Norm McInnis is joined by Jessica Boquist and Laura Hooper at Broomhill Park in the aftermath of a massive cleanup party that occurred on Nov. 16. (Tim Collins/Sooke News Mirror)

Sooke’s Broomhill Park gets another cleanup

Some of the debris has been there a very long time

The District of Sooke’s chief administrative officer Norm McInnis joined a group of 35 volunteers during a recent clean up effort that succeeded in making a considerable dent in the accumulated garbage and debris at Broomhill Park.

Next time, he’ll wear rubber boots.

“The smart people came with rubber boots,” McInnis said, chuckling.

“It gets very wet and muddy down by the creek. I’ll know better next time.”

RELATED: Park cleanups are happening everywhere

The community clean up was organized in conjunction with the District of Sooke by the Juan de Fuca Community Trails Society, and by the time the work was done, they had removed more than 500 pounds of accumulated debris from the picturesque park, located at 2280 Pyrite Drive.

“The good news is that many of the items we’re finding and removing are not reflective of current practices, but are really a hangover from the past when people would just dump things without much concern for the environment,” Laura Hooper, the district’s manager of parks and environmental services.

She recounted finding a van seat during a previous clean up that had been there so long that the roots of a Douglas-fir had grown through the seat.

“That had obviously been there for a very, very long time.”

But Hooper said some of the garbage removed from parks like Broomhill has more recent origins.

“We get bear waste. That’s the bags of improperly secured garbage that bears will take and drag off into the woods to eat where they won’t be disturbed,” Hooper said.

“We also get a lot of yard waste and some other items being dumped in the woods by residents.”

The dumping of that last category of waste may be addressed, McInnis said, when the municipality makes solid waste home pick up mandatory next year.

“Old habits are hard to change, but the solid waste collection will be key (to starting that process),” he said.

Remediation of past dumping, changing current habits and generally cleaning up the parks is worth the effort, said Jessica Boquist, Sooke’s lead hand for parks operations and an proponent of the Juan de Fuca Community Trails Society.

“First of all, this is such a beautiful jewel of a park here in this community – much bigger than a lot of people realize. We’re looking at having it incorporated into the system of community trails. The Stickleback Trail will connect the Galloping Goose Trail at Kirby Road all the way to Broomhill,” Boquist said.

RELATED: Trail system for Sooke

Touring the park, Boquist stopped to point out some of the invasive species that need to be removed from the park.

“That’s English ivy. Norm knows all about that. He was helping to pull some of it out during the clean up. It’s the stuff they use for Christmas decorations, but it will outcompete native plants and has to be taken out,” Boquist said.

During the Nov. 16 cleanup, more than eight cubic yards of invasive plants were also removed from the park.

More information on the activities of the Juan de Fuca Community Trails Society as well as announcements of future clean ups can be found at the Trails Society website.



mailto:tim.collins@sookenewsmirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

This pile of waste from Broomhill Park is just some of the accumulated trash removed by volunteers. (Contributed)

Just Posted

Esquimalt speed skating week helps province determine find fastest skater

Speed Week takes place on Dec. 17 at Archie Browning arena

Goldstream church offers free festive feast

Gordon United Church says all are welcome to attend Monday’s meal

Longtime Saanich drama group brings pirates onstage for traditional Christmas pantomime

St. Luke’s Players present Treasure Island Dec. 18 to Jan. 4

Sex workers march in downtown Victoria for Red Umbrella Day

Red umbrellas became a symbol of sex workers after an art installation in Italy

MLA Adam Olsen calls for ‘substantial’ changes in provincial economy

Green Party MLA also criticizes gap between government rhetoric and actions

VIDEO: Success of wildlife corridors in Banff National Park has advocates wanting more

Demand for more highway protection escalated after seven elk were killed by a semi-trailer near Canmore

Pacioretty scores 2, Golden Knights top Canucks 6-3

Vegas goalie Fleury gets win No. 452

B.C. VIEWS: Hunger does not end with the season

Despite innovations in food distribution, the need is still there in B.C. communities

Fans sing Canadian anthem after sound system breaks at BMW IBSF World Cup

The Canadians in attendance made sure their team and flag were honoured on the podium

VIDEO: Fire destroys Big White Ski Resort chalet

Social media eulogies peg the property, nicknamed “The Pharamacy,” as both loved and hated

Prince George RCMP use bait packages to catch porch pirates over the holidays

First-in-Canada program with Amazon looks to combat parcel theft

Nanaimo mechanical engineer creates thief tracking program

Nanaimo Thief Tracking lets users plot and share information about thefts online

Mayor wants B.C. to institutionalize severely mental ill people who are homeless

Those suffering from mental health conditions, such as schizophrenia, need specialized care, mayor says

Five things of note from Trudeau’s mandate letters to his ministers

Some marching orders come from the Liberal Party’s campaign, while others are new additions

Most Read