Jersey Chamber's History
The oldest Chamber in the English-speaking world.
History is garnished with valued improvements to Jersey, thanks to the wise influence of the previous Chamber generations.
The archive of the Jersey Chamber of Commerce is an invaluable source for local historians and a vital tool in understanding the business history of the Island.
Enriched in Chamber’s long and illustrious history are the values we still hold today; that is, to promote trade and build on the prosperity of the island.
These values have been part of the fabric of our history for centuries, much of what we celebrate today is a testament to the hard working merchants who founded Chamber back in 1798.
Chamber started with a group of public spirited ship merchants getting together to protect the interests of the Island’s maritime trade. They were dissatisfied with the representation by the ruling elite in the Sates who had little interest in assisting merchants, ship owners and traders.
There were many difficulties to overcome such as fishing trade, industrial, pirates, the French Revolution, the development of the Island’s harbours and the safety of their vessels during wartime.
They became a forward thinking and dynamic organisation interested in the pursuance of better trade conditions for the Island’s merchants.
Throughout the early years, the main work of the Chamber was promotion and protection of shipping as the community was mainly composed of ship-owners.
Chamber was active and forward looking. The ordinary 18th century Islander, whatever his class, had little contact with the outside world, whereas members of Chamber, in contrast, were citizens of the world.
As business and trade developed in the Island, so did the scope of Chamber’s activities.
Today Chamber represents a diverse community across a number of sectors including finance, hospitality and retail. It is dedicated to the promotion of trade, commerce and the general prosperity of Jersey and is the largest employer representative organisation in Jersey.
Celebrating 250 years
250 Year Anniversary: Chamber is rebranded and launches a new website
On the Move
After 180 years in the Royal Square, Chamber moves offices to Pier Road
How many people?
Challenged a plan to cap the population at 85,150
Concerned over what Britain joining the Common Market would mean for Jersey
Privatising Fort Regent
Supported proposals for private development at Fort Regent
Questioned the future of the abattoir at the Weighbridge and its long-term development
On-going discussions about Sunday trading
Landing an airport deal
Supported plans to extend the Airport runway
Increased pressure to create more car parking space in St Helier to encourage shoppers
Liberation Day holiday?
Considered whether it was appropriate to trade on Liberation Day
Event led tourism
Discussed staging key events such as an International Film Festival
Questioned the future of Fort Regent
Entered a float into the Battle of Flowers
Airport takes off
Instrumental in the building the airport and acquiring the surrounding land
Defended the dairy industry over the sale of margarine
Linking the Islands
Raised funds to lay a submarine telegraph between the Channel Islands and England
Organised the completion of Victoria Pier using States funding
New headquarters set up in the Royal Square in a property gifted to Chamber
Set up the Island’s very first Post Office
Successfully fought against the restrictions placed on tobacco trading
Charter of incorporation was drawn up to help promote the welfare and prosperity of the Chamber
For the workers
Acted for carpenters working on ships, demanding an increase in their wages
Increased the subscription for non-ship owners and introduced fines for non-attendance
Acted against ships having to obtain clearance in Britain
The oldest English speaking Chamber began its journey