Swan Street was named after John Swann, one of Governor Wolverstone’s captains and the Surveyor who laid out the principle streets of early Bridgetown.
The street officially received its name around 1656, when an Act was passed by the Legislature for the lay-out of the streets of Bridgetown. However, in the early years Swan Street was also known as ‘Jew’s street’, and later ‘Burnt Street’.
Swan Street was nicknamed Jew’s Street because it was mainly populated by Sephardic Jewish merchants, who had shops and businesses on the ground level while residing on the upper levels, which featured overhanging balconies.
Around the 17th century, Jews had exclusive control over importations from Europe, who at that time supplied most of the imported goods to the island.
After the big ‘Bridgetown Fire of 1845’, this street along with many properties in the Lower Bridgetown area that were affected by the fire, became known locally as ‘The Burnt District’.
Today Swan Street is divided into a lower and upper section, with many retail shops offering bargain shopping. The upper levels of the shops are no longer residences, but are now warehouses to the stores below.
Thanks to a Bridgetown upgrade development program, Swan Street was refurbished and is now a pedestrian-only cobblestone street, lined with antique-styled street lamps and large plant pots of palms.
Some of the items to be found on sale when bargain shopping in Swan Street include shoes, clothing and jewelry, just to name a few.
You will also find fabric stores and haberdasheries, as well as street vendors and other shops selling general items ranging from CDs to fruits.
A trip to Swan Street will give you the true pulse of the bajan culture.
Connecting roads/streets include High Street at the upper end and Tudor St and Milk Market Rd at the lower end. Other connecting streets in between include Middle St and Bolton Lane, as well as Prince William Henry St, which also connects to Lucas St to separate Lower Swan St from Upper Swan St.
Shopping/Stores/Shops in Swan Street Swan Street Malls/Shopping Plazas
Historic Sights/Buildings near Swan Street
This street is located in the Historic Bridgetown & its Garrison area
…A UNESCO World Heritage Site