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VG residents claim Oil Nut Bay Resort restricting access to bay

- Persons claimed to have been debarred from free access but ONB management refutes such claims
Several persons have alleged that Oil Nut Bay Resort has placed 15 white "pins" from the beach to the reef with floating line between them. They also alleged the resort has been restricting persons from accessing certain areas of the bay. This photograph was taken by a concerned resident in December 2012. Photo: Provided/FB
This photo was taken closer to the reef where the pins have allegedly been placed. Photo: Provided/FB
This photo was taken closer to the reef where the pins have allegedly been placed. Photo: Provided/FB
OIL NUT BAY, Virgin Gorda, VI – Several persons have recently been complaining that they are being forced to put up with a number of restrictions when it came to the accessing and usage of the sea area that forms part of Oil Nut Bay, especially when it came to swimming and accessing certain sections by boats.

The concern was first raised by a member of the Virgin Gorda Community Board on the social network, Facebook. Since then there were several calls to Virgin Islands News Online for an investigation into the matter.

According to one caller, she was overly embarrassed when she was approached by a team of employees at the Oil Nut Bay Resort and told was told that she couldn’t access the area. She said she had challenged the team by insisting on docking her boat and proceeded to swim at her leisure. “At the time I had some friends from other countries who were with me and I was going to have them to tour Oil Nut Bay as they had investment interests but because of the greeting we got I took them to another resort who got the business,” said the concerned resident of Virgin Gorda.

Several comments were posted on Facebook on the alleged issue, among which were “Just thought I would let everyone know that in addition to putting swim buoys out to block access to the public beach at Oil Nut Bay, yesterday I was told by management there that I'm not allowed to anchor (in sand) at oil nut as David Johnson now owns the seabed too - of course I didn't leave as I wasn't trying to install a mooring, was just having a sea bath...so he owns the sea now, people we really need to wake up here,” one person alleged.

Another alleged, “Oil Nut Bay has placed 15 white "pins" from the beach to the reef with floating line between them. Took guests to ONB back in December for lunch and a tour; when we came upon the pins, my guests asked “What's that? A shark net?" After my guests had departed the dock for lunch, I asked one of the greeters why the pins were installed and was told it was to protect their residents who routinely swim from the beach to the outer reef. I suggested that there was no need for the floating lines between every pin, as just the pins alone are enough to slow down boat traffic. Then I asked how did they get authorization and was told "when you spend the kind of money that David Johnson spends here, you can get permission to do almost anything". As a tax-paying resident of North Sound for 18 years, I was truly disgusted to hear this but for all I know Mr. Johnson would be upset to hear this as well. Want to make very clear this was said by a young greeter on the Welcome dock,” the individual alleged on Facebook.

Contacted, General Manager of Oil Nut Bay, Mr Johnathan Oaks said the allegations were not true and said the resort had responded on the same Facebook page.

Oil Nut Bay’s response in full as posted on Facebook's Virgin Gorda Community Board

“The Team at Oil Nut Bay wishes to clarify some misleading statements that were recently posted online with respect to the designated swim area and marine sanctuary at Oil Nut Bay. It is important to note that the Management and staff at Oil Nut Bay are aware that the sea bed belongs to the Crown and at no time have we nor will we hold ourselves out to be owners of the sea bed and neither have we nor will we prevent persons from using the sea bed in a positive manner.

The designated swim area at Oil Nut Bay was demarcated by the Conservation and Fisheries Department and approved by the Cabinet to create a safe recreational environment for everyone due to past incidents of boats traveling at high speeds that have put swimmers, especially children, in danger. [Fishermen are, of course, allowed to enter the swim zone to fish.] The Oil Nut Bay swim zone is similar to designated swim zones at Bitter End Yacht Club, Scrub Island, Peter Island, Norman Island, Cane Garden Bay, Cooper Island and other areas around the BVI. At Oil Nut Bay, the buoys are in line with the shallow water zone and are connected by a swim line. There is no netting of any kind.

Boat anchors can cause damage to ecologically sensitive seabed areas including coral reef, turtle grass and even sand flats, therefore, the Conservation and Fisheries Department discourages anchoring in this area. The Management and staff of Oil Nut Bay takes great care to hold environmental integrity as a pillar of our development. For example, dredging of the seabed has never occurred and will never occur; only turtle safe lighting is allowed, and an environmental monitor on behalf of the BVI Government and paid for by Oil Nut Bay conducts monthly environmental assessments. 

In the interest of safety and sustainability, we ask that boats not be driven in designated swim zones at Oil Nut Bay or anywhere else in the Territory except boats belonging to fisher folk and emergency vessels. We are more than happy to invite concerned citizens to Oil Nut Bay to tour the site and understand further our efforts toward environmental stewardship and integrity. If you are interested please call us directly to schedule a visit at 393-1000.”

This news site is working on more details to this story.

63 Responses to “VG residents claim Oil Nut Bay Resort restricting access to bay”

  • kkk (23/08/2013, 08:40) Like (7) Dislike (7) Reply
    Tis south africa
    • beans (23/08/2013, 13:44) Like (11) Dislike (0) Reply
      The lady who was barred is an American white lady. Check it onfacebook. So stop dragging race into everything and check your facts. Concentrate on the real issue instead of hate mongering.
      • Curious (23/08/2013, 18:26) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
        Sorry, she's a clear woman who has lived here for a long, long time - she didn't choose this battle, it was laid in front of her, yes, let's
        s concentrate - no you can't come here - that's the story...
  • Lawdie (23/08/2013, 08:47) Like (22) Dislike (2) Reply
    it is not the right of oil nut bay to tell ppl where to swim ect.. they can put up what ever signs about their ecological concerns but this is public access. know ya'll damn place man. the public can swim, fish, boat, go on to the beach if desired.. our government allows this bs for a few $$ and its getting out of hand...
    • trick ah treat (23/08/2013, 09:33) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
      all what happen isw oil Nut Bay trick the NDP
      • polo (23/08/2013, 10:47) Like (8) Dislike (1) Reply
        The country needs all its citizens to be included in full access to our water rights not some expat investor
        • black boy (23/08/2013, 12:52) Like (9) Dislike (2) Reply
          Here we go again: Another example of the BVI selling their soul for a buck to the foreign man who has no interest in the BVI but to rape it of it's resources.

          • drummer boy (23/08/2013, 14:01) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
            still uncertain about oild bay resposne

            • True (23/08/2013, 18:37) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
              I am neither a supporter of VIP or the NDP. I am for the truth. How quickly you ALL forget who put us in this hole. You think it was Uncle Ralph? Think again.
  • mandown (23/08/2013, 08:53) Like (13) Dislike (3) Reply
    What you all expect ndp in bed with deeds invadors
  • qc (23/08/2013, 09:28) Like (0) Dislike (1) Reply
    this is like south Africa one balck and one white..look trouble in this land
    • Really? (29/08/2013, 12:46) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Indeed, qc, one could argue that the division created by the attitude of " I bahn here" versus those from somewhere else, regardless of skin colour, on whom we depend for a great deal of skilled labour people here seem unwilling to do, is very much like apartheid was in South Africa. Most people living here who are not belongers have no right to vote, and have no right to work, have no right to send their children to state schools (regardless of how much they may pay in taxes) unless sponsored by a belonger employer, not all of which treat their employees fairly. Moreover, the children of non-belongers born here have no right of citizenship.
  • mother hen (23/08/2013, 10:45) Like (6) Dislike (2) Reply
    NDP givin away our kuntry again.
    • xxxxxxxx (23/08/2013, 12:58) Like (6) Dislike (3) Reply
      What would happen if the BVI citizens rose up - JUST AS THE Egyptians DID.... It would tell the egotistic politicians that they need to shape up or they will be shipped out of office! they must never sell out our birth right!!!
      • True (23/08/2013, 16:43) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
        Somebody had to sell them their birth right to get the land, it wasn't crown land that was sold it was a local families.
  • son of the soil (23/08/2013, 10:48) Like (7) Dislike (1) Reply
    Who looking out for we????
    • ndp (23/08/2013, 13:10) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      These civil society groups do not speak for all Virgin Islanders.....When will persons of the "uncivilized" section of the society have a say?
  • H2 ZERO (23/08/2013, 10:51) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    What you expect to happen when you sell out those prime locations...
    • tortola girl (23/08/2013, 23:33) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      My name is lauren and I fully support saving the bay and the nature of the BVI I want my children to experience this one day,
  • pete (23/08/2013, 12:06) Like (11) Dislike (0) Reply

    Oil Nut bay was purchased as a tag on to Biras Creek. while one hand was touting the renovations at millions of dollars, the other hand, held by Dr S...., got the 400 acres without going through normal channels. the environmental impact study used was at least 10 yrs old and was done for a much smaller hotel, not an invented community.
    If they were so concerned about the environment, why did they import improper sand from Barbuda, and transplant palm trees where there were none naturally? they created their "paradise" while destroying turtle nests in the process.
    I do have to say that I am torn between citizens rights to access vs. protecting the reef and anchorage which often ruins and destroys many sites around the BVI. Boaters rarely get sanctioned for destruction of reefs. I do think that many boaters need education when it comes to violating natural areas. But there are more affective educated ways of doing so. I personally think that from the beginning ONB was an elitist fantasy developed by a self-important big-whig who knows how to play the system, who cherry-picked key BVI ex-ministers to work for him, and who created a self-contained inbred oasis for his millionaire clientele while dazzling current government officials. So how is the government going to handle this one? hand-slap their friend?

    • two BVIs (24/08/2013, 08:08) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      more of this to come you wait until the NDP sells prospect reef
  • people do your research!! (23/08/2013, 12:10) Like (3) Dislike (16) Reply
    goverment did not sell the land to johnson. The man who own top of the baths. Norman is who sell it to johnson. The man who own hog heaven sell the land where yccs to johnson. Government did not sell no land. They only help with the process.
    • staff (23/08/2013, 17:48) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
      yes but the ndp give them water right and they need to dig very deep to know what is going on.
      shame on this government.
  • Curious (23/08/2013, 12:56) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    Now that we're on the subject of ONB, could they tell us anything about docks with villas soon to be built that will run parallel to the beach, effectively building homes in the sea and putting the finishing touch on blockading the area???
  • Shara Parlin (23/08/2013, 13:09) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    Here is what I think. Both the NDP and VIP are responsible for this project that is why we need a new party to run this country. I personally think nether NDP or VIP have the solution to all our problems.
  • ooooo (23/08/2013, 13:11) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    where is the ndp?
  • Donald E. de Castro (23/08/2013, 13:11) Like (8) Dislike (0) Reply
    When I wrote my article a few months ago about discrimination and segregation on Virgin Gorda so many bloggers had so many negative things to say
    • Ded (23/08/2013, 14:16) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
      Well u have the last laugh huh.
      • look and learn (23/08/2013, 18:44) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
        We must start looking again at how our society functions, who gains by these paternalistic action by this resort and who suffers in between
    • . (24/08/2013, 00:17) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      But which ones were saying it?
  • Mike (23/08/2013, 13:15) Like (8) Dislike (0) Reply
    This is the price of foreign investment. This is what pisses me off with the Government. I have heard of numerous occassions when this Government was up at Oil Nut Bay having lunch or dinner cozying up to the owner. I have to shake my head sometimes. We are really in trouble. Sad sad sad...
  • Opinion (23/08/2013, 13:40) Like (9) Dislike (0) Reply
    If it is that Oil Nut Bay is restricting access, they won't be the first. Why, because OUR GOVERNMENT, yes the ones that we elected, gives them the right to do it. Look at the Dawson Bay issue at Beef Island. They have literally restricted beach access and our Government still beautified the entrance to the beach that they are blocking. Look at Little Bay, there is hardly access to that beach, but the residents in the area are quick to tell you that they got approval to restrict/limit from our Government?? But, we Tortolians are way to passive, we grumble behind closed doors and yet we take no action. How long will WE stand by and allow ourselves to be trampled
  • one eye roster (23/08/2013, 13:53) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    The silence from media and all those people who were so vocal under the previous administration is deafening lets here the same cries we heard over biwater!!!.
  • concern (23/08/2013, 14:11) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply

    the government was to help Norman Henderson but instead them allow David Johnson to come into our bvi and ab*se our local that owned the property took it from them and it's like nothing to government cause they want to keep the sleeping dogs quite it will get much worst in time to come

    • tears (23/08/2013, 17:41) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
      the BVI is the New South Africa and Deep South of the USA... Promote tourism for whites but close off the beaches for blacks and locals.....poor we
      • Real Estate (24/08/2013, 08:54) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
        This is the truth. Only place I have ever seen such a segregated society ... or should I say two societies. One for the whites with their enclave clubs and schools that they hold out like carrots swinging in front of the stupid government ministers or unwary local "haves" and one for the rest of us black have nots. No wonder so many South Africans love it here. Feels just like home in the good old apartheid days.
    • black rock (23/08/2013, 18:33) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      Rather surprised that they have not cut off the whole area from us even sailing in
  • upchuck (23/08/2013, 16:31) Like (9) Dislike (0) Reply
    Any reasonable person reading the Oil Nut Bay response would say there is nothing wrong here, they would only see conservation and preservation but for those of us who know first hand this is nothing but pushing out, fencing out, locking out. They want no access to the beach period. Oil Nut Bay is very, very, good with slight of hand and has a lot of experience in making things look like they are when they are not, masters of embellishing the truth, legal robbery and a knack for getting our own people, who should be looking out for our interest to agree to these things which are so wrong. Of course when these wrongful things come under fire the song will be, it is not us you are the ones that gave us the permission to do these things. Yes development is needed but we need to know and understand the kind of development we want instead of acting like desperate, hungry greedy people willing to give away EVERYTHING for free for the promise of a few dollars and cocktail party.
    • pat (23/08/2013, 17:42) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      the kind of development we need to understand includes the cruise ship dock plans and reclamation along the water front.
  • power (23/08/2013, 17:12) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    what you expect Oil Nut and Johnson runs things
  • facts man (23/08/2013, 17:44) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    under the NDP our rights are all gone, no freedom of the press, public officers are silence and locals cannot use our water ways...voters take note
  • roll (23/08/2013, 18:00) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    yes the gun creek man
    • ya hear wa a say (24/08/2013, 14:19) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      New Gun Creek committee in place full of yes men. You will hear.
  • BuzzBvi (23/08/2013, 22:00) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    What was once a place where boats could anchor and people quietly go about their business now cannot.
    Apparently in the name of safety and conservation.
    Not entirely sure what destroying 300 acres of once pristine land with excavation and buildings changing the nature and form of a once natural salt pond and removing natural vegetation from the beach and shipping in 50,000 tons of sand from another country has to do with conservation.
    What it has to do with is stopping people from using the bay in the way in which they used to.
    Now that it has a multimillion dollar resort the owners want to keep the beach and the bay for the personal private pleasure of the rich elite who will buy and visit there.
    A small protected swim area away from where boats can anchor on the sandy bottom in that once public bay would be more than sufficient should the wealthy guests tire of the swimming pool.
    Little DIx Bay and Peter Island have played a similar game for years by roping off complete beaches rather than making an appropriately sized swim area for the safety of the guests that still allows boat users to use the marine environment in the way that they used to before the elitist resorts were built.
    This bay and the others should be handed back to the people of the BVI and its visitors.
    In addition Oil Nut Bay should seriously be scrutinised for the environmental damage caused to the beach, the salt pond, the sea bed (from the dock and the marina that they have built) and land along with the environmental damage caused by their heavy costruction boat traffic washing away other beaches in the area.
    We need to stop this nonesense.
  • nut bay flyby (24/08/2013, 01:40) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply

    sounds like this D.J. represents really big money. if not, how did HE get it? Land is hyper expensive
    in the BVI especially to foreigners. Some folks were there years ago who are american or british, but not
    that many, and sometimes people like that are 'grandfathered in'. WHO does this man represent? If he is
    in fact walking all over locals and a beautiful island in a small island country, HOW is he doing it? His
    backers would have to be in the high billionaire class, american or british. and very self centered. I am
    a white american and I wouldn't support such bastard rude arrogant behaviour. every local sit on the beach.

    • Concerned in North Sound (24/08/2013, 17:43) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      His Rags to Riches story
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V5mdRztB0Nc

      Actions of Victor International
      www.bvihotpress.com/community/item/3027-oil-nut-bay-gives-generously-to-vi-government.html

      http://www.bviplatinum.com/news.php?page=Article&articleID=1322065065
    • pat (24/08/2013, 23:38) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply

      Victor international does not smell like a rose. He allegedly had a law suit in Michigan with one of his developments. He also supposedly got an environmental award for another one, which was done on a dump site.

  • BuzzBvi (24/08/2013, 07:23) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    What was once a place where boats could anchor and people quietly go about their business cannot. Apparently in the name of safety and conservation.
    Not entirely sure what destroying 300 acres of once pristine land with buildings and removing natural vegetation from the beach and shipping in 50,000 tons of sand from another country has to do with conservation.
    What it has to do with is stopping people from using the bay in the way in which they used. Now that it has a multimillion dollar resort the owners want to keep for the beach and the bay for the personal private pleasure of the rich elite who will buy and visit there.
    A small protected swim area away from where boats can anchor on the sandy bottom in that area would be more than sufficient should the wealthy guests tire of the swimming pool.
    Little DIx Bay and Peter Island have played a similar game for years by roping off complete beaches rather than making an appropriately sized swim area for the safety of the guests that still allows boat users to use the marine environment in the way that they used to before the elitist resorts were built.
  • sister voter (24/08/2013, 17:15) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    NDP has not learn any important lessons from the 2003-2007 election lost
  • @ sister voter (25/08/2013, 09:04) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Well trust me we the people who do not trust them will teach them the same lesson they got in 2007 come 2016!!! BAM
  • E. Leonard (25/08/2013, 13:17) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    Unobstructed access to British Virgin Islands beaches is a basic citizens right; it is a right that must exist into perpetuity. Beaches must be available for the use and enjoyment of citizens but to use and enjoy them require access. Local and external investors can use our beautiful beaches as a marketing tool for their businesses but it must be clearly understood that beaches are national treasures whose use cannot obstructed or restricted.

    Moreover, to exercise this right to use beaches for their enjoyment, citizens must have unfettered beach access. Public beach access must and should be part of any land purchase and development. Property abutting a beach,if any, without public access to it from land government should acquire an easement for access to it or them; the easement can b acquired through a donation, land purchase or land swap.

    Further, Virgin Islanders understands that investment is needed for growth and development. And they also understand that tourism is a vital means of earning foreign exchange earnings. And are willing to share their national treasure (beaches) with visitors. However, they will and should push back strongly against any attempt to deprive them of the use and enjoyment of their national treasure(s). If the allegations about beach access are real, government should take swift action to urgently remedy this untenable situation.
  • MW (25/08/2013, 19:14) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Ayo better check on Gun Creek and the tricks now being played
  • Ragnar Danneskjold (26/08/2013, 00:19) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Nut Oil Bay is in the hospitality business - catering to guests wanting to have an enjoyable stay. Perhaps
    they should be put to a test of their hospitality and good will (for a price of course) by having one of the
    Illuminati Primi pay a visit in their submarine. Say have a trillionaire like Hagbard Celine tool up and
    disguise themselves with a fake beard and take the dingy ashore to the resorts bar/restaurant and proceed
    to order a cheeseburger and fries with a Budweiser. See how the owner reacts Bethya all laugh!
  • Yah Yah (26/08/2013, 07:18) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    At the end of the day this is a citizens of the BVI fight and we should not be dependent on our visitors or those who we have invited to live amongst to fight this fight for us. It is wrong it needs to be fixed and the precedent for this type of behavior was already set with the like of Branson and Jarecki. If we do not stand up and loudly protest to those who are suppose to represent us they will continue to shovel crap down our throats until we choke and die. I wonder if after death there is a special section for the rich and racist?
  • Virgin Gordian (26/08/2013, 18:46) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply

    With all due respect, I do not know exactly who responded on behalf of Oil Nut Bay. We Virgin Gordians nor anyone else can access Oil Nut Bay beach the same way we would usually access any other beach. It is WRONG for the Government to claim in the House of Assembly that all beaches are public and then to be forced away from some of them. And people please don't be fooled, it is not Oil Nut Bay alone, the Government needs to pay attention to areas such as Trunk Bay as well as the famous Necker Island (which I KNOW they are already aware about). It is UNFAIR. The BVI belongs to us, not the people who come from abroad. It is sickening to know that someone can leave their country to come into ours and tell us that we can't use what's ours. And it is even more sickening to know that the Government allows it, whether NDP or VIP. You've got to do better than this!

  • Labeet (26/08/2013, 23:10) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Remember Fountain vally*
  • vvvvvvvvvvvv (27/08/2013, 11:51) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply

    Nothing new hear
  • monty (20/09/2017, 12:02) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    this is how david johnson and his goons from Bay Harbor/Oil Nut Bay handle things


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