Gregg Farm Plantation House, Gregg Farm, St. Andrew, Barbados Pocket Guide


The architectural landscape of Barbados today is quite different from what was once the case in colonial years gone by. Along with plantation houses, the island was predominantly littered with chattel houses. These houses were built in the most convenient way as the main purpose of these structures was to allow plantation workers an ease of relocation from one plantation to another, should the need arise. As such, chattel houses in Barbados were built on rocks or blocks and in some instances appeared dangerously set in place due to a lack of solid foundation.


The architectural impact that subsequently surrounded the chattel house was quite significant. Heavy rains and high winds associated with the hurricane season were kept at bay as a result of the highly pitched corrugated roof. Strong midday heat was also kept at bay as a result of affixed shutters to the windows. Further character was added to the chattel house by way of jalousie windows, open verandahs and ornamental designs carved in the wood.


Traditionally, chattel houses were painted in rather dull colours such as brown, beige or white. These days, a wave of vibrancy has stepped in that has seen chattel houses across Barbados being painted in some of the most colourful selections found on any colour chart.


Historic Homes

An island filled with such history that dates back centuries ago is bound to have some aspect of that history still standing. Such history can be seen in the very historic homes that still grace the island. As you can imagine, a great number of age is associated with these homes as many of them were built in the 17th and 18th centuries. Many of them have been refurbished and brought back to as close to the original state as possible.


The now historic homes that once belonged to plantation owners were built after the British arrived in Barbados in 1625. Many of these now historic homes were built with Jacobean and Georgian styles while the modest chattel houses  inhabited by slaves were built of wooden structures set on blocks which aided in easy movement from one plantation to another.


A great amount of thought went into the construction of these historic homes as they were all built with the awareness that the island of Barbados sits in a hurricane belt. As a result their walls were thick, their roofs highly pitched and designed in a four hip style to shift the raging winds and hoods and shutters attached to the windows to shield strong winds and rains throughout the passage of tropical storms.


Barbados National Trust Open House Programme

Visitors to the island of Barbados and locals are given an opportunity to view many of the historic homes on the island as the Barbados National Trust hosts its Open House Programme. This programme runs from January to April and showcases some of the most exquisite historic homes Barbados has to offer. The showcasing of these homes is not just about history but also about socialising on the grounds.


Further information on the Barbados National Trust Open House Programme can be sourced by contacting them at (246) 426-2421, (246) 436-9033, email address: .


For further information on the Barbados National Trust Open House Programme, click here.


Modern Homes

In recent years, the design of homes across Barbados have taken on a rather interesting architectural appearance as modern-day architects have felt the need to freely express themselves along with their client's needs at the time of design.


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