Arnie Campbell takes a look at the historical addendum to the Otter Point Official Community Plan.

An OCP with an interesting difference

History added to Otter Point Official Community Plan

Official Community Plans are written to be the vision of a community. They present a long tern vision, establish goals and objectives and reflect a community’s values. It’s the foundation on which planning and development rely.

Otter Point’s Official Community Plan is something just a little different. While it contains all of the  usual bylaws, zonings and policies, it also contains an addendum comprised of the history of Otter Point.

Arnie Campbell said when they first began reviewing the OCP, they found the history to be out of date and Juan de Fuca  planner June Klassen approached Campbell about taking on the project of updating the history. Campbell, is the former president of  the Otter Point and Shirley Resident Ratepayers Association (OPSRRA). He enlisted the help of Elida Peers and they began the two year journey.

They put their heads together and started compiling the history of the area and in the process they discovered little bits of history they didn’t know existed.

They talked to people who still remembered the region in their lifetime and as a result a impressive booklet emerged. They scoured the archives at the Sooke Region Museum and they researched facts and fiction.

“They either corrected wrong information or gave us new stuff the museum was unaware of,” said Campbell.

“Did you know that the St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church isn’t the first Catholic church in the area?” asked Campbell.

There was a St. Xavier Catholic Church on the corner of Kemp Lake and Otter Point Roads, kitty-corner to the present firehall. It was there in the 1960s but it never lasted more than a decade.

As the logging industry faded, so did the need for a church. It became a  teacherage and then a private residence.

There was a horse race track on the Poirier Ranch and they found a map from 1894 showing its location.

The man who Kemp Lake is named after was a squatter on Crown land and there was a railway that ran from Tugwell Road to Robinson Road then to Poirier Lake onwards to DeMamiel Creek before it ended at the Sooke River. The railway hauled logs to Cooper Cove.

They also found a company drilled for oil at Muir Creek. They went down 1,200 feet without discovering any crude.

And then there are the accounts of Emily Carr…

Those are just some of the stories and bits of history included in the booklet. The booklet will be presented to those who contributed to it at a small private reception on February 26.

It took two years to complete and it is not a document which will sit on the shelf gathering dust. It is meant to be a document that can be reopened and added to and will be part of the OCP.

Arnie Campbell has written and edited the OPSRRA newsletter for many years and he will now be handing over the task to Marika Nagasaka. He’ll continue to be involved in smaller and smaller ways as he eases himself into some kind of “retirement.”

Just Posted

Development replacing Fairfield United Church gets final approval

The new Unity Commons Development will take over the space at 1303 Fairfield Rd.

Sooke painter highlights Emily Carr at all-portrait show

Whether or not you are a fan of Emily Carr’s work, check… Continue reading

Search and rescue volunteers work to keep waterways safe

Over 1,000 volunteers help keep mariners safe; headquarters based in Sooke

Spring break nature walks – get the kids out into nature!

Spring break, CRD Regional Parks naturalists are hosting three guided nature walks

VIDEO: Can you believe it? This B.C. hill pulls cars backwards up a slope

Sir Isaac Newton had clearly never been to this Vernon anomaly when he discovered gravity

B.C. man sentenced for tying up, assaulting and robbing another man at hotel

Gabriel Stephen Nelson robbed and assaulted travelling businessman in Nanaimo in 2017

B.C. girl and her toy monkey make videos to fight negativity on Facebook

Ava Ast created the Ava and Cello’s Good Deed Page last month

Deadline extended through April to nominate top B.C. educators

Second year of Premier John Horgan’s awards offers $3,000 bursary

Victoria meme accounts unite residents

Poking fun at common frustrations around Greater Victoria brings laughs

Paramedic staff shortage at critical level: B.C. union

A number of units were out of service due to lack of staffing in Lower Mainland, union says

B.C. lottery winner being sued by Surrey co-workers

They claim he owes them $200,000 each, in a lawsuit filed in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver

BIG READ: The two sides of the Strait of Georgia roe herring fishery

The case for the Strait of Georgia roe herring fishery Comox fisherman,… Continue reading

Fraser Health under fire again for taxiing homeless man from Langley to Hope

Patient sent to Hope shelter because a spot in the man’s home community couldn’t be located

Most Read