Place of birth
Place of residence
National identity

Howard Fergus

Short biography
Sir Howard A. Fergus was born at Long Ground in Montserrat. He attended Bethel Primary, Montserrat Grammar School, Erdiston Teacher’s College in Barbados, the University College of the West Indies (1961-64) and the Universities of Bristol (Cert Ed. 1968) and Manchester (M.Ed, 1978) and UWI (Ph. D, 1978).

He has served Montserrat since 1955 as a teacher, voucher clerk, Chief Education Officer (1970-73), Acting Permanent Secretary, and from 1975, Speaker of the Montserrat Legislative Council and De Facto Deputy Governor from 1976. Since 1974 his main job has been that of Extra-Mural Resident Tutor of UWI, Montserrat, where he ran a Creative Writing Workshop. He was awarded an CBE in 1995 and knighted in 2001 for his outstanding sevices to Montserrat. He has remained ion the island since the devastating eruption of Soufriere in 1997, which reduced the island’s habitable space by two-thirds, caused the collapse of the economy and forced the migration of almost half of the population.

He is Montserrat’s historian and has written extensively about the island. His published work includes History Of Alliougana: A Short History of Montserrat (1975), Montserrat the Last English Colony? Prospects for Independence (1978); William H. Bramble: His Life and Times (1983); Hugo Versus Montserrat (with E.A. Markham (1989)) and Montserrat: History of a Caribbean Colony (1994).

His poetry began appearing from 1976, with Cotton Rhymes; Green Innocence (1978), Stop the Carnival (1980), and his poems have been anthologised in the Penguin Book of Caribbean Verse and appeared in Artrage, Writing Ulster, Bim, The New Voices, Caribbean Quarterly, Ambit, Caribanthology and others. In 1998, Peepal Tree published Lara Rains & Colonial Rights. 

His new collection Volcano Verses will be published by Peepal Tree in 2003.