

  1. Henry "Hank" Tonnmacher says:


    Just getting into your web site for the first time so thought I would get on board now. I moved to Carriacou in 1974 to teach Oceanography at Camp Carriacou. In 1975 Linton Rigg drove me to the Carriacou airport to catch a plane to Grenada so I could sail to St. Maarten on the barque Dana. I left St. Maarten in 1977 to work in St. Croix and have been here ever since. More later.

  2. Nancy Dutaud says:

    Hello Bill,

    I am a repeat visitor to Carriacou and I’m presently here on a long term stay.
    I’m looking for information regarding Camp Carriacou. Almost all of the online entries are very dated with little to no information about it’s history. From what I’ve been able to gather, it appears Canada had an influence and it’s origins were charity based. Do you have any information about who currently owns this property and is there still some connection with a Marine School? I also wonder if there is an association with Camp Kayak.
    I would value any thing you could add to this.
    Thank you,
    Nancy Dutaud

    • Bill Cameron says:

      Hi Nancy,
      Thank you for writing in with your query. I don’t have any solid information for you re- Camp Carriacou. Sorry. N.B. If anyone reading this comment can assist please write in. Thank you.

    • Barb Hildebrandt says:

      Camp Carriacou was started by a Swiss Canadian who had two other private secondary schools – one in Lausanne and another in Toronto. All three provided an accredited Canadian High School diplomas, with each location having its specialty – Lausanne for the humanities and Carriacou for marine biology/environmental science. Students could spend a semester or year at different locations and still graduate with a Canadian HS diploma. My husband and I taught/lived there 1977-79 and had an amazing time. We returned to Canada the year before the coup and heard the camp closed after that. I’ve never been back but planning a trip in the next few years. Sounds like much has changed. The people were warm and welcoming – I’m sure that’s still the same.

      • Bill Cameron says:

        Thank you for your comment Barb. I’ll try and make sure Nancy gets the information. Best, Bill

      • John Dolin says:

        I was a 17 year old student during Barb’s last semester at CJC in Carriacou. Barb was the world’s greatest chemistry teacher, so much fun I cannot tell you. What a phenomenal year . The kids who attended were so fortunate (and slightly out of control.)

      • Bill Cameron says:

        Thanks John. I hope Barb sees your comments.

      • Mike Beverley says:

        Somewhere around 1975 I was sent to Carriacou by the Ontario Ministry of Education as the school inspector! In those days all private schools that gave credits had to be inspected. I believe it was the only Ontario school that offered a Gd 12 credit in Marine Biology. It was a pleasure to recommend its approval. The principal at the time was Bill Allison. A good administrator, and a highly competent scuba instructor. Students who went there, in my opinion, had a great experience.

      • Bill Cameron says:

        Hi Mike, Thank you for your comments. I’m sure the students would agree with your conclusions.

  3. Baz Van Riet says:

    Barb, is *almost* right. My Dad is actually from Belgium, not Switzerland 😉 It’s also important to point out that while not in the forefront – my Dad was tthe charismatic and a very good “salesman” – my Mom (Lorraine) was 50% of the schools initial success and worked just as hard, if not harder than Bill Van Riet..She was also 100% NOT responsible for the schools demise.

    There were no charities connected to CC, or Canadian Junior College for that matter.

    I still remember the first time we pulled up to Manchioneel Bay in a chartered 26′ power cruiser from Grand Anse with the British Chap (Malcolm) who had the property for sale. I’m guessing this was around circa 73-74.I don’t think my Dad even knew exactly what he wanted to do with the place at first. The result of course, was an experience that too few ever got to experience, or will get to experience in the future.

  4. gavin kennedy says:

    I went to the Marine biology course in the summer 1974 and turned 18 while I was there . It was one of the most challenging and fun courses i have ever taken. The island is burned into my memory as well as some of the “jack” that was sampled with the guys playing dominos down by the boats…..ha,ha

    • Bill Cameron says:

      Thanks Gavin. It sounds like CC provided great experiences and wonderful memories of Carriacou. It seems such a pity that it folded. I’d be interested to know a bit more about the courses that were run there. Thanks again for writing in. Cheers, Bill

    • Ian Cardarelli says:

      Hello Gavin, I remember that summer very well. What a great month we had.
      I wen’t back in 1996 bare boating from Martinique. We spent a couple of nights moored in Tyrel bay. We tried to sail around the south side of Carriacou but were not able to get close to the shoreline to see the old camp. 40 years ago this summer.

  5. Rick Welsford says:

    Hi. I was a student the very first summer the camp opened. Enjoyed every part of every day from the plane trip down from Toronto to the reunion held at our house only a couple weeks after we arrived back in Canada. Did well with the courses. Drank a few beers. Great diving. Made some very good friends that remain close today. One of them is my wife Barb. Looking forward to visiting again beginning this Saturday (March 9-16) . Yup, I will be taking pictures to share. Cheers. PS Can be found either on the small white Canadian ketch named Lizzy Belle or searching for the remains of the Mermaid Hotel.

  6. Al Verwey says:


    I’ve enjoyed reading your blog and reminiscing. In the summer of 1972, I attended Camp Carriacou while my older sister did the Marine Biology course there. We were able to stay for 9 weeks because my mother was the camp nurse in exchange for my sister and I being able to attend for free. There was no way our family could have afforded it at the time otherwise. All of the other kids were from wealthy families, some of whom attended the CJC facility in Lausanne during the school year and others from private schools around Toronto.

    I have fond memories of the scuba diving, sailing on the two 47-foot catamarans, trying “white lightning” for the first time, Sandy Island, boiled pork with long black hairs sticking out of each chunk, the bliss of the trips to Grenada where we were able to have a swim in the fresh water pool and many more experiences.

  7. Rick Welsford says:

    Have to add to Al Verwey’s comment. His mom saved me from a terminal sore throat but more importantly my Barb was the one that fell down the incomplete backfilling around the cafeteria foundation and was airlifted to Barbados for hospitalization. She arrived back a week later with her mom (my future mother-in-law) who I fell in love with first. We all arrived while the camp was still under final construction and there were a few problems. The other most memorable one was the fresh water reserves were not yet fully charged and after a few days showers were shut down for the balance of the summer. So, regardless of the event , when it rained class was dismissed for a quick scrub. Yup hairy pork is another good memory. Good times…wish I was 18 again.

  8. Rick Welsford says:

    Have a picture of the whole gang if I knew how to share it with you.

    • Bill Cameron says:

      What I suggest Rick is you email the picture to me at wilcam1@googlemail.com and I can load it up on to the site if you wish. I will ask the tech adviser (son) if there is a more direct way to send images when he returns from his snowboard venture. Catch you later. Cheers Bill

  9. Glenn Petersen says:

    Hi Bill. Cool to read various people’s recollections of Camp Carriacou. I attended the school in 1976 and it was the most fantastic experience. It was a wonderful, rustic island environment with great academics and the chance to learn to dive and study marine life. We had large aquariums and marine holding tanks. Fishermen used to come to the dock selling their day’s catch. One day they had a small hawksbill turtle. a few of us pooled our pennies and bought it to release. Unfortunately it died in the holding tank that night before we were able to. I still have the beautiful shell to remind me. The adventures on Carriacou instilled a travel bug in me which has never been fully satisfied. What is very exciting for me is that I leave with my family today to go back for the first time since then. I’m quite curious to see what has changed, and what hopefully hasn’t. Great blog. Thanks!

    • Bill Cameron says:

      Excellent comment Glenn. Thank you. It seems like there are quite a few ex CC students are returning. I hope you have a wonderful time with your family. Maybe you could let us know what you think has changed!!! Cheers Bill

  10. Brian Boudreau says:

    Hi Bill,
    I attended camp cariacou in 1976 and it was the most ispiring time of my life.

  11. Glenn Petersen says:

    Hi Bill. Had an absolutely wonderful trip back to Carriacou in March. The six days just disappeared. I was welcomed back like a long lost son by any Carriacouians I met and told of my past stay. So fantastic. I had great visits in Belmont with two ex-CC staff, Lenny and Enid. Shared stories and even a little Jack with Lenny. Late seventies and going strong. Went diving in the new Marine Reserve stretching down from Sandy Island and it was fabulous, especially Whirlpool and The Sisters.

    So what for me changed in Carriacou since 1976? Better roads (many now concrete), more vehicles, widespread electrical power, more bigger houses, more tourism (but not to the point of being detrimental), ATMs and lots of cell phones. Population not much different, but there are more internationals today. What is great is how the friendliness and feeling of the island seems so much the same.

    Camp Carriacou itself has unfortunately seen much better times. From what I could gather, CC was taken over by the government after the school closed. It became a military base “Camp Carriacou” until the 1983 Operation Urgent Fury invasion. It then attempted life as a tourist operation; apparently a “Chris” from England purchased the property. It was used for many local functions in terms of weddings and graduations. Various stories had it ceasing operations around 1995 or continuing to be used sometimes up to 2004. However it apparently became quite rundown with perhaps many items borrowed for use elsewhere before 2004 when Hurricane Ivan hit it full on and “smash it down”. Sad to see it like that, but there were many beautiful views still and glimpses of the CC that was. White Island front and centre like the jewel it is. Didn’t make it to White this visit. That will help bring me back. Strongly recommend the trip down memory lane for all who can. Btw, I have some photos if you have a way of posting them to the site. Cheers. Glenn

  12. Glenn Petersen says:

    Original comment above first published on 19/07/2013

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