Saint Patrick’s Perish Green Space is in the seaside community of Oak Bay, one of thirteen areas of the Capital Regional District of British Columbia. Initially called Willows Church the building was on a large open field and was created in nineteen twelve. Shortly thereafter it became the original perish for Lady of our Lourdes and was the first Catholic church in Oak Bay. At that time the street, now called Haultain, was called Third Street. This original structure is the Poor Clare Sisters chapel while the new perish was built in nineteen sixty and renamed by the Reverend Father William MacDonald as St Patrick’s. The affiliate elementary school is in Saanich, B.C. St. Patrick’s Elementary school was founded in nineteen fifty-four. A small grass covered area lies to the east of the perish while most of the land is private condo property. Cedar hedge trees and various shrubs forming the green scape around the large asphalt parking lot.
Geographic Location N48º 26’ 10” W123º 19’ 11”
Saint Patrick’s Perish Green Space can be reached from the Trans Canada Highway. Continue along the Hwy 1 into Victoria as it becomes Douglas Street. Turn off Douglas onto Hillside Avenue to head east. Stay on Hillside Avenue as it becomes Lansdowne Road. Continue along Lansdown Road to reach Foul Bay Road. Turn right onto Foul Bay Road and continue to Haultain Street. Turn left and look for the green space on the left. There is some street parking. City buses travel along Foul Bay Road.
The grounds of Saint Marys’ are two separate green spaces that host buildings of the third oldest Anglican congregation on Vancouver Island. Located in Metchosin, a coastal community in the Capital Regional District, St Marys’ Church heritage site, at 4354, was created in the late eighteen seventies. It is used mainly for periodic events. The newer building and grounds border along Witty’s Lagoon Regional Park, about two kilometers to the east.
The heritage church green space, St Mary the virgin, has a welcoming garden among the final resting areas of the many of the earlier pioneering families of the Metchosin area. The grounds were donated for consecration by the first initiate Mr. John Witty. The garden has several unique trees and shrubs including a weeping Lawson cypress planted in about eighteen eighty eight. A coronation English oak was planted on the 25th of June in nineteen thirty-seven. In the springtime the burial grounds are covered with the flowers of the white lilies. The garden is maintained by volunteers. A second building hosts a preschool with a small playground shaded by the arbutus and Douglas fir grove.
The green space at 4125 Metchosin Road hosts the parish, St Mary the Incarnation, with a large paved parking area. These are surrounded by a grass covered area with a border of large Douglas fir trees to the south. Witty’s Lagoon Regional Park is beside this green space.
Geographical location N48º 23’ 18” W123º 31’ 34”
St Marys’ Green Space can be reached from Highway 1, the TransCanada Hwy. Exit at the Millstream /Veteran Memorial Parkway overpass and head south along the Veteran Memorial Parkway to reach Latoria Road. Turn left onto Latoria Road and continue along to reach Metchosin Road. Turn right onto Metchosin Road and watch for the signs to Witty’s Lagoon Regional Park. One church with its large parking area lies immediately beside the lagoon parking lot. The other church grounds is about two kilometers along Metchosin Road. There is limited roadside parking along Metchosin Road near the gated entrance. City buses travel along Metchosin Road.
Further information about the heritage sites can be found at websites for Old Cemeteries in BC, Heritage BC and the church.