David Adamson is shown here with a small portion of the war memorabilia displayed in the Legion building on Lawson Rd.
By David Adamson
I have written numerous articles over the past few years referring to the financial challenge Legion Branch 258 was facing due to ongoing maintenance costs along with the decline in membership. Unfortunately, the expenses continued to exceed income and steps had to be taken to address this.
During the general meeting on December 10, the current situation was discussed. It was concluded that a Property Committee be set up to conduct an in-depth evaluation.
At the general meeting on April 10, options were outlined to the membership and the option that was accepted was to sell the property and relocate into another building within close proximity. This option is being investigated and a further report will soon be made to the general membership on our findings.
There obviously is a degree of empathy in moving from our current location as it holds many endearing memories. As a Life Member of Branch 258 and a member of the Legion for over 30 years, I can well appreciate the sentiments expressed by the membership and the community.
History of Branch 258
The Highland Creek Branch 258 was originally known as the Colonel T. Herbert Lennox Branch 258 and received its Charter on May 18, 1934, from the British Empire Service League that was later renamed the Royal Canadian Legion. The first president of Branch 258 was Comrade George Lomas, a veteran and a well-known and respected businessman in Highland Creek. The property on which Branch 258 is located was acquired during the 1940s and consisted of 10 acres.
A two-storey building was constructed on the north parking lot facing Lawson Road. Unfortunately, due to a fire in October 1976, the building was destroyed. This led to a new branch being built in its current location that was opened in May 1981. A 2 ½-acre portion of the 10-acre property was deeded to build a Seniors Veterans Home, which welcomed its first resident on August 14, 1976. The home was initially known as the Metro Toronto Legion Village and was later renamed the Tony Stacey Centre for Veterans Care.
The branch has been a significant focal point within our community over the years with such events as Remembrance Day services and Canada Day celebrations. It has also financially supported Army Cadets, hockey and baseball teams and given donations to churches over Christmas to help the less fortunate. Many weddings, anniversaries and memorial services have been held in the Legion Banquet Hall.