• Town Staff have completed a report detailing public feedback on Council’s initial decision to accept a donated Leopard tank for display in Memorial Park.
  • This would have necessitated the removal of the Stouffville Horticultural Society’s 150th Canadian Anniversary Commemorative Garden to create a new memorial space, incorporating the Town’s cenotaph and the tank.
  • New Staff recommendations include:
    • Declining the tank donation from the Department of National Defence
    • Keeping the Horticultural Society’s Garden in its current location
    • Relocating the Town’s cenotaph from the Stouffville Legion to a new memorial space north of Burkholder Street and west of Park Drive.
  • Council will decide on the recommendations during their June 5 meeting at 1 p.m. in Council Chambers.


In response to public concerns following Stouffville’s initial direction, the Town conducted the Memorial Park Commemorative Spaces Survey to seek feedback on the proposals. 1093 responses were received, with 69% of participating respondents opposing the Town’s possible acceptance of a donated tank. 77.75% of respondents also indicated that the Commemorative Garden on Booth Drive should remain in place.

Regarding the cenotaph’s relocation, 44.92% of respondents preferred it remain at the Stouffville Legion, 33.89% favoured its move to Memorial Park, and 21.19% had no preference.

“Although the highest scoring individual preference indicated that the Cenotaph should remain at the Legion, this option does not come without risk,” the Staff report explains. “During the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Legion was met with significant challenges and almost closed, nearly leaving the Town’s cenotaph without a home. The Legion’s request…was to return the Cenotaph to its original home in Memorial Park and return carriage and oversight to the Town.”

Staff now recommend using the North Pavilion site for a new memorial space and home for Stouffville’s cenotaph. The Memorial Park location, which is north of Burkholder Street and south of the Lawn Bowling Club, is viewed as a “more intimate space and scale for reflection and contemplation.”

While Staff advise declining the Department of Defence’s tank donation, Council can still choose to accept it. Should they do so, Members will need to decide on its future location. Among survey respondents who supported the tank donation, equally preferred locations were the Whitchurch-Stouffville Museum and the originally approved Commemorative Garden location.

If the tank is accepted, Staff recommend placing it at the Museum as a stand-alone exhibit. An alternative option would be to incorporate the tank within the recommended North Pavilion memorial space, as 75% of survey respondents in support of the tank wish to see it alongside the cenotaph.

Financial impact assessments were not updated within the report. “Preliminary costing estimates of original proposed memorials ranged between $250,000 to $400,000,” the report notes. “New design and associated exercises will need to be undertaken following [Council] direction received to determine costing and timelines for consideration in future budget submissions.”

The complete survey results can be found here.

*Cover image shows the original North Pavilion concept design created by NAK Design Strategies


A map showing the two location options considered for a new Memorial Park memorial space.