Friday 16 December 2011

Outer Battery booklet launch on Sunday

Please come join us for tea and cookies and pick up your copy of ‘Out to the Battery’ on Sunday December 18, 2011 at 3:30 pm at Pearcey’s Twine Store.  There's a free copy for each household,  as noted below.  You can buy extra copies for $12 each.
They look pretty nice, too!

Thursday 15 December 2011

Outer Battery booklet available next week

Many of us had our thoughts recorded by Annie & Lisa last summer, or by Angie & Judy this Fall, for an Outer Battery booklet.  We are pleased to inform you that the book ‘Out to the Battery’, stories and pictures from current and former residents, will be available later this week or early next week.  150 copies are being printed for distribution and sale.
·  Every person interviewed will receive one free copy of the book.  
·  Any households not represented in the list of interviewees will also receive one free copy.
·  Board members will distribute copies to interviewees and households.
Remaining copies will be sold at $12.00 each. Proceeds go to the Outer Battery Neighbourhood Association. Please get your orders in fast because we expect these to sell like fish cakes.
Contact for copies:
Chris Brookes [] or at 576-0359
Angela Drake 722-0283; Joanne Butler 687-2046
Thanks to our two folklore students from Memorial University (Lisa Wilson and Annie McEwen), to all of you who did interviews and provided pictures, and Board members who did supplementary interviews, and assisted with editing, layout and printing logistics.
If you have any questions about distribution please address them to Chris or Ange. 

Wednesday 14 December 2011

Garbage pickup day change

This week, the City will pick up on Saturday Dec 17th, and next week on Friday Dec 23rd.

Thursday 8 December 2011

Parking lot fill dumping

The construction crew has been dumping their fill onto Edgecombe's property to the East, covering part of the stone wall.  Concerns have been raised about whether they have permission, whether the City has given a permit for this, whether there has been any environmental check of the fill for contamination with PCBs etc, and whether there has been any planning for when the fill slumps further down with runoff, etc.  After some residents complained, they have stopped dumping there today.  City Works Dept has been asked about it.  The construction has also destroyed much of what was left of the shed.

Sunday 4 December 2011

Blue Moon Pottery

Isabella St. John at Blue Moon would like everyone to know she is celebrating every Saturday from now to Christmas.  She says" I'll have mulled cider and cookies on Saturdays as well as a Christmas decoration demo."

Parking Lot construction this week

Rick Heistinger advises:
Pouring concrete for west walls and culvert inlet area starting around 8:30AM tomorrow morning, Dec. 5th

Monday 28 November 2011

Parking lot construction this week

Rick Heistinger advises:

Will be pouring concrete in East foundation area Tuesday and Wall West hopefully Thursday.

Monday 21 November 2011

[HERE]SAY project going up Wednesday

Many of you were kind enough this summer to talk to OBNA researchers Annie McEwan and Lisa Wilson, as they recorded your thoughts & memories for an Outer Battery booklet and also for a HereSay project. The booklet is still in the editing phase and should be out before Christmas.  In the meantime, the [HERE]SAY project is launching this week.

Here's the background: [HERE]SAY is a collection of local stories that people can hear over the phone.  It's a project that Dale Jarvis & Chris Brookes originally created along Water Street in 2009.  Now they're adding an Outer Battery extension.  As of today, you'll see some small new signs along Outer Battery Road.  Each sign tells walkers that they can dial a phone number on their cellphone and hear a story about the spot where they’re standing.   The Outer Battery voices currently are Florence Sweetapple, Isabella St. John, Carl & Charlie Pearcey, Jack Wells, Frank Maher, Paul Critch and Jake Nicoll.  You can try it out by dialing 726-9000 and punching codes between 200 and 206.  Or you can check out the website at
There will be a celebratory public launch of the Outer Battery [HERE]SAY on Wednesday November 23rd at the Crows Nest Club (east side War Memorial steps) from 5.30-7.30pm.  Dale & Chris will be introducing the project and raising a toast to everyone whose voices are heard in it.  There'll be some Outer Battery music by Christina Smith and Frank Maher, and maybe others.  Everyone is invited, so please come on Wednesday if you can.  Dale & Chris would love to see you.

Sunday 20 November 2011

Parking lot construction this week

Rick Heistinger, the manager of the HyTek Construction parking lot job, would like residents to be aware of their following schedule for this week Nov 20-25:

Our wish list for this week is as follows.
Monday, may open up another small section of street for culvert, but will not be closing road...this may not happen til Tues, wed or Thurs...fall back scope of work not priority.
Wednesday Morning, pouring middle wall section concrete.
Thursday Morning, Pouring east end foundation.
Friday Morning, Pouring west end walls.
This is approx, and numerous variables may change current plans plus or minus a day.
Thanks for your help and cooperation to all residence in area, we're on the home stretch now.

Wednesday 19 October 2011

Battery booklet coming in November

Many of us met Lisa Wilson and Annie McEwen this summer as they took photographs and interviewed us about Outer Battery history and memories.  They have been editing the material and laying out design for a printed booklet and audio CD, tentatively titled "Out to the Battery".  It should be printed in 3 weeks, so there can be a proper launch for it before end of November.  There will be enough printed so that every resident can have a copy.
As well, the HereSay project ( has agreed to place 8-10 signs along Outer Battery Road, prompting walkers to use their cellphones to listen to some Outer Battery voices.  For this, Annie has made a selection from  the various stories for which people gave their permission.
Check out their fieldwork blog on the SUMMER PROJECT tab above.

Tuesday 27 September 2011

Race Winner

Zack Garland, formerly of Outer Battery, just won the GranFondo Whistler bicycle race out in BC. Congratulations Zack!

Thursday 15 September 2011

North Atlantic Forum

There's an upcoming conference on " Culture, Place & Identity at the Heart of Regional Development" in town October 13-15th, which is of interest.  Registration costs $395.  OBNA has applied for financial assistance to cover this registration cost for one (or more) persons to attend.  If successful, this could be any OBNA member or a board member.  Let the board know if you are interested in attending.
UPDATE Oct 10: we didn't get the assistance.

Summer oral history project

Lisa and Annie have talked to many residents and gathered a whack of material.  We hope to have some of it edited into a booklet (and also possibly a CD)  that will be in your hands in the next few weeks.

Tuesday 13 September 2011

Parking lot - latest

City confirms that the tender bids did in fact come in lower than expected, but Council has decided to put the leftover $$ towards road paving in the Goulds instead of landscaping our parking lot expansion.  OBNA board met earlier this summer with city works engineer John Barry, and with councillors Galgay, Duff, Hickman and O'Leary to press for some parking lot design that (if it is going to be expanded by 18 feet  for vehicles) will address the 84,000 pedestrian visitors we get.  Some residents and provincial government officials wrote the city on the parking lot issue.  The decision by staff and councillors clarifies municipal policy towards Outer Battery.
We still have not received any reply from our ward councillor or other councillors regarding our several requests for a public information session.  At this point it is apparent that they don't intend to have one.  Construction on the parking lot expansion began today.

Friday 9 September 2011

Parking lot expansion

We have been pressing city council hard to consider some alternative to an expansion that looks like a concrete bunker, i.e. landscaping.  And that takes into account something besides vehicles, i.e. aesthetics and the 84,000 pedestrians who walk through every year.  We'll be living with whatever is built for the rest of our lives. There may be many possibilites, here is one that's been suggested to the city by the province's Director of Heritage.  It is rumoured that the tender bids came in low; if so it should allow the city to spend some of their $400,000 allotment on landscaping.  If you have an opinion about this, and would like to express it to mayor & councillors, their email addresses can be found here.
We have also asked (3 times since July) for the city to schedule a public meeting to inform Outer Battery residents about the details of the expansion.  We obtained the engineering drawings and posted them on the DOCUMENTS blog page (here), but not everyone can easily interpret technical drawings and some residents are interested to understand what will be built.  We are still awaiting reply from councillors about a public meeting.  

Tuesday 23 August 2011

Stakeholders' roundtable

It was a fairly positive meeting, and there was a feeling that progress is being made, albeit slow progress.  City engineering & building dept. staff, and Parks Canada, did not attend.
1: Eric Jokinen (Jokinen Associates) presented a powerpoint of his study of Outer Battery fishing structures.  He'll make the final report available in another 2 weeks and we'll put it up on this site.  Basically, it explored the flexibility permitted under national bldg code for heritage structures, noted important details of our stages & sheds, and drew some larger conclusions.  It will be helpful for anyone restoring stages & sheds.
2: Parking lot expansion information.  City staff were not in attendance to present any details of the $400,000 expansion plan.  OBNA tabled the engineering drawings which the city is distributing to tender bidders.  OBNA strongly requested the 3 city councillors present to insist on landscaping provisions which are not currently being planned by the city (the current plan is for a bunker-like concrete structure).  Deputy Mayor Duff and councillor O'Leary said they would endeavour to do so, and provincial officials later suggested an interesting heritage and visitor-appropriate design.
3: Future storm surge likelihood, rising sea levels study . Federal MP's office advised that a Chain Rock breakwater could present problems for altered water flow through the Narrows.  We asked if it is possible to do a study on possible solutions.
 : provincial representatives were very helpful
7: Proposal for Outer Battery Plan (province).  Provincial reps presented a draft plan for a planning process that would find common ground with neighbourhood, city, and other interests.  Ryan Cleary MP suggested such a plan be expanded to include the Narrows, i.e. embrace Ft. Amherst.  This was positively received around the table, and provincial reps will adapt their suggested plan accordingly.
We await feedback from the city on the parking lot, and from the province on the Narrows plan proposal.  
If you'd like more detailed report, contact any of the OBNA board members.

Tuesday 16 August 2011

Outer Battery 'stakeholders' roundtable

OBNA board is convening another meeting of 'stakeholders' to discuss Outer Battery issues this week.  Around the table will be the OBNA board, reps from city & provincial tourism, Heritage Foundation, some city councillors, Parks Canada, MP & MHA, etc.  The idea is to get this wide group together every so often to talk about issues that affect us and them.  On the agenda will be:
1: Presentation of Jokinen Outer Battery study (Eric Jokinen) 
2: Parking lot expansion information (city) 
3: Future storm surge likelihood, rising sea levels study 
4: PHB viewplane guidelines applied to fishing structures (city) 
5: Restoration of fishing structures - intentions & outlook (obna) 
6: Signage - liability (city, province) 
7: Proposal for Outer Battery Plan (province) 
We'll let you know what happens, and we'll put up Eric Jokinen's study later this week as we get it, on the DOCUMENTS tab of this blogsite.  It's been commissioned by the Province and OBNA, and is a structural study of remaining heritage fishing properties. His preliminary study is already on the DOCUMENTS tab.

Thursday 11 August 2011

Parking lot expansion plans available

We have finally been successful in getting from the city their plans for doubling the size of the parking lot.  They have issued an August 24 tender call to expand out into the waterfront by about 18 feet.  You can see the detailed plan views by going to our DOCUMENTS tab and clicking on them, or directly here. 

Wednesday 27 July 2011

Moratorium extended to Aug 31st

OBNA wrote city council last week, asking them to hold a public meeting to give residents information about the parking lot expansion and listen to residents' desires about the expansion before going ahead with it.  The same letter asked Council to extend the moratorium on demolitions and major city construction until August 31st.
To date we've received no reply from Council about these two requests, but we read in Tuesday's Telegram that on Monday Council voted:
(a) to expand the parking lot at a cost of $400,000
(b) to  extend the moratorium on demolitions and major city construction until August 31st.
The Telegram reported nothing about whether there will be a public meeting, but did report that the parking lot will go out an extra 18 feet into the harbour.

Wednesday 20 July 2011

City to double size of parking lot

On Monday, the City Works committee voted to lift the moratorium on major city construction early, and to call tenders to double the size of the parking lot.  OBNA was not informed until after the fact.  Ward councillor Frank Galgay said he pushed this forward at the request of an email he received on Sunday from one resident.   He received an earlier letter in May from another resident opposing the expansion.  This is obviously a contentious issue.   Councillors will vote on the Works committee's recommendation  at the main city council meeting next Monday July 25th, after which it will be final.  Anyone wanting to express their views pro or con to City Council in writing before Monday should probably copy all councillors, in addition to our ward councillor.  Councillor's email addresses can be found here.
There's a report in today's Telegram
In March, OBNA asked the City for a copy of the engineering plans and copy of the environmental impact assessment.  We were told no engineering plans have been completed and that the city will not be carrying out any environmental assessment. City Engineer John Barry forwarded this aerial view:  That's all the information we have.  It appears to eliminate the Wells wharf, and the current west side streetlight.  Compared with the current lot size:
Leave a comment below if you like.

Draft Jokinen study

Eric Jokinen presented a powerpoint to the "stakeholders" roundtable meeting last Friday.  It is a preliminary version of his study of heritage fishing structures on Outer Battery.  He intends a more detailed report to be available mid-August.  The study is commissioned by OBNA and the Heritage Foundation, and funded by the Province.  You can see the draft report on the DOCUMENTS tab.

Tuesday 19 July 2011

Sunny Sunday Barbeque

The weather cooperated for the 2nd annual Outer Battery bbq on Sunday.  Great Big Thanks to everyone who helped make it possible.  Thanks to the musicians: bagpipers Ean Parsons & Dave Allison, box player Frank Maher and his concertina friend, bodhran player Rick West, fiddler Christina Smith and her friend, and of course to Mike Walsh for playing Ugly Stick.  Also thanks to Belbins Grocery, Dominion & Sobeys who donated some of the food. If anyone took photos please send them along and we'll put them up here.  Dominique Hurley ( took this pic:
Raffle ticket winners were drawn at the end of Sunday afternoon.  They are: 
Coffee beans donated by Coffee & Co, Water St. won by Sydney Chislett
Crystal birds donated by MaryAnne Wyanandi won also by Sydney Chislett

$25 gift certificate donated by Georgetown Bakery won by Mike Walsh
Battery note cards donated by Red Ochre Gallery won by Christina Smith
$15 gift certificate donated by Coffee Matters won by Emily Connelly
Gift certificate for 2 pizzas donated by Gracie Joe's Cafe, Quidi Vidi Rd won by Anne-Marie Carew
$10 gift certificate donated by Tim Horton's gift certif  won by Angie Drake
$10 gift certificate donated by Tim Horton's gift certif  won by Michel Savard
Blue Moon Pottery brooch won by Wes Pretty

The magnificent wooden firetruck model made by you-know-who was up on separate tickets, and Carl Pearcey drew the winning ticket: Lee-Anne Facey-Crowther.  The draw raised $282 for the summer heritage project (Lisa & Annie). Thank you Carl.
And a new sign has been placed on our signboard.

Saturday 16 July 2011

OBNA board met with city, province etc

This morning we convened a roundtable of reps from City, Province, federal MP & MHA, etc to focus on Outer Battery issues - mainly the heritage fishing structures.  Ask board members for details at the barbeque!

Sunday 10 July 2011

2nd annual Outer Battery Barbeque!

Sunday, July 17th from noon to 4pm
Mark your calendars!
Music! (including the incomparable Battery box player Graham Wells with friends, Battery 4-stop legend Frank Maher with fiddler Christina Smith & Rick West on bodhran, plus bagpiper Ean Parsons and Dean Ryall!)
Burgers!  Hot Dogs!  Veggie Sausages! Sunny weather forecast!
Raffles raffles raffles!  (All proceeds go to Outer Battery heritage projects.)
If you can volunteer to help, call Chris 576-0359

Special raffle/auction:  Carl Pearcey's beautiful hand crafted wooden firetruck (thank you Carl!)

Monday 20 June 2011

Heritage hello & goodbye, bbq & birds

• Eric Jokinen the heritage engineer will be here Wednesday & Friday this week documenting material for a heritage inventory of the stages & stores. His report will be ready early-mid July, and will be available to everyone who wants to see it.

• Meanwhile, City issued 2 tender calls to demolish Critch's fishing premises. Demolition is currently underway. Image on 'photos' page. Certainly changes the look of the place. Tourism will have to change their posters.

• Community barbeque being talked about for July.

• There's a webcam taped onto binoculars trained on the seagull nest atop Jack's twinestore. Link is on the right side of this page.

Tuesday 7 June 2011

Moratorium extended

On Monday, City Council complied with our request to extend their moratorium on Outer Battery demolition orders and major city construction until the end of July.
Unfortunately this doesn't apply to the Critch property which the city decided to exempt from the moratorium.  They have issued a 2nd tender call to demolish these 2 structures.

Friday 3 June 2011

Inventory of fishing structures

The engineer Eric Jokinen confirmed today that he'll be starting his inventory mid-June and we should have his report in our hands by end of June.  For the record, the Province/Heritage Foundation is engaging him.

Monday 30 May 2011

Summer Project & Moratorium alert

We have engaged two MUN folklore grad students to help gather historical information and people's memories about our community.  You'll probably see them around during the summer and they may knock on your door to introduce themselves.  The plan is to build up an archive of Outer Battery heritage material made up of recorded voices, plus photos and other material.  We hope to make some of it  available to residents as a booklet, and some of it to visitors via a few small signs along the road featuring people's voices telling stories (like the HereSay downtown project).

Their names are Lisa Wilson and Annie McEwen.  The funding to engage them has come from MUN GradSwep and Canada Summer Jobs so thanks to those organisations.

Any time now the engineer Eric Jokinen will be doing a "heritage inventory" of Outer Battery fishing structures - identifying the importance of each stage, twinestore, wharf etc from a heritage point of view.  We'd expected to have that study in hand by now, but Eric has been delayed apparently.  So in a couple of weeks if you see a guy out in a boat taking pictures from the waterline, that will probably be Eric.   Don't worry, he's not working for the city he's working for us (and provincial Heritage Foundation).  For individual owners, this study will give you a measure of the value of your property from a heritage point of view.   And for the community, it  will give us the ammunition we need to talk to the city and province about ways of preserving and restoring the structures.

OBNA board has learned that on May 5th, City Council issued a memorandum to update the Battery Guidelines to consider fishing structures.  This is not something that OBNA asked for, it seems to be entirely a city council initiative.  For some reason the city was initially reluctant to give us any information about it (they said we'd have to file a Freedom of Information request!) but we now have a copy of the memo and you'll find it on this blog's "Documents" tab.

HEADS UP!  The moratorium we asked for on City construction & demolition orders is set to expire mid-June (or - the City's written agreement is contradictory - it may expire in July).  We'll be asking for an extension until we get Eric Jokinen's report in hand, but PLEASE BE AWARE that if they don't grant it they may decide to push more legal action and demolitions again.

There'll be more frequent updates to this blog over the next weeks.  Feel free to add your comments, photos, etc.  (Does anyone know how to add a photo to a comment? If so please let us know)

Thursday 7 April 2011

AGM notes

Thanks to everyone who came to the agm. Board members voted in for this year are: Judy Adler, Joanne Butler, Angie Drake, Keith Sparkes and Chris Brookes.
These suggestions were made - please add anything else:
• board to check out the parameters of the Joninen inventory study
• have a community meeting when the Jokinen inventory is in hand - expected late May.
• can the inventory include the whole community as well as fishing structures?
• can the Johnson Foundation be invited to participate in the stakeholders group.
• what about the city installing hanging flower boxes this summer, like in Quidi Vidi.
• parking lot consultation

Saturday 19 March 2011

Annual General Meeting

Tuesday April 5th in Pearcey's twinestore, 7pm.  All members please try to be present.
The board will make their report and there will be an election of officers amongst other business.

Demolition orders suspended

Here is the official text of the city council action, emailed to us March 17 by David Blackmore, head of the Building Dept:
"Council considered a request by the Outer Battery Neighbourhood Association that the City place a immediate  moratorium on major construction and  demolition orders in the Outer Battery,  pending completion of the Jokinen inventory study,    the deadline date being set at June 15, 2011.
Council directed that given the safety hazard associated with the Critch Shed properties, Jokinen Associates be asked to proceed with a review of the Critch’s shed property immediately, and that a report be provided within two weeks, following which the properties would be demolished.
With respect to the general request,  Council approved the moratorium on major construction and further demolition pending the completion of the report in July."
We emailed Councillor O'Leary to clarify that it is a moratorium on major city construction, not on house repairs and that kind of construction.
Update on the 2-week period for the Critch structures:  OBNA has commissioned Eric Jokinen to fly down from Quebec next weekend to do the review the city wants in time for the March 31 deadline.
Further update: Jokinen Associates completed a review by Council's 2-week deadline.  They recommended a design to stabilise the structure so renovations could be carried out later, should the owner want to do that.  They consulted with the city Bldg Dept who would accept the stabilisation design if that is the owners desire.

Wednesday 16 March 2011

Half a loaf

Last night city councilor Sheilagh O'Leary went to bat for us and presented our request for a moratorium on major city construction and all demolition orders here until August 31st.  O'Leary is councillor-at-large,  not our official ward councillor.  Councillors met and decided there will be a moratorium until June 15th. (or July, depending on how you read David Blackmore's grammar in the official text, above)  So please everyone affected  take note of this Except the Critch fishing property(s) which were under immediate demolition order will now be suspended for 2-weeks only.  Since the councillors considered all this in their private pre-council public meeting we don't really know all the reasons for this, but understand it is the result of a hard-line position by the Building Dept regarding liability and safety.  The OBNA board disagrees with this exception of a 2-week suspension for Critch's, and we're trying to find a solution before deadine the March 31st.

Monday 14 March 2011

City council votes Tuesday

Councillors will be considering our request for a temporary suspension (until August 31st) of city demolition orders etc against Outer Battery fishing properties at Tuesday's council meeting.  We're hopeful that it's got the support to pass.  If it does, then nobody will be forced to tear down fishery structures for a few months, and this can provide time to consider other possible options.

Thursday 10 March 2011

Information Session March 9

OBNA had an information session yesterday for representatives that have a stake in what happens in Outer Battery.  Present were reps of Siobhan Coady MP, Lorraine Michael (herself), provincial tourism (heritage), city tourism, Parks Canada, city Planning, Building & Engineering departments, Heritage Foundation, and councillors Galgay & O'Leary.  We presented a powerpoint (you can see it on this blog's Documents page.  At the end, everyone agreed that forming a "stakeholders working group" would be a good idea, to meet 3 or 4 times a year.  
We also are asking the City to temporarily suspend its demolition orders, legal action, and major construction at least until after the inventory of heritage fishing structures is carried out (this inventory will happen in April/May)
We can give you the lowdown at the AGM - meanwhile call Angie or Chris if you want to know details.

Sunday 27 February 2011


According to Parks Canada we already get 84,000 foot visitors between May-December. Now it looks like National Geographic may be planning to bring us even more.  Who knew?  Go to World's top coastal destinations and then click on the "Photo Gallery - World's top coastal destinations" and guess what image comes up?

On CBC Thursday

The Mayor of Carbonear says he will lobby both levels of government for additional storm damage funding. Sam Slade says storms are becoming increasingly frequent. Slade reports it wasn't just Hurricane Igor that caused damage, calling that storm a "flash in the pan." He notes a storm prior to Christmas lasted five to six days. Slade says there was no funding announced to address damage caused by that system.
Hear the interview here:  CBC

Friday 25 February 2011


Some of this is old news that we talked about at the last community meeting in January, but in case you missed it:
1: Before Christmas, OBNA board arranged a meeting with Eric Jokinen, heritage engineer (Jokinen Associates) and the provincial Tourism Dept -- they planned for Eric to make an inventory of Outer Battery heritage fishing structures.  Eric expects to complete this by May/June.  This will give OBNA a database of structures that are important from a heritage point-of-view.
2: Eric has offered to carry out a pilot project for OBNA.  He'll do a heritage engineering study of Andrew Mahon's stage (the one farthest out)) to see what would be involved with restoring it, bringing it up to city-acceptable standards while keeping its heritage qualities. As I understand it, the study will lay out some options for what Andrew could do with the stage - or not - if he wants.
2: OBNA board has submitted applications for summer student funding - student(s) to compile information on our heritage structures, record oral histories, etc.  We won't know whether or not the applications are successful for another couple of months.  We're working on another couple of similar applications for summer.  With luck, at least one may be successful.
3: I've started this blog, with the hope it may be useful as a kind of community noticeboard. Contributions welcome.
- Chris