The Sugar Revolution, the introduction of sugar cane from Dutch Brazil, in the 1640s was extremely lucrative but came with high social costs
Barbados was one of the oldest English settlements in the West Indies, surpassed only by Saint Kitts.
The country's historical ties date back to the 17th century and include settlement, post-colonialism, and modern bilateral relationships.
Since Barbados gained independence in 1966, the nations have continued to share commonwealth relations with the queen as monarch.
In 1627, 80 Englishmen landed aboard the William and John on the Caribbean island and founded Jamestown (near present-day Holetown) in the name of King James I.
The early settlers struggled to develop a profitable export crop and struggled to maintain supplies from Europe.
However, the Sugar Revolution, the introduction of sugar cane from Dutch Brazil in the 1640s, was extremely lucrative and over the next decade more than two-thirds of English emigrants to America went to Barbados.
This switch to sugar, while generating huge profits, came with high social costs. Thousands of West African slaves were shipped across the Atlantic to work the plantations.
Selling sugar, or white gold as the colonists called it, made huge profits as it was a scarce commodity in European markets.
Sugar was an integral part of the country's economy until the 19th century, while workers suffered from low wages and minimal social services.
Barbados gained independence on November 30, 1966 at a time when the country's economy was expanding and diversifying.
In 2008 UK exports to Barbados were £ 38.0 million. This makes Great Britain the UK's fourth largest export market in the region.
In recent years, an increasing number of British nationals have moved to Barbados to live there. According to surveys, British nationals make up 75 to 85 percent of the second home market in Barbados.
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