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Bournemouth Bath to host new entertainment complex

Published:Monday | May 15, 2017 | 12:00 AMLivingston Scott
Rehabilitation work started on the Bournemouth pool in East Kingston.

East Kingston businessman Leonard Green recently revealed an ambitious multimillion-dollar plan to redevelop the Bournemouth Bath Pool facility into an arts, entertainment and sports complex.

"In five years' time, Bournemouth will be the centre of entertainment in Kingston, and probably Jamaica. If Bournemouth doesn't regain its position as the top entertainment centre, then we probably would have failed," he told The Gleaner.

Bournemouth has a rich history of hosting parties and other entertainment events in earlier times, but in recent years, the focus switched solely to pool activities. However, that by itself failed to generate funds needed for the upkeep of facility, and the lack of regular activities caused the building to be neglected, vandalised and looted. Now, Green is confident this new approach will turn the famous pool into a major entertainment attraction again. These new attractions include restaurants, an amphitheatre, a boardwalk and an open area to relax and lyme.

"The architectural drawing is done. We are to end up with three restaurants. The one on the roof will be a little upscale and the one around the amphitheatre will be a yard restaurant where you get your fry sprat, bammy, other fishes, and regular Jamaican food, and bar offerings ... and we want to set up the area where boats come in. We are also doing work on the amphitheatre, we finished the conference room and the bathrooms are almost finished. We are working on a two-year timeline," he said.

Green believes Jamaica is losing its cultural heritage and music to foreigners and hope Bournemouth complex can be a place where locals can rediscover the vintage Jamaican experience, and where musicians and others can express themselves in authentic forms.

According to Green, "The guys that do entertainment now are struggling with the offers and number of facilities, and we (natives) cannot even find a good place in Jamaica to listen and enjoy reggae music. We will create a stage and amphitheatre and showcase on a monthly basis basic indigenous Jamaican expressions. We believe there has to be a real long look at our culture and music and how we can market it, and how to get the Government to support initiatives like the one at Bournemouth."