Forillon National Park's Grande-Grave Heritage Site revitalization project takes shape!
The Association of Persons Expropriated from Forillon and their Descendants, members of the expropriated families, the community and Parks Canada gathered to celebrate the implementation of the Grande-Grave heritage accommodation project.
July 17, 2023 Gaspé, Quebec Parks Canada
A community event attended by more than 100 people was held yesterday at Forillon National Park to mark the implementation of the Grande-Grave heritage accommodation project. With only a few months to go before the first major works on the site, the gathering confirmed this important step and, above all, highlighted the valuable collaboration between the Association of Persons Expropriated from Forillon and their Descendants, members of expropriated families in the Grande-Grave area and Parks Canada. This long-awaited revitalization of Grande-Grave includes the conservation and presentation of several heritage buildings, the commemoration of the history of the expropriated families, and the creation of a distinctive accommodation offer for visitors to this area of the national park.
The event provided an opportunity to reunite the expropriated families, discuss the heritage accommodation project and report on its progress. Everything has been put in place to ensure that this event will be significant for the families who were expropriated from the Grande-Grave area, particularly those who lived in the houses involved by the project. To achieve this, Parks Canada worked closely with descendants, including the Gavey family, to create an event that reflected their image. Members of these families in attendance yesterday came from all over the country, including British Columbia and Alberta. People were able to chat and take the time to reminisce about the days when they lived in Grande-Grave. It was an afternoon filled with music, memories and tributes to these families.
In November 2022, the Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue and Member of Parliament for Gaspésie—Les Îles-de-la-Madeleine, on behalf of the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, confirmed the Government of Canada's commitment to revitalizing the Grande-Grave heritage area. The federal funding of nearly $9.8 million announced at the time will be used for the conservation and presentation of several heritage buildings, including four houses: Elias Gavey, Daniel Gavey, Joseph Gavey and Charles-Philip Bartlett.
The buildings of Grande-Grave are among the last witnesses to the life of this village before the creation of Forillon National Park. They offer an opportunity to commemorate the expropriated families who lived there at the time of the park's creation. Developed in close collaboration with the Association of Persons Expropriated from Forillon and their Descendants and members of expropriated families in the area, as well as Parks Canada, this heritage accommodation project will conserve these heritage buildings, while offering a meaningful experience for visitors who can learn more about our history, including difficult episodes from our past.
For further information, please visit the Forillon National Park website.
In June 1970, Forillon became Quebec’s first national park within the Canadian network. Located on the tip of the Gaspé Peninsula, Forillon National Park protects a territory of 244.8 km2, including a narrow strip of marine area a little over 150 m wide (4.4 km2).
This project is supported by a dozen local organisations, including the Association touristique régionale de la Gaspésie, Destination Gaspé, as well the Association of Persons Expropriated from Forillon and their Descendants.
The Grande-Grave heritage sector is an ideal place to showcase the rich cultural heritage of Forillon and to commemorate former residents of the area. Parks Canada has developed, with local people and the expropriated families, a unique project to safeguard and present that aims to make the houses of Grande-Grave a “heritage cottage” type-accommodation.
Parks Canada is responsible for one of the largest collections of federal government assets, managing a variety of built assets, in 47 national parks, one national urban park, five national marine conservation areas, 171 national historic sites and nine heritage canals.
Parks Canada's wide-ranging infrastructure portfolio includes more than 18,500 built assets such as highways, bridges, dams and other marine infrastructure, historic buildings and fortifications, water and wastewater treatment facilities, campgrounds, visitor centres and operational buildings and compounds.
Since 2015, the federal infrastructure investment program has enabled Parks Canada to improve the condition of approximately 5,000 assets across the country. These upgrades help ensure public safety, quality, reliability, and inclusion in visitor offers, incorporate green technologies and climate resilience, while connecting Canadians with nature and history.
Association of Persons Expropriated from Forillon and their Descendants
Forillon National Park, Parks Canada
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