In keeping with His Royal Highness’ commitment to architecture, the environment, and inner-city renewal, the Prince of Wales agreed to lend his title to the creation in 1999 of a prize to be awarded annually to the government of a municipality which has demonstrated a strong and sustained commitment to the conservation of its historic places. The local government must have a record of supporting heritage preservation through such means as regulation, policies, funding and exemplary stewardship. The nomination must provide evidence that heritage properties in the given municipality have improved over a period of time.
Nominated by Barbara Longfield, Chair of Grimsby’s Heritage Advisory Committee, the Town is being honoured for its longstanding commitment to conservation and commemoration of its rich local heritage through policies, programs, grants, facilitation and support for the Grimsby Museum.
An independent jury of heritage experts from Canada and the United Kingdom selected the Town, from among a field of nominees from across Canada, for the sixteenth Prince of Wales prize.
Grimsby’s award is a considerable achievement for this town of approximately 26,000 residents located at the western gateway to Niagara, and is a reflection of the progress made in enhancing the municipal heritage conservation program in recent years. It is also a testament to the sustained commitment and enthusiasm of heritage property owners, local volunteers and heritage enthusiasts who through the Grimsby Historical Society, have worked tirelessly for more than 66 years to preserve and celebrate local heritage.
Mayor Bob Bentley said: “I am delighted with this wonderful recognition for our Town. The award reflects the sustained dedication and commitment of our community to the conservation and celebration of local heritage over more than six decades, and I am grateful to all those who have contributed to helping The Town of Grimsby achieve this outstanding acknowledgement.”
Heritage Advisory Committee Chair Barbara Longfield said “It’s a great honour for the Town of Grimsby to receive this prestigious award and I am very proud of Grimsby for its efforts in conserving and commemorating its heritage resources”.
Grimsby Historical Society President, Linda Coutts said “Grimsby’s’ history is finally coming of age! As we progress we celebrate our heritage but it always needs thrust. Thanks to the Heritage Advisory Committee who put forth the nomination, Congratulations to the Town, the honour reflects on all who make the effort to treasure what we were and are and carry it forward as we grow.”
Grimsby is a Town rich in history with a wealth of heritage resources including the Neutral Indian Burial Ground; a remarkable collection of 18th and early 19th Century Heritage sites such as Nelles Manor, built 1798 and the Nelles-Fitch House, built 1787, The Engagement at the Forty battle site (1813), and the colourful Victorian era cottage community of Grimsby Beach (1859), once known as the Chautauqua of Canada and an inspiration for the continent wide Chautauqua movement. Although a growing community on the edge of the Greater Toronto Area, Grimsby’s growth has not come at the expense of its history and culture. Thanks to a dedicated community and strong municipal support for conservation, Grimsby has maintained a remarkable sense of history, community and identity that is renowned in Niagara and the Golden Horseshoe.
The award is the second to honour the Town’s heritage preservation work this year. In February, Lieutenant Governor Elizabeth DowdeswellOC OOnt , Presented Grimsby with the Ontario Heritage Trust’s Lieutenant Governor’s Ontario Heritage Award for Community Leadership for 2014.
The presentation of the Prince of Wales Prize will be made at an awards ceremony on October 23 at the Petroleum Club, in Calgary, Alberta as part of the National Trust for Canada’s annual conference. The prize, which consists of a Plaque, a framed scroll and flag with the insignia of the Prince of Wales and the National Trust for Canada will be presented to Bob Bentley, Mayor of Grimsby and Alderman Nick Diflavio, a long-time member of the Heritage Advisory Committee.
Plans are currently underway for a community event to celebrate and acknowledge the support of the community, on October 28th at Grimsby Town Hall. For more information about the Town of Grimsby’s nomination please contact the Mayor’s Office at 905-309-2004.
For further information on the Prince of Wales Prize please go to: https://www.nationaltrustcanada.ca/get-involved/awards/2015-award-recipients
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