Pirate Island at Arreton Barns

Islanders young and old were given the chance to step back in time to 1706, during the golden age of piracy, and walk through the pirate town of Nassau in the Bahamas, recreated at Arreton Barns. It was an opportunity to meet the ‘real’ Pirates of the Caribbean.

Visitors to Arreton Barns witnessed plenty on offer. Captain Henry Jennings (Edward Nash aka Captain Nash) had landed at Nassau on the Island of New Providence and set up the town as a Pirate Republic with himself as governor. The Pirates of Nassau hunted merchant ships on their way to and from Europe.

The town prospered for a while but, with new crews arriving, it would only be a matter of time before infighting broke out amongst the pirates.

The Pirate Island Day began with a morning skirmish. This was followed by a cannon and firepower display. The entertainment continued with a live action tavern fight. Aficionados of blood and gore could then witness a display by the ship’s surgeon, from the days before anaesthetics and knowledge of hygiene. Finally, the day ended with a full-scale battle reenactment.

When asked to explain the attraction of pirate reenactments, Edward (Captain) Nash, a pirate since 2009, said: “The pirates were the original freedom fighters. They may have been villains, murderers and thieves, but they were still lovable rogues.”