A son of the soil, Winston L Harrigan was born on April 2, 1930 to Camily Harrigan and Wilhem Richardson. His struggles as a young man venturing into an unknown world were numerous, but certainly not insurmountable. His determination to succeed coupled with his ambitious and industrious spirit led him at a tender age to develop a love for architecture/construction. The passion for construction grew exponentially as a young boy under the apprenticeship of Alfred (Feddie) Webster and others in the industry, sometimes without remuneration, sometimes going to labour on just tea and bread. He recalls waking early in the morning to start his work day. Dressed in his work boots, he would begin his journey by foot on the unpaved rocky dirt roads from East End to Sandy Ground to be on the job site by 7 a.m. and would walk back in the afternoon tired from his day’s labour but content that he had done his best that day. As that passion developed and although at times plagued with asthma, he forged through until his retirement at age seventy-five. He became a master builder and businessman employing men in the construction field as he shaped the residential landscape of Anguilla. His love of country not only encompassed construction, it extended to the political landscape as well.
The 1967 revolution as Winston (aka Winkie) recalls was very exciting times. Anguillians were determined to chart their future. He played an important role in transporting the brave determined men to their various out stations for guarding of the beaches and buildings as he himself did despite the fact that he was a long suffer of asthma.
On the day that Statehood was observed, Winkie loaded and transported (unprompted) a locally made casket on his vehicle to the Government House at Landsome Bowl to demonstrate the resentment of the people for being a part of the Association with St Kitts Nevis. That day the past was buried forever. The “James Ronald Webster Park” bears the name so ably suggested by him and to this day remains.
His concern and interest for the welfare of the people of Anguilla resulted in him being selected as one of the twelve Councilmen to serve on the then organised Anguilla Island Council. The Council at the time was responsible for determining the vision for Anguilla. Discussions were intense and nerve wrecking as these loyal Anguillians wanted to ensure their decisions would be in the best interest of the people.
A staunch Anglican, Winkie maintains a strong belief that Anguillians should remain grateful to God for keeping the island free of bloodshed during the revolutionary years. He feels strongly that it is Gods’ goodness that kept the island throughout those turbulent times.
Like many Anguillians he travelled to many of the neighbouring islands to seek employment but as he puts it Anguilla was always his choice of stay….will always be home for him. Evidence of his construction skills are still evident at the three Anglican churches, the Governor’s residence and further afield in the neighbouring USVI at the University of the Virgins Islands (the then College of the Virgin Islands).
A father of four children with diverse professions, much of which he was instrumental in shaping, Winston is extremely proud of his labour and feels satisfied by the contributions he has made.