BVI News

Willy T moving to Peter Island

William Thornton (Willy T) floating bar and restaurant has found a new location to operate.

“We are pretty well confirmed to be definitely moving. We are not going to be in The Bight [but] at Great Harbour on Peter Island,” said Willy T owner, Ewan Anderson.

He made the announcement following a meeting with the government on Monday, May 14.

Anderson told BVI News that things are being fine-tuned for the move.


The business owner said he is relieved the matter is resolved.

“It will be ok. It’s another location, it’s on the water, and it’s good for tourism — good for Great Harbour.”

“We are happy that we can move somewhere as opposed to closing down the business. So, yes, we are happy and the government is helping us to avail that situation,” he added.

Anderson then described his discussions with government as ‘helpful’.

He said Willy T’s required permits are now being processed in order to resume operations.

The relocation order

The new Willy T arrived in the British Virgin Islands on Thursday (May 10) from the United States to replace the previous vessel which had been destroyed during the September 2017 hurricanes.

However, upon arrival, government informed the owners that the vessel will no longer be allowed to moor at Norman Island.

Government said they had no objection to the continued operation of the Willy T but said the vessel had to move to an alternate location.

A government-issued statement further said the Willy T has been operating under an annual seabed licence which expired in February 2018.


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  1. ??? says:

    Gee, where are the overwhelming posts of celebration for the relocation of Willy T to a location that seems quite advantageous for locals and visitors? When will we learn to stop making noise with the lack of information as our foundation? When will we use similar passion for solving problems for which we have an abundance of information?

    • @??? says:

      I don’t get your point as this is a problem that NEVER should have occurred. Who knows….you might be next…
      Get my point?

      • Fran says:

        A high class resort will be built for the wealthy on Norman Island. It will be all inclusive with everything the wealthy want. The visitors are going to spend an enormous amount of money to be secluded there. Massages, swimming pools, 24 catering, baby sitting, hair and nail salon. Do you really think they give a rats ass about the noisy Willy T? That would be a NO! They do not need your money…SMDH.

        • Hmmmm says:

          Well Fran, That is just what you all want, to leave you all in seclusion to plan our destruction. Well the seclusion is to our advantage. East Job and no one knows. So you people came to another man’s country, behave yourself.

      • Captain Tip says:

        Wonderful news! We are scheduled for another bareboat cruise in January of 2020 and we will definitely visit the Willy T at its new location.

    • $$$$$$$ says:

      yippe mooring balls please

  2. Mike Lane says:

    Now that Willy T has moved no reason to go to Normand Island. See ya Pirates Bight. I suspect they had something to do with the move

    • Exactly says:

      @ Mark Lane…this is what I was thinking…a lot of people (including myself) would go/sail around Norman Island to go see Willy T’s and then stop over at Pirates Bight…I suspect that Pirate’s Bight will lose customers…but I applaud the owners of Willy T for settling so quickly…sometimes you have to give people what they want and let them fall into their own trap

      • MillyZ says:

        I aggre!

      • ! says:

        The Bight won’t miss us. They are looking for the big money now.

      • Erik says:

        No offense to the folks here that enjoy Willy T’s, but plenty of other people were never fans and will not miss them.

      • Mark says:

        Correct me if I am wrong, but doesnt Peter Island charge an exorbitant fee to pick up a mooring?

        • Wayne / S.V. Manna says:

          Same fee as any of the other mooring balls in BVI. Free during the day and $30 for the night. Or drop an anchor on east side.

        • Carla Riordan says:

          We only knew of 3 at the dock. $65 but last month they had signs not to trespass. The island is closed until maybe next year. Are there any at Great Harbor?

          • Captain Gee says:

            Only inside the resort bay. Dock fee by length but min 200 and 10lbs of ice and access to amenities save the restaraunt up top

          • Husker says:

            Carla – You are talking about the resort side. There are lots of balls and anchorage opportunities in Great Harbor.

          • Hark the harol says:

            More secure had moorings at great harbour but those red money hounds collected the fees and will not turn over the money guess what moorings disappeared

      • Rubber Duck says:

        This might explain why the owner of Norman Island seems in no great hurry to get the main restaurant at Pirates Bight back up and working. Untouched after Irma when I was there two weeks ago. If he goes down the route of Little Dix and Oil Nut Bay he will not want boaters around his “ Las Vegas Posh “ resort. Will the mooring balls come up next?

    • William Porter / S.V. Makkia says:

      Happy to hear this great news! This will give us more reason to visit Peter Island. Evidently the folks on Norman don’t realize that the Willy T is what brought most of the bareboaters over to the bight. I’m looking forward to our next trip “BVI2019”. The new Willy T and Peter Island will be on our sail plan.

  3. Ken K. says:

    The Willie “T” is an irreplaceable monument to those who harken back to the days of pirates, extreme party-goers, and pirate wanna-be’s….of course they would find a home somewhere in the BVI’s, as for most of us, the Willie “T” is the “anchor store” (no pun intended) of the BVI’s, where people go first and foremost, and usually more than once during their time in the BVI’s…here’s to the shot-skiis and body-shots for those who are young, and those who still think they are!

  4. ? says:

    Great spot while Peter Island is closed BUT I doubt they’ll be welcome once the resort is rebuilt & open to higher end clientele. Then what?
    ❤️ Willy T. Hoping everything works out.

    • . Correction says:

      Great habour is where oceans seven is located not the resort. I wonder how they are taking that move .

    • Carla Riordan says:

      We found management of Peter Island is not even hospitable to docking customers any more. They are not going to like fly by boaters. Can someone please tell me if there any mooring balls at Great Harbour ?

  5. Bowie M says:

    Hooray! A victory for the BVI, tourism, and the owners of Ocean’s 7 restaurant if they want to take advantage of this remarkable stroke of luck! Upgrade, put in some friendly help, reasonable prices. Oceans 7 could be the greatest beneficiary from this. Good snorkeling there also. Need more moorings which certainly will be added. Long live the Willy T!

    • me says:

      All good, but where will all the boats/visitors be anchoring???????

      • JaCowboy says:

        Probably same as before. Pull up alongside and dock the boats side by side to the Willy T itself. They had a small floating dock before too. I’m sure this will be part of the new location.

      • Carla Riordan says:

        Exactly. How do you do happy hour at Williams T til dark and boat somewhere else In the dark to moor! Ugh!

  6. Rubber Duck says:

    Amway don’t have the same pull as Jarecki. Yet.

  7. Derek says:

    The unfortunate thing is Norman is set up perfectly with all the mooring balls. I hope they plan to add more balls to the field on Peter or it will be very difficult to pick one up as they should go quickly. The Willy T is a destination.

  8. Sam the Man says:

    The only reason I ever went to Norman Island was to visit the Willy T at some point, most of my friends are the same, never liked P— B—- anyway or the place before it that was mysteriously burnt down, drinks too expensive and food v poor and over priced….won’t be going back to Norman….but certainly will join the hoardes at Great Harbour Peter Island – this is great publicity for the Willy T but not so good for Norman Island!

  9. Concerned says:


  10. Anonymous says:

    Do they know when they will be set up and in operation? I will be down there at the end of the month and was hoping to stop by.

  11. Clayton says:

    So glad the Willy T found a new Home. Peter Island will definitely benefit from the move. Sad for the Bite, they will miss the business. I too hope they put in more mooring balls for Great Harbor, it will be crowded..
    Long Live the Will T

  12. Election says:

    In 2020 peter island reopen ,then what but in 2019 election and ndp gone also j—- power, lol

  13. Diver says:

    It can anchor over the wreck of the first willy T.

  14. Chupps says:

    Was hoping they would move out of sight.
    Great history lesson though.

    • True says:

      The history learned regarding William Thornton was priceless, As a result, I did more research.
      Will never see this business nor its owner the same way ever. I am ” Woke”. Thank you.

  15. Nick says:

    The original Willie T was irreplaceable and will be missed and mourned by those who knew her. Hanging the old name on a new vessel in a new location will not recreate the vibe

    • Hamilton says:

      Out of respect, if such a thing exists in this circlem might be a good idea to retire its name. New barge, new location, new name.

    • Stephen says:

      The vessel destroyed in 2017 hurricane was not the original Willy-T. That was the second one, as the original one was a wooden hull that sank circa 1990s.

  16. Mickey says:

    We tie to Willy at peter that place will see more businuss

  17. Allan T says:

    We are VERY disapointed at what the government burocracy has pulled on the Willie T, it is a destination and the bight was annual two night stop for us.
    We will skip the bight this june and hang out on peter.
    Thank u willie t i have been visiting yearly since 1988

  18. LLBK says:

    WillyT or Wah

  19. Larry H says:

    Ditto Alan T…I’ve been visiting Willie T and the Bight since 1988…..hit the Willie T one night and “Billy Bones” on second evening…..good bye to The Bight…

  20. Gary CN says:

    Google Maps will need an update.

  21. Honestly says:

    I am a BVIslander with traceable lineage to the 1800 on both my parents.
    I travel extensively on business and for pleasure.
    I have never visited or been asked to visit Will T .
    Not once during my travels and interaction with folks in all walks of life has the Willie T been mentioned to me in identifying or connecting with
    the VI.
    Just saying.

    • Bond says:

      Where have you been hiding?

    • Carla Riordan says:

      Are you serious? Unbelievable !
      It’s an icon just as Foxys is!

      • MsRiordan says:

        Locals know and cherish a different BVI which is very different than what some visitors and expats portray or carve for their own pleasure into the fabric of these Islands albeit for their own pleasure and comfort.
        BVI Locals are for the most part non habitual drinkers , non coffee drinkers,non smokers, non diet cokers ,other cokes and other mind altering habits. They are uncomfortable with lewdness to the extent of foregoing their Aug Celebration which unfortunately has been gradually eroded with lewdness and crime.
        So watering holes and bars are not registered in their social psyche. Yeah ,dull but it is this character makeup which placed the BVI as a premier Caribbean destination.

  22. Willie says:

    Good luck to Ewan… long live Willy T… Good Bye Norman… Thank you Peter Island…

  23. Anonymous says:

    This is great, shortens the trip from VG, great work Ewan, sounds like Norman island the bight will go the way the DoDo bird did, they have not been interested in what has been happening there ever since it was sold. Congratulations
    Sea you at great harbour….

  24. anonymous says:

    Norman Island will be reconsidering their decision in 2020 after the loss of business it will be experiencing for the next upcoming seasons.

  25. Tom and Martha says:

    We were actually invited and went aboard the “NEW” Willy T as it was finishing outfitting in Tortola Harbor on Saturday May the 12th. Everyone was hard at work, and the ownership was both concerned and optimistic … so its great to see this announcement. Newer, bigger, better bar and food areas, and a great platform for jumping off the top deck … ;=}

    Great Harbor on Peter Island is about the same distance from Tortola as the Bight, so its still makes for a great first or last night for boaters in the BVIs for 1-2 weeks.

    As it’s legendary predecessors have shown, you can have your original “Willy T” sunk, and put another one on the water and make it a success. Same here … and the new locale will greatly benefit from the visibility and traffic.

    Kudo’s to the Willy T owners … and great success!

  26. BRAD BOYNES says:

    Hope the Premier and his gang is happy to continue to support these persons coming to do business amongst us with their s———-t and s—–r mentalities.

  27. Yay says:

    Now the poker run association can cancel Norman Island as a stop and make everyone go to Peter Island instead.

  28. BuzzBvi says:

    And the winner is? Boycott all you like the owner now has his second deserted island paradise that only money can buy.

  29. Dave S says:

    Sad that Willie T won’t be in the Bight, but happy she is afloat and in business again.

    Hopefully her presence in Great Harbour will inspire more mooring balls, as anchoring in BVI is always a challenge in crowded bays with the inexperienced charter operators. You often wake up with one on top of you (they think “scope” is mouthwash).

    All the best to the owners of the Willie T. May business be brisk and winds fair.


  30. Priscilla E. says:

    Sorry but I think this is not positive for Peter Island when it reopens. I for one will skip over my favorite island.
    So sad ????

  31. Hmm says:

    Pure boatman ghettoness on Sundays . lol

  32. Ted says:

    The Willy T put Norman Island on the map. To kick them out so a company that is sucking off itks draw is wrong. Bye Norman Island.

  33. Carla Riordan says:

    So sorry it’s moved. We take visitors several times a year and moor at Norman Island.. Great Harbour on Peter doesn’t have morning balls or if there is it’s not very many. Too hard to do happy hour there tbecsuse it will be too dark to leave and moor somewhere else. Too bad. So disappointed.

  34. Norman No Friends says:

    The only reason we went to have lunch at Pirates almost every month with a large family group was because we would stop off at the Willy T first and kids would jump off and snorkel. Norman will be boring without Will T so we will go to Peter Island instead.

  35. ALL SMILES says:


  36. argggh says:

    I just hope the new cove is sheltered enough from the weather to make those 3am dink rides back ‘more successful’….

  37. Hark the harol says:

    What’s the deal with this Willie tie s*&t if you want to go Willie t go if you want to go pirate go get over it

  38. Denise says:

    Just sailed back to the BVI from St Barths and heard the news. We will change our plans and head over to Peter Island.

  39. JV says:

    Will it be open this weekend for Memorial Day?

  40. guidoontheroad says:

    Between the cruise ships, Scrub Island disaster and now Norman Island development, I think a new sail destination is in order. It’s a big world.

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