National Heroes and Benefactors Day (in lieu) in Belize in 2024

National Heroes and Benefactors Day (in lieu) in Belize in 2024
  How long until National Heroes and Benefactors Day (in lieu)?
National Heroes and Benefactors Day (in lieu)
  Dates of National Heroes and Benefactors Day (in lieu) in Belize
2025 Belize Mon, Mar 10 Public and Bank Holiday (in lieu)
2024 Belize Mon, Mar 11 Public and Bank Holiday (in lieu)
2023 Belize Mon, Mar 6 Public and Bank Holiday (in lieu)
2022 Belize Mon, Mar 7 Public and Bank Holiday (in lieu)
2021 Belize Mon, Mar 8 Public and Bank Holiday (in lieu)
  Summary

Known as Baron Bliss day until 2008, this holiday has now been expanded to honour more heroes of Belize

When is National Heroes and Benefactors Day?

National Heroes and Benefactors Day is a public and bank holiday in Belize celebrated on 9th March, though the actual day that is observed as a holiday may be moved depending on what day of the week it falls on.

If 9th March falls on a Monday or Saturday, the holiday will stay on 9th March, otherwise, it will move to a Monday.

History of National Heroes and Benefactors Day

Until 2008, this holiday was known as Baron Bliss Day as the day is dedicated to Baron Bliss, who willed nearly two million Belize dollars to a trust fund for the benefit of the citizens of what was then the colony of British Honduras, now Belize.

Henry Edward Ernest Victor Barretts was born in Buckinghamshire, England in 1869.  He took the familial title of Fourth Baron Barreto in his early adulthood. He was a successful engineer, justice of the peace and man of substantial family wealth (from the manufacturing of gun parts).

In 1911, at the age of 42, Bliss became paralyzed from the waist down, probably as a result of Polio.

He had become wealthy, and gained his title, through a series of inheritances. This wealth allowed him to retire and sail to the Caribbean and indulge his true passions for fishing and sailing. He spent time in the Bahamas and Trinidad, before settling down in British Honduras where he spent the rest of his life, living on his yacht - never actually visiting the Belize mainland.

In early 1926, he was told that he had a terminal illness and changed his will to leave his fortune to British Honduras.

Bliss died on 9 March 1926 and was buried in Belize City and a lighthouse was built in his memory.

Most of his fortune was placed in a trust fund for the benefit of the citizens of British Honduras. Over the years, the trust has provided more than $2 million to fund projects across the country.

Soon after his death, the government declared 9th March to be Baron Bliss Day, a national public holiday.

A highlight of National Heroes and Benefactors Day is the annual harbour regatta which is consists of sailboat races - The Baron requested that funds be set aside so that this tradition could be kept up every year.


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