Candle-Deeyas being lit on the steps of Mille Fleurs (Photo by Leslie Ann Paul)
Deeyas illuminating the steps to Mille Fleurs (photo- Leslie-Ann Paul)
Members of the Council and Staff at the National Trust of Trinidad and Tobago participated in a small, all COVID-19 protocols observed, deeya-lighting ceremony at Mille Fleurs last night to commemorate Divali and to celebrate the adoption of the prestigious Magnificent Seven building as the new home of the National Trust.
According to Chairman of the National Trust, Margaret Mc Dowall, “Mille Fleurs has served the people of Trinidad and Tobago in many forms over its illustrious history. As the soon to be, new home of the National Trust, we wanted to mark this moment with the commemoration of Divali, and we intend to make the space available to all persons in Trinidad & Tobago in due course. I take this opportunity, on behalf of the Council and Staff of the National Trust to extend Diwali greetings to the National community with the hope that the triumph of light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance and good over evil, which is symbolised through this auspicious festival and the optimism engendered through the lighting of deeyas will be enjoyed by everyone. For us at the National Trust, our lighting of deeyas at Mille Fleurs was the perfect beginning of this new chapter in our evolution as an organisation.”
Immediately prior to the lighting of deeyas, the National Trust hosted an online lecture by Dr. Visham Bhimull founder of Caribbean Hindustani entitled “Celebrating Lights and language”. Dr. Bhimull shared with a very appreciative audience, the engaging history of the local and international celebration of Divali and how the evolution of Bhojpuri language and Trinbagonian English creole has served to shape the unique identity of Trinidad and Tobago’s culture.
Mille Fleurs lit with deeyas! (Photo – Leslie-Ann Paul)
Staff, council members and family members socially distanced on the steps of Mille Fleurs (Photo – Leslie-Ann Paul)
On Friday evening as a continuation of the National Trust’s Divali observances, it will feature a special pre-recorded presentation by Dr Radica Mahase, Senior Lecturer of History at COSTAATT on “The History of Divali from the plantation to the present day”. The feature is open to the public on the National Trust’s YouTube channel from 4PM Friday 13th November.
About the National Trust
The National Trust of Trinidad and Tobago was established by Act 11 of 1991 and amended by Act No 31 of 1999. The Trust is established with the following objectives:
- Identifying built and natural properties and sites of interest
- Formally listing properties and sites important to our national heritage to prevent destruction or to ensure discussion prior to agreed modification.
- Making provision for access to and enjoyment of properties of interest by the public
- Encouraging research and acquiring records of properties of interest and historical artefacts
- Conducting education and awareness campaigns to ensure general acceptance of the rich and diverse heritage of Trinidad and Tobago