Feature Story                                                              Friday, Oct. 28, 2016


Geash, What a Mess!

Veterans are incensed that they've lost their beautiful historic CFB Officer's Mess Hall, now slated for demolition

Darren Kennedy, Vice President YACG and Spokesperson for The Vedder Crossing Museum Project/Submitted photos


The CFB Chilliwack Officers Mess Hall, Building #24, at Vedder Crossing circa 1940s.


s you may well be aware, Canada Remembers and the Remembrance Day holiday are rapidly approaching.


Of local concern, right now, in Chilliwack, is the status of the old CFB Chilliwack Officers Mess Hall, Building # 24 in Vedder Crossing.


Built in 1942, during World War 2, this building was designated as a Heritage Building by the Federal Government, and Canada Lands.


Built in 1942 during World War 2, the CFB Chilliwack Officers Mess Hall, Building #24, at Vedder Crossing is closed, but still standing.


We were pleased that it had as it was always considered that a designated heritage building was protected under the laws of the land and could never be destroyed intentionally.


Well, we were WRONG. Our Officer's Mess Hall is apparently not a designated building anymore – it changed ownership.


The building received its Heritage Designation in 1996. So, we asked them to add some pictures we found to their website.


The Parks Canada website of Historic Places answered us and we were told that building #24 had been demolished and all the information was to be deleted from the national database.


Demolished? Really? We see that beautiful building every day and it appears to be in excellent condition. At least it was when Canada Lands had their offices in the building and did their renovations a few years ago.


So, we went back to check and they discovered that a “glitch” in the system had indicated that the building had not been demolished after all but it had been disposed of. No matter what the word was, it was gone as a heritage site.



The website page referring to Building #24 was pulled the same day as did every link that went with it.


All that paperwork, all that care that someone took to try and save it for our community and it was gone as if it never mattered.


We may not know everything about all that government legal jargon, or how to interpret it, but we can understand that the only heritage building in Sardis is no longer a heritage building. And, one of the only military buildings left on the base can disappear without a trace, at any moment.


At least with heritage status we thought it had a future with us.


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