Heritage buildings are not just local landmarks, they represent history, while adding character to neighbourhoods.
He n m h character
That is why Langley Township recognizes the commitment of owners of registered heritage sites make to preserving, restoring, or adapting historic places, through the Community Heritage Register Plaque Program.
This year, owners of the Cummings residence in Murrayville, the Matheson house in Willoughby, and the Hogben residence in Fort Langley were honoured.
"These buildings have played an important role in our community's development, and will continue to do so in the future, thanks to the effort and dedication shown by their owners," said Township Mayor Jack Froese. "They have preserved a significant part of Langley's history, and the result can be appreciated by the entire community."
Owners of the Cummings residence, Dr. Angela Busletta, Dr. Erica Phelps, and Dr. Elaine Mah of BUMP Holdings, received a plaque on May 10, during a celebration of the opening of their new medical clinic at Five Corners in Murrayville.
One of Langley's early settlements, Murrayville was established in 1870. In 1888, Roderick Cummings arrived from Prince Edward Island and started a butchery, supplying meat to logging camps and farmers.
The Cummings family home was built around 1913, an example of the Craftsman style design that was popular at the turn of the century. Over the years, major alterations were made, including additions to three sides of the building.
The home was added to the Township's Heritage Inventory in 2009, but in 2011, a fire destroyed the additions and the north side of the building.
BUMP Holdings had recently acquired the site. The doctors were determined to make the heritage house part of their practice, and entered a revitalization agreement with the Township to restore the building.
Alterations were removed, the front porch was restored, and the windows, doors, and exterior materials were all returned to their original appearance. Even the original paint colour has been closely replicated.
Community Heritage Register Plaques were presented this month to Stuart and Leslie MacDonald for their work on the Hogben home, and to Troy Wilson of the Langley Meadows Community Association and Rachel Cram and Cari Shorrock of Wind and Tide Preschools Inc. for the Matheson house.
One of about half a dozen 19th century residences left in the Township, the Matheson farmhouse was built in 1898 by John Matheson, originally in the middle of 80 acres of farmland and orchard.
In 2003, the building was moved about 100 feet to Langley Meadows Community Park, and there restoration was started by the Langley Meadows Community Association. In late 2011, with the exterior of the building almost finished, Wind and Tide became interested in the building as a new home for its daycare and preschool, and provided resources to complete the interior. The pioneer home was adapted into a place where children can grow and learn, in time to start the September 2012 school year.
A testament to the early history of Fort Langley, the Hogben residence was built by settlers Edward and Ada Hogben, who arrived in Canada from their native Kent, England, in the early 20th century.
Upon establishment of the Crown Colony of British Columbia at Fort Langley in 1858, the land surrounding the Hudson Bay Co. fort became available through Crown grants, and was acquired by early Langley pioneers who came to the area to farm. Edward worked the land until his death in 1910, just after his home was completed.
Prior to construction of the Hogben home, the site was occupied by a Hudson's Bay Co. house that was destroyed by fire in
1909. The home was made with materials produced in local mills, and conveys the influence of the Arts and Crafts movement in the early development of the village of Fort Langley.
Today the house has been restored to much of its original historic beauty.
@ Copyright 2013