LETTERS: Namesake not in history books

Editor:

Re: White Rock critic under fire in U.S., Oct. 14.

Editor:

Re: White Rock critic under fire in U.S., Oct. 14.

Dean Berkeley is quoted in this article that his family history in the city dates back to the late 19th century and that Peace Arch Hospital’s Berkeley Pavilion was named in honour of his grandfather.

He may well be related to early pioneers, but there is no historical data referencing this name in either White Rock or Surrey archives. Noted historians in both areas cannot verify his claims.

As editor of the local newspaper at the time, I covered both the construction and opening of the Berkeley Private Hospital, touted as one of the first and finest private facilities in B.C.

When tenders for construction were called in 1961, Neil Cook, a Vancouver lawyer and major shareholder, said the hospital to be built on purchased land between Vine and Russell would be known as The Berkeley, as he had been involved with a similar facility in Berkeley, Calif., so the name seemed appropriate.

There was never any reference to a local connection.

Cook was joined in the project by several local investors, including Alex Reid, an accountant and son of pioneer Senator Tom Reid, and Surrey business leaders Frank McKinnnon and Alan Davidson. The facility opened amidst much fanfare in August 1962, drawing a host of guests including health minister Eric Martin.

Grandpa Berkeley did not appear to be among them.

In 1966, the board of White Rock District Hospital Society – soon to become Peace Arch – felt the Berkeley should become a public facility and part of the existing hospital. Board chairman Bob Hassell opened negotiations with the owners, which resulted in the hospital society purchasing the Berkeley for $550,000, most of which was recovered through provincial grants.

I was a board member at the time.

In September 1967, I served as MC at an event formally finalizing the purchase attended by the original owners, hospital society members and other guests. No one by the name of Berkeley was in attendance or they would certainly have been introduced.

Vin Coyne, White Rock

 

 

Just Posted

VIDEO: Surrey man charged after dangerous driving incident in Vancouver

Toyota Camry spotted doing laps in intersection, driving towards pedestrians

Surrey brewpub’s 20th-year ‘Cask Off’ championship belt won by its head brewer

‘Jason’s Mimosa’ among crafty creations at annual competition

Surrey RCMP provide summer safety tips as school lets out

Police say they will continue to ‘proactively engage’ with youth in a number of programs this summer

Former Surrey man charged with fraud, theft and using forged documents

Johny Panyavong, 26, was arrested in Ontario on June 18 and released on $5,000 bail in Surrey

VIDEO: Clip of driver speeding past B.C. school bus alarms MLA

Laurie Throness of Chilliwack-Kent says he will lobby for better safety measures

Former Vernon Judo coach pleads guilty to child pornography charges

Bryan Jeffrey McLachlan is set to return to court Sept. 4 for sentencing

B.C. Olympic skier sues Alpine Canada after coach’s sex offences

Bertrand Charest was convicted in 2017 on 37 charges

B.C. senior’s car vandalized for more than 18 months

Retired RCMP officer determined to catch ‘tagger.’

Former Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo to retire

‘Bobby Lou’ calls it a career after 19 NHL seasons

Man charged in crash that killed B.C. pregnant woman

Frank Tessman charged for 2018 Highway 1 accident where Kelowna elementary school teacher died

Province unveils 10-year plan to boost mental health, addiction recovery services

The plan, called A Pathway to Hope, focuses on early-intervention services that are seeing high demand

Man arrested for alleged indecent act after ‘predatory’ SkyTrain incident

A woman had reported the man had exposed himself while on the train on April 29

Two helicopters reportedly seized by RCMP near U.S. border south of Cultus Lake

Federal Mounties mum on raid two weeks after dramatic raid reported by Columbia Valley residents

Most Read

l -->