Glenn Willing believes that Langford’s proposal to relocate the Victoria Bowmen’s Association to Willing Park will limit the potential for future improvements to the park. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)

Neighbour rallies against archery club relocation to Langford park

Victoria Bowmen’s Association on limited time in View Royal shooting range

A four-acre park is a dream come true for Ashleigh Hooks, who lives in a townhome in Langford’s Happy Valley neighborhood – a dream she believes will be ruined when an archery club relocates nearby.

Since April, the Langford woman has dropped by Willing Park almost daily to get some fresh air, stretch her legs and meet her neighbours.

“Since we live in townhouses, it feels like we don’t have any greenspace, so this small piece of land means a lot,” said Hooks. “I don’t want to see this created into an ugly eyesore. This is public land and not for a privatized group.”

Hooks refers to a Sept. 30 open house where city officials presented residents of Valley View Estates with the potential plans for Willing Park as the new home of the Victoria Bowmen’s Association.

The proposal includes paving a parking lot for about 20 spots, construction of berms for a shooting range and relocation of two sea cans on the field to store archery equipment. Plans show a realignment of a one-kilometre trail that goes through the park.

Hooks launched a petition to express her disappointment and garnered nearly 600 signatures.

She’s asking the city to indefinitely suspend plans to relocate the club to Willing Park, avoid paving green space, building concrete walls or removing trees, and consider suggestions from nearby residents on how the space should be used.

Hook says that though the relocation to Willing Park may be the most cost effective option for the archery club, it’s a cost too high for the residents and wildlife.

ALSO READ: View Royal archery club looking for new home after province moves in on property

Al Wills, president of the Victoria Bowmen’s Association, said they’ve been looking for a new space for the past two years as the province favoured BC Transit’s plans to place a handyDART bus facility in their View Royal outdoor shooting area.

Currently, the group is using Saanich Commonwealth to practice shooting. According to Wills, Langford offered the park as a viable option.

“I have looked at every possible park and I haven’t found one that is more perfect than Willing Park,” said Wills. “It has so much potential to be the centre of a world class archery range too.”

Glenn Willing, a member of the family that donated a portion of their farmland as a park years ago, said while he doesn’t have anything against the archery club, he believes the city’s proposal limits potential for future improvements.

“This blocks the chance that a future ball park could be built because in my mind they got the best part of the park,” said Willing. “The pond that’s there makes it impossible to put anything on that side of the land.”

Public engagement is ongoing and the project is not expected before council again until 2021.

READ MORE: Victoria archery club says goodbye to outdoor range in View Royal

aaron.guillen@goldstreamgazette.com

City of LangfordTown of View Royal

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

 

Glenn Willing believes that Langford’s proposal to relocate the Victoria Bowmen’s Association to Willing Park will limit the potential for future improvements to the park. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)

Just Posted

A rare Short-eared owl was found dead in a Saanich backyard on Oct. 26 and will be sent for a necropsy to find out if it had ingested rat poison. (Photo courtesy Kimberly Adamec)
Rare owl found dead in Saanich yard to be sent for necropsy

Short-eared owl ‘vulnerable’ in B.C., owl advocate says

The iconic and well-loved live music venue Logan’s is permanently closing its doors due to impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Google Maps)
Fernwood pub Logan’s permanently closing its doors

Live music venue unable to weather COVID-19 storm

The Starbucks at 3849 Cadboro Bay Rd. closed permanently on Sunday, Oct. 25. (Google Maps)
Cadboro Bay Starbucks closes despite petition signed by nearly 250 residents

Closure part of transition to more drive-thru locations, Starbucks spokesperson says

Shawn Magnus of Sidney Courier has partnered with Sidney Business Improvement Area Society for free commercial delivery for society members. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Sidney business association partners with courier for free commercial delivery

Service started Oct. 26 and extends to a radius of 35 kilometres

Victoria police are searching for a suspect after a stabbing Monday night. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria police searching for suspect in late-night stabbing

Victim taken to hospital with potentially life-threatening injuries

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry arrives for briefing on the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020 (B.C. government)
B.C. records 217 more COVID-19 cases, mask use urged

Infection spike continues, 21 senior facilities affected

Los Angeles Dodgers celebrate after defeating the Tampa Bay Rays 3-1 to win the baseball World Series in Game 6 Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
L.A. Dodgers beat Rays 3-1 to win 1st World Series title since 1988

National League champs claim crown in six games

Seven-year-old Aaliyah Rosa was found dead in an apartment in Langley in July. (Langley Advance Times files)
Child’s body cold, no pulse: Off-duty cop testifies in Langley mother’s murder trial

The seven-year-old girl’s mother faces a first-degree murder charge

A picture of John taken at Children’s Hospital Vancouver last week. Photo courtesy, Alicia Sewid.
RCMP investigating after young boy run over by SUV in Campbell River parking lot

The seven-year-old has multiple injuries including a broken pelvis and was admitted to Children’s Hospital in Vancouver

People march during a climate strike in Montreal, Friday, Sept. 27, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Judge rejects 15 youths’ climate change lawsuit against Canadian government

Justice Michael Manson has granted the government’s motion to strike the plaintiffs’ claim

A video message from Mrime Minister Justin Trudeau was streamed to attendees at the State of the Island Economic Summit on Tuesday morning. (Vancouver Island Economic Alliance image)
Prime minister greets Vancouver Island economic summit attendees

Vancouver Island Economic Alliance conference being held virtually this week

A woman walks through check in at WestJet at Pearson International airport during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Strong support for pre-flight COVID testing ahead of upcoming WestJet trial: YVR

Airport is partnering with UBC, which is helping choose the method of pre-flight testing

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau provides an update on the COVID pandemic during a press conference in Ottawa on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Trudeau says pandemic ‘really sucks,’ and that Christmas gatherings are up in the air

The prime minister encouraged residents to continue to follow the advice of local health authorities

Most Read