These few short posts were penned with a few updates the Ranger (alias the procrastinator) had promised for a few years now. The posts have links (in red lettering) to the original post in brackets, so our readers may find the whole story.
The Welcome Motor Inn. (Welcome Motor Inn) This derelict building located between Port Hope and Welcome on Highway #2 was once a well known motel, restaurant and gas bar and at the time of the original post, was ready to tumble to the ground. This unusual building with some two story construction featured very unusual architectural styles seldom found on such a building. Built in the 1950’s, it was owned and operated by the Mark family of Port Hope for many years. For several years after the business closed, the abandoned building was looted and vandalized many times becoming a serious safety hazard for anyone entering the property. In the past year, the property was finally surrounded by a security fence awaiting its eventual fate.
Update: This choice real estate was recently sold and the local citizens were hopeful that it would become the new home for the Port Hope Fire Fighter’s Museum. Our hopes were dashed when it was learned that the Ministry of Transport Ontario (MTO) has purchased this large plot of land. Local speculation was that it was to be used for a staging area for supplies and equipment for the major local upcoming Highway 401 bridges and interchange improvements, as well as other bridges from Hamilton Road through Welcome. Wait for it readers, a reliable source has indicated there is a good chance the property has been sold again and may indeed be the new Fire Fighter’s Museum home!
Rose’s Cottage. (What is the Fate of Rose’s Cottage) This attractive cottage was originally located at 36 Victoria Street South, Port Hope. According to the Architectural Conservancy, Port Hope Branch, it has a history dating back to the 1860’s. The small white stuccoed cottage was best known for it’s two ‘eyebrow’ windows on the second floor roof. In 1829 Mary Rose immigrated from Ireland to assist with household and child care duties by the owner’s of the Penryn Estate. The cottage was facing certain demolition to make room for a housing development until a local developer, Stephan Henderson of Henderson Construction purchased the cottage and with permission of the Port Hope Town Council was allowed to move and temporarily store the building on nearby King’s Field.
Update: The local specialist in heritage conservation and restoration, Stephan Henderson recently moved the cottage to a new location at 65 Pine Street, North. Now called Rose Cottage. The cottage with it’s two floors of about 500 sq feet each has acquired an addition at the back of the building, nearly doubling it’s living space. The addition blends well with the original cottage in a perfect location. Mr. Henderson was named co-winner of the 2020 Architectural Conservancy NextGen award for his actions to save Rose Cottage.
The Canadian Fire Fighter’s Museum. (The Museum Building Port Hope) This quaint old building, a quonset hut was located at 95 Mill Street, South Port Hope was originally a multi-bay garage utilized by the Town Works Department for trucks and equipment storage. The building became vacant in the mid 1980’s when a new and larger Works Department complex was constructed on Cranberry Road and Hwy 401. The old building was scheduled to be eventually demolished as part of the Port Hope Area Initiative Clean Up. With some changes the building became the birthplace of the Canadian Fire Fighter’s Museum. After 33 years, the museum was forced to close in 2018 for the above mentioned Clean Up. The Museum committee has since been searching for a new, larger location. The former Canadian Tire Building at 10 Robertson Street, south of the town hall was the favored location, but the empty building was not for sale. The current Port Hope Fire Station on Ontario Street and a location in the Port Hope Business Park were all considered. With only a few regional Fire Fighter’s Museums in Canada, A National Fire Fighter’s Museum at this time is still a dream.
Update: The former museum has been demolished. The site is now a river-side park with landscaping nearly completed, open green space, trees, park benches etc. creates a new, fresh look to the Ganaraska River and boat launch area of the town.