Lights and decorations might not be up in abundance this year, but for 10 residents of Haynesville, St. James and Gall Hill, Christ Church, it might have well been the case that Christmas came early today.
The five in Haynesville – the longest of whom has been in the area about almost 30 years – were presented with their conveyances declaring them officially the owners of their housing units by the National Housing Corporation and MP for the area Donville Inniss.
For Norma Blackman of unit 17D born on December 25, it was an early birthday and Christmas gift.
The woman who could only recall that she moved into the area in the 1980s when the Barbados Labour Party was still in Government, said she was the first person to move into block D and was extremely happy to receive her conveyance from Inniss and Acting Deputy General Manager Garvey Alleyne.
Equally happy and grateful was Dianna Sealy of unit 14H, who recalled moving in January of 1986.
“It was really different back then. All de time you used to hear fights and see people running through here. At de top there had some old cars and people used to get beat bloody there. It has changed so much. This neighbourhood is now one you want to live in and I am proud to live in,” said Sealy.
She told Acting General Manager of the NHC, Lanette Napoleon-Young, that her official ownership of the property would cut down on what she used to pay in rent, considering that times were hard.
This morning, Hazel Bostic of 14F was the first one to receive her deeds, which Inniss explained were being given to those who were paid up in full on their rents and had been living in the units for 20 or more years.
He explained that there were about 200 residents in the areas who would qualify under the programme.
Bostic had been living in the area since March 1987, while Gaberline Forde of 18D, a former NHC employee himself, received his deeds after living there for 21 years, and Sophia Williams, receiving on behalf of her mother Lorna Williams of 20G.
MP for Christ Church West Central Stephen Lashley also presented conveyances to Donnah Atherley, Ivan Greenidge, Hazeline Nurse, Patricia Burke and Elsa and Shirleen Brathwaite in Gall Hill. (LB)