Parish History

Parish Name: Trelawny

Capital: Falmouth

Land Area: 874.3 sq km (337.6 sq mi)

Population: 75,558



Established in 1770, this parish was named after William Trelawny former Governor of Jamaica.

Trelawny has pockets of rich culture indigenous to the parish. The southern section of Trelawny is a part of the Cockpit Country, and is uninhabitable. It is therefore a natural reserve for flora and fauna; most of Jamaica’s 27 endemic bird species can be found there, along with yellow snakes, and the giant swallowtail butterfly, the largest butterfly in the western hemisphere.

Wakefield in North Trelawny is the home of the Tambu, Gerre and Mento Band. The Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) has taught these traditions to children in several schools –Duncans All-Age and Granville All-Age. Drumming is also a part of the rich culture and was one of the teaching activities of JCDC.

With new attractions such as the Falmouth Cruise Ship Pier and the Multi-Purpose Complex, Trelawny is receiving well-deserved notice by tourism interests as it positions itself among the most attractive locations in the very competitive industry.

Geographical Location

Trelawny is bordered by the parishes of St Ann in the east, St James in the west, and St Elizabeth and Manchester in the south. Most of the parish is flat, with wide plains such as Queen of Spain’s Valley, and Windsor. The highest point in the parish is Mount Ayr which is 3,000 feet (910 m) above sea level.

Main towns

Martha Brae

Martha Brae was the parish’s first capital. Its history dates back to the days of the Spanish occupation and was supposedly the site of an old Spanish settlement. The town got its name from the Martha Brae River, which today is used for rafting and is a source of water for the north coast.

Stewart’s Town
This town is near the eastern border of the parish and is an important centre for provisions brought from the interior. The town was named after James Stewart, a former custos of the parish. Stewart’s Town is also home to Westwood High School, a famous Jamaican girls’ school.

Rio Bueno
Rio Bueno has one of the deepest harbours in the island. Once an important shipping haven, Rio Bueno is today a sleepy little village.

a small interior town located between Low River and Settin and borders Green Town. Comprised of 5 districts, it is known for fertile farm lands, and yam and strawberry production.


Important Jamaicans from the Parish

The Hon. Usain St. Leo Bolt, OM is undoubtedly the fastest athlete the world has ever seen. Born on 21 August 1986 in Sherwood Content, a small town in Trelawny, his athletic prowess and world record breaking performances in both the 100 and 200 metres sprints has raised the standard in athletics to a new level, and left the world in awe.

Rt. Hon. Hugh Shearer ON, OJ PC, well-known politician, was born in Martha Brae, Trelawny on May 18, 1923.  He was a trade unionist and president of the Bustamante Industrial Trade Union.  Mr. Shearer was appointed Prime Minister of Jamaica upon the death of Sir Donald Sangster in 1967. 

The Hon. Professor Rex Nettleford, OM OCC was born on February 3, 1933 in Bunkers Hill, Trelawny.  His life was one of distinction as he was a cultural ambassador, international scholar, dancer, teacher, orator, critic, mentor and national patriot.

Veronica Campbell-Brown, CD born May 15, 1982 in Clarks Town, Trelawny, is a Jamaican track and field sprint athlete and a seven-time Olympic medallist who specializes in the 100 and 200m races.