The century-old Hornsby Crawler steam tractor sits in the Lemare Lake Logging work yard near Port McNeill after being returned to North Vancouver Island on Aug. 31 following a seven-year absence.

McNeill declines Hornsby – for now

PORT McNEILL-Council passes on RDMW Heritage Registry but will explore possible inclusion in the future

PORT McNEILL—The Town essentially removed itself from consideration — or at least deferred its chances — as the final display location for the historic Hornsby Steam Crawler Tractor, which was recently returned to the North Island from Surrey following a protracted legal battle.

During deliberations in its regular meeting Oct. 1, council declined to join the Regional District of Mount Waddington Heritage Registry, a precondition for hosting the RD’s historical artifacts.

Joining the registry would cost the Town $2,500 per year, a cost councillors were not willing to accept at this time.

“We’ve got the steam donkey here, and we’ve got the burl,” coun. Shirley Ackland said. “We have heritage here we need to preserve. Before I would be willing to vote to put money into a regional plan, we need to look after the equipment we have here.”

When the North Island Heritage Society last month invited requests to house the Hornsby, which is in temporary storage at the Lemare Lake Logging yard south of Port McNeill, the Town offered a tentative affirmative.

Wickstrom, who was provided the RD’s information just two days earlier, informed council of the heritage bylaw requirement, kicking off a discussion that quickly made clear Port McNeill would not be a front-runner for the 100-year-old machine.

“My personal feeling is we have enough on our plate without encouraging us to get into a situation where there’s even more expenditures to lay out,” Mayor Gerry Furney said. “The Hornsby was retrieved by the people of Coal Harbour, and I have felt if Coal Harbour is interested in making a project of it, it would be a great attraction for them.”

Wickstrom reminded council that the question was not one of hosting the century-old Hornsby, the only one of its kind ever produced, but whether the Town was willing to join the RDMW Heritage Registry.

Currently, only Electoral Area C — which includes Coal Harbour — and Area D, which is working to secure funding through the registry to explore restoration of steam locomotive 113 in Woss, are members of the registry.

“If someone (in Port McNeill) did come forward with a proposal to display the Hornsby, we wouldn’t be in consideration,” Wickstrom said. “The question is whether we want to be part of the heritage registry at that cost, whether that crawler comes to us, or any other piece of machinery or equipment, for that matter.”

No motion was called on the Heritage Registry issue, but Wickstrom noted the Town could always choose to join in the future, and suggested the matter warranted further research.

“Seeing as you’ve done as much research as you have, would you like to take that on as a committee?” Furney asked Wickstrom. Then he added through the general laughter that followed, “This is called administration.”

Wickstrom said she would work with Town Administrator Sue Harvey on the issue.

 

Just Posted

People’s Party of Canada plan to have a candidate in the North Island-Powell River riding

Elections Canada formally recognized the North Island—Powell River PPC Association

NVIATS takes over NIEFS space in Thunderbird Mall

“We were approached by NIEFS, they’re going to be downsizing”

Port Hardy Reigns compete in Nanaimo at Island Championships

“We are very fortunate to have this opportunity for our youth in Port Hardy”

Derina Harvey Band – Heartfelt, Energetic, Celtic rock comes to Port Hardy

Front-woman Derina Harvey leads this Celtic-rock act, who offer an authentic east-coast experience.

OPINION: Urgent care room will cost lives

“Seniors, of any demographic, are the most vulnerable to the loss of emergency care.”

What’s age got to do with it? B.C. couple with 45-year gap talks happy marriage

An Armstrong couple that has 45-year age gap began turning heads after being featured on show Extreme Love.

B.C.’s largest Vaisakhi festival target of threatening Facebook post: Surrey RCMP

Police say they are investigating the posts on Facebook, after local MLA forwarded screenshots

Pug life: B.C. town boasts waggish list of dog names

Freedom-of-information request lists most ‘pupular’ dog names registered in White Rock

VIDEO: Duncan-Nanaimo’s Funkanometry bow out of ‘World of Dance’ with ‘After Hours’ routine

Judges praised them as entertainers, and urged them to work a bit more on their dancing

VIDEO: Fish farming company launches $30-million vessel to treat salmon for sea lice in B.C. waters

Freshwater treatment an improvement but fish farms should be removed from sea, says conservationist

Singh says childhood abuse steeled him for scrutiny and stress of politics

He recounts the assaults for the first time in his book Love & Courage

Despite five extra weeks’ parental leave in Canada, dads still face stigma: survey

One reason people said dads don’t need leave is because they can just bond with their kids at weekend

Vintage bottles, magic cards, a 1969 Playboy: Quirky items found in historic B.C. buildings

Crews set aside some of the funkier pieces emerging from the construction rubble

PHOTOS: Inside the ‘shoe house’ in Northern B.C.

A rare look inside the famous Kitseguecla Lake Road shoe house, with a tour led by owner Toby Walsh

Most Read