Looking Back: Langley’s history from the week of April 7

Eighty Years Ago

April 2, 1936

• Education minister G.W.Weir said the provincial government was considering taking over and administering B.C.’s entire education system.

• The Canadian Geographical Society asked Langley’s council to change the Salmon River’s name to Langley Creek. The suggestion was rejected.

Seventy Years Ago

April 4, 1946

• An outbreak of diphtheria, which had closed West Langley School, had abated.

• A meeting was called to form a Junior Chamber of Commerce in Aldergrove, and the Langley Board of Trade was fanning interest in reviving a Jaycees organization in Langley Prairie, as well.

• Langley’s town planning commission prepared a zoning bylaw which, if adopted, would be the first of its kind in the Fraser Valley.

• Novice safe crackers failed in their attempt to blow the safe at Langley Pharmacy.

Sixty Years Ago

April 5, 1956

• Fort Langley Board of Trade squelched a bid to follow Langley Prairie’s example and incorporate the area as a village. The Board claimed it was not possible to carve a village out of an municipality that was already incorporated.

• A group met at St. Andrew’s Anglican Church to discuss starting a housing society for senior citizens.

• A Langley man, Herbert Howerton, was killed by RCMP as he fled from the scene of a Burquitlam bank robbery.

Fifty Years Ago

April 7, 1966

• Eleven Langley and Aldergrove students were prepared to go to Montreal for the summer, as participants in Canada’s Centennial Commission Youth Travel exchange program. In return, Langley was to host 24 Montreal students for a week.

• Sixteen local girls and four leaders were making plans for a three-week Girl Guiding Bonanza camping trip to California.

Forty Years Ago

April 1, 1976

West Langley Community Hall burned to the ground in a $75,000 fire.

• A block of stores and offices along Douglas Cres suffered extensive smoke and water damage after a fire broke out in a refrigerator in the back of one of the offices.

• Police in Langley were searching for a prisoner who had made a daring escape from a sheriff’s vehicle while enroute from a Matsqui prison to Surrey Provincial Court.

• Public outcry stopped school trustees from moving the Fundamental program from Langley Central to Nicomekl School.

• Operators of Langley’s jitney-bus service announced it would be terminated in June.

• Langley Memorial Hospital was raising its rates from $1 to $4 per day, plus further hikes for private and semi-private wards, effective June 1. Extended care rates were to rise from $1 to $7 per day.

• Tenders were called for a two-storey expansion to Langley Municipal Hall.

Thirty Years Ago

April 2, 1986

• War veterans responded to a dispute between staff and management at Langley Legion by adding pickets of their own. The situation escalated still further when residents made threats against any union actions planned for the upcoming weekend.

• City and Township Council members voted by secret ballot to allow the Langley YM/YWCA to run the aquatic facility at W.C. Blair Recreation Centre.

• Jim Goodbrand, president of long-time Langley-based Goodbrand Construction, decided to pull out of B.C., saying it was too risky for business in this province.

Twenty Years Ago

April 3, 1996

• Township Council replaced Coun. Muriel Arnason as its Fraser Valley Regional Library representative, choosing to send Coun. Heather McMullan instead, to lobby for a library in the proposed $8.3 million cultural centre for Murrayville – a centre which Arnason steadfastly opposed.

• The Agricultural Land Commission drew heat from Township Council when the “unelected, appointed” group turned down a proposal to remove 500 acres near Aldergrove from the Agricultural Land Reserve.


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