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Wallace lighthouse turned over to community


WALLACE – The lighthouse along the Sunrise Trail in Wallace will continue to guide boats and serve as a landmark in the community.

Wallace Area Development Association has finally taken ownership of the Wallace Lighthouse from Public Works Canada after a three-year effort.

TOPIC: Heritage

 

HL: Guiding light

Sub: Wallace development association purchases community lighthouse

 

The Wallace Area Development Association purchased the lighthouse from the federal government for one dollar and received a $10,000 grant for maintenance of the structure.

“It would have been destroyed if nobody wanted it,” said Doug Perry, president of the association. “It’s kind of an icon for our tourism, it’s easy to see and people recognize it. We didn’t think it should be torn down.”

Efforts to obtain the lighthouse began in 2012 but the association didn’t become the official owner until December 2015.

The Wallace Harbour Sector Lighthouse was built in 1904 and is the last of three lighthouses that once stood in the community. When it was constructed the roadway was only a carriage track. Now, the building is located just seven feet from the paved surface of Route 6, catching the eyes of everyone who travels through the village.

As a result of erosion, the shoreline is only 25 feet away but local sandstone has been placed around it to make the land stable.

Because it is still a working lighthouse, guiding boats into the harbour, Fisheries and Oceans Canada will continue to maintain the light. The association will maintain the structure itself, which currently only needs paint. Perry hopes volunteers will help and painting can be done for about $500.

The transfer of the building was made possible by the Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act, which was passed in 2008.

The structure

The Wallace Harbour Sector Lighthouse is a designated heritage lighthouse with an eight-metre (26 foot) square wood-frame tower painted white with a red stripe and trim. It had been one of a pair of range lights, but was converted to a sector light in 1990 when the rear range light was taken apart and moved to become a cottage.

 

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