Tim Collins/News staff
The Log Cabin Museum, located at 7910 Polo Park Crescent in Central Saanich, is about to undergo a face-lift.
But before that work was possible, the caretakers of the property, the Saanich Pioneer Society, have been required to obtain approval of the District of Central Saanich by way of a heritage alteration permit.
The museum was first constructed in 1933 as a home for the Pioneer Society; a place where members could socialize and where member memorabilia could be saved for posterity. In 2010 it was designated as a municipal heritage structure, requiring Council approval for any modification to the site.
Ironically, prior to being receiving municipal heritage designation, modification had been done to the site to safeguard the building and contents from vandals; a modification that worked against the preservation of the site as a pristine historical site. The front of the building was encased in galvanized chain link fencing, enclosing the front porch and closing off the front door with a chain link gate.
“Norma put it succinctly when she appeared before council,” recalled Mayor Ryan Windsor.
“She told us that the chain link fence is ugly and doesn’t fit well with the heritage of the building. We had to agree.”
The Society plans to remove the chain link fencing and replace it with tempered glass panels that will allow visitors to view the structure and contents while still protecting the structure from vandalism. The chain link gate will be replaced with a decorative iron gate and an access ramp will be constructed to improve the museum’s accessibility.
“As a council, we have no doubt that the Pioneer Society will continue to be good stewards of the building and will exercise a incredibly light and respectful touch throughout any renovation,” said Windsor.
Information on the museum and activities associated with the site can be found at saanichpioneersociety.com.