Western Scots 67 Battalion and Gordon Highlanders on Parade at Willows Camp Racetrack (now Carnarvon Park

Speaker examines Oak Bay’s transformation from gardens to trenches

Oak Bay Heritage looks at war’s impact on community

In the century since the First World War broke out Oak Bay has evolved and changed in many ways. But not so dramatic and instant as the immediate response to the war. Historian Kate Humble, education curator at the Maritime Museum of British Columbia, will delve into those dramatic changes during a talk tonight at Windsor Park.

“In 1914 Oak Bay is a very young community,” said Humble, herself and Oak Bay grad. “You’re still doing things like borrowing fire trucks form the City of Victoria. … We really forget how much it grew in the 20th century.”

In a fitting November presentation, she’ll cover “From Garden to Trench, Oak Bay and the First World War” during her talk sponsored by Oak Bay Heritage.

“The way Oak Bay was developed meant almost everybody who lived there was of British extraction unlike the rest of Victoria, with very strong connections as well with politics,” she said.

And the garden to trench title is quite literal.

“You’re dealing with people raising prized geese and entering flower competitions. Then all of a sudden the war breaks out and Willows Exhibition Fairgrounds, where Carnarvon Park is now, explodes and becomes the major training centre for the Canadian Expeditionary Force,” she said. “I’m going to talk about the abrupt transition from their gentrified upper-class world where people are very involved in social status … garden parties and who’s marrying whom, to the sudden and startling realization this community starts to lose people. Right off the hop this community starts losing people.”

She’ll focus on how the impact of losing their young men evolved the identity of the average Oak Bay resident over the course of the war with individual stories of those who went overseas, both men and women.

Oak Bay Heritage brings the historian to Windsor Pavilion for “From Garden to Trench, Oak Bay and the First World War” on Wednesday, Nov. 19 at 7 p.m.

 

cvanreeuwyk@oak baynews.com

 

 

Just Posted

Almost four of 10 Canadians have unlimited internet data at home

Fifty-four per cent say they telecommute at least sometimes

New Carnarvon Park field-house could cost $4.3M

Both tennis and pickleball courts are included in new draft plan

Esquimalt needs urgent health care facility, mayor says

A severe doctor shortage is leaving Esquimalt residents scrambling for health care

Student Voice: Saanich students launch competitive robotics team

The Reynolds Reybots plan to share their skills with middle schools

What are the worst parking spots in Victoria?

We are looking for the worst places in the city to park and need your opinion

Want to avoid the speculation tax on your vacant home? Rent it out, Horgan says

Premier John Horgan and Sheila Malcolmson say speculation and vacancy tax addresses homelessness

CONSUMER REPORT: What to buy each month in 2019 to save money

Resolve to buy all of the things you want and need, but pay less money for them

UPDATE: B.C. woman and boy, 6, found safe, RCMP confirm

Roseanne Supernault says both she and her six-year-old nephew are fine and she has contacted police

PHOTOS: Women’s Marches take to the streets across B.C. and beyond

Women and allies marched worldwide protesting violence against women, calling for equality

Anxiety in Alaska as endless aftershocks rattle residents

Seismologists expect the temblors to continue for months, although the frequency has lessened

Women’s March returns across the U.S. amid shutdown and controversy

The original march in 2017, the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, drew hundreds of thousands of people

Federal Liberals announce former B.C. MLA as new candidate in byelection

Richard Lee will face off against federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh

No winning ticket in $10 million Lotto Max jackpot

No win in Friday night’s draw means the next Lotto Max draw will be approximately $17 million

Most Read