Langley Looking Back: Development in Willoughby contentious

A look back through the files of the Langley Advance which has published since 1931.

Eigthy Years Ago

November 25, 1937

  • A meeting of the Langley Agricultural Association was called to decide whether or not to go ahead with plans for a 1938 fall fair.
  • Sid Gray and his Fort Langley seed potatoes won second place in the Royal Winter Fair in Toronto.
  • The Presbyterian Church welcomed Rev. W.J. Forbes and his family, recently arrived from Englehart, Ont., to take over the local mission field, at a social evening.

Seventy Years Ago

November 27, 1947

  • UBC professor W.N. Sage, speaking at a banquet in Fort Langley, proposed that Douglas Day (Nov. 19) should be declared a provincial holiday.
  • A petition was being circulated, calling for street lights in Langley Prairie, between Rump & Sendall’s Hatchery and the Roman Catholic Church. If approved, property owners would pay 70 per cent of the cost, with the rest coming from general tax revenue.

Sixty Years Ago

November 21, 1957

  • Langley Township turned down a bid to have the Lower Mainland Planning Board prepare a planning appraisal for the district, at a cost of $600, followed by a more detailed appraisal for $1,400.
  • School and hospital costs were expected to take the lion’s share of an anticipated 11.3 mill tax in Langley City.
  • City council called for tenders for drilling a water well on its Brookswood property.

Fifty Years Ago

November 23, 1967

  • Langley City was headed for a $25,000 budget deficit, despite a two-mill general tax hike in 1967.
  • For the first time in Canada, crop insurance was being made available for the Fraser Valley and Vancouver Island.
  • The Pollution Control Board ruled that sewage should be treated before being dumped into the Fraser River, and municipalities would have to foot the bill.

Forty Years Ago

November 23, 1977

  • Langley Township re-elected mayor George Driediger, all three incumbent aldermen whose seats were on the line, and the three school trustee candidates that they had endorsed. George Preston failed to regain the mayor’s chair, which he had lost to Driediger two years earlier.
  • Former reeve (mayor) Noel Booth was named Freeman of the Township of Langley during a ceremony held in conjunction with the annual Douglas Day banquet. Booth was credited with having been the founder of the festivities 30 years earlier.

Thirty Years Ago

November 25, 1987

  • John Beales scored a decisive victory at the civic polls to take the Township mayor’s chair. His margin over former deputy mayor Len Fowler was just shy of 1,500 votes.
  • Langley MLA Dan Peterson was appointed deputy government whip by premier Bill Vander Zalm.

Twenty Years Ago

November 21, 1997

  • A legal opinion cleared City councillor Evan Williams of a conflict of interest charge leveled by fellow councillor Jack Arnold, who maintained Williams, as the owner of a downtown Langley building, should not have been allowed to vote on whether or not to change that stretch of Fraser Highway into a one-way thoroughfare.
  • A public hearing into a new community plan for Willoughby served to emphasize the division in the community over the prospects of developing the area.
  • Summer of 1999 was set as the target date for opening a 25,000-square-foot destination entertainment centre, with between 12 and 16 cinemas, an Imax theatre, restaurants, and retail stores, in Langley City.
  • Not long after City council blocked a request for a casino licence from Newlands Golf Club, a Vancouver businessman submitted a proposal, through councillor Ron Logan, for a casino and business centre across Fraser Highway from the Langley Hotel.

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