Victoria’s Bay Street Armoury Celebrates 100 Years

The Bay Street Armoury has been part of our community for 100 years and on Sunday it celebrated by opening its doors to the public. The event was very well attended and the guest of honour was the Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, the Honourable Judith Guichon OBC.

The day-long event included a 90-minute commemoration program that traced the history of the building and the units that have called it home for the last century. These include The Canadian Scottish Regiment (Princess Mary’s) and the 5th (BC) Field Regiment, RCA both of whom opened their regimental museums to large crowds of curious visitors. They also set up a number of displays on the main floor, as did the 11 (Victoria) Field Ambulance. On loan from the Provincial Legislature and on display in the Canadian Scottish museum were the Pipes once belonging to Pte. James Cleland Richardson VC.

The event was a great opportunity to connect with a number of local organizations including Archives staff from Saanich, Oak Bay and Esquimalt. It was a pleasure meeting Sonia Nicholson, Caroline Duncan, Greg Evans and Jack Bates. I also had the opportunity to meet Jack Azar, President of the CEF100 Commemoration Society and the MC for today’s commemoration program.

The drill hall echoed with the sounds of 5th Field Band and later the Pipes & Drums of the Canadian Scottish Regiment. The latter made several appearances, one of which I captured on video. The most poignant moment of the day took place when The Last Post and Flowers of the Forest were performed next to the battlefield cross erected at Vimy by the 16th Battalion (The Canadian Scottish) in 1917.


1 reply

  1. ma great uncle fought and died under Lieutenant-General Sir Arthur Currie. James Sinclair Voy 16th Canadian Scottish 3rd bt 1st Canadian Div. was wounded in the trenches near Lens on the 4th of March 1918 and later died at CC6 on the 7th of March.. whats weird is ive only come to learn this this year since researching our Orkney roots and i used to go watch and play floor hockey with the lads at the Armoury in 2007-2008 when i lived on the Island for a year..i say this because i always felt a connection with this majestic building! i know he probably never stepped foot in there as he left from Manitoba shortly after coming back from Scotland to his Brothers Farm in Brandon Man. and was killed over seas…still, i think its neat.

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