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7 Super-Significant Suggestions for Soundproofing!


The BVI has a vast array of events throughout the year, but none are as vibrant, colourful or meaningful as the Emancipation Festival. Held in late July and early August, this annual festival celebrates the 1834 Emancipation Act which abolished slavery in the British West Indies. The festival is a time for everyone to congregate and rejoice in the freedoms that were fought for by the islands’ ancestors.


Parties and celebrations are held far and wide and activities include live music performances, dancing, street art, donkey and horse races, a freedom march, emancipation church services, boat races, parties, and parades. The centre of the festival is the purpose-built pop-up village in Road Town, Tortola which has a number of bandstands and an array of food-stalls and bars. The atmosphere is captivating and not to be missed; however, those living in Road Town and the central south side of the island can find themselves going without sleep as the partying is loud and steady for nearly two weeks.

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If you need to get up for work (which some residents may do despite the holiday) or if you have youngsters in the house, the following tips might help with sound control.


  • Close all the windows and doors at the front of the building (facing Festival ground) to limit what sounds travels through the house. Create a seal around the windows (tape will work) to give maximum protection
  • Curtains are good at absorbing sounds, but make sure they’re dense and heavy and reach right down to the floor. Blackout curtains (designed to stop heat and make rooms darker at night) can significantly improve sound insulation for problems like traffic and street noise.
  • Sound is absorbed by fabrics and carpets so move as many cushions and rugs to the rooms in the front of your house to soak up as much sound as possible
  • Run fans and air conditioning if you can; the motors will help to soften the background noise
  • Settle in for the evening and listen to movies and/or music with the surround sound on. Failing that use headphones if you have them.
  • Invest in some earplugs (available for a few dollars from the drug store) so you can snooze while the party continues
  • Alternatively, take some time off to explore other islands in the BVI; all will have lots going on but you will be able to find a quiet corner

Whatever you do, make sure you find some time to enjoy and participate in the celebrations. There is a great deal of uncertainty in the world at the moment and celebrating this Territory’s emancipation under a warm sky is a really special way to spend a summer’s day and/or evening.


Lucienne Smith

Lucienne Smith

Lucienne grew up in the BVI and worked for a number of years as a director for a FTSE 250 company in London. She now heads up the Residential Property Management and Long Term Rental divisions of Smiths Gore.

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