May Pen is the capital and largest town in the parish of Clarendon in the county of Middlesex, Jamaica. It is located on the Rio Minho river, and is a major market centre. The population is estimated at around 60,000. The town has a Mayor and a long standing Member of Parliament.
May Pen was established as a plantation settlement by the British between 1660 and 1683 on a crossing point of the Rio Minho River. May Pen is now said to be the fastest growing rural town close to Kingston. It is well located from an administrative point of view in the centre of a largely agricultural parish, and as a midpoint on the Kingston to Manchester road.
May Pen is also an important citrus packing centre, famous for ‘Trout Hall’ oranges. The Denbigh agricultural showground is a short distance from May Pen.
It is the birthplace of reggae and ska legend Fredrick Toots Hibbert frontman of Toots and the Maytals.
Like everywhere in Jamaica, the history is endlessly fascinating. There are old churches and great houses. Car racing enthusiasts will love the racing at Vernam field.