Thanks to the leadership of the Commonwealth Games Association in Turks and Caicos the Trust visited both Providenciales and Grand Turk as part of their first visit to the UK Overseas Territory. Deputy Premier and Minister for Sport The Hon Akierra Missick welcomed the Trust and committed the government to completing 4 Commonwealth Walkways including North and South Turk too.
Mrs Edith Cox, Treasurer of the Turks and Caicos CGA, Mr Alvirto Smith, President of the Turks and Caicos CGA, Mr Hugo Vickers, Chairman of the Outdoor Trust, The Hon Akierra Missick, Deputy Premier of the Turks and Caicos Islands, Mrs Judith Robinson, Director of Sport and Mrs Rita Gardiner, Secretary General of the Turks and Caicos Commonwealth Games Association.
The Trust has drafted a 10km potential route for the island of Providenciales linking many of the resort hotels along the Bight Road and connecting back along the beach, voted recently as number one in the world. It was a joy to walk though tempting to also swim regularly too.
Alvirto Smith, President of the Turks and Caicos Commonwealth Games Association said "Without leaps of imagination or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all is a form of planning, and to have the initial agreement in place with key partners in the Turks and Caicos Islands, has given us hope that the Commonwealth Walkway will be established here in the TCI. We look forward to the installation of such a jewel to aid in the promotion of Health and Wellness and the promotion of our culture and heritage throughout the world".
Rita Gardiner, Secretary General, CGA said "On behalf of the Commonwealth Games of the Turks and Caicos, we take this opportunity to thank Jim Walker and Hugo Vickers for coming to the country and including our Association in this most prestigious project. We are so proud to be associated with the Commonwealth Walkway project and I can assure you that we will take this project forward with the support of the TCI Government who have already endorsed this joint venture and described it as a wonderful partnership and a long term initiative for the citizens and visitors alike to promote good health, awareness of our environment and at the same time celebrate the Queen's reign of 65 years".
When visiting Grand Turk the Trust met up with enthusiastic students from the HJ Robinson High School who suggested some of the key points that should be included in the Walkway around their town. The Trust went on to meet helpful staff at the museum, the Legislative Assembly building and at the local radio Station before also visiting Waterloo, the Governor's Office. Dave Moore, Head of The Governor's Office, leant his support to the initiative and met the Trust in the absence of the Governor who was overseas at the time.
The Trust presented the Minister with the first marker for the Grand Turk Commonwealth Walkway, the Capital of Turks and Caicos. We look forward to returning soon to celebrate getting it in the ground and planning the other routes.
Our special thanks to Rita Gardiner for organising such an amazing trip for us and securing so much support for the project. It has been a typically friendly welcome from the Islands and we are pleased to now be able to promote the Turks and Caicos as part of the Commonwealth Walkway family.