The Sir Andrew Macphail Foundation in Orwell has acquired the neighbouring Lindsay property, a 100-acre woodland along the Orwell River. To celebrate this important acquisition, there will be a talk about the new property and a guided walk on Sunday, Oct. 20 at the Macphail Woods Nature Centre.
At 1:30 p.m., there will be an introduction of local dignitaries as well as attending descendants of Sir Andrew Macphail. Traditional music will be performed by Kevin and Colin Jeffrey. Refreshments will be provided and donations will be gratefully accepted.
Then at 2 p.m., Gary Schneider of Macphail Woods will give a talk on the history of the property and planned forest restoration and educational activities. After the talk, there will be a walk to the Lindsay property for a ribbon-cutting ceremony and a short tour of the woodlands.
Admission to the Lindsay property talk and walk is free and everyone is welcome. For more information, please contact Gary at 902-651-2575, or check out the Macphail Woods Facebook page.
The Lindsay property has been owned by the Macphail family since 1913. Three and a half years ago the family was approached to find out if they would be interested in donating this land to the Sir Andrew Macphail Foundation. The Foundation received approval from Environment Canada to become an eligible recipient, which allowed the property to be received as an ecological gift. The Foundation is responsible for ensuring that the biodiversity and environmental heritage features of this ecological gift are maintained. It is also in the process of receiving designation under the provincial Natural Areas Protection Act.
The Lindsay land is an ecologically sensitive property, including the Orwell River which becomes a marshy area as it flows into Orwell Bay. Old growth hemlocks are found along the river banks and most of the rest of the property is forested, although much of it was cleared for farming at one time.
With the acquisition of this property, over 250 acres of land and several kilometers of the Orwell River have now been protected in perpetuity. This property will be used to demonstrate ecologically sound forest management and restoration practices.
The Macphail Homestead is the birthplace of Sir Andrew Macphail (1864-1938) who was a towering literary presence in Canada during the first few decades of the twentieth century. He was also a medical doctor and a champion of the rural Island way of life. The 1850’s farmhouse has a museum acknowledging the contribution of Sir Andrew Macphail to our heritage. A café offers lunches during the summer months as well as special events such as Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners. Lectures and symposiums are also held on a regular basis throughout the season.