Central Bank Museum reopens

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Central Bank Governor Dr Alvin Hilaire (second from left) looking at different $100 notes as the bank celebrates International Museum Day 2022 with the reopening of the Central Bank Museum at the Eric Williams Plaza on Independence Square in Port of Spain. With him, from left, are Central Bank staff members Christine Nanton Winter, Nicole Crooks and Nimah Muwakil. – Photo by Sureash Cholai

The Central Bank Museum reopened on Thursday after being closed since March 2020.

The reopening came just in time for International Museum Day – the day when the world recognises the potential museums have to affect lives and bring about positive change through the exploration of history.

At the museum, governor Dr Alvin Hilaire expressed happiness that the museum was able to reopen physically despite being accessible virtually.

“We missed the children, we missed the tourists, the people coming from Penal and other distances to visit. We missed the human interaction.”

Central Bank Governor Dr Alvin Hilaire speaks at International Museum Day 2022 celebrations which were marked by the reopening of the Central Bank Museum at the Eric Williams Plaza on Independence Square in Port of Spain. – Photo by Sureash Cholai

However he cautioned people against the dangers of the new variants of covid19 and assured that the museum will observe public health protocols.

“We are still in the throes of the pandemic,” he said. “The new variants of the virus are highly contagious. We may have to limit the sizes of groups, and we advise virtual booking.”

The museum displays several artefacts from Trinidad and Tobago’s history, including a gold bar, paintings by local artists such as Irenee Shaw
and representations of local items such as Crix, and Solo soft drinks.

Central Bank Governor Dr Alvin Hilaire (left) listens to extempo calypsonian Black Sage (Philip Murray) during the reopening of the Central Bank Museum at the Eric Williams Plaza on Independence Square in Port of Spain. – Phoot by Sureash Cholai

The museum also features a display highlighting TT’s transition from cotton bills to polymer bills. The display shows one of the first bills and had examples of bills throughout TT’s history. Another section of the museum displays a board with the question “How can we grow our economy?”

The board had responses like “Focus on agriculture and import less,” and “teach vocational skills” on the board, written on Post-It notes.