SYDNEY – The St. Paul Island Historical Society and residents in Dingwall have something to celebrate this morning with news from MLAs Keith Bain and Cecil Clarke that St. Paul Island’s lighthouse is being repatriated.
“Years and years of hard work have been put in by the Society and the communities north of Smokey to bring home this historical treasure they lost decades ago,” said Victoria-The Lakes MLA, Bain. “Everyone that has been involved in this venture is feeling a sense of pride today. The lighthouse is an essential part of the history of St. Paul’s Island and I hope it will take its rightful place as the centrepiece of the museum.”
The lighthouse is currently on display in Dartmouth at the Canadian Coast Guard Maritime base. However, Bain and Clarke have been working with Gail Shea, the federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, to bring the lighthouse back to Cape Breton.
“I met with Minister Shea on Parliament Hill and I was pleased to hear that she understood the importance of having the lighthouse back in the community,” said Cape Breton North MLA, Clarke. “I would like to thank the Minister for her part in ensuring the positive resolution of this long standing issue. I can say with certainty that the federal government will be bringing St. Paul Island’s lighthouse home.”
The St. Paul Island Historical Society is applauding the news, as well the success of Bain and Clarke in bringing the cultural icon back to its community.
“We are very pleased with the news the lighthouse is coming back to us,” said Hamilton Carter, President of the Society. “It will make a big difference to the community as it will certainly be a tourism draw, which will in turn provide a boost to local businesses.”
Built in 1917, the lighthouse guided ships through the Gulf of St. Lawrence for approximately 100 years.