Ministry of Local Government & Community Development

Ministry of Local Government
& Community Development

Government of Jamaica

Local Authority

Westmoreland Parish Council

Westmoreland was founded in 1703, and was most likely so named because it is the western most parish on the island. The parish boasts rain-fed fertile soils and low relief, well suited for sugar cane. The topography consists mainly of hills and slopes of moderate elevation. The remaining quarter of the parish consists of low lying alluvial plains and some 10,000 - 12,000 acres of wetlands.

Savanna-la-Mar is the capital town of Westmoreland. It was developed as a port from which sugar was exported and dates back to around 1730. The Spanish name Savanna-la-mar means "Plain by the sea" refers to its immediate environment. The port was built at the end of a straight road that runs perpendicular to the coastline. The road was flanked by flat mangrove swamps, which limited the lateral expansion of the development. The resulting linear development was unlike the many other ribbon-like developments along the coast.

The town of Frome is located some 5 miles away from Savanna-la-Mar, and boasts one of the few remaining sugar factories in the country. Unfortunately exporting activities at the Savanna-la-Mar port ceased in 1985 and sugar is now exported from Ocho Rios. Next to sugar and rum in importance is the cattle industry, which produces dairy and beef. Farming of rice, bananas, coffee, ginger, pimento and honey were also popular in the parish in the mid 1960s.

There has been a decline of the traditional agrarian industries of sugar and cattle over the years. This decline has been largely due to a shift in the local and macro economy from natural resource based industries to the more human resource based one such as tourism and financial services. The parish also produces diverse agricultural products such as sugar cane, cocoa, coconut, coffee, citrus and pimento. The fishing industry in Westmoreland currently ranks second in the island.

CONTACT INFORMATION

Address: Great Georges Street, Savanna-la-Mar, Westmoreland
Telephone: 955-2656, 955-2643
Fax: 955-2797
E-mail: westmorelandpc@mlge.gov.jm

KEY POSITIONS IN WESTMORELAND PARISH COUNCIL

Chairman - Mayor Bertel Moore
Deputy Chairman - Deputy Mayor Danree Delancy
Secretary/Manager - Opal Beharie
Superintendent of Roads & Works - Ezekiel Clarke
Director of Planning - Grace Whittley
Director of Administration - Sonia Glaze
Disaster Coordinator - Hilma Tate