Three VI Heritage & Conservation Initiatives

Below, three items in our newsletter to Vancouver Island friends & supporters  – what we hope might  be of interest to you as one of those late summer public interest-type news stories that have nothing to do with the federal election…VI Flaq, Q Victoria, Poster- historical, july'15

1) ‘Beautification & Heritage’ project update on the ‘Heritage Lands’ of Cedar, S. Wellington, Yellowpoint, North Oyster & Cassidy
2) Addressing VI’s drought
– a Pilot Project on local water governance
3) Today’s feature front-page coverage of our letter from the Queen, VI’s Heritage and an important 150th Anniversary! (

Please feel free to contact us if you wish further information:

Laurie Gourlay
President, VICCS

Vancouver Island & Coast Conservation Society, Box 333, Cedar, B.C., V9X 1W1; 
250.722.3444, (


August 18, 2015

Hello Friends of Vancouver Island, Heritage & Conservation!

Your advice svp…

I’m looking to make contacts locally …with heritage, community and our shared landscape in mind. I’d like to extend the conversation our Society has begun, to see if there’s interest in working together on the ‘Heritage Lands’ of Cedar, S. Wellington, Yellowpoint, North Oyster & Cassidy …as well as Vancouver Island initiatives for Heritage and Conservation.

There are two projects in particular that I’d like to come and talk with you and your group about – and I’d like your help in reaching out to other local organizations as well. Your help in providing contacts of local organizations, or in forwarding this information, would be very welcome – and will help with our Canada 150 celebrations and events. And, before I provide an overview of our 2016 -2017 goals, please let me add that VICCS would like to work in partnership on these projects – we want these to be ‘community-owned’, with local organizations and residents deciding what best meets their wishes. VICCS is encouraging the discussion to get things up and going, and is prepared to work with all interests as things move forward.

So then…

1) Heritage & Beautification

The first project we have underway is the ‘Beautification & Heritage’ project, and what might be pursued together for 2017. We have planters which were donated by the City and are now stored at the Wheatsheaf Pub – along with plans to place them with benches, horse hitches and pocket gardens. We have historical records identified from a student project in Cedar, along with some heritage pictures; and we’re talking with Take 5 magazine about publishing a book that will profile our historical, cultural and natural heritage. And we’ve raised the possibility of a ‘Heritage Sports Day’ for youth in 2017 – with a children’s soccer re-match in mind to commemorate the 125th anniversary of the famous Nanaimo Thistles vs Snuneymux’w game that saw Harry Manson play. Harry is now recognized locally and nationally in Sports Hall of Fame circles.

We also have good relations with City Councillors and the RDN, the latter who have written a very favourable letter endorsing our ‘Beautification & Heritage’ project. And we’ve had several meetings this past spring to provide an overview of the project to the community, while circulating introductory letters to businesses throughout these ‘Heritage Lands’. And there’s more on our website. By the way, we’ve approached VIU to see if their computer classes may assist on this project, to develop an interactive website that residents could post to, add photos and comments on – and which could have resources and heritage records available for everyone to read and contribute to.

And finally in this regard, it’s last minute now but if your organization is interested at this short notice in pursuing a tulip garden, as per the copied email below from the Cedar Women’s Institute, please let us know. Deadline is August 30th.

2) VI Conservation – Our Local Water Supply & Watershed

A few days ago we heard back from the BC Deputy Environment Minister, with respect to a proposal we had put forward for a pilot project that would bridge RDN/CVRD boundary lines. Raising attention to water management needs for our shared landscape, we suggested that the new BC Water Act could facilitate co-operation across jurisdictions. We’re hoping to encourage regional governance of water across the CVRD/RDN, and ensure an ongoing supply and partnership with all sectors and interests who depend on the aquifers, creeks and rivers and watersheds spread across Cedar, S. Wellington, Yellowpoint, North Oyster & Cassidy.

I can provide a copy of our proposal to the Ministry, or you can go to our website where it will be posted this weekend. From the Deputy Environment Minister’s reply, and previous correspondence exchanged, there is good reason to believe that we could have this ‘watershed initiative’ underway by 2016, once the BC government announces Water Act revisions in the spring. Now’s the time to start working together if we want to ensure that this area has the water and resources in place to deal with droughts and future demands upon our water supply . VICCS would be pleased to work in partnership with the community,  and all interests and sectors, to develop a plan that will secure our water and watershed needs.

If you can then please consider forwarding this email to others you know – neighbours and friends, local groups and community organizations and businesses who may be interested. And please do let me know if I can come and speak at a meeting with you and your group, especially if there’s interest in working together on either or both of these projects for our ‘Heritage Lands’.

Hope the summer’s been a good one for you!


Laurie Gourlay
President, VICCS

3) ps – and you may also wish to have a look at the front page coverage VICCS received today – featuring our letter from the Queen, VI’s Heritage and an important 150th Anniversary! (

Vancouver Island & Coast Conservation Society, P.O. Box 333, Cedar, B.C., V9X 1W1
<>  <> (250 722-3444)