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Victoria Report: Restoring an important gateway to our history

Fraser-Nicola MLA Jackie Tegart writes about efforts to preserve Hope’s historic CN train station
Japanese-Canadians at the CNR station in Hope in 1942. (Photo credit: Tashme Historical Society)

Fraser-Nicola MLA Jackie Tegart

Our riding of Fraser-Nicola features a rich history and many important and unique heritage sites. One of these sites, in Hope, needs our support to be restored and reinvented.

The historic 1916 CNR Hope Station was closed in 1984. It was purchased by the community and relocated, serving as an arts and culture centre and a hub for musicians. It was facing demolition in 2020, but a grassroots community campaign vowed to save it.

During that campaign, it was discovered the station had strong connections to the dark history of Japanese-Canadian internment. More than 8,000 men, women, and children were forcibly sent to the Tashme Internment Camp, 19 kilometres east of Hope.

Internment also occurred in the Fraser Canyon communities of Yale, Lytton, and Lillooet, where monuments and educational opportunities currently exist to remind people of this chapter in our history.

Hope Station also has links to Indigenous peoples whose homes and land were displaced by the railways. Chinese, Mexican, African-Canadian, and Indigenous peoples helped to build these railways, enduring unsafe working conditions for little pay, with many losing their lives.

The new vision for the station is an exciting one. The Tashme Historical Society and District of Hope propose a heritage tourism and education space with a museum and visitor centre, restaurant, co-working offices, and event-hosting opportunities.

Hope Station is a finalist in National Trust’s Next Great Save, a national heritage competition that will award $50,000 to the project with the most votes by Feb. 22, 2023.

Please visit and cast your vote, so Hope Station can serve as an important educational and cultural site in B.C.’s Interior for years to come.

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