Farm Roads in Manchester and St. Elizabeth to Be Repaired

Photo: Rudranath Fraser Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. J.C. Hutchinson, takes a picture of the Bakers Common to Halifax farm road in Manchester, during his tour of the roads on January 24.

Story Highlights

  • Almost 19 kilometres of farm roads are to be repaired in Manchester and St. Elizabeth between now and March 26 this year, at a cost of $81 million.
  • “The Ministry recognises the urgent need of the farmers to move their produce from the field to the market. We are committed to fixing the roads, because it lessens the cost of transportation to farmers, thereby decreasing the cost of production and ensuring a more profitable operation for them,” he said.
  • The roads include Brandon Hill, Chudleigh Path, St. Toolies, Reckford and Alvie. In St. Elizabeth those to be repaired include Delightful, Thatchwalk, Phantiland, Spring Park and Hodges.

Almost 19 kilometres of farm roads are to be repaired in Manchester and St. Elizabeth between now and March 26 this year, at a cost of $81 million.

This was noted by Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. J.C. Hutchinson, after he toured some of the roads on Wednesday, January 24.

“The Ministry recognises the urgent need of the farmers to move their produce from the field to the market. We are committed to fixing the roads, because it lessens the cost of transportation to farmers, thereby decreasing the cost of production and ensuring a more profitable operation for them,” he said.

In Manchester, Mr. Hutchinson and a team of officers from the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA), toured some of the roads to be repaired and bushed.

The roads include Brandon Hill, Chudleigh Path, St. Toolies, Reckford and Alvie. In St. Elizabeth those to be repaired include Delightful, Thatchwalk, Phantiland, Spring Park and Hodges.

The Minister stressed that not all the affected roads would be fixed in the current budget, and the Ministry will continue the work in the next financial year.

“Between now and March 26, we are looking at fixing 6.7 kilometres of farm roads in St. Elizabeth at a cost of $34 million and 12 kilometres in Manchester at a cost of $47 million. These parishes are the main producing parishes in the island,” he said.

The Minister also noted that there are several farm roads in other parishes to be rehabilitated by March 26, but final costings have not been arrived at as yet.

Farmers in the Over River community of Chudleigh Path, Manchester, who were reaping a bumper crop of carrots, told the Minister that they are very happy to hear about the proposed work on the roads.

“We are facing difficulties, so we are thankful for it,” said Alvia Wilson of Chudleigh Path.

The farm-road tour in the areas selected was in response to a number of requests from some farmers’ groups as well as the local RADA extension officers who work in the various areas.

“We will continue to address these requests as funds become available. These farm roads are in some of the most productive areas in these parishes, and by rehabilitating the roads, we will allow farmers to increase production and productivity,” Mr. Hutchinson said.

During the tour, the Minister also held discussions with farmers, emphasising the need for them to treat agriculture as a business.

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