HISTORY OF WORK POINT BARRACKS
by Jack Bates
PART 9 — 1971 to 1994
TROOPING THE COLOUR
THIRD BATTALION PRINCESS PATRICIA’S CANADIAN LIGHT INFANTRY
Royal Athletic Park Victoria, B.C. Friday 1 July, 1983
October 6, 1983
A cairn was placed at Beacon Hill park in commemoration of the presentation of colours to the First Battalion PPCLI on July 17, 1959.
The Esquimalt Star
Buxton Green Park was officially dedicated recently under a tremendous downpour, (top pic) Mayor Ken Hill (far left) and Laurie Wallace, Vice Chairman of the Provincial Capital Commission look on as Evelyn Buxton and Doug Knight cut the ribbon (bottom pic) Mrs. Maude McKenzie (nee Buxton) helps unveil the sign.
Among the 135 people who turned out for the dedication ceremony 90 per cent of the Buxton family was on hand.
Many of the executive of the Esquimalt Anglers past and present were also on hand. The Anglers spent about $80,000 developing Buxton Green.
Picnic tables donated by the Lion’s Club were also dedicated.
The Buxton family has been a part of Esquimalt’s history since the early part of the century.
Opposite the Esquimalt Angler’s Association building there is a memorial rocked wall, dedicated to the many “anglers” who have launched their boats there, and returned “with or without fish.” In the 50’s, Kenny Buxton, with a lot of us friends, used to swim at Fleming Beach and catch the odd octopus in the salt water tidal pool, built in 1941 by the 60th Battery, RCA, filled in now as part of Buxton Green.
December 7, 1983
WORK POINT - "C" COMPANY ARRIVES
Victoria Daily Times, May 12, 1906. Imperial Troops at Esquimalt.
Canadian regular forces were first stationed in Victoria in 1887 when C Battery CA was formed for garrison duty in this province. It consisted of 18 NCO’s and men half from A Battery at Kingston and the balance from B Battery at Quebec. The arrival on November 17th of the new troops was marked with great enthusiasm. No barracks had been fitted for the reception so they were accommodated in the old Agricultural Hall at Beacon Hill, which remained home for 3 years until suitable quarters had been built at Work Point. Their only service outside garrison duty, was in 1889 when they were sent to Skeena River to quell an Indian disturbance which was done without bloodshed. “C” Battery left this province in 1893.
Esquimalt had become a place of great military importance. This caused the Colonial Defence Committee to enter into negotiations for its better protection and, as early as 1889 steps were taken in this direction. In that year a small party under the command of Lieutenant J.J. Lang, R.E., was dispatched for the purpose of making a preliminary survey of the land in the vicinity of the city and the naval headquarters. This occupied some 2 ½ years.
The completion of this survey put matters further in train and in 1893 an agreement between the Imperial and the Dominion governments was arrived at whereby defence works, costing about $300,000 were to be constructed at joint expense.
The Dominion agreed to pay the entire cost of the Imperial Government and to hand over Work Point Barracks at a valuation to be deducted from the former’s share of costs of the fortifications. The Imperial Government, as its share, undertook the superintending of works, to provide armament and stores for submarine mining and half the cost of the defence works.
In pursuance of this agreement, on August 4th, 1893, Lieutenants Templar and Barnes RMA arrived with a small force to take over the barracks at Work Point and “C” Battery left the next night for Quebec. The officer selected by the War Office, Major H.H. Muirhead R.E. reached Esquimalt from England a few days later and a decision was reached to construct the works by day labour under sapper supervision.
A further detachment of the 18th Co. R.E. arrived on 1st of May 1894 and work was almost immediately commenced on the battery at Macaulay Point.
A large number of civilian labourers were employed and the different works decided upon were taken up and completed early in 1896.
Submarine mining at Esquimalt dates from 1897.
The above version was condensed and written by F. Longstaff, the full version, with photos, is in the Times, May 12, 1906.
A History of the Defence of Victoria and Esquimalt: Royal Garrison Artillery Period 1899 – 1906.
As the previous two writings by Ron Lovatt, and as we get closer to family histories, this 238 page booklet is another most interesting read with the variety of content and illustrations.
A History of the Defence of Victoria and Esquimalt 1918 – 1956.
This 164 page booklet is the 5th (not sure about the # 4) and last of the histories by Ron, covers a time frame as above with some prior year’s content, and includes illustrations. This is more current and again well worth a view. It coincides with Fort Rodd Hill as a National Park.
AB Tony Irons, HMCS Saskatchewan, RCN, spent 78 days, to September 25th, in the Work Point Barracks guardhouse pending trial for a mutinous act on July 10, 1984, the cells block in Naden being condemned at the time. Aside from his deeds of that day he was a tremendous artist. To his credit he designed a new NAVY RUM label for the 75th Canadian Naval Anniversary, for which he received a $200 award, but declined so the tale goes.
A History of the Defence of Victoria and Esquimalt, 1906 - 1918
This 181 page, part 4 of 5, covers the post Imperial forces departure time frame. Featured with illustrations are local personalities, camps and forts on the island such as Willows and strike duty in Nanaimo, along with the buildup to WW1 and eventually demobilization.
Regimental Memorials of Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry was published with a revised edition to coincide with the 75th celebration in 1989. This booklet contains local reference to Work Point Barracks, St. Paul’s church, Beacon Hill Park, Schjelderup Lake V.I., the Patricia Room at the Royal Jubilee Hospital and CPR liners. It also contains references to other memorials across the country and overseas as well as individual landmarks and memorials to notable persons of PPCLI history.
I believe that the booklet should be updated and more photographs added to highlite the memorials. Of specific note at this moment would be the addition of the PPCLI cairn at Work Point placed June 8th, 2014 and a photo of the CWO RG Buxton memorial. Of course photographs should be added for all the individuals listed.
squimalt Archives 997.88-35
That the five year agreement between the Department of National Defence and the Corporation of the Township of Esquimalt for leave and licence to use the Department of National Defence land commonly known as “Macaulay Point” for recreational use and historic interest, be ACCEPTED; that the proper officials be instructed to prepare the necessary by-law to provide the authority to execute the said agreement; and that the amount of $200 required as payment for this agreement, be authorized paid.
Esquimalt residents have a new five hectare park courtesy of the Department of national Defence. DND has given the municipality a five-year “leave and licence” permit to use Macaulay Point lands for recreation and historical purposes.
The Esquimalt Anglers Association is currently cleaning up the parkland and making it more accessible for the public. Mayor Ken Hill has been working on the agreement for more than two years. The permit may be renewed after 1990.
A new BC Land Registry plan numbered 41833 was registered on September 2, 1986, which consolidated the plans in Work Point Barracks and Macaulay Point exclusive of 1870R, CRD property; and 35322, the former Imperial Oil property on Victoria View Rd. The lands were previously shown on plan 195A, Viewfield Farm.
Survey monument installed on the top of the Battery Command Post at Fort Macaulay.
SAXE POINT PARK
Saxe Point Park, one of Esquimalt’s loveliest recreation areas, had added associations with garbage and war before it officially became a park. The area was first, however, used as a farm. The point itself had been named, like many other landmarks, by Lt. James Wood of the British survey ship Pandora around 1850. The name was taken from the title of Queen Victoria’s husband Albert, the Prince of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. Then, in the decade between 1850 and 1860, Saxe Point was part of the Viewfield Farm, one of the four farms in Esquimalt operated by the Puget Sound Agricultural Company to provide meat and produce to the Hudson’s Bay Company. The farm, however, was not a productive one, and of its six hundred acres only 35 were improved. When Donald Macaulay, the bailiff of Viewfield Farm returned to Fort Simpson, the farming venture ended, and the land reverted to the Hudson’s Bay Company.
In the 1920’s the Company subdivided the area into 20 one acre lots and sold one. In 1929 the Company gave the land to Esquimalt for taxes. Meanwhile, the Municipality of Esquimalt was filling in a shallow pond near the present entrance with garbage. Local children went ice skating in the winters at the “dump” in the 30’s. In 1934 a small portion of the land was set aside for a park, and this was added to in 1939 and again in 1944, so that today’s park encompasses almost fifteen acres.
During the Second World War, Saxe Point was needed for defence purposes. So, in 1940 the Canadian Army cleared the seafront of trees and installed a searchlight on the shore. The remains of that light can be seen in the lookout near today’s parking lot. Park development gradually proceeded as the municipality found the funds that made this possible. Today’s grounds are an impressive mixture of woodlands, cliffs, and gardens. In one area, ivys climb evergreens next to rocky beach that catches enormous windblown kelp, and further on cultivated flower beds border gravelled trails. With its wild and varied character, Saxe Point Park still hints at its unusual beginnings.
Work Point Barracks To Celebrate Its 100th Year
On 20 June, the Third battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry will celebrate the Centennial of Work Point Barracks. It was 100 years ago that C Battery, the Regiment of Canadian Artillery, began the construction of the Work Point Garrison. Since then the garrison has been occupied by all manner of military organization including the Submarine Mining Company of the Royal Engineers in 1889, and the HQ of the 6th Infantry Division, 1945. The PPCLI has been in residence on two separate occasions, 1919 – 1939 and 1957 to the present.
3PPCLI will mark the occasion with an open house and a parade exercising the Freedom of the City of Victoria and the Municipality of Esquimalt. The parade, beginning at 1100 hrs at the Beacon Hill Park entrance at Douglas and Southgate, will proceed up Government street, across the Johnson Street bridge, on Esquimalt road to the Esquimalt Municipal hall by 1245 hrs. The parade will finish off at Work Point at 1330 hrs with the Battalion firing a Feu-de-joie.
The open house at Work Point Barracks will commence at 1000 hrs and will feature performance by Victoria’s military bands, including the PPCLI Regimental band, static displays of military equipment, the Work Point Museum and an unarmed combat demonstration. At 1330 hrs the Battalion will arrive for the parade finale. Work Point Barracks is located at the end of Head and Lyall streets in Esquimalt. There is no admission charge.
A stone cairn was placed inside the main gate at Work Point Barracks on June 20, 1987 in celebration of the 100 years of military presence at Work Point Barracks.
The PPCLI have been in residence three times, “B” Coy, 1920 – 1939; 1st Battalion, 1957 – 1963 and 3rd Battalion, 1970 to present time, contrary to the above.
3PPCLI presents: WORK POINT BARRACKS SINCE 1887.
The above is the inscription on the stone cairn which was unveiled by the Reviewing Officer as part of the Centenary Celebrations. The stone is of granite and comes from Beacon Hill Park courtesy of the City of Victoria. Beacon Hill was the temporary home of the contingent which built Work Point Barracks, 100 years ago.
Soldiers Celebrate Garrison Centenary
Soldiers will be strutting their stuff in downtown Victoria Saturday in honor of 100 years of military at Work Point. But ask just about any member of the 3rd Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry about their historic garrison and he’ll likely tell you he’d rather be in the field. “It’s home for us, but garrison time is just an interlude between field training,” Capt. Dan Drew, battalion information officer said Thursday.
Battalion commanding officer Lt. Col. Tony Anderson said the centennial presented the PPCLI with the opportunity to involve the public in the battalion. “A lot of people see our Grizzlies going down the street but don’t know anything about us,” he said. Beginning at 11 a.m. Saturday, the battalion will exercise its Freedom of both Victoria and Esquimalt, marching through downtown – in their new summer tan uniforms for the first time and carrying their old FN rifles for the last – before winding things up with displays and a ceremony at Work Point.
Ceremony is just one aspect of the “interlude” which mostly filled with maintenance – the mandatory paperwork, administration and planning as well as equipment and vehicle maintenance and base upkeep. For a combat soldier, it’s time to relax a bit – but it’s not much fun. Victoria’s battalion has been dubbed “the sunshine battalion’ by its sister battalions on the prairies who think the mild climate makes for soft foot soldiers. The approximately 600 officers and men of the 3rd know differently but don’t say anything. “We play on that a bit with our sister battalions, sending them pictures of us in bathing suits under parasols. It’s all in good fun…but these soldiers take a back seat to no one in the army,” Anderson said.
Because the Island’s terrain doesn’t lend itself to large mechanized tactical exercises, the 3rd does a fair bit of travelling to training sites – spending between four and six months away from home a year in such not so exotic hot spots as Wainwright, Alta., the North West Territories, and Washington State. Anderson said training in cycles – an intense couple of weeks out and then in for a rest is an advantage to a prairie location “blessed with a training area at its back door where you go out so often it gets a little hum drum.”
Location has enabled the 3rd to develop an amphibious capability as well as expertise in mountaineering, Drew said. The local tough terrain presents a good workout for the soldier who lives on his feet. “We pride ourselves in that we can pretty well go anywhere and do anything as a unit,” he said.
It was 100 years ago that “C” Battery, the Regiment of Canadian Artillery, began the construction of the Work Point garrison. The PPCLI first took residence there from 1919 to 1939. The regiment has since been in residence there twice from 1957 to 1963 and 1970 to present. Since it was built the garrison has been occupied by all manner of military organizations including the Submarine Mining Company of the Royal Engineers and the headquarters of the 6th Infantry Division, 1945.
Anderson said some of the original buildings, including the guardhouse and the officer’s mess date back to Work Point’s beginnings. And while no changes have been made in the last 10 to 15 years, a building program to start this year will see a new lecture training centre, maintenance area and badly needed new quarters built. The battalion maintains a close relationship with the Navy, Anderson said, and a return to distinctive uniforms helps.
COMBAT SHOW ENDS IN DEATH
A 20 year old soldier is dead after a “fluke accident” during a hand to hand combat demonstration on the final night of the Esquimalt tattoo. Joseph “Jack” Bruce Daniel Gichrist apparently received a superficial stab wound to his chest and struck his head in a fall, CFB Esquimalt spokesman Lieut. Mike Ferland said Sunday. “We believe it was just a fluke accident.”
The young soldier was taking part in a hand to hand combat demonstration in which participants separate into pairs, with one playing the attacker and the other defending himself.
The choreographed combat employs the use of two knives, one resembling a small bayonet, the other a small attack knife. “In this kind of exercise for a public demonstration, the knives are usually blunted,” Ferland said.
Gilchrist had apparently sustained a superficial wound which stunned him. He fell down, hit his head and stood up again before collapsing, Ferland said. Gilchrist, of Misissauga, Ontario, belonged to the 3rd Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light infantry – one of several units participating in the week long tattoo featuring military pageantry and demonstrations.
A military doctor in the audience provided immediate help and Gilchrist was taken to Victoria General Hospital Saturday night and died shortly before 10 pm, Ferland said. An autopsy is scheduled for today. The coroner will be examining a military videotape of the event, Ferland said.
The accident occurred shortly before intermission and the full house of 1,000 people stayed until the event wrapped up about 11 pm. “The audience was not aware that it had happened,” Ferland said. The tattoo was held to celebrate 75 years of co-operation between the fleet and the municipality.
Esquimalt Mayor Ken Hill watched Saturday’s three hour performance. After the PPCLI team’s demonstration was completed, “They all walked to form two lines and while they were standing at attention – just an instant before they were to march off – one of the fellows in the back row sagged and two fellow soldiers helped him off the floor.” Gilchrist was one of more than 600 members of the battalion.
He enrolled in the armed forces in March 1986 and spent three months in recruitment training at CFB Cornwallis, N.S., PPCLI Adjutant Capt. Mike English said, Gilchrist then completed a three month battle school in Wainwright, Alta., before arriving in Victoria last October.
Soldiers volunteer for a position on the unarmed combat team and go through a selection and try out process, English said. “For a demonstration team like this we’ll pick the guys that seem to have more of a flare for it, more physical fit, stronger…”The team started training in early June for the tattoo and other events.
Esquimalt police and military are investigating the death. PPCLI spokesman Lieut. Andrew Bryan expects a military board of enquiry will be set up to examine the accident.
The 3rd Battalion PPCLI served its fourth tour of peacekeeping duty in Cyprus from March to September 1988.
New Barracks For CFB Esquimalt
Pat Crofton, M.P. for Esquimalt – Saanich, announced recently on behalf of the Hon. Paul Dick, that 68 Junior Ranks single quarters will be constructed at Work Point Barracks, CFB Esquimalt. The new facilities will be home to members of the 3rd battalion, Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry.
“The new quarters will go a long way towards solving the problem of insufficient numbers of single quarters at Work Point Barracks,” said Mr. Crofton. “And it’s another step in the provision of proper facilities for our Armed Forces, as outlined in the June 1987 White Paper on Defence.”
The project design has been completed and construction contract awards will be made in November, 1988. The new quarters, which have the appearance of modern townhouses, should be ready for occupancy by August 1989. The total value of the project is more than $3 million.
This is the extant building # 1093, the “Ojibwa” building. A number of the older buildings were demolished at this time to make way for these new quarters.
FEDERAL HERITAGE BUILDING REVIEW BOARD
BUILDING REPORT 89 - 205
This report followed the FHBRO points rating system which awarded the status of “Recognized” to four of the fifteen buildings involved, those having more than 50 points.
No.’s 1001, the Guardhouse; 1004, one of the three original “C” Battery huts; 1020, the Administration building; and 1075, the R.G.A. barracks.
BUILDING REPORT 89 – 69
This report also followed the points rated system and awarded No. 1027 the status of “Recognized.” The building was “deconstructed” in 2006 after much discourse and a relocation option. The report had been rushed at the request of the local DND and curiously enough scored less than the Guardhouse.
Of note, there is only one building in CFB Esquimalt’s inventory (excluding Royal Roads) which has the higher status of “Classified” based on the points rating system requiring 75. That is building No. 101 in the Dockyard, the “Admiral’s Residence” and former Naval Storekeeper’s house. Of course the points rating system used has been challenged, without success, with the custodial department having to apply for evaluations of - or upgrades to heritage status.
New Centre Honors Hero
The PPCLI has a brand new red brick lecture and training building in Esquimalt.
The Brigadier James Arthur de LaLanne Building was officially opened on Jan. 31 by Base Commander Captain Brian Beckett, Maj. Gen. G. Brown and a host of other dignitaries.
The 2,798 sq. m. complex is the first permanent training facility the third battalion of Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry has had.
As well as classrooms and offices, the building boats a 124 seat theatre/auditorium, a military library, heavy weapons training quarters and an underground firing range.
Brigadier de LaLanne joined the PPCLI during W1. He was wounded in action three times and was the victim of poison gas on three occasions. De LaLanne received the Military Cross and Bar for heroism in battle.
He again served with the PPCLI during WW II. De LaLanne, a chartered accountant by profession, was also mayor of Westmount, Quebec, from 1955 – 1957.
De LaLanne died on August 12, 1988, at the age of 91.
Brig. Gordon Reay (left) and Base Commander Capt. Brian Beckett were two of the many dignitaries who attended the official opening of the Brigadier James Arthur de LaLanne Building at Work Point Barracks on Jan. 31. Below, Lt. Col. Harry Elliot, Commanding Officer of PPCLI’s third battalion, unveils a plaque dedicated to the memory of Brig. De LaLanne.
Extant building # 1094, now named the “ Vice Admiral A.L. Collier” building.
3 PPCLI Celebrates 75th Anniversary
The Third Battalion , Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry celebrated its 75th Anniversary locally in style and panache, with two Freedom of the City parades.
The two Freedom of the City parades were conducted under a bright sky in front of appreciative crowds at the Victoria and Esquimalt City halls. Both Mayor Brewin and Mayor Warder inspected the guards in front of their respective city halls, with presentations and proclamations following.
Upon completion of the parades, the battalion put on an open house for the public, which turned out to be fun for all ages. The “combat scene” starring Recce Platoon, the parachute free fall demo, and the unarmed combat demo delighted all, though the kids were more interested in the Grizzly rides and Sgt Dumas’ display of booby traps. All ranks put in an excellent effort which exemplified the professionalism of the Patricia’s of the Third Battalion.
L Col H.F. Elliot escorts Mayor Warder of Esquimalt during the Freedom of the City parade on 21 June, 1989.
Drum Major, WO H.O. Leduc, leads the Corps of Drums during the Freedom of the City of Esquimalt parade.
L Col Elliot escorting Mayor Brewin of Victoria as she reviews the troops during the Freedom of the City parade.
Marching down Douglas Street, L Col Elliot (right) leads the Guards during the Freedom of the City of Victoria parade.
M Cpl Dodds and Cpl Willie put on a show with the Corps of Drums at Beacon Hill Park.
Pte Steward of 6 Platoon, B Company tries to recruit newcomers with the .50 cal during the open house.
Pte Woodridge hams it up for a few onlookers at an open house display.
Pte Boucher (left) and Pte Duprey (right) in old garb during the open house.
Regimental Trooping – 1 July, 1989
On the 1st of July, the Third Battalion held a Trooping of the Colour ceremony at University of Victoria’s Centennial Stadium as part of the Seventy-Fifth Anniversary celebrations. The sky was clear, and the sun beamed down upon the grassy field as the crowd sat waiting expectantly for the start of the anniversary ceremonies. Weeks of drill practices, of sweat, aches and pains, of anger, disappointment and frustration, all lead to this day.
With the beat of a drum, the ceremony started. Musical interludes by both the Third battalion’s Corps of Drums and the Regimental band started the programme. The music was excellent and the crowd receptive. Following the musical introduction was the main event, The Trooping. The crowd was hushed and attentive as the Battalion marched up, lead by the Regimental band. The old guard members sat in silent pride as they watched the Battalion march, reminiscent of years past. The Trooping was outstanding, much to the delight of the Reviewing Officer, the Colonel of the Regiment, Briga dier General R.S. Graham and the many guests, family and friends. Along with the Colonel of the Regiment, there were a host of other Regimental dignitaries in attendance at the ceremony. The Battalion was graced with the attendance of Major General G.M. Reay, MBE, CD and two World War One veterans, Captain (Retired) A.A. Bates and Mr. J. Loy. After the inspection and Trooping of the Colour, Brigadier General R.S. Graham passed on Lady Patricia’s blessing and a “well done” to the battalion. The crowning touch of the Trooping ceremony was the March Past of the Old Guard under the guidance of Capt. F. Carrierre, CD.
The Trooping ceremonies were followed by formal festivities in the Officer’s and Warrant Officers’ and Sergeant’s Messes and a seventy fifth celebration event at the Junior Ranks Mess. The Third Battalion would like to thank all those personnel who helped in making the ceremonies of the First of July a success.
The Third Battalion Corps of Drums and the Regimental Band strut their stuff for an appreciative crowd at the University of Victoria.
Two Guard (foreground) and the Escort to the Colour stand tall following the dressing.
Maj Ross McLaughlin stands tall in front of the Escort to the Colour during the Trooping of 1 July 1989.
Precision – The Guards of 3 PPCLI execute forms on the march.
The Colonel of the Regiment, Brigadier General R.S. Graham, CD salutes as the troops march past. Major General C.B. Ware, DSO, CD also looks on.
The crowning touch, The Old Guard marches past.
Four Guard marches past in slow time.
An excellent video was recorded and various publications were printed.
PPCLI Ridge Named
On August the 23rd members of the Third Battalion, Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry climbing expedition successfully scaled and named PPCLI Ridge. This was the culmination of months of planning in celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the founding of the Regiment.
The expedition consisted of Major D. Fraser, Warrant Officer Berridge, Master Cpl Officer, Master Cpl Corbett and Pte Preus. The team staged out of CFB Comox by Buffalo Aircraft to a dirt airstrip at the head of Butte Inlet. From there they were ferried into the climb site (near Washington Mountain Range on the mainland) by Labrador Helicopter flown by 442 Squadron Base at Comox. After several days of poor weather the team was fortunate that the weather broke long enough for a successful climb. The Ridge, some three kilometres long and averaging 900 feet includes Homathko Peak and Endeavor Mountain. The climb capped off a busy schedule of anniversary events conducted by the Battalion.
PPCLI Trying to Save Ship Bell
The former CP steamship Princess Patricia may have gone to a wrecker in Taiwan this week, but the armed forces unit bearing the same name is trying to save its bell.
“It’s part of our history,” said Maj. Dave Fraser of Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry in Esquimalt. “It’s our 75th anniversary and it (the bell) would be a nice touch.”
Princess Patricia was the regiment’s first colonel in chief when it was founded in 1914. Her name also went to the passenger steamer built in 1948 along with a sister ship, the Princess Marguerite.
The two ships plied the waters between Victoria and Vancouver under the Canadian Pacific banner until 1962.
The Maggie, now owned by B.C. Stena Line, still sails between Victoria and Seattle.
The Patricia became a Vancouver-to-Alaska cruise ship, and then a floating hotel at Expo 86. CP then sold the ship and it became a sad, rusting hulk at Esquimalt.
Auctioned off for debts owing, Taiwanese steel company Chi Shun Hua Co. Ltd. bought it last October and towed it across the Pacific to an uncertain future.
Canada’s trade office in Taiwan learned last week the ship was to be scrapped this week.
Saving the bell off an old ship is a seafaring tradition, said Fraser.
“The significance is that if a ship is ever decommissioned, the ship’s history lives on because the bell is saved.”
The regiment put in an offer for the bell to Chi Shun Hua early this week and is awaiting a reply. If successful, PPCLI will retain the bell in Esquimalt.
Bell From The Princess Patricia Not For Sale – Taiwan Wreckers
Dave Fraser’s efforts to save the steamship Princess Patricia’s bell appeared Thursday to have been for naught.
Fraser, a major with Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry in Esquimalt, wanted to buy the bell from the wrecker’s yard in Taiwan where the ship is being scrapped.
The company that purchased the 41 year old former CP ship refused the sale this week, he said.”
“They said it wasn’t available,” he said.
Both the ship and the regiment were named for the daughter of the Duke of Connaught, governor general of Canada from 1911 to 1916.
Fraser said the common name gave the regiment a feeling of attachment to the ship.
He said he had not given up, although he was doubtful of success. He is asking the Department of External Affairs for help.
The ship was sold at federal court auction for debts owing last October, Chi Shun Hua Steel Co. Ltd. bought her and towed her across the Pacific. The company planned to begin breaking her up last week.
The bell from the first Princess Patricia, built in 1902 and scrapped by Capital Iron in Victoria, resides in the Nanaimo Museum, presented to the City of Nanaimo by the BCCSS on August 23, 1937.
“Natural” Macaulay Point Feared Park’s Death Knell
Esquimalt aldermen who want to keep Macaulay Point “natural” could force the loss of the popular park for all of Greater Victoria, Ed Bradford, chairman of local historic society said Wednesday. An Esquimalt committee, which includes Bradford as a representative of the Greater Victoria Military Heritage Society, has been working for months to develop a plan to develop part of the park.
Bradford’s group would like to see a ceremonial guard display utilizing local youth established at Macaulay – the longest continually fortified spot on Canada’s west coast. Monday, however, Esquimalt aldermen Colin Blair, Norm Tapping and Jim King passed a motion forcing a public forum to be held within 30 days before any further action is taken to develop the point. They maintain several residents in the area want the point left as it is – a wild area where people can walk their dogs.
Mayor Ron Warder and Ald. Bill Allen cried foul, saying that there is no point in holding a public forum until the committee has a set of development options which they can present to the public. Warder said Tuesday he will bring the issue back to council for reconsideration. Bradford said Wednesday that the Esquimalt council’s actions are “ridiculous.” “They don’t even know what we wanted to do. They’ve only heard from people who have been complaining. Some people went around the district with a petition saying we were going to close the point off and other nonsense which is totally misleading.
“It is really sad when we have an opportunity to recreate our history and employ young people which they do in other parts of the country well enough so they can be presented on the lawns of the Parliament in Ottawa for the world to see. It’s not Mickey Mouse. It’s not Disneyland. It’s our heritage and that property belongs to everybody, not just to the people in Esquimalt,” Bradford said. Esquimalt leases the point from the Department of National Defence. Bradford said there is nothing to stop DND from selling it.
Blair Out of Order On Macaulay Point Park Decision
Esquimalt Ald. Colin Blair said he is embarrassed by Mayor Ron Warder’s plans to ask council to take a second look at its latest decision over Macaulay Point. But Blair never was given a chance to explain his position as he was twice ruled out of order when he tried to rise on a point of privilege on the issue. A committee headed by Ald. Bill Allen has been looking at redeveloping the park – the longest continuously fortified spot on Canada’s west coast – by perhaps restoring the gun emplacements or providing water for fire protection.
There had also been discussions with the Greater Victoria Military Heritage Society, a group wanting to use the site for mock changing-of-the –guard ceremonies as a tourist attraction. But plans have drawn considerable public criticism and a week ago aldermen decided a public hearing on the future of Macaulay should be held before anything further proceeds. After the council decision, Warder said he would bring the matter back before council at the April 23 meeting for reconsideration.
Warder said 30 days does not give the committee time to draft development proposals to present to a public hearing. Warder also has said he will ask council at the same meeting to give walking papers to the military heritage society. Blair wanted to know Monday whether municipal staff had been instructed not to proceed with plans for the public meeting. But because the issue was not on the agenda for either the special council meeting or the priorities and planning committee, Blair was ruled out of order.
Betty, a well-known resident of Esquimalt, known for her involvement in matters of “Historical Esquimalt,” wrote a 19 page history of Macaulay Point. This bears reading.
August 8, 1990
The December 1962 “Brief History of Work Point Barracks” was updated and corrected to this date by Lt. Col. M.R. Gentles, CD, DRO, Pacific Region HQ, Victoria, B.C. It is titled: HISTORY OF WORK POINT BARRACKS AND FORT MACAULAY.
It contains a list of QOR of C and PPCLI Commanding Officers from1953 to 1990 and totals 8 pages.
Doug Nelson, who we all knew as the Base Historian, wrote a report called the “A Brief Historical Outline of The Macaulay Point Battery Site Esquimalt B.C.” This is another report which bears reading.
Army Digs For Guns
The army is going to do some digging for old gun sites at Macaulay point. Esquimalt council’s Planning and Priorities Committee gave the go ahead for the 5th BC Regiment to carry out an archaeological dig on the site.
The dig, led by Regiment Museum and Archives Curator Robert Clapp, will look for the gun emplacements of cannon used to fire a salute to the opening of Legislature in 1878. “It would be folly on the part of this council to oppose this dig and further it would create problems in our relationship to the Department of National Defence,” said Ald. Ray Rice. But Ald. Jim King is nervous about the dig.
“I wouldn’t like to think they will be digging all over the place to find these things,” King said. “The area is just starting to look really nice again.”
The dig will take place this summer.
June 30, 1991….3 PPCLI stationed at Work Point Barracks exercised their right to Freedom of the Township of Esquimalt with a parade to celebrate Canada day.
Macaulay Point Gun Dig Postponed
A dig for the original gun emplacements at Macaulay Point Park has been postponed until the fall. Victoria’s 5th B.C. Field Battery, Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery, planned to begin looking this spring for the three original gun emplacements constructed for its parent unit in the 1870’s.
But by the time the unit had received permission from both DND and the Township of Esquimalt the supervisor they planned to hire went to another employer, commanding officer Maj. Brad Woollven said Thursday.
“The project has been approved by both DND and Esquimalt. We’re looking at reactivating it in September but it’s just a matter of getting the right person with the right archeological background,” Woollven said.
The guns themselves have been gone for close to a century, but the unit wants to find out exactly where they were located.
Macaulay Point is the longest fortified position on Canada’s west coast.The first battery was built there in less than a month in 1878 with three guns facing south on the tip of the point.They were manned by the Victoria Battery of Garrison Artillery, parent of today’s fifth.
The King’s and Regimental colours of the First Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry were relocated from St. Paul’s church on this day. They were delivered by military escort to the Museum of the Regiments in Calgary to coincide with the opening of this new Museum. They currently reside in large glass covered environmentally controlled drawers in the PPCLI section of the museum. Apparently this relocation had been in negotiations since 1978.
Work Point Barracks
FAREWELL TO PPCLI
On Sunday, 13 September, 1992 the 3rd Battalion of the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry will parade for the last time on the parade square in Work Point Barracks in Esquimalt, B.C. prior to the unit leaving for an assignment in war-torn Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina. We, the members of the Korea Veterans Association of Canada Inc., have been invited to join with them on this memorable occasion as part of “The Old Guard” during their ceremony. We thank the Commanding Officer for this great honour and we wish the unit every success in their new duties in a new and strange environment. As old soldiers, sailors and airmen our thoughts and our prayers will be with them throughout their tour of duty. Good luck to them ! and may God bless them all.
UNITED SERVICES GOLF CLUB / MACAULAY POINT GOLF CLUB
Dated 1992, J.R. Findlay produced a 1”- 200’ scaled drawing of the nine holes of the above named club and Fort Macaulay. It was very neatly done using the Leroy drafting system, included coloured shaded outlines and contours of the area with spot elevations at the high points. Also shown are streets of the time and some residences, namely Col. Peters, Major Sisman and the Buxton residence, known to be a landmark of the golf course in the thirties, and the club house on Lyall Street. The golf course was situated more on the Macaulay Plains and Macaulay Camp than on Macaulay Point with only green # 5 and #6 T box south of Munro street.
Rodd Hill Friends Society
“Shoot Shoot Shoot” A History of the Victoria Esquimalt Coast Artillery Defences 1878 – 1956, is a book published on this topic. It is well written, contains ilustrations, tables and tales and is considered to be a most worthy source of information.
Base Hosts EME Colonel Commandant
The Base Electrical and Mechanical Engineering (BEME) Section of CFB Esquimalt recently played host to the EME Branch Colonel Commandant, Col. (Ret’d) Murray Johnston.
Although the main reason for his visit was to attend Ex – Cadet functions at Royal Roads Military College (RRMC), Johnston did take time out of his schedule to visit the BEME workshop, as well as 11 (Victoria) Service Battalion Maintenance Company and the local chapter of the LEME Association.
The position of Colonel Commandant is an honorary, and therefore unpaid, appointment bestowed upon a retired member of the Branch who attained the rank of Colonel or higher while a serving member.
Johnston visited the BEME Workshop on the afternoon of Wednesday February24 and took part in an unveiling ceremony for a replica of the EME hat badge mounted above the entrance to the main shop. The cap badge was manufactured by workshop personnel. As well, he spoke with members of the workshop, both military and civilian, on Regimental matters. Topics discussed included a number of historical initiatives as well as preparations for the Branch 50th Anniversary to be celebrated in May of 1994.
On the afternoon of February 25, Johnston, who is also president of the “Friends of the Canadian War Museum,” visited the Base Museum and its curator Ernie Colwell.
That evening, the Colonel Commandant visited the 11 (Victoria) Service Battalion, Maintenance Company to discuss concerns of the EME Reserve with regards to the implementation of the Total Force Concept, and apprise EME Reserve personnel of Regimental matters. Johnston was pleased to find the soldiers and officers of the Battalion’s Maintenance Company as interested in these matters as their Regular Force counterparts.
He completed his visit with a briefing given to the local chapter of the LEME Association at the Naden Wardroom.
New Badge – Col. (Ret’d) Murray Johnston unveils the new Electrical and Mechanical Engineering (EME) hat badge mounted on building 1052 in Work Point.
The building was demolished with others by September 1998.
April 14, 1993
3 PPCLI to Move
Rumors regarding the 500 member Third Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (#PPCLI) departure from Esquimalt were finally confirmed last Wednesday by Lt. Col. Glen Nordick, 3 PPCLI Commanding Officer, after almost two years of speculation.
The battalion will be relocated in Chilliwack, and in keeping with the Total Force concept, will become primarily a reserve unit, consisting of 10 percent regular force members and 90 percent reserve.
Two hundred 3PPCLI soldiers will leave Esquimalt this summer for postings to 1PPCLI Calgary and 2PPCLI Winnipeg. Eighty-four regular force soldiers will depart for Chilliwack to lay the foundation for the reconfigured unit, while others will be posted across Canada during the next year.
Although Base Commander Captain (N) Tony Delamere will be “sorry to see them go, their presence and colourful uniform will be missed around town,” he also admits that HMC Dockard and Naden are “bulging at the seams” and that Work Point Barracks will be very useful to the base. There is “no doubt that we’ll fill every building there,” he says.
The move is expected to be completed by the summer of 1994.
THE THIRD BATTALION
Will Celebrate The CANADA DAY WEEKEND
FREEDOM OF THE CITY OF VICTORIA
FREEDOM OF THE MUNICIPALITY OF ESQUIMALT
About That Move
At first, it seemed hard to argue with the recommendation to move the 3rd Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry from Esquimalt’s Work Point Barracks to CFB Chilliwack. The obvious social and economic loss to our community aside, who can argue with Ottawa’s aim of reducing regular infantry forces by 30 percent in its battle to reduce the deficit.
General Tom deFaye, the Land Forces Western Region Commander who recommended the move at changing the battalion’s make-up to a 10-90 regular foreces – reserves split, noted that the Lower Fraser Valley is one of Canada’s fastest growing areas. This, he said, should provide a huge pool of potential reservists. He also maintained Chilliwack has better access to training areas than Victoria, where training is “under continual pressure – such as Heal’s Range.”
The general needs to review his figures. While the population of the Lower Fraser Valley is growing rapidly, so are the numbers on lower Vancouver Island. The latest census indicates that the Capital Region grew by 19.2 per cent between 1986 and 1991, from 264,614 to 299,550. The same census indicates there aren’t as many people between Langley and Hope as there are on southern Vancouver Island. Where is the general’s “huge pool”? As for difficulties with some training facilities, wouldn’t working that problem out be preferable to wholesale uprooting of servicemen and their families.
The Defence Department needs to ensure the general’s numbers really justify the PPCLI move.
A history making decision that proved detrimental to Esquimalt, and British Columbia as the battalion moved to Edmonton a year later when CFB Chilliwack was closed. Quite a void left in the Province.
Navy Could Move to Work Point
Developers eyeing Work Point Barracks will have to wait a few years before any decision is made to sell. There is a lot of competition for the land, said Lt. Col. Glen Nordick of Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, speaking at the Esquimalt Chamber of Commerce lunch March 9. “A lot of people seem to think they can get the land for a dollar,” he said. “But if it’s sold, it will be at fair market value and put toward the federal deficit.” He said once the Department of National Defence pulls out this year, it is up to federal government to dispose of the land. With base closures all over \canada it will be “almost three years before a decision is made on how to dispose of the land.”
But 3 PPCLI will be out of Esquimalt and moved into the Chilliwack base by July, 1994 Nordick said. Work Point’s doors officially close June 28 and 29 when a parade marches past the legislature and then Esquimalt to say farewell to the public.
“Leaving Esquimalt and Work Point Barracks is going to be heartwrenching…but its time to move on,” he said. Chances are the navy will be allowed to move on to Work Point. Nordick said the Navy was “jammed in” their present locaton and had “made a proposal to Ottawa to use Work Point as a training facility for the Navy.” Some of the wooden buildings are slated for demolition while the heritage buildings would be maintained, he said.
There are currently almost 400 personnel at the barracks, with one military company slated for duty in Croatia in April, leaving less than 200 people at Work Point, Nordick said, who returned almost a year ago from the peacekeeping mission in the former Yugslavia. Beginning with 3 PPCLI soldiers, the Canadian military is now repeating duty in the area of conflict. 3 PPCLI companies were first deployed as part of the United Nations peacekeeping force in September 1992.
The conflict in Croatia and Bosnia can be frustrating for westerners, he said. “The history of violence in th area is as long as time itself,” he said. “There is no chance of an early resolution (to the conflict). They’re negotiating in bad faith on all sides. All of them have a basic mistrust and hatred of each other.” And because peacekeepers must not compromise the impartiality of the United Nations, the presence of Canadians and other soldiers often unwelcome by all sides, he said. In Croatia a ceasefire agreement gives peacekeepers the right to maintain the law, in Bosnia, where there is no agreement, the “atrocities continue to happen. The U.N. is there solely on humanitarian grounds, the only time force can be used is if a convoy is under attack,” Nordick said. “We’re there strictly to keep 11 million people from starving.”
Move to Chilliwack All Set For 3 PPCLI
The move is underway. Trailers and trucks full of equipment have been regularly leaving the island for weeks as the Third Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (3 PPCLI) prepares for its departure of Work Point Barracks for its new home, CFB Chilliwack. “We’ve been moving equipment over there for about a month and a half now,” said Captain Sean Hackett, 3 PPCLI Intelligence Officer. “The thin-out is underway.” The battaliongradually began to cease operations this month. Turning over Work Point buildings to CFB Esquimalt has been taking palce steadily since May. To date five buildings have already been turned over to the base, and the rest will be returned by mid-July.
An Implementation Cell of five officers and 10 support staff was posted to Chilliwack last summer. They were tasked with the evaluation of base facilities in preparation for the scheduled establishment of the new 3 PPCLI garrison. “In the interim, facilities are kind of tight,” he said, adding that after a few renovations are made, they will be adequate by the fall.
The move to Chilliwack is a major component of 3 PPCLI’s transformation into a 10/90 Total Force Infantry battalion. “It’s a move toward greater integration of the regular and reserves,” said Capt. Hacket The restructured battalion will therefore consist of 10 per cent regular forces and 90 per cent reserves. “This doesn’t affect the soldiers too much because it’s not a reduction in overall numbers,” Capt. Hackett explained, as most soldiers leaving 3 PPCLI will move to either 1 PPCLI in Calgary, or 2 PPCLI in Winnipeg. “It’s a re-alignment.” CFB Chilliwack is the home of the new 3 PPCLI Battalion HQ and Administration Company.
“It has been a very gradual withdrawal from the community. We haven’t left in one big rush.” Capt. Sean Hackett 3 PPCLI
The largest portion of the 84 man Regular Force cadre, approximately 50, will be posted there. The 10/90 Battalion organizational plan also calls for the posting of small regular force cadres throughout the Province. In addition to the largest contingent in Chilliwack, four other cadres will fill selected leadership positions at each of the BC District Militia Infantry Regiments in Kamloops, Vancouver, and on Vancouver Island.
Capt. Hackett said that the battalion has been moved out of Work Point gradually, and the Esquimalt community has easily absorbed the loss. “It has been a very gradual withdrawal from the community,” he said. “We haven’t left in one big rush.” Downsizing began last summer when the battalion returned from Croatia, with 180 personnel being posted elsewhere. Another 100 left in April 1994, returning to Croatia with 1 PPCLI.
Various Close Down ceremonies are scheduled for late rthis month. The Countess Mountbattem of Burma, the Colonel in Chief of the regiment, will arrive on June 28 to preside over the ceremonies. A formal parade on the BC Legislature grounds to bid farewell to the City of Victoria will begin at 2 p.m. A dinner and ball for all ranks of the battalion will be held at the Bay St. Armouries tht evening. Finally, on the evening of June 29, 3 PPCLI will conduct its final parades in Victoria; a farewell to the Municipality of Esquimalt; followed by the formal farewell to MARPAC; an official change Change of Command Parade between the current Commanding Officer, LCol. Glenn Nordick, and the incoming Commander, LCol. W.D. Turner; and a traditional sunset ceremony to bid farewell to Work Point Barracks. With the exception of the Farewell to Victoria Parade, all ceremonies will be held at Work Point.
“The move is greeted with a little bit of sadness,” said Capt. Hackett. “We’ve been here for 23 years, we’ve become part of the community,” he said. “It’s certainly sad to leave.”
Bye – Bye, 3 PPCLI
The Third Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (3PPCLI) is saying goodbye to Esquimalt tonight after almost 25 uninterrupted years at Work Point Barracks.
The cerenonies begin at Work Point at 7 p.m. this evening with two parades – a Farewell to the Municipality of Esquimalt, followed by a formal Farewell to Maritme Forces Pacific. Then, the official change of command will take place, as outgoing Commander, Lt. Col. Glenn Nordick turns command over to Lt. Col. Bill Turner. A traditional Sunset Ceremony to bid farewell to Work point Barracks – expected to begin at 9 p.m., - will wrap up the evening’s events. The Countess Mountbatten of Burma, the Colonel in Chief of the Regiment, will be on hand for the ceremonies.
Preparations for the departure of a scaled down 3 PPCLI have been under way for the past year. The first phase of the battalion’s downsizing began last summer, when 180 personnel were transferred to Calgary, Wainwright and Petawawa. By August 1993, all that remained at Work Point were one Rifle Company, an Administration Company and a reduced Combat Support Company. The remaining Rifle Company joined 1 PPCLI based in Calgary, in November 1993.
At the same time the downsizing began last summer, a group of officers and support staff went to the 3 PPCLI’s new home in Chilliwack to prepare the new facilities.
But the past two months have been the busiest time for the company, as the move draws near.
During May and June, buildings and facilities have been gradually turned over to CFB Esquimalt and ceremonial drill practices began June 13 to prepare for the Closedown Ceremonies.
On June 28, 3 PPCLI held a farewell ceremony on the grounds of the Legislature and a parade along Douglas and Belleville streets to bid adieu to the City of Victoria, followed by a gala ball – for all ranks of the battalion and their guests – at the bay Street Armouries.
During the next two weeks, the final stages of the move to Chilliwack will wrap up. More than 100 personnel, who will not be joining the battalion at its new location, will be posted to other units throughout Canada and on United Nations duty overseas. The remaining work parties will turn over the last of the Work Point Barracks infrastructure to CFB Esquimalt and move the necessary equipment to Chilliwack, July 15.
The 3 PPCLI – which was honored in a ceremony at Buccaneer Days, above – bids adieu to the municipality of Esquimalt and Maritime Forces Pacific in a ceremony tonight, beginning at 7 p.m. A traditional sunset ceremony will follow, at 9 p.m. The Countess Mountbatten of Burma, the Colonel in Chief of the Regiment, will preside over the evening’s events. Spectators are welcome at all the farewell events.
City Takes a Last Look at 3 PPCLI
It was like saying good bye to an old friend. Douglas Street outside city hall was hushed, but for the military band playing softly, as city officials reviewed the Third Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry on Saturday for what was likely the last time.
With its regimental colonel in chief, Countess Mountbatten of Burma, overseeing and the sidewalks lined with onlookers, the battalion marched through Victoria, drums beating, colors flying and bayonets fixed.
These traditional Freedom of the City ceremonies were a chance to say goodbye to the battalion, which is leaving Victoria after more than two decades for Chilliwack where a new era will begin with 90 percent militia.
Under sunny skies, young and old watched, shot video and snapped photos as the battalion snapped to attention outside city hall with the colors swaying gently in the slight breeze.
“From our point of view the future bears some sadness on our part,” acting Mayor Martin Segger said in a sidewalk address to the troops. “Very soon various of your members will be posted away, it seems permanently.”
New postings are scheduled to start immediately. The battalion will be reduced to about 315 by summer’s end from about 500. The rest of the soldiers will be moving on next year.
But Saturday was a day to remember the past, not think about the future. In April the battalion returned from six months UN peacekeeping in Croatia. It was honored then, and again Saturday.
“The Freedom of the City of Victoria is a rare honor,” Segger said. “It is the symbol of trust and good relations between the military and the civilian community.”
“It is also the recognition of high service, of loyalty to one’s community and one’s country, of duty and pride of service.” “It is the honor the third battalion richly deserves.”
“You have carried these qualities with you in training exercises, in wartime service in Korea, in peacekeeping services in Cyprus and elsewhere throughout the world.”
Of the 84 regular force members who will continue to serve with 3 PPCLI, only 57 will be posted to Chilliwack and the rest will serve with the four militia units which will make up the remainder of the battalion.
The soldiers later Saturday marched down Fisgard street to Store street, across the Johnson street bridge and along Esquimalt road where similar Freedom of the City ceremonies were held at Esquimalt Municipal Hall.
Tonight, the 3 PPCLI regimental band and pipes and drums of the Canadian Scottish Regiment are scheduled to give a concert on the legislature steps at 7:15 p.m. A sunset ceremony will start at 8 p.m.
Photo – The Third Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry marched down Douglas street Saturday in a farewell parade to the city.
It’s Just Like a Family as Countess Joins in Victoria Farewell
The Patricia’s are like family to Countess Mountbatten of Burma. In fact, she says it’s not going too far to suggest she thinks of members of the Third Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry as offspring.
“No, I don’t think it’s too far at all,” said the battalion’s affable colonel in chief.
“I certainly feel, and the regiment as a whole feels very strongly, they are all one family.”
So, it was only fitting she was in Victoria on Saturday as her soldiers marched through the streets for what was likely the last time before scattering to other postings.
She has visited the battalion numerous times here and abroad, but this time was different.
“It’s especially sad that its necessary to have to leave here,” she said. “There’s been a very close link between the town and the battalion.”
Her military connections are dep. The row of medals across her chest is proof. Christened Patricia Edwina Victoria Mountbatten, she entered the Women’s Royal Naval Service in 1943 as a signal rating.
She served in Combined Operations Bases in the United Kingdom, was promoted Third Officer in 1945 and served in Supreme Allied Headquarters in Southeast Asia.
The 69 year old countess is also first cousin to Prince Philip and godmother to Prince Charles.
She was made Countess Mountbatten of Burma after her father, Earl Mountbatten of Burma, was killed on his yacht off the coast of Northern Ireland in August 1979. She survived the remote controlled terrorist bomb blast that killed her father.
She was appointed colonel in chief a little more than 19 years ago after the death of her father.
Photo – COUNTESS watches as battalion approaches reviewing stand.
SOLDIERS BID VICTORIA FAREWELL
3 PPCLI Relocates to Chilliwack
How does one say goodbye to old friends? That was the question Lieutenant Governor David Lam posed to the crowd Tuesday, June 28 during a parade which marked the farewell to Victoria for this city’s soldiers.
“You will be missed,” said the Lt. Governor to the soldiers of Third Battalion of the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (# PPCLI). The 3 PPCLI “Farewell to Victoria” parade, held on the grounds of the Legislature, was one of the several farewell events the battalion held last week.
“We will miss this town and this garrison deeply.”
Lt. Col. Glenn Nordick
The farewell ceremonies were the final occasion for the local community to see 3 PPCLI. The battalion has been in Esquimalt for 24 years but now departs Work Point Barracks for its new home at Canadian Forces Base Chilliwack. There, the battalion will be reorganized into a 10 / 90 Total Force Infantry Battalion, consisting of 10 per cent regular force members and 90 per cent reserves.
The Countess of Mountbatten of Burma, the Colonel in Chief of the Regiment, presided over all the farewell ceremonies over the two days. They included: the Farewell to the City of Victoria parade at the Legislature; a dinner and ball that evening at the Bay Street Armoury; farewell parades to the Municipality of Esquimalt and Maritime Forces Pacific (MARPAC); a formal Change of Command ceremony between the incoming and outgoing Commanding Officers; and a traditional Sunset Ceremony to bid farewell to Work Point Barracks.
During the Farewell to Esquimalt parade at Work Point, outgoing commanding officer, Lt. Col. Glenn Nordick, thanked the Municipality for its support since the battalion’s station here.
“We experienced directly the sense of pride and community here,” he said. “We will miss this town and this garrison deeply.”
The battalion then bid farewell to MARPAC.
“3 PPCLI and MARPAC have enjoyed a special relationship,” said Lt. Col. Nordick. He thanked the navy for their cooperation and support the battalion has received over the years. The parade march past which followed was 3 PPCLI’s final parade under the command of Lt. Col. Nordick, as Lt. Col. W.D. Turner was officially made the battalion’s new commanding officer in the Change of Command ceremony.
Victoria mayor Bob Cross commented on the “mixed feelings” greeting the battalion’s move – sadness for its departure, yet gratitude for its record of service while based in Victoria.
“Over the many years 3 PPCLI has participated with integrity at home and abroad,” he said.
Lt. Col. Nordick paid tribute to the support 3 PPCLI received from the city, particularly at the Welcome Home parade upon the battalion’s return from Croatia last year.
“We will not forget the outstanding support you have given us,” he said. “Today marks the end of an era…(but) it does not end the memories and the friendships that have been forged here.”
Photo – SO LONG, FAREWELL – 3 PPCLI members said goodbye to CFB Esquimalt and the City of Victoria last week. The battalion is moving to CFB Chilliwack after 24 years based in Esquimalt.
July 13, 1994
3 PPCLI Commander Says Farewell
On behalf of myself, and all ranks of the Third Battalion, Princess Patricia’s Canadian light Infantry, I would like to express our deepest gratitude to the City Of Victoria and the Municipality of Esquimalt for their unfaltering support throughout our residence.
A special thanks must also be given to the Victoria Chamber of Commerce for its very generous assistance with our Close Out Ceremonies. The combined efforts of your citizens and business people have made our stay on Vancouver Island an enjoyable and memorable experience. We shall miss you all.
G.W. Nordick, MSC,CD
A commemorative bronze plaque was struck:
“TO MARK THE DEPARTURE OF 3 PPCLI WORK POINT BARRACKS”
This plaque was rescued from a dumpster by a vigilant Commissionaire doing his rounds sometime after it had been removed from its display location at Work Point Barracks and discarded... A mystery to be sure!
Municipality Still Interested in 40 – Acre Chunk of Land
There’s no doubt some of the waterfront land at Work Point barracks will be turned over by the military, it’s just a matter of who will get what.
At least that’s what Defence Minister David Collenette told Esquimalt Mayor Chris Clement last month during a visit to Esquimalt.
“The Minister of defence indicated that if the Navy wants to hold on to the developed part of Work Point, (the Department of National Defence) will have to be willing to give up the area of land south of Bewdley Avenue.”
“The question that remains to be answered is how they will dispose of it,” Clements said Saturday.
He added that he thinks the DND will make a decision about the transfer of the land within the next year.
“This has tremendous implications for development in Esquimalt,” he noted, adding that the 40 acre chunk of land is worth about $40 million undeveloped and about $100 million developed.
The Municipality, said Clement, would “love” to get its hands on some of the land and they are currently exploring “avenues for obtaining” at least some of it.
He said the 40 acre chunk of land belonged to the Township until 1940 when the Federal Government expropriated it during the Second World War.
“The question now is why did they keep the land after the war was over?”
Clement said the Municipality is seeking legal advice on what rights, if any, the Township has over ownership of the land.
But he admitted that if the government were to offer the land to the town at its current market value, there’s no way Esquimalt could afford it.
The Municipality currently leases the Macaulay Point Park, which is located within the 40 acre chunk of land, from the Federal Government for a fee of $50,000 a year.
Normally when the Federal Government disposes of land, it is first offered to other Federal departments, then the Provincial Government and, if no level of government wants it, it is sold to the public.
Clement said the Provincial Government has indicated its interest in the land if it becomes available.
The issue of ownership of the 40 acre chunk of Work Point land, which is probably some of the most desirable waterfront in Victoria, is not likely to be resolved easily.
Clement said the matter could be complicated by a proposal by a Capital Regional District proposal to build a sewage disposal plant on 10 acres of the 40 acre chunk of land as well as possible native land claims.
A Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt spokesperson said the DND has yet to assess the military’s needs at Work Point but he added that it “seems evident that there’s some undeveloped extra land” that may be declared surplus.
In the meantime, the Naval Officer Training Centre and Base Electrical and Mechanical Engineering section have moved into a bulk of the Work Point barracks facilities that were vacated in July by the army.