The rich 127-year history of Truro’s Victoria Park will be explored this summer during free, guided walks held every Tuesday and Thursday.
Elizabeth MacArthur and Jessie Campbell, summer events assistants for Truro Parks, Recreation and Culture, have researched and created a general interest tour that highlights key locations in the park, as well as some almost forgotten stories and sites.
“Whether it’s your first time in Victoria Park or you’re a regular visitor, this tour is an opportunity to experience the rich history and charming sites in a completely new way,” MacArthur says.
Whimsical and interesting names have been given to much-loved areas of the park over the generations, such as the Fairy Dell, Irresistible Engagement Seat, Cathedral Dell, Holy Well, the Devil’s Pulpit, the Witch’s Cauldron and Nymph’s Grotto. Some of the names, the locations and their stories reflect the interest Truro area residents in the Victorian Era had in the notion of fairies and fairy lore.
MacArthur says researching the history of the park opened her eyes to the thoughts and efforts that went into every aspect of its creation.
“I now have an appreciation for those who helped make Victoria Park what it is today,” she says.
“The whimsical ideas and cultural influences really drew us in, making the history enjoyable to learn about and into something we’re excited to share with others.
“The tour reveals some of the forgotten history of well-known attractions and will open visitors’ eyes to a number of obscure sites that many people don’t know exist.”
The free tours will be held on Tuesdays and Thursday, starting July 8 and continuing until Aug. 19 inclusive. Participants are asked to meet at the community policing station near the main entrance to the park at 1 p.m. Pre-registration isn’t required.
The tour from the main entrance of the park to Joe Howe Falls will take a maximum of one hour. The terrain is relatively flat and follows well-established paths in the lower and gorge areas of the park.
Some of the historical information for the tour was found in a study recently conducted by Vineberg and Fulton Ltd., a heritage conservation consulting group. A full copy of the report is available to read on the Town of Truro website at www.truro.ca.