Parks Canada

Parks Canada

March 05, 2009 14:50 ET

Government of Canada Recognizes Beechwood Cemetery as the National Cemetery of Canada

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 5, 2009) - The Honourable Jim Prentice, Canada's Environment Minister and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, today tabled legislation establishing Beechwood Cemetery as the national cemetery of Canada. Later at a ceremony at Beechwood, Minister Prentice welcomed dignitaries to mark the occasion.

"Our Government is proud to take this historic step", said Minister Prentice. "Our legislation today provides our country for the first time with an official resting place for our national leaders and other great Canadians who have shaped our history."

"In designating Beechwood Cemetery as the national cemetery of Canada, our government is recognizing a unique and noble place where Canadians can gather for solemn commemorative events, and remember our national heroes and their achievements. We are setting aside a national cemetery worthy of our great country."

Beechwood Cemetery is ideally suited to be Canada's national cemetery because of its national historic significance, its location in the National Capital, and because it is the home of the National Military Cemetery and the RCMP National Memorial Cemetery. With this legislation, Governors-General, Prime Ministers and Canadian Victoria Cross recipients may choose in the future to be interred at Beechwood Cemetery, where they can receive fitting commemoration in a way that benefit all Canadians.

In 2001, Beechwood Cemetery became a National Historic Site of Canada, recognized as an exceptional example of 19th-century rural cemetery design that is characterized by a natural, pastoral and picturesque landscape, encompassing an outstanding array of funerary monuments commemorating some of the nation's most prominent Canadians.

(Also available on the Internet at www.pc.gc.ca under Media Room.)

Contact Information

  • Office of the Minister of the Environment
    Frederic Baril
    Press Secretary
    819-997-1441
    or
    Parks Canada
    National Corporate Communications Branch
    Media Relations
    819-953-8699