WOSS, B.C. – A decision has been made on how to best honour the legacy of the Englewood Railway on northern Vancouver Island.
Western Forest Products (WFP), the company that owns Englewood, said rail memorabilia is going to be installed at Woss Heritage Park.
WFP collected public feedback between June 4th and July 20th to make the decision.
Comments were also collected from local First Nations, the Regional District of Mount Waddington, Western Forest Products employees and former rail workers.
The public consultation included an open house, engagement through social media, meetings with key stakeholders and a public survey.
According to the company, 138 surveys were received and they saw more than 200 people provide feedback.
“We thank everyone who took the time to participate in the consultation and share your input to help shape this recognition,” read a statement from WFP.
“We also heard interest in converting portions of the rail bed into a trail. Western is committed to working with ‘Namgis (First Nation), on whose traditional territory the rail bed is located, in any exploration of establishing a trail along the rail line.”
WFP added that they are going to work in collaboration with the Regional District of Mount Waddington and provide updates throughout the course of the project.
A LASTING LEGACY
The Englewood Railway is believed to have been the last operating logging railroad in North America, according to WFP. It was in service for more than 100 years.
Unfortunately, tragedy struck on April 20th 2017.
Three workers were killed after a train being re-loaded rolled down the track and crashed into a train maintenance car, resulting in a derailment.
Operations were immediately put on hold following the incident.
On November 7th 2017, months after the derailment, Western Forest Products announced the closure of the railway. Logs are now being transported by truck.
A website dedicated to the memorial project can be accessed via this link.