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Bellevue House receives $1.1M investment from Government of Canada

MP Mark Gerretsen with Katherine Patterson, the Field Unit Superintendent for the Georgian Bay and Ontario East Field Unit of Parks Canada, at Bellevue House media announcement on Wednesday, Jun. 26, 2019. Photo by Jessica Foley.

Mark Gerretsen, MP for Kingston and the Islands, on behalf of Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, announced a federal investment of $1.1 million to fund a major renovation of Bellevue House, the former home of Canada’s first Prime Minister, Sir John A. Macdonald. This investment brings a total of $2.1 million to Bellevue House National Historic Site from the $3 billion investment the government has made to all Parks Canada locations over five years.

The expanded renovations include a full roof replacement, repairs to plaster work on the ceilings, floor restoration and updated electrical systems and wiring. When this work is complete, the interior will be renewed with the exhibits, displays, and artifacts that have long been housed at Bellevue House.

Parks Canada is taking this opportunity to renew everything about Bellevue House – the building, the exhibits, and the story of Sir John A. Macdonald. With consultation from indigenous groups, the exhibits and programming at Bellevue House will include more untold stories, and aim to provide a more holistic approach to the story of Sir John A. Macdonald and the snapshot of history that this site represents. Showing all sides of history is something Parks Canada is striving to bring into the forefront.

“Bellevue House National Historic Site is an important part of the history of Kingston and of Canada. The Government of Canada’s infrastructure investments at Bellevue House will preserve this special place for future generations and enable Canadians to connect with our country’s history. This transformational project will renew Bellevue House as a place to learn about and share perspectives on the legacies of our first Prime Minister and Confederation, including the complex and challenging moments that helped define Canada today. This historic investment in Bellevue House will help preserve our built heritage, while supporting local economies and contributing to growth in the tourism sector.”

Mark Gerretsen, Member of Parliament for Kingston and the Islands

This is the second year Bellevue House has been closed for the summer season. The historic house was closed initially last spring (2018) for Parks Canada to restore the plaster ceilings. During this maintenance further structural issues were noted and the house was closed to visitors in preparation for extensive interior work.

While the house is closed, the grounds and visitor center are open and free for all visitors. Read about what you can experience at Bellevue House National Historic Site this season: https://www.kingstonist.com/culture/bellevue-house-closed-for-second-season/.

The Visitors Center at Bellevue House National Historic Site. Photo by Jessica Foley.

Visit Bellevue House National Historic Site at 35 Centre Street in Kingston, Ontario. Starting Monday, Jul. 1, 2019, the visitor center and grounds will be open daily 10am to 5pm including statutory holidays.

Learn more and plan your visit at the Bellevue House website: https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/lhn-nhs/on/bellevue.

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