Mick Henningson, President of the Sullivan Mine & Railway Historical Society, stands with Elana Zysblat, Heritage Consultant with Ance Building Services, who helped the society undertake a project to preserve its Powerhouse (in background). The project received funding from Columbia Basin Trust.

CBT issues funds for heritage restoration including historic Kimberley powerhouse

The Columbia Basin officially announced that 43 heritage projects across the region will receive $2.8 million for everything from installing interpretive signs or offering new museum exhibits, to creating conservation plans or training archival staff.

A large chunk of that money — $331,838 — is going to the Sullivan Mine and Railway Historical Society in Kimberley. The funds will help to preserve the historic powerhouse, built in 1924.

By doing items like brickwork repair and restoring all 34 windows (totalling 3,200 glass panes), it will be preserving this building while protecting the artifacts within it. These range from huge compressors, to a large hand-crafted mine model, to a two-tonne high-grade ore sample that was exhibited at the 1967 World’s Fair in Montreal.

“The mining railway sees over 10,000 visitors per year, and the Powerhouse facility illustrates the scale of the mining operation and Kimberley’s rich history,” said Mick Henningson, President. “This very important preservation work will keep this heritage building in good shape for years to come, including all the heritage assets contained within it, for visitors to continue to learn from and enjoy.”

“The ways people can preserve this region’s history, and make sure it remains relevant to future generations, are as varied as the history itself,” said Johnny Strilaeff, President and CEO, Columbia Basin Trust. “With input from Basin residents, the Trust developed a strategic priority to ensure the history and culture of the Basin is celebrated. Alongside our partner Heritage BC, we are pleased to support heritage and other organizations, whether they plan to acquire or conserve assets or better manage and promote what they already have.”

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