• Stouffville’s Council has approved a new Memorial Park location for the Town’s cenotaph.
  • Their initial decision would have replaced the Stouffville Horticultural Society’s 150th Canadian Anniversary Commemorative Garden with the new memorial space.
  • The change will spare the garden and see the memorial and cenotaph located at the North Pavilion site, which is just south of the Stouffville Lawn Bowling Club.
  • The Town will receive a donated decommissioned Leopard tank from the Department of National Defence, however it is now destined for the Whitchurch-Stouffville Museum.
  • Culminating months of advocacy work and worry, Stouffville Horticultural Society (SHS) members applauded Council after votes were cast during the June 5 meeting.
  • Victory was declared on the SHS petition website, which garnered nearly 3,000 signatures in support of saving the garden.


SHS has been hard at work responding to Council’s December decision to remove their garden. “It is an understatement to say that the last six months have been full of more anxiety and stress than any other recent time in our Society’s 100-year history,” SHS spokesperson Joan Bostock declared in a deputation to Council.

“Nevertheless, I’d like to thank Mayor Lovatt and Council for agreeing to meet with us on this matter,” Bostock added. “And thank you to Town Staff for their hard work in hearing our concerns, meeting with us, and implementing and analyzing the survey.”

Bostock also shared the group’s support for Staff’s newest recommendations regarding the future memorial site, protection of their garden, and advised reversal of Council’s decision to accept a tank for public display. While the tank will be received and is destined for the Whitchurch-Stouffville Museum following a Council-approved amendment, SHS’s priority was always saving their garden at Park and Booth Drives.

Councillor Maurice Smith commended SHS and highlighted their efforts and commitment to Stouffville: “I am a great supporter, and I think we owe [SHS] a debt of gratitude for taking the time over the last number of years to consider and assist us in helping keep our town the beautiful place it is.”

Bullet Point News spoke with Bostock and SHS Secretary Debbie Lonergan following the meeting. “The Stouffville Horticultural Society is both pleased and relieved that Council voted to save the Canada 150 Garden,” Lonergan stated. “Over 2000 volunteer hours have been put into this garden since it was established, and it is wonderful to have that investment recognized and appreciated.”

The process has been a learning opportunity for SHS members, according to Lonergan, and their greater understanding of Council procedure has them ready to continue advocating for the garden. “I would like to follow up this good news by asking the Town for another sign to replace the one that was stolen, and maybe a couple of benches for the area,” Bostock suggested.

Lonergan also expressed hope that this has been an informative process for Council, and she is now looking ahead with the garden issue settled. “It’s good to be moving forward on a positive note in our centennial year,” Lonergan told us.