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Hatley Park Collection
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Roland Stuart's Hatley Park

The Hatley Park estate was so named in 1889 when the land was purchased by Roland Stuart and Charles St. Aubyn Pearse. The name derives from the ancestral home of the Pearse family in England. Pearse died in 1901 and Stuart had a number of other business partners and tenant farmers who helped manage the estate.

A large fire destroyed the property in 1905 and shortly after, Roland Stuart put the estate up for sale.

Hatley Park Collection

  • CA RRU 025-001
  • Collection
  • 1890-1990

There are several images of the castle, gardens and grounds at various points in time, as well as of Dunsmuir family members, and those of staff or contractors who worked on the Hatley Park estate. Some images are not from Hatley Park but have been included in collection because of their obvious connections, such as images of the Wellington mines.

Ground being prepared for Italian garden and croquet lawn. View from lower pond looking northeast

Hatley Castle was designed by renowned British Columbia architect Samuel Maclure for James Dunsmuir. Using only the finest materials, builders, stonemasons and detail carpenters only took 18 months to construct the building from 1908 until 1910. The construction was overseen by contractor, Thomas Catterall.
The Italian garden to the west of the castle was added as part of extensive development of the Hatley Park estate by Boston based landscape architects, Brett and Hall from 1912-1914.

Original stables courtyard with 5 horses on display. The building was later converted to apartments

When Samuel Maclure constructed Hatley Park, 1908-1910, several other buildings were also constructed as part of the estate, including a stables and separate garage at the top of the hill near Sooke Road. After the Dunsmuirs moved in, they decided some elements of the estate design were not satisfactory and hired Boston based landscape architects, Brett and Hall to make improvements. One of the improvements they made was to move the stables and garages closer to the main house and farming area. Laura Dunsmuir later converted the former stables into apartments for staff and/or family and visitors.

Buildings at Hatley Park

When James Dunsmuir purchased the Hatley Park land in 1907, he acquired some surrounding property to expand the estate and hired Samuel Maclure to design the large family home, now known as Hatley Castle. In 1911, unsatisfied with the estate layout, Dunsmuir hired Brett and Hall, a Boston-based landscaping company, to develop the estate and model farm.

Stables courtyard with 8 horses on display

Harry Mann holds Dola's horse, Beauty on left, James Dunsmuir Jr. holds two horses and Mann family members hold the remaining 5 horses. Horses are not ready for the photo.
Coachman, William Edward John (‘Fred’) Mann, was in charge of the stables at Hatley Park. Also employed were his sons, Charlie, Bill and Jack. His youngest son, Harry, also helped out in the stables when not attending school. They are standing in the courtyard of the U-shaped stables and garage building. The coachman's home was attached to the stables at the east side of the building and the chauffeur’s home was attached to the garages on the west side. The building was added as part of the extensive estate development by Brett and Hall, 1912-1914.

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