$19,000 from Ottawa to start Vic Hall work

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$19,000 from Ottawa to start Vic Hall work


A $19,000 federal grant has been awarded by the federal government to the Society for the Restoration of Victoria Hall. The money is to be used to employ seven laborers and one draughtsman to dismantle the opera house and remove other temporary partitions within the building.

"Thanks to this grant, we’re starting work on the building much earlier than we expected," said John Taylor, executive director of the Society. "We didn't think we would be able to start, until fall."

The grant, provided under the local incentives program, was announced to the Society on Wed- nesday afternoon.

Mr. Taylor said no restoration .could be done on Victoria Hall until structural repairs are completed. "We will remove all the fittings in the opera house so that it is just a bare room," he said. "This will allow the restoration architect to get at the beams and joists for structural work."

The project scheduled to begin January 3, is ex- pected to last at least 21 weeks and include additional work on the third and second floors.

"The opera house will take about two months to pull apart," said Mr. Taylor. "It has to be done very carefully. It is a slow process so that we don't lose any evidence that we might need in the recon- struction”

The Society will be hiring seven laborers and one draughtsman for job. Actual materials for the project are expected to cost only $500 and the seven laborers will earn $90 a week. The draughtsman will earn professional fees.

The Society made the application for the grant directly to the Manpower and Immigration Department in Toronto. Three other work incentive grants have also been given in this general area.

The positions for the work are to be registered and hired through the Canada Manpower office in Cobourg and work is to start January 3.

Drama Guild agrees to start

Directors of the Cobourg Opera and Drama Guild met with Restoration Society directors on Tuesday night, agreed that work could begin in clearing out the Guild's property in the Opera House, to prepare for restoration.

There are 430 seats in the Opera House, all of which must be removed, as well as the stage, lights, and costumes.

While there is no final decision made yet by town council, or the society as to whether the Opera House should be restored as a theatre or in its original state as a ballroom, the consensus emerging from the meetings suggests that a restored Opera House with sloping floor and fixed seats would have more community use than a ballroom or hall with flat floor.

When the hall was opened in 1860, the Prince of Wales attended a gala ball in the ballroom. Some years later, a sloping floor was built over it, and the ballroom became an opera house. The heavy floor is a dead weight on the structure.

At least three local groups are prospective users of a theatre-type opera house; the Opera and Drama Guild, Com- munity Concerts, Oriana Singers, as well as public lectures, touring com- panies and perhaps summer theatre.

Media Type:
Item Type:
$19,000 from Ottawa to start Vic Hall work
Source: The Cobourg Sentinel-Star, Friday, December 24, 1971
Acquired: January 2008
Date of Publication:
24 Dec 1971
Local identifier:
Victoria Hall Restoration 08-08
Language of Item:
Geographic Coverage:
  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 43.95977 Longitude: -78.16515
Copyright Statement:
Copyright status unknown. Responsibility for determining the copyright status and any use rests exclusively with the user.
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200 Ontario Street, Cobourg, ON K9A 5P4

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$19,000 from Ottawa to start Vic Hall work

$19,000 from Ottawa to start Vic Hall work
Source: The Cobourg Sentinel-Star, Friday, December 24, 1971
Acquired: January 2008