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Qualicum Beach’s St. Andrews Lodge a finalist in ‘Next Great Save’ competition

Last year’s winner was the Duncan Train Station
St. Andrews Lodge in Saahtlam Park on Qualicum Beach’s waterfront. (PQB News photo)

The renovation of the St. Andrews Lodge, located on Qualicum Beach’s waterfront, has been named one of Canada’s 12 most significant heritage sites in a nationwide competition organized by the National Trust for Canada.

The historical lodge in Saahtlam Park, stewarded by the St. Andrews Lodge Historical and Cultural Society (SALHACS), was chosen as a finalist in the National Trust’s Next Great Save competition, which is dedicated to restoring and preserving heritage buildings. The first prize is $50,000, with $10,000 for second place and $5,000 for third.

In order to win, SALHACS must garner the most votes through an online voting process that allows people from anywhere in the world to vote on a daily basis. Voting will start on April 18 and it will be open until May 6. Last year’s winner was the Duncan Train Station project that collected more than 76,000 votes.

SALHACS president Jay Smith said they are thrilled to be in the final round of the competition but the society now needs the community’s support.

“Our board members have put countless hours into this project,” said Smith. “It has been done on an extremely tight timeline, with an embargo on any public information until today. We will be distributing information throughout Oceanside in the form of mini-posters that people can take home as a reminder to vote daily. The posters include a QR code and a link to the voting site.”

Because of the short voting period and the fact that Oceanside consists of smaller communities the society is asking supporters to share the information and voting link with friends, families and colleagues far and wide.

“There are significant heritage sites right across the nation in the running,” said Smith. “So we hope that folks will take up the challenge and spend a couple of minutes each day between April 18 and May 6 to vote for St. Andrews Lodge.”

Smith feels that it wasn’t just the classic lodge itself that contributed to the society’s success in qualifying for the final round of The Next Great Save.

READ MORE: Qualicum Beach society receives $211K to upgrade historic St. Andrews Lodge

“Absolutely, that building means a lot to many people worldwide – it and the cottages created many happy memories for many generations of families over the course of its 80 years in operation,” said Smith. “But just as importantly, the lodge contributed in a big way to the economic success of Qualicum Beach as a tourist destination for the middle class. That legacy continues to this day. And the Little family, who built and operated the business, were revered community leaders for a huge number of contributions. The lodge is more than ‘just a building.’ It represents what it means to be a true part of a community’s heritage, in so many ways.”

Smith indicated that despite the society receiving a federal grant of more than $200,000, there is still a need to raise more funds for the restoration of St. Andrews.

“The federal grant will cover the cost of required seismic upgrading,” he points out. “We have been very fortunate to have a professional engineer and a well-regarded local contractor step up to the plate and volunteer to act as project managers. But there is still much to be done, including electrical and plumbing upgrades and restoration of damaged interior surfaces. That $50,000 prize would make a big difference to getting things done in an efficient and cost-effective manner.”

Voting begins on Thursday, April 18 and ends on Monday, May 6, with individuals permitted to vote once each day for that time period.

The link to vote is, or you can go to the SALHACS home page at: and find the link and QR code there.