Dateline Cowichan 1962: Bamberton honoured for record on safety

Members of the Bamberton work team pose with their safety awards. - courtesy Bamberton Historical Society
Members of the Bamberton work team pose with their safety awards.
— image credit: courtesy Bamberton Historical Society

“I am a cement plant, and I am raw, At what is done far better by a war.”

I penned those two lines (with apologies to Alexander Pope) during a brief sidebar in my working life spent in the office at Bamberton Cement Plant just south of Mill Bay. I learned then of Bamberton’s sterling safety record.

Eight years earlier, in October 1962, the plant celebrated an outstanding achievement in the annals of the cement industry. The British Columbia Cement Company hosted a banquet for employees and their wives at Victoria’s Holyrood House to mark 1,000 days of safe operation of its Bamberton plant.

The company had become one of only 20 of 175 plants in North America eligible to join the “One-Thousand-Day Club”, B. Brabant, Ocean Cement’s executive vice-president, told the 180 attendees.

R. Muirhead, works manager and chairman for the evening, stressed the importance of safety in family life. He said wives can play an important role in a safety campaign by seeing that their men leave for work in a cheerful and relaxed frame of mind.

“The workers who know all is well at home are those least likely to become involved in accidents,” he said.


1962: Kinsmen

Bob Howard, a member of the Duncan Kinsmen since 1949, was made a life member of the club. Bob Young was awarded the club’s brass hat for his outstanding work, including his role in the Poliomyelitis and Rehabilitation Foundation of BC.


1962: cadets

Army cadet Gord Mast of Duncan was named the top cadet in Canada at the summer’s Banff National Cadet Camp. Leader of 190 master cadets from across Canada, Mast received the Colonel La Point trophy and a pair of binoculars.


1962: ferries

The CPR boosted ferry service between Vancouver and Nanaimo from $2 to $2.95 per person. The vehicle charge remained at $5 per car and $2 for the driver one way. This increase matched the B.C. government ferry fare.

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