The Friends of Cedar Hill Park is a community-based not-for- profit Society originally formed in 2006 to care for the natural areas of the Park. We continue the legacy of community action that led to the Park being saved from subdivision and many subsequent efforts to defend the Park as a natural preserve.
The Friends of Cedar Hill Park ask the citizens of Saanich and Greater Victoria to support our petition for Saanich Council to celebrate the Park’s 50th anniversary in 2017 by proclaiming a Charter for Cedar Hill Park to preserve the natural and green spaces of Cedar Hill Park for future generations and for all species of animals and plants that live in the Park.
In 1967 Saanich Council, with the encouragement of the community, acquired the land that became Cedar Hill Park. However, the value of the Park to the citizens of Saanich has never been clearly stated by the District of Saanich. There have been periodic efforts by special interests and the District to build on the remaining natural and green areas of Cedar Hill Park. These attempts have resulted in a number of protracted conflicts that are the antithesis of "Building Community".
The ambiguous status of Cedar Hill Park is in contrast to that of Mount Douglas Park where a strong, clear statement prepared by the Friends of Mount Douglas Park, and proclaimed by the District of Saanich in 1992, has led to over two decades of protection and community care for the park. This has been good for the park and good for the community.
The members of the Friends of Cedar Hill Park believe that the Park is at risk of development as long as its value remains unrecognized and a commitment to sustain it goes unstated. Our proposed Charter for Cedar Hill Park and statement of Community commitment follows:
The Charter for Cedar Hill Park
Cedar Hill Park, within Straits Salish traditional territory, was acquired by the District of Saanich from the estate of the George McRae family in 1967 for its recreational, cultural and social value to the community and as an important habitat for native plants and animals.
The District of Saanich hereby declares that Cedar Hill Park, including the headwaters of both Bowker and Colquitz Creeks, will be preserved forever for the inspiration, use and enjoyment of the public, while maintaining the abundance and diversity of natural habitats for all native species that call it home.
Proclaimed this (date) of (month), (year), by the Council of the Corporation of the District of Saanich on behalf of the citizens of Saanich.
We, the citizens of Saanich commit to five principles in order to protect the Park: