Downtown kiosks get new life

As part of Cayman’s Quincentennial celebrations of 2003, fives kiosks meant to document architectural advancements in Cayman over each century since the Islands’ discovery, were built between Scotia Bank and the Courts Office.


Four Kiosks downtown depict Cayman’s architectural advancement over 500 years. Photo: Stuart Wilson

Afterward, the small, roofed booths were used as a craft market, but that had to be scrapped after the passing of Hurricane Ivan in September 2004. According to organisers of the craft market, the huts were damaged severely during the storm and as a result there are only four kiosks remaining. They said the former Tourism Minister Charles Clifford made the decision to remove the fifth kiosk.

However, with the help of the Ministry of Tourism, craft market founder and Director Jean Eric Smith said the restoration of the kiosks is under way and explained that the structure depicting a thatch house was already refurbished.

The fifth kiosk is expected to be replaced during the refurbishment.

‘This park, along with Heroes Square is something we should be taking better care of, as it is a tribute to our past,’ said Mr. Smith.

Hair braiding is offered at the location on some days, while food can be found during the lunch hours on a daily basis.

The food vendor service is run by East Ender Don McLaughlin.

People, who have lived in Cayman long enough, will remember food being offered under the guinep tree that used to grace the Courts Office grounds before the Quincentennial Celebrations and subsequent procurement of Heroes Square.

Mr. McLaughlin has been exempt from paying rent; however he may have to do so eventually.

An extension of the craft market is said to be set to return to the location, as a means of providing a cultural offering to tourists on both sides of George Town and at that time all of those occupying the kiosks will be charged rent, according to Mr. Smith.

He said despite the lack of cooperation regarding parking by the Courts Office, plans were still under way to reinstitute the craft market.

Cayman celebrated 500 hundred years of recorded history in 2003, to mark the discovery of the Islands in 1503 by Christopher Columbus.