This grassy square with its central Eros and Aphrodite fountain and ornate bandstand is the symbolic center of downtown Port of Spain. Dr Eric Williams, Trinidad and Tobago's first prime minister, gave stirring speeches here, which eventually led to independence from Britain; the 1970s Black Power demonstrations also took place here. Known as the 'University of Woodford Square,' it remains a ‘speakers corner’ where people can express opinions via soapbox discussions; daily topics are posted on a blackboard.
Surrounding Woodford Sq are some interesting edifices, including the Red House parliament buildings and the Old Public Library, a handsome brick-built structure from 1902 with an arcaded second story; exterior restoration was completed in 2018, but the interior remains unusable. Its precious Heritage Collection languishes in storage in the basement of the modern NALIS (National Library and Information System Authority) building, nearby at the corner of Hart and Abercromby Sts, a ship-like structure which looms over the area like a huge beached cruise liner.