Walking tours to capture history, stories behind Victoria Park

Published on July 2, 2014

TRURO –After learning so much information about Victoria Park, two young women from Truro are eager to share their wealth of knowledge with others.

Jessie Campbell and Elizabeth MacArthur are summer events assistants with Truro Parks, Recreation and Culture. Part of their job is to offer free weekly Victoria Park walking tours, which has required a lot of research into the history and makeup of the park.

“Even if people think they know a lot about the park, there’s more to learn. I learned about the amount of thought that went into it and that everything has a purpose and a story behind it,” said Campbell.

For example, she said, Jacob’s Ladder was inspired by Genesis, a First Testament book in the Bible.

In Genesis, “a man named Jacob dreamed about a ladder that went from the Earth to the heavens and God’s angel went up and down it and this ladder in the park was built to look like it was going up to the sky” as well, Campbell explained.

That is only one example of historical information the ladies will share on the tours, which will begin next week and take place, weather dependent, every Tuesday and Thursday from July 8 until Aug. 19.

Almost 20 sites within the park will be visited, including memorials, trails, the witch’s cauldron and Joe Howe Falls.

MacArthur said the tours are worthwhile for local residents and visitors alike.

“It’s important to fully appreciate the park and you need to go back in time to do that,” said MacArthur.

“You don’t really look at all the surroundings when you are in the park and knowing the history opens your eyes.”

For example, some key locations in the park are

Fairy Dell, Irresistible Engagement Seat, Cathedral Dell, Holy Well, the Devil’s Pulpit, the Witch’s Cauldron and Nymph’s Grotto. Many have stories that reflect the Victorian Era and its notion of fairies and fairy lore.

Tour participants should meet at the community policing station near the main entrance to the park at 1 p.m. on tour days. Pre-registration is not required for the tours, which are expected to take about an hour. Tours can also be booked by calling 893-6078.

The tours are only one of many good things to come for Victoria Park, said Doug MacKenzie.

The director of the town’s parks and recreation department said plans to rejuvenate the park continue and many projects are expected to take place during the next 10 to 15 years through the Victoria Park master plan. It’s expected upwards of $2 million could be spent on projects and upgrades.

“People like the general philosophy of the park and want that to be consistent. The park is in good shape and projects will enhance it and not take away from it,” said MacKenzie.

MacKenzie said it’s too early to comment on what

specific projects could take place until the parks and recreation committee takes recommendations to town council for consent and funding considerations.

Projects “will be long term; we hope to begin next spring,” MacKenzie said.



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