Proponents of the former Orchard House are asking that its memory be preserved in plans for a new city recreation facility. (File photo)

City asked to help preserve memory of Orchard House

Dilkusha proponents ask something be incorporated in recreation centre plans

Dilkusha House may be gone, but its proponents wish to see its memory preserved as part of the city’s recreation facility.

The former Orchard House, located along 24th Street NE, across the road from the Salmon Arm Recreation Centre, was demolished by the city in July 2017, despite efforts by the community to have the structure preserved, either at that location or moved elsewhere.

The city purchased the Orchard House property in November 2016 for future expansion of the recreation centre.

During a brief presentation to Salmon Arm council on Monday, Dec. 10, Dilkusha Heritage Society of BC member Maureen Shaffer asked the city to include Dilkusha in its planning process for a new multi-use recreational facility.

Related: Former Orchard House torn down

“Because when a piece of heritage is gone, it’s gone forever, and it’s the one opportunity that remains to remember the contribution that the family, Col. Bernard Scott and his family, who built the house and looked after the orchard… to remember what they gave the community that helped to make Salmon Arm what it is today,” said Shaffer.

Shaffer suggested a garden space or park space, or a gazebo reflecting the structure of the former house be considered. In addition, Shaffer said a rose from Dilkusha was preserved and is easily propagated and could be planted there.

“It’s simply building in a small component… that captures some of the spirit of what Dilkusha was and continues to carry forward for the community so that we remember,” said Shaffer.

Related: Salmon Arm Council, Recreation Society seek input on facility upgrades

Coun. Tim Lavery noted any plans for the recreation centre are still in very early stages, but applauded the idea of integrating a part of Dilkusha.

Mayor Alan Harrison said an open house on the recreation centre is being planned for sometime in January, and he encouraged Shaffer to submit a letter and her ideas at that time.

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