Parks Canada

Parks Canada

December 20, 2011 09:00 ET

Government of Canada Supports the Preservation of Local History and Culture at Esquimalt Naval Sites National Historic Site of Canada

Parks Canada announces contribution for infrastructure improvements at site

ESQUIMALT, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Dec. 20, 2011) - On behalf of the Honourable Peter Kent, Canada's Environment Minister and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, Minister responsible for British Columbia, and Member of Parliament for Port Moody - Westwood - Port Coquitlam, today announced that the Government of Canada is investing in infrastructure improvements at the Cole Island Magazine at Esquimalt Naval Sites National Historic Site.

"Our government is proud to invest in Canada's historical sites", stated Minister Moore. "By supporting the groups that operate sites like the Cole Island Magazine at Esquimalt Naval Sites National Historic Site, we help protect Canada's history, support local economies and encourage more Canadians to explore and discover our national heritage."

Through Parks Canada's National Historic Sites Cost-Sharing Program, the Government of Canada is contributing up to $68,000 and the Province of BC is providing $68,000 for stabilization work to preserve the five remaining structures on Cole Island, including two shell storages, two powder magazines and a guardhouse.

The Cole Island Magazine was established in 1859 and retired in 1938. Its distinctive forms, materials and design have contributed to our understanding of the development of Canada's Pacific naval experience. Esquimalt Naval Sites was designated a national historic site in 1995. It is owned by the Province of British Columbia and managed in partnership with the Friends of Cole Island Society.

"One of our Government's objectives is to inspire Canadians to develop strong and meaningful connections with Canada's national treasures," said Minister Kent. "Our national historic sites are vital to our history, our identity as Canadians, and our tourism industry. By investing in them and by building lasting relationships with the groups that operate them, we ensure that they will continue to help support local economies and encourage more Canadians to explore and discover our national heritage."

"Cole Island speaks to the significant role naval defence has played in the development of our coast line in British Columbia. We are pleased to work with the federal government to preserve these buildings for future generations," said Steve Thomson, B.C. Minister for Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations.

"We are really excited that these buildings will be stabilized," said Linda Carswell, founder of the Friends of Cole Island Society. "These essential repairs will contribute to the renaissance of a site of such immense heritage value and, at the same time, will provide the public with a touchstone to Canadian and British naval heritage."

The Cost-Sharing Program reflects the Government of Canada's dedication to protect Canada's heritage through funding towards the conservation of our national historic sites. In this centennial year, Parks Canada is pleased to continue its efforts to ensure that Canada's historic and natural heritage is protected for the enjoyment, education and appreciation of all Canadians, today and in the future.

For additional information, please see the accompanying backgrounder at under Media Room.

Contact Information

  • Adam Sweet
    Press Secretary
    Office of the Minister of the Environment

    Media Relations
    Parks Canada