Sooke Harbour: News:
Lighthouse Society gains Provincial support
Sooke News Mirror
August 10, 2005
Lighthouses were the bright beacons that
became symbols of hope for seafarers around the world. The British
Columbia coast is home to some of the most rugged and dangerous
waters found anywhere and her lighthouses historically were the
salvation for many a flailing ship at sea. They are the romantic and
historical icons of our time and their preservation
most often falls to non-profit societies.
The Sheringham Point Lighthouse, built
in 1912, is the reason for the existence of the Sheringham Point
Lighthouse Preservation Society. They have been working for the past
three years to preserve and acquire the lighthouse within a 10-acre
park site. On Aug. 7, one of the last remaining pieces of the
acquisition puzzle fell into place with the announcement of support
from the Province of B.C.
"Government is prepared to consider
support for the efforts to acquire the lighthouse and have the
Capital Regional District hold title to the property for the use of
the general public," said Premier Gordon Campbell in his support
letter to CRD director Erik Lund.
Michael Galizio, president of the
society, is elated over the support now received from all three
levels of government.
"This is the piece we were missing,"
said Galizio. "We are now awaiting the Fisheries and Oceans
determination in making the property surplus and we expect this to
happen any day."
Once the federal ministry declares the
property access it will first be offered to other federal
jurisdictions, then consultation with First Nations bands will take
place. Normally what has happened in the past, is a portion of the
negotiated fee is paid to First Nations. The next level is
provincial and that is why Galizio says support letters are so
important in the acquisition process. He commends the strong support
shown by both Director Lund and MP Dr. Keith Martin.
The CRD Parks Commission would
administer the park and lands.
The membership, at their annual general
meeting, overwhelmingly adopted a resolution endorsing a signed
agreement between the society and the adjacent property owner.
The agreement provides the society with
$200,000 to assist with the purchase of the lighthouse if it becomes
available. The CRD had voted to accept cash-in-lieu from the
The adjacent owner/developer has reached
an agreement with the society and the CRD to give 3-4 kms of
statutory right-of-way for walking trails on his property.
Galizio said there had been concerns
expressed by residents of Sheringham Point Road. The residents
raised the issues of notice, road speed and maintaining the rural
nature of the road intact.
They were, at one point, dead set
against any development. They were notified that the society
membership has been working with the Ministry of Transport and the
adjacent landowner to mitigate any negative affects resulting from
the road access.
"We want to work with the community to
see that it is done the right way," said Galizio.
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Lighthouse Society clears the air
Sooke News Mirror
Sept. 07, 2005
Road issues and a poor choice of words has left
Sheringham Point Road residents wondering what the truth is in regards
to road access to a new subdivision development on 165 acres of
oceanfront property close to the Sheringham Point Lighthouse.
On August 7 the Sheringham Lighthouse Preservation Society (SPLPS)
adopted a resolution endorsing a signed agreement between the Society
and the Vancouver-based developer, Guiding Owl Development. The
agreement would provide the Society with $200,000 to assist with the
purchase of the lighthouse if it becomes available from the federal
government. A cash-in-lieu agreement with the Capital Regional District
would see 3-4 kilometres of public walking trails on the property.
In an article in the Sooke News Mirror on August 10, Michael Galizio,
president of the SPLPS stated that the membership "has been working with
the Ministry of Transport and the developer to mitigate affects
resulting from the road access."
Rob Howat, Approving Officer of the Ministry of Transport, said this was
false. He said there has been no contact or talks with the Sheringham
Lighthouse Preservation Society. "The only dialogue is with the
applicant's consultant in establishing a physical width (for the road)
which would be required to serve the development if the development
proceeded," said Howart. Galizio said he realizes that his choice of
words in the August 10 article was unfortunate. "While it appears our
choice of words has led to some confusion, our intent is to work with
all parties to mitigate the affects of road improvements in the
community. To that end we have written to the Ministry of Transport and
included road issues in our negotiations with the adjacent landowner."