Roy Departed This Life
The BVI has
lost one of its pioneers and one of the most outstanding figures of the old
days. Born James Rowan Scott Roy to parents Christine Scott Roy and William
Campbell Roy on 27th December, 1925 in St. Thomas, his birth took
place in Charlotte Amalie because the 1924 hurricane had destroyed the Cottage
parents had moved to Tortola in 1919, and later bought Pasea Hall and Fahie Hill
Estates from the Crown. Mr. Roy began his studies in Road Town and 1936 his
parents sent him to
School in Perthshire, Scotland. After spending four years abroad Mr. Roy
returned in 1940, but due to the Battle of Britain in World War II, the same
year his parents sent him to Lakefield Preparatory School in Lakefield Ontario,
Canada where he completed his education.
Lakefield, the young entrepreneur spent the next four years studying at the
Ontario College of Art in Toronto, Canada. He majored and completed courses in
Fine Arts and Commercial Arts.
It was while in
Canada that Mr. Roy met his wife Anne, and in 1952 after his father's death he
returned to Tortola and resided here ever since.
Anne and Rowan
were married November 21st, 1953 and together they managed Pasea
Hall Estate. Mr. Roy designed and built Treasure Isle Hotel for his brother
Charles Lambert Roy. The hotel started with four double rooms, a bar,
restaurant and the hotel lounge.
In 1964 the
entire family decided to purchase Treasure Isle from Charles, and after the
sale had taken place Charles, Mr. Roy's brother moved to Virgin Gorda. The young
couple managed the hotel until 1968 when the property was sold to Herbert
Showering of England.
As an amateur
radio operator between 1955 and 1965, Mr. Roy gave weather reports every morning
on the Antilles Weather network which was the only weather source in those days.
He later became involved in various business practices mainly in the
construction field until he retired in 2002. The well known contactor designed
and built Tortola Yacht Services in its original form near Fort Burt, his own
home at Hodges Creek along with his brother William Campbell Roy’s house on the
same hill and Sir Alan Cobham's home, and a number of other buildings and
structures in Road Town and else where.
Mr. Roy was
also associated with the Moorings Ltd around the same time Tortola Woodcrafts
went up for sale, so he purchased and managed Tortola Woodcrafts for about six
to seven years. He built furniture for the community and his store Tortola
Woodcrafts became well known for its work.
served on the Public Service Commission for over five years during the 1960s and
70s he was a founding member of the National Parks Trusts, and a member of Land
Development Control Authority for approximately five years during the 1980s,
when he also served as Chairman for two years. Mr. Roy was the first chairman of
the BVI Hotels Association before the formation of the BVI Hotels & Commerce
Association. He was a member of the Rotary Club, and became a Paul Harris fellow
and was president of Rotary in 1976- 1977.
Rowan Roy was
well known in the community for his impressive shell collection and for his
untiring efforts to complete BVI Bird data information every year. He began
collecting BVI seashells in 1953 and his collection has been displayed twice in
the Central Administration Building – November 2001 and August 2003. His
collection is comprised of approximately 400 species of shells from the BVI and
another 300 species from the Caribbean and oceans of the world. In recent years
he worked on a book on BVI shells. He compiled the bird species check list for
the National Parks Trust in 1995. Mr. Roy has chaired under the auspices of the
Audubon Society in the Christmas Bird Count since 1989.
service of the late Rowan Roy will be held at the St. George's Episcopal Church
at 3:00 pm on Monday the 10 January.
Management and Staff of The Island Sun newspaper extend sincere condolences to
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