The Adopted Dog – Walking on the set

Wallilabou was in the bay beyond,.  As we drove into a small car park, I noticed these huge warehouses, and out in the bay a massive jetty and two  tall derricks sitting on a solid stone base.  This was like a major harbour, although you could see that it was not currently used.  Of course I knew what it really was, but I’ve kept up the illusion for you as the view was so realistic it could easily pass for an old dockyard.  In reality it was the leftover scenery from the first couple of “Pirates of the Caribbean” film.  And everything I was looking at was less reality, more fake.  The “stone” building behind was  made of plywood, as was the small bridge crossing the river, and the stone base to the derricks.  Look closely and you could see that the cobblestones that were so solid and tactile in the houses of Kingstown were painted on here at Wallilabou Bay.

If you have seen the first two Pirates of the Caribbean films the bay was used as the main centre of Port Royal.  Most of the town was taken away but these three or four artefacts have been a huge tourist trap for the west coast of St Vincent.  The later films did not the same location it though so now both the set and the tourist trade is decaying back into the undergrowth.

We took a tour around before lunch.  You could not get far onto the jetty as the boards had collapsed into the sea, but up close you could see the painted facades lacking or peeling away to reveal the plywood underneath.  You could walk across the bridge but you could feel it creaking under you to remind you that this was not a solid structure.  And we wandered round the sole remaining building of the town; this had been carefully maintained and the central space could be used for weddings and parties.  We lunched on the beach and had a couple of beers in this bizarre location.

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