Repopulation Government of the Pitcairn Islands

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The Adamstown Neighbourhood.

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The threshold of Pitcairn is a steep road, known as the ‘Hill of Difficulty’, running from Bounty Bay to the Edge. This road, which follows the track used by the mutineers when they landed, rises upward for 70 metres hugging the side of the cliff. As in the days of the mutineers all supplies must still be transported up this road, although tractors and quad bikes make the task less onerous today.

Most Pitcairners live in and around Adamstown, the original home of the mutineers, though some newer homes have been built at the top of the island to make the most of the incredible views. Adamstown is well situated on a northerly slope, 120 to 150 metres above sea level, and covers an area of 20 hectares. From the Edge, the main road currently runs for about 800 metres through Adamstown, roughly parallel with the coastline. The houses are scattered along the main road and side roads.

The houses are quite modern and are simple, making them ideal for the climate and weather conditions that the island experiences. The sizes of the houses vary significantly depending on need. All roofs are of corrugated iron from which guttering and pipes lead rain water into private tanks or wells for a good supply of fresh water.
Although kitchens are now incorporated into the houses, several houses still have the traditional outside kitchen as well. Hot water is heated by burning the copper, which means electricity is unnecessary and power is saved and today many people have gas water heating. Most home have installed inside flush toilets, however, many locals still favour the old ‘Duncan’ out-house.

Like elsewhere in the world, modern appliances are a part of everyday life on Pitcairn. All houses have refrigerators, washing machines, deep freezers, electric and gas stoves, television sets, computers, microwaves and stereos. Current TV reception, via satellite, is limited but hard drives are shared and there is no lack of movie and documentary entertainment.

Further along the main road the General Store is situated on the edge of the road. The side road beside the general store leads down to the three public generators which are rotated to power the the island’s electricity supply which operates from 6.00am to 10pm daily.

Continuing along the main road, the Square, ‘upside’ the road, is the heart of Adamstown. The Public Hall, with a veranda running along its entire length, takes up one side of the Square, and outside, on a plinth, stands Bounty’s anchor, which was recovered by Yankee in 1957.

The Public Hall, serves as the Court House and Council Chambers and as a focal point for social gatherings and public functions. The internal walls are decorated with historical and official portraits and memorabilia.

Directly across the Square, from the Public Hall, is the Seventh Day Adventist Church. On the third side of the Square is a building containing the Island Council Office, the Government Treasury Office and the Post Office.

Before entering the Square, a walkway ‘downside’ the main road leads to the Island’s Medical Centre. Built in 1996, it replaced the old dispensary at the Square. Further down the main road is Bob’s Valley where the temporary Cultural Centre, Tourism Office and Public Library are located.

Just past Bob’s Valley, is the road leading to the Mill (a sugarcane mill still in operation), the island cemetery and the historic house site of Thursday October Christian.

Back on the main road, past the Banyan trees the road leads out to Pulau where the school, and the Administrator’s residence is located. Although, not strictly speaking, part of Adamstown, the school sits below Christian’s Cave and the eco trail which leads up to the cave can be found just below the school.