”A stop off at school, then continue on our way, these Welsh/Shetland ponies visited Palsson Elementary School last week for show and tell while out on a walk with owner Sandy Stinson. The ponies, Duchess and Duke, will be housed at Mid-Island Riding Centre temporarily.” (Lake News, June 11, 1997)

”A stop off at school, then continue on our way, these Welsh/Shetland ponies visited Palsson Elementary School last week for show and tell while out on a walk with owner Sandy Stinson. The ponies, Duchess and Duke, will be housed at Mid-Island Riding Centre temporarily.” (Lake News, June 11, 1997)

Flashback: A petition, forgetful campers and more layoffs for the mill

A look back at the history of the Cowichan Lake area

Welcome to Lake Flashback. Reporter Sarah Simpson has been combing through old newspapers with the assistance of the Kaatza Station Museum and Archives so we can jog your memory, give you that nostalgic feeling, or just a chuckle, as we take a look at what was making headlines this week around Cowichan Lake in years gone by.

This week around the Cowichan Lake area…

10 years ago

“Whose responsibility is it, anyway?” wondered editor Tamu Miles in the June 13, 1997 edition of the Lake Cowichan Gazette. It took reading the story to figure out what the heck she was writing about.

“The June 5 public works meeting was once again dominated by the issue of excessive water run off onto properties on North Shore Road.

A delegation of property owners presented council with concerns they say they have been trying to get the town to address since 2008.

This group, owning lots 1-17 along North Shore Road, want something to be done about excess water seeping down to their properties from Deer Road and Castley Heights.

“Nagi Rizk, superintendent of public works and engineering, agrees that there is a problem with moisture on the hillside. However, when it comes to responsibility for clearing or maintaining the easement, he says there are many things that have to be taken into consideration, and proper procedure must be followed.”

Her next story in the same edition was a little more straightforward. It came under the headline: “More locals speak out against roundabout project”.

Hubert Crevels, a local resident, said that “in February he gathered 38 names on a petition against the planned roundabout for the intersection at North Shore Road and South Shore Road.

“The petition was handed into the town office on March 1, of this year. It stated that those who signed do not support a roundabout at the intersection and instead would prefer traffic lights, equipped with sensor activation, for those turning left onto South Shore Road. Crevels feels that if he had had more time, he would have been able to gather many more signatures.”

25 years ago

Here’s a good news story in the June 11, 1997 Lake News that we wish we would see more of these days:

“Honeymoon Bay Elementary School officially received the Quality Physical Education Program award on June 6.

“The school also received a letter from Prime Minister Jean Chretien applauding the students and the dedication of the teachers. Honeymoon Bay Elementary school was only one of 46 schools in B.C. to receive the award and one of 437 in Canada. The school received letters of congratulations from School District #79 and from Physical Education Provincial Specialists Association.”

Also some naughty campers caught the eye of police and the newspaper this time 25 years ago.

“A group of campers left an unauthorized camping area near Skutz Falls last weekend after being requested to leave by a park official — but left their camping gear behind.

“‘The occupants simply departed and did not return,’ Sgt. Gary Poitras of the Lake Cowichan RCMP said.

“The campers left behind gear, including tents, which can be claimed at the RCMP detachment in Lake Cowichan.”

40 years ago

Bad news for the forest industry as “veneer plant shut down ‘indefinitely’” said the front of the June 9, 1982 Lake News. Seems some of the employees just couldn’t seem to catch a break.

“The veneer plant at B.C. Forest Products Youbou mill has been shut down this week for an indefinite period, throwing 50 workers onto unemployment insurance for the second time this spring.

The layoffs began Monday, June 7 and will continue ‘until the economic conditions improve,’ according to industrial relations officer Myron Barge of the Youbou mill.

Veneer plant workers were laid off from March 8 to April 5 this year because markets were poor.

It wasn’t just veneer plant workers who were laid off either.

“Mill fire forces layoffs” was a headline on the very next page.

“Workers will be laid off from the R&R mill at Beaver Lake while the mill is repaired from a fire May 29 which damaged its electrical system. About six workers will be laid off for about two weeks while the work is completed. Apparently the mill itself was not greatly damaged.”

And finally a “dispute over noisy party sends local man to trial” headline was eye catching on page three.

“The Lake Cowichan man who was charged August, 1981, after he drove his car onto the sidewalk to chase what he considered to be noisy party goers in the Sahtlam-Grant’s Lake-Boundary area was committed for trial last week.

“The accused faced a charge of criminal negligence in the operation of a motor vehicle.”

 

”Police escort for Jennie Johnson is provided by Const. Paul Meckler at official opening of Olson Manor Friday as George Webster, chairman of the Cowichan Lake Senior Citizens’ Housing Society, invites guests to follow Mrs. Johnson, the oldest resident at the complex, on a tour of the senior citizen’s residence located on the banks of the Cowichan River. (Lake News, June 9, 1982)

”Police escort for Jennie Johnson is provided by Const. Paul Meckler at official opening of Olson Manor Friday as George Webster, chairman of the Cowichan Lake Senior Citizens’ Housing Society, invites guests to follow Mrs. Johnson, the oldest resident at the complex, on a tour of the senior citizen’s residence located on the banks of the Cowichan River. (Lake News, June 9, 1982)

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