The Mack Laing House Conservation Committee Team was formed in early June in response to the emergency discovery that the Town of Comox was proposing to demolish Baybrook, at the mouth of Brooklyn Creek in Comox.
Baybrook is Hamilton Mack Laing’s first house in Comox. It was built in 1922. He resided in it until 1949. Mack Laing’s scientific collecting activities for the Canadian National Museum, and his most important and prolific writing coincide with that period of his life. During this period, Mack Laing was at his creative height as a nature writer, producing some 22 scientific articles in major ornithological journals, some 1000 articles in major North American journals and magazines and 14 books, 2 of which were published. This helped Mack Laing establish a large network of colleagues and friends who became associated with Baybrook.
The importance of Baybrook to the cultural history of British Columbia and the Comox Valley gives Baybrook its particular value for Canadian heritage. The conservation of Baybrook is a truly unique opportunity to preserve Mack Laing’s legacy, as entrusted in his will with regards to Shakesides, within a contemporary context.
The Committee consists of environmental, engineering, architectural, heritage conservation, logistics and history professionals, as well as residents of Comox. The response was originally spearheaded by Project Watershed (PW) and Comox Valley Nature (CVN), who have a special stake in the natural history of the Comox Valley and the Comox Estuary. It was subsequently expanded to include a broad range of stakeholders and experts.
The report being submitted to the Town of Comox is here. (3.3 MB pdf file)