A Gated Men's Club In Barbados

There is an advertisement in today’s Nation Newspaper which is placed by an organization called “The Barbados Chapter of Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International”.

The message in the ad is as follows:

Men only monthly breakfast meeting to be held at the Barbados Yatch Club on Saturday 21 at 8.30a.m. The breakfast fee is $25.00 per person and interested men are asked to contact ten telephone numbers listed in the ad which list some prominent Barbadian men, the likes of Bruce Hennis, John Bourne, Harry Mayers, Anderson Cherry, Leonard Payne, Louis King and others. The guest speaker will be George Clarke, the former Superintendent of Glendairy Prison who will share testimonies about how God has shaped and nudged him throughout his life.

I remember some years ago being invited or some would say an attempt to recruit me to attend this “group” which at the time would meet at the Grand Barbados Hotel on Saturday mornings. My investigation at the time indicated that it was a group that identified what they perceived to be upwardly mobile men using a religious flavour as a basis for growing the organization. I concluded then and I am still of the view that it is an immoral basis for driving any organization when all it is really is a club of prominent business and professional men who use the organization to network to consolidate power and political standing in Barbados. At the time one of the richest men in the Caribbean was a member, do not know if he is still active~Kyffin Simpson.

39 thoughts on “A Gated Men's Club In Barbados


  1. Well I am a member of Full Gospel and

    1 I’m no businessman

    2 I am a member of what is now fashionably called the ‘working poor’

    3 I go to the meetings for the inspirational messages and comradeship

    4 I see nothing wrong with members of all denominations worshiping together

    5 When you talk about it being a gated community, I think you are mixing it up with the so-called lodges and secret societies that abound on the island, and to which politicians, lawyers etc belong for obvious reasons.

    6 Nobody putsa gun to your head or recruits you to go to these meetings. Like everything that deals with the ‘Kingdom of God’, it is a matter of ‘Free
    Will’.

    Brother, the choice is yours

    t


  2. This is recruitment arm for the church in Warrens called the Living room and yes Mr Simpson is the leader of this cult.


  3. Sorry, never heard of a church called ‘The Living Room’ in Warrens. That is not to say it doesn’t exist.
    Like I said all denominations are welcome.
    Never heard of any cult lead by mr Simpson either…sorry


  4. Is the Yacht Club now “all inclusive” and no longer racist???
    Strange how this club now “accepts” us all. Could it be another case of “the colour of the dollars?


  5. The Living Room very definitely exists and Kyffin Simpson is very definitely the leader – in fact if not in name. I don’t think it’s a secret of any sort. Never been though so can’t comment on whether it’s a cult or not. I hear it’s extremely evangelical, and a little odd though.


  6. The biggest curse in Barbados comes from these elitist groups which band together to give one another special favours and to discriminate against ‘outsiders’. Nothing is worst that the Lodges, membership of which is mandatory if one plans to exist here.
    This encourages mediocrity, discourages competition and striving for high standards, and frustrates inovation (in favour of connections).
    I guess that this is the church men’s response to the success of the Lodges…
    Poor Barbados…


  7. This is a very skillful network that takes care of its own once you are within their group, if you take for example the Simpson, R L Mark, Alamac Trading groups which are closely linked to religon and these companies trade among themselves or among those within the same religious grouping, this is nothing new it has been around for somewhile now.


  8. The question for Andrew is can anyone walk in off the street or must one be “recruited”?

    ————————————————
    Well, it so happened that I saw lecture advertised to be delivered at one of these meetings.
    The lecture interested me and a few friends of mine and we decided to go, pay for the breakfast, and attend.
    It was then that I realised that a few of my former school mates, colleagues and acquaintences (of varying financial, business and social standing) were also members.
    I never had trouble fitting in, because I didn’t go to network (I could join a lodge for that), I went to keep in touch with my spiritual side.


  9. Still awaiting a reply…has the Yacht Club denounced its racist past and is now the “accepted” place for blacks to go?
    Or have they now realised the importance of true integration?
    It would be great to hear from them, one of the last bastions of racism in this wonderful country.


  10. It appear to me the bigger the thief you are the further you climb in these organisations printerman and southern plams personel have elevated themselves to high post within the organisational structure. Mark ( non pun intended) my words on this.

  11. Pingback: Al Gore, Rihanna, Owen Arthur, Glitz, Pomp, Ceromony~Barbadians Will Be Bowled Over « Barbados Underground


  12. littleboy~the Yatch Club has had no choice in the present day environment to denounce its racist and prejudice past. BU observation though is that it remains the preserve of the Whites and high Yellows. We get the impression it is a place where the majority of blacks are still made to feel uncomfortable 😡


  13. Sorry to tell you, David, but you are wrong about the Yacht Club. I may have a BROWN skin, but I have seen those much darker in complexion than me enjoying the facilities of the Yacht Club. There is a voting process – you have to be nominated as a new member and you must get at least 50 votes to be eligible. If you don’t know 50 members, then it could present a difficulty, regardless of what colour you are.

    I have noticed from reading this blog that you seem to have a problem with white people. That is sad.


  14. Brown Skin~We are sorry that you feel the way you do simply because at BU we try to challenge some of the status quos which Barbadians have traditionally swept under the carpet. BU have already admited that the system of barring blacks from the gated club of the Yatch Club may have been dismantled but the residual behavior still exist. We know that if the Club is serious it will take time but don’t fool the world that at the Yatch Club all is hunky dory with blacks and whites singing from the same song sheet.

    Now if we don’t like white people because we chose to express this view then we suppose you are right 😐


  15. David, that is not the only view you have expressed with regard to white people, but I’ll let that ride for now.

    Sir Courtney Blackman has stated more than once that it is not true that the whites “control the wealth” in Barbados. Other black Barbadians of high standing have said the same thing. So, tell me, who should we believe – you, or Sir Courtney Blackman? I’m just curious.


  16. Brown Skin~why do you assume that at BU we are not prominent in the society? 🙂

    But to challenge your point why do you assume that at BU and like you we are not entitled to express our view? In all the pieces which we have written on the emotional issues of race, immigration, homosexuality, business and others we have always tried to support with some position. At the end of the day remember that this is a blog which reflects our views.

    On the issue of Sir Courtney our opinion is that he was the creature of a system which allowed him to be successful. At BU we can clearly see that he like others have a vested interest in protecting the status quo. It would destroy his legacy if many of the structures which he built and have now outlived their purpose is dismantled. In other words BU find many of Sir Courtney’s views lacking in credibility and substance.


  17. I’m truly sorry if I hurt your pride. I would never dream of suggesting that you are not prominent in this society! How could I know that, when I don’t even know who you are! But I do know who Sir Courtney Blackman is. I was not trying to put you down (get rid of that chip!). Now I know I’ll get thrown off for this, but since you’re so prominent in society, please brush up on your English grammar.


  18. Brown Sugar~you have provided a good laugh early on this Sunday morn 😆 Your attempt to use a red herring argument has been spotted. We use our blog to communicate not to demonstrate our ability to make grammarians proud 🙂

    The last time we checked you were understanding our broken grammar quite well. Please share your breath of intellect with us if you can humor yourself to step down.


  19. Brown SUGAR?? Oh, how sweet. We really are getting a good laugh in truth! If you mean me, Brown Skin, I hate to tell you, but I’m not one of your Intellectuals and I don’t have to “step down” because I’m already there – I never was “on high”. Furthermore, I have never stated that I don’t UNDERSTAND your broken grammar. Hope we’re still friends.


  20. Brown Skin~sorry about that, put it down to the proverbial fraudlien slip 🙂
    We stated that we enjoy a good tussle so there will never be hard feelings 🙂

    Keep feeding back, we are new at this blogging thing and will tweak if we think it will cause more impact on our readers. From the look at the stats we get quite a few!

    BTW if you want to send us notes on any grammatical errors you spot please email us 🙂


  21. So Brown skin, if you finish with David now…Help me to understand what exactly is so special about white people that someone can’t have a ‘problem’ with them? why would that be sad?
    I would like to really understand your position cause I may be in deep trouble.
    I have problems with all kinds of people… definately including white- so help me


  22. From my own personel experince, the yatch club attitude ain’t only to blacks, its to whites as well. Its class discrimination at its best.


  23. An organization called “The Barbados Chapter of Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International”.
    Was this not the basis of the discussion? Is Mr Simpson not the father of this out-fit?


  24. The commodore of the yacht club – which is basically the chairman of the board – is a black guy. While the history of this, and many other colonial era places/institutions in Barbados, is tarnished with bigotry and racial intolerance, much has improved.

    I’m so tired of hearing people btch and complain about race on these blogs.

    1. We don’t live in the colonial era anymore

    2. The country is run (i.e. Gov’t) and the people are represented by a group of people are that racially and culturally representative of the people

    3. Bajans are free to set up enterprises, own property and enjoy all the other freedoms afforded by democracies.

    So suck it up, leave the past in the past, stop making excuses, and move on…


  25. K~we conceed that maybe the Yatch Club example is not the best example. We know that they have done a lot to dismantle the old system. The food is good and cheap and the atmosphere is also good for business.Many blacks go there to wheel and deal 🙂

    On Sundays we still see a lot of white people on the beach. Maybe it is because it still behaves like a private one 🙂


  26. It’s really that there are a lot of people there on Sundays – they just happen to be white. One cannot expect that a club with such a long history is all of a sudden going to change in demographics to a ratio representative of the population at large. But it is a fantastic place, relatively cheap to join, with a welcoming atmosphere (in my opinion). Often times I am gladdened to hear black people say to me, “you know this place is not so bad, not at all what I expected – I can see why people are members.” And that has heppened several times. I would be thrilled if more black Barbadians joined the club.

    Granted people are going to be soured by its history and they are free to not join. I just get tired of people complaining about problems that have, in reality, improved significantly, even in my reltively short lifetime. Race and racism in Barbados is only a problem to those that make it a problem for themselves. For the younger generation which I’ll mark at 30 and under, these issues seem to be less of a problem.

    Thankfully the bigotry (both black and white) is dying off with older people. I look forward to a day when I don’t have to hear this cr@p over and over again, every single day, on blogs and call in programs alike.


  27. K~we appreciate the exchange. You should not feel frustrated if by your owned admission it will take some time given the long history of the Club. Exchanges like what you have done here can help you think?


  28. IT IS A PITY THAT IT IS NOT POSSIBLE TO SUE SOMEONE WHO WOULD WRITE SUCH NONSENSE.
    MR. SIMPSON IS NOT THE LEADER OF ANY CHURCH – AND BY THE WAY THE LIVING ROOM IS NOT A CULT –
    SURELY YOU COULD SPEND YOUR TIME MORE USEFULLY SPREADING TRUTH AND NOT PROPAGANDA


  29. I am a woman and I sometimes attend the events put on the business men’s fellowship. Through this felowship I have experienced great healing and have gotten to know God even better.

    I agree with Ann. it is just a pity how people sit and write nonsense about things they don’t know about.


  30. Why does every conversation about Barbados come back to Black & White.When will bajans get over this nonsense and get on with life. I cant believe that so much time is spent quibbling about the Yacht Club. It’s just a club where both balcks and whites go to meet and relax—–nothing more or nothing less.Stop trying to creat situations that dont exist.


  31. I’m a foreigner and lived in Barbados for a while. I hope to come back as I thoroughly enjoyed the atmosphere, nature, people and water.

    After not having been involved much with Barbados and coincidentilly reading this blog I got a harsh reminder: Indeed Bajans relate every debate back to race, eventually.

    I have read your countries history quite deeply, and spoken to many (before you get started; black, brown, white and yellow). Many countries have had a similar history but left the past behind a long time ago, or at least had debates which did not so deeply leave a canion both sides of which look surprisingly segregated. (Examples: Brazil’s blacks are pride Brazilians cheering for the national soccer team, and yes I have been there many times).

    What I have not yet heard much about in this blog discussion is the ‘why’ is this the case. I get the causes and effect relationship many years ago, but why is the perception still so deep?


  32. Persons REALLY get over this black and white issue ……. you really think so! ha ha hahhahahahaha lol! What ever!


  33. Wishing in vain // April 19, 2007 at 10:40 pm

    “This is recruitment arm for the church in Warrens called the Living room and yes Mr Simpson is the leader of this cult.”

    WIV, based on experience in North America, I would be extremely careful about how you make statements such as these on a public forum such as this.

    In North America, statements made on open forums such as the BU, have been lifted off the forum and then used in multi-million dollar lawsuits against the poster.

    All people who post outrageous statements in the BU and the BFP are leaving themselves wide open to defamation lawsuits. Forewarned is forearmed.

    BTW, to the best of my knowledge, the Living Room is a properly constituted Christian church, not a cult. They meet at Foursquare complex, not at Warrens. I know the immediate former pastor very well, and he is a solid Christian man, formerly on the pastoral staff at one of the largest churches in Barbados. As to Sir Kyffin Simpson being the “leader of that cult,” that statement is so outrageous as to be laughable, but is worthy of a defamation lawsuit. So you, WIV, had better be careful. You can’t hide behind a pseudonym.


  34. If I was an M.P in Partiament, I would rise on a point of order. I was a regular visitor to the Living Room meetings, especially Wednesday afternoon sessions. I found it very refreshing especially at the middle of the week, it used to recharge my Christian spiritual to face the rest of the week. Sir Kyffin attended occasionally and so too many Christians from many different denominations. I suspect that one of the reasons it was stopped is that many persons used to come just in time to partake in the light refreshments that Simpson Motors used to provide. For some greedy “blacks” and I’m sorry for identifying any race, used to pack a doggie bag to take away. The hold thing was getting out of hand. I attended a few of their services at Foursquare but I think they have moved. Thanks for reminding me , I will contact them and stop by at some point in time as I like visiting other churches.


  35. I JUST CAME ACROSS THIS PAGE BUT I WOULD SAY THAT THE ONLY WAY THE BARBADOS IS STILL STANDIN UNLIKE OTHER COUNTRIES IS BECAUSE OF THE AMOUNT OF PRAYERS THAT CHRISTIANS POUR OUT FR BIM BUTTTT GOD’S MERCY SHOULD NT BE TAKEN FR GRANTED AND ONE DAY , BARBADOS WILL NT BE SAME ANYMORE, GOD’S RAFT WILL BE POURED OUT ON BIM , VERY SRY TO SAY. PPL GET URSELF 2gether. BESIDES GOD’S POWER IS GREATER THAT ANY OF THESE CULTS AND LODGES , THE BEST THING TO DO IS MAKE SURE THAT U GO TO A BIBLE BELIEVING CHURCH N STOP WRY ABT OTHER PPL U WILL GET KNOW WHERE .


  36. What does ‘A’ mean by “Barbados is still standing unlike other countries”? What other countries are not standing? And what about the many others that are also standing? Sorry, but I don’t get the specialness about Barbados. I really think local Christians should disabuse their minds of this notion that Barbados has some special place in God’s heart.


  37. Feeling a little sympathy with ‘K’s’ point of view on the race debate. The Yacht Club has been known to be exclusive in the past, but in recent times there have been signs of inclusiveness. Perhaps it’s better now to see how that trend develops rather than throw its past into its face at every turn.

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