In early 1787, as American vessels flooded the Gold Coast with rum and as the French worked to extend their coastal position, the Cape Coast Castle governor Thomas Price, reported that the Fante, England's coastal allies, ‘are too politic a people, and too well acquainted with their own interests, ever to wish to confine their trade to one nation’. Price's summation of the issues affecting Anglo-Fante relations on the late eighteenth-century Gold Coast (modern Ghana) provides the foundation for this article. This article contributes to West African coastal historiography in that it examines the relationship between the Gold Coast and the Atlantic World through the trans-Atlantic slave trade. The article expands upon this foundation by narrowing the focus to one Gold Coast trade/administrative enclave. It examines the enclave during a period of change, the 1770s to the early 1800s that culminated in radical reconstruction of coastal relations. The article utilises the Fetu city of Cape Coast, also the administrative centre for England's Company of Merchants Trading to Africa (hereafter CMTA), to examine the relationship between Atlantic (external) and coastal (internal) factors within an African trade enclave. To accomplish this, it eliminates the dichotomy that exists between exploring general coastal trends within a diverse coastal region. This raises a question concerning the consequence of these general trends upon diverse states, cultures and peoples. Do the general trends affect each group similarly or differently and, if so, why? The focus upon one Gold Coast enclave expands our understanding of the consequences caused by the interaction of Atlantic and coastal factors.