Looking Back August 20, 2014
A look through the Sooke News Mirror archives and what made the news in years gone by.
August 12, 2009
Puppy scam costly for Sookite
The lesson was embarrassing and expensive for a Sooke resident who responded to an ad on UsedVictoria.com.
Local RCMP learned of the incident after a total $1,800 had been sent overseas in a bogus puppy marketing operation.
The seller was in the African country of Cameroon, and $900 was initially sent for an advertised boxer pup.
The delays, excuses and expenses then added up before the man’s wife ended the transaction, preventing a possibly higher price tag for the non-existent pooch.
“Always inspect and/or test the item fully before paying for it. If it can’t be inspected or tested before the sale, just say no.”
August 11, 1999
Local woman rescues rabbits given death sentence
Erin Quinney is launching a full-fledged rabbit rescue operation at Victoria General Hospital.
The Sooke resident “rescues” an average of six rabbits every evening and brings them home to her farm.
She said she tried to go through the right channels but received no response.
“They wouldn’t even talk to me,” she said of the Capital Health Region.
She’s taking all of the rabbits to the vet for a checkup and to be spayed and neutered. She’s also building additional 15 by 15 foot pens for them to live.
August 10, 1994
Pool will be nothing short of a miracle.
Sooke’s pro-pool lobby group SPLASH are faced with an enormous task—they must raise $700,000 for a community swimming pool.
The money would bring the price tag to $3.7 million — a price tag our parks and recreation commission feel taxpayers would be more likely able to swallow.
Only time will tell whether property owners will part with $65 per $100,000 assessment for a pool.
It will be nothing short of a miracle of SPLASH raises $700,000 to make up for the shortfall a successful referendum would bring.
August 9, 1989
An angry Sooke Regional Director Bob Clark says he finds it “mind-boggling” that a logging company that works regularly in the Sooke area wouldn’t be aware that the old CNR right-of-way has been designated as Galloping Goose Park.
“Malloch and Mosely is not a fly-by-night outfit. It has done a lot of logging in this area, I find it hard to believe that this firm would do what it has done,” he said.
Mr. Clark said the CRD will definitely seek compensation for the damage that has been done.
August 11, 1959
Crofters planned to live in Renfrew
Port Renfrew would probably have had a very different history if Scotsman Alexander Begg had lived a few years longer.
This gentleman was a wealthy philanthropist who conceived the idea of bringing to B.C. at least 100 Crofters and their families and possessions from the Hebrides (Scotland), and getting them settled on the land here.
The Crofters, who had only a few acres of land called the Crofts, had no opportunities for advancement unless they left their Scotland homes, and Canada — B.C. especially — was calling for settlers.
Mr. Begg interviewed the B.C. government in 1890 and it promised to set aside the San Juan River Valley (Port Renfrew) for the Scottish settlement. The valley was located 60 miles west of Victoria, and the road was only built as far as Otter Point, about halfway.
The government promised to complete the road in a year or two, and to make representations to Ottawa to build a wharf and a breakwater to make the harbour safe for a fishing fleet. Markets were to be found for the catches of fish.
Mr. Begg was to pay all transportation charges from Scotland, set up a sawmill to cut lumber for their houses, and get them started clearing land. An ambitious scheme but a good one. Each family would have 160 acres of land.
The Crofters were prepared to make a move within a year when Mr. Begg died in the influenza epidemic, which took a heavy toll of lives in Britain in early 1891.
The scheme wasn’t advanced far enough to have funds set aside by Mr. Begg for its fulfilment, so it fell through, much to the disappointment of a great many people.
The land set aside for the Crofters was thrown up for pre-emption a year later, and only in 1958 — nearly 70 years later — was the road to Port Renfrew completed.