Feds agree not to de-staff lighthouses

Fate of those already de-staffed remains unknown

Oak Bay’s Trial Island lighthouse will continue to shine

Oak Bay’s Trial Island lighthouse will continue to shine

They’re historical landmarks and iconic navigational aids – and their future has been in question.

But recently a ray of light shone down on Canadian lighthouses and those who have pushed to protect them, as the federal government announced it will not de-staff the structures.

“We’re incredibly thrilled with that,” said Meredith Dickman, lightkeeper at Oak Bay’s Trial Island lighthouse for the last seven years. “It solidifies all the work that the lightkeepers and everyone else, all of the interested parties, have put in over the last years in ensuring that light stations remain staffed.”

Minister for Fisheries and Oceans Canada Keith Ashfield issued a statement in response to Seeing the Light: Report on Staffed Lighthouses in Newfoundland and Labrador and British Columbia, stating that not only will lighthouses currently staffed remain so, but that government has no plans to further study lighthouse staffing.

While the staffing hurdle has been cleared, the future of Canadian lighthouses, many already de-staffed, is uncertain.

On May 27, 2010, Fisheries and Oceans Canada declared nearly 1,000 lighthouses on both the east and west coasts surplus.

Canadians have until May 30 to nominate lighthouses for heritage designation under the Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act. Many light stations have not had applications submitted, and could become vulnerable to de-staffing, Dickman said.

“Even though some of them are still active beacons, those ones still have the potential to be sold off,” she said. “It’s not in the best interest of the Canadian people to have heritage light stations, whether they have been declared or not, sold off without heritage protection.”

The Oak Bay Heritage Foundation submitted an application to protect the Trial Island lighthouse, built in 1906, and its associated buildings registered.

Dickman urges anyone interested in preserving lighthouses anywhere in the country to go online, learn more about the station and submit a nomination. The process requires the nominator to provide a petition with at least 25 signatures of support.

More information is available from Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The construction zone remains for now at Clover Point, but plans for a new pedestrian zone and partially closed traffic loop were approved by Victoria councillors on Thursday. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)
Victoria council compromises with partial closure of Clover Point

Option preserves parking 14 spots facing ocean, creates more pedestrian space

(Black Press Media file photo)
Trees Cannabis to reignite downtown Victoria location as licensed store

The dispensary will reopen its 230 Cook St. location on Saturday

A wind warning is in effect for Greater Victoria Thursday afternoon. (Black Press Media file photo)
Strong winds predicted for Greater Victoria

Environment Canada issues warning for Thursday afternoon

Sergeant Francis Dion with the box containing HMCS Calgary’s new secret mascot costume. (HMCSNCSMCalgary/Facebook)
Don Devenney is a Goldstream Gazette 2021 Local Hero as Community Builder of the year. (Don Denton/Black Press Media)
West Shore volunteer’s efforts an exercise in adventurous pursuits

Don Devenney is the 2021 recipient of the Community Builder Award

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature. (B.C. government)
B.C. reports 10 additional deaths, 395 new COVID-19 cases

The majority of new coronavirus infections were in the Fraser Health region

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Feb. 23

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(Black Press Media File Photo)
POLL: Are you struggling with Greater Victoria’s cost of housing?

While Victoria remains one of the most expensive cities in the country… Continue reading

Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools is preparing a rapid response team proposal for submission to the B.C. Ministry of Education. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Nanaimo-Ladysmith school district chosen as COVID-19 rapid response team

Team to consist of SD68 and Island Health staff, according to B.C. Ministry of Education

A new survey has found that virtual visits are British Columbian’s preferred way to see the doctor amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (Unsplash)
Majority of British Columbians now prefer routine virtual doctor’s visits: study

More than 82% feel virtual health options reduce wait times, 64% think they lead to better health

Captain and Maria, a pair of big and affectionate akbash dogs, must be adopted together because they are so closely bonded. (SPCA image)
Shuswap SPCA seeks forever home for inseparable Akbash dogs

A fundraiser to help medical expenses for Captain and Maria earned over 10 times its goal

The missing camper heard a GSAR helicopter, and ran from his tree well waving his arms. File photo
Man trapped on Manning mountain did nearly everything right to survive: SAR

The winter experienced camper was overwhelmed by snow conditions

Castlegar doctor Megan Taylor contracted COVID-19 in November. This photo was taken before the pandemic. Photo: Submitted
Kootenay doctor shares experience contracting COVID-19

Castlegar doctor shares her COVID experience

Ashley Paxman, 29, is in the ICU after being struck by a vehicle along Highway 97 Feb. 18, 2021. She remains in critical condition. (GoFundMe)
Okanagan woman in ICU with broken bones in face after being struck by car

She remains in serious condition following Feb. 18 incident

Most Read