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  • The Government has allocated $32 million to the restoration of the Ward Theatre as one of the ‘Jamaica 55’ legacy projects.
  • The restoration project is being undertaken by the Ministry in collaboration with the Kingston and St. Andrew Municipal Corporation.
  • “By August, the facility will be restored to a level that it can be utilised for events and will play an important role in the commemoration of the anniversary of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designating Kingston a ‘Creative Music City’,” Ms. Grange said.

The Government has allocated $32 million to the restoration of the Ward Theatre as one of the ‘Jamaica 55’ legacy projects.

Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Hon. Olivia Grange, made the announcement during her contribution to the 2017/18 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on Tuesday, May 30.

The restoration project is being undertaken by the Ministry in collaboration with the Kingston and St. Andrew Municipal Corporation.

Work to restore the building, constructed in 1912, commenced on May 23 as one of the National Labour Day projects.

This included repairs to the changing room and 13 bathrooms at the facility, as well as exterior and interior painting, fumigating and plumbing.

“By August, the facility will be restored to a level that it can be utilised for events and will play an important role in the commemoration of the anniversary of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designating Kingston a ‘Creative Music City’,” Ms. Grange said.

Kingston was designated a Creative City of Music by UNESCO in 2015.

Meanwhile, Ms. Grange said the Ministry will be seeking to capitalise on the Blue and John Crow Mountains World Heritage Site.

On June 8, the third and final gateway sign to the area will be unveiled in Port Morant, St. Thomas.

The move forms part of a strategic marketing campaign to raise the heritage profile of communities in which the signs are located.

Gateway signs in Papine and Port Antonio, as major access points to the area, were unveiled in 2016.  Ms. Grange anticipates that the programme will facilitate increased tourism traffic at the World Heritage Site.

The Blue and John Crow Mountains was inscribed on UNESCO’s prestigious World Heritage list in 2015.

A nomination file has been submitted to inscribe ‘Reggae Music of Jamaica’ to the UNESCO representative list of Intangible Cultural Heritage for Humanity.