The forested land where the Pugh family raised two generations will remain protected as part of a covenant with The Land Conservancy of BC. (Contributed)

The forested land where the Pugh family raised two generations will remain protected as part of a covenant with The Land Conservancy of BC. (Contributed)

Central Saanich family protects threatened ecosystem with land covenant

Agreement with The Land Conservancy of BC ensures property never developed, nor trees removed

For 80 years the Pugh family of Central Saanich lived on forested property just north of Gowlland Tod Provincial Park and now, through a covenant with The Land Conservancy of BC, the land will remain protected from development.

The joint agreement is just one piece of the environmental legacy the late Lorna Pugh worked tirelessly to create; the protection of the 1.4 acres will be known as the Pugh Covenant.

“Our parents enjoyed watching the many animals and birds that increasingly used the wildlife corridor and sanctuary that the protected creek and forest area, rich in native flora, provides,” said Frances Pugh, one of Lorna and her late husband Alan’s four daughters.

RELATED: The Land Conservancy of BC celebrates 20 years of conservation

Along with sisters Winona, Gillian and Geraldine, Frances – a Central Saanich grower and conservancy board member – considers the covenant a way to honour their parents.

The land is a stone’s throw from Gore and Oak Haven parks, which Lorna had a hand in creating.

The property has long been used for livestock grazing and farming and the coastal Douglas-fir ecosystem under which it falls is a threatened one.

RELATED: Protect Canada’s parks from being ‘loved to death’ says study co-author

Just 0.1 per cent of the historic region – a warm, desirable part of the Island located on the southern tip and eastern coast that has seen extensive logging – remains today.

“Protecting even 1.4 acres of it… every little bit really does help,” said Torrey Archer, a biologist and land manager with the conservancy. Archer was part of the team who worked with the Pugh family to co-create the covenant, a legally agreement bound to the land title.

“That’s important because then it carries on once the Pugh family sells to the next owner,” she explained.

RELATED: Woman donates land as nature reserve on Quadra Island

While the property is currently for sale, it comes with a no subdivision clause (part of the covenant) to protect it from future development or tree removal.

The land conservancy is a registered charitable land trust and through the covenant program, it now sustainably protects more than 12,750 acres throughout B.C.

“Protecting this land is a generous gift to the community,” said Central Saanich Mayor Ryan Windsor, adding a thank-you to the family for “continued dedication to conserving local ecosystems and habitats.”


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Staff and volunteers at the Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea were disappointed by the theft of an educational porpoise skull likely taken on Jan. 8. (Courtesy of Tina Kelly)
Well-loved porpoise skull stolen from Sidney aquarium

Skull had been used for youth and visitor education and outreach for years

A female prisoner sent Langford police officers a thank-you card after she spent days in their custody. (Twitter/West Shore RCMP)
Woman gives Victoria-area jail 4.5-star review in handwritten card to police after arrest

‘We don’t often get thank you cards from people who stay with us, but this was sure nice to see’: RCMP

The Starbucks in Langford’s Westshore Town Centre is one of almost 300 storefronts that the U.S. coffee giant will be shutting across Canada by the end of March. (Google Maps)
Langford’s Westshore Town Centre Starbucks to close permanently

Popular coffee chain to close 300 storefronts across Canada by end of March

An Oak Bay Police officer handed out five tickets for “fail to obey stop sign” and two tickets for using a cell phone while driving, all within two hours at King George Terrace on Jan. 11. (Oak Bay Police Twitter)
Man confronts unmasked group at Oak Bay Marina

Oak Bay police issue plenty of tickets in short King George Terrace visit

Registered nurse Sammy Mullally displayed a tray of supplies to be used by a drug addict at the Insite safe injection clinic in Vancouver, B.C., in 2011. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
Councillors call on Saanich to address overdose crisis, explore options for safe consumption sites

‘There’s no vaccine for this problem,’ new action is needed, councillors say

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry prepares a daily update on the coronavirus pandemic, April 21, 2020. (B.C. Government)
B.C. adjusts COVID-19 vaccine rollout for delivery slowdown

Daily cases decline over weekend, 31 more deaths

An elk got his antlers caught up in a zip line in Youbou over the weekend. (Conservation Officer Service Photo)
Elk rescued from zip line in Youbou on Vancouver Island

Officials urge people to manage items on their property that can hurt animals

A Trail man has a lucky tin for a keepsake after it saved him from a stabbing last week. File photo
Small tin in Kootenay man’s jacket pocket saved him from stabbing: RCMP

The man was uninjured thanks to a tin in his jacket

Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation Chantel Moore, 26, was fatally shot by a police officer during a wellness check in the early morning of June 4, 2020, in Edmundston, N.B. (Facebook)
Frustrated family denied access to B.C. Indigenous woman’s police shooting report

Independent investigation into B.C. woman’s fatal shooting in New Brunswick filed to Crown

Delta Police Constable Jason Martens and Dezi, a nine-year-old German Shepherd that recently retired after 10 years with Delta Police. (Photo submitted)
Dezi, a Delta police dog, retires on a high note after decade of service

Nine-year-old German Shepherd now fights over toys instead of chasing down bad guys

Nurses collect samples from a patient in a COVID suspect room in the COVID-19 intensive care unit at St. Paul’s hospital in downtown Vancouver, Tuesday, April 21, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
5 British Columbians under 20 years old battled COVID-19 in ICU in recent weeks

Overall hospitalizations have fallen but young people battling the virus in hospital has increased

Canada released proposed regulations Jan. 2 for the fisheries minister to maintain Canada’s major fish stocks at sustainable levels and recover those at risk. (File photo)
New laws would cement DFO accountability to depleted fish stocks

Three B.C. salmon stocks first in line for priority attention under proposed regulations

Trees destroyed a Shoreacres home during a wind storm Jan. 13, 2021. Photo: Submitted
Kootenay woman flees just before tree crushes house

Pamala DeRosa is thankful to be alive

Gin, one of the Kantymirs’ two sheep. (Martha Wickett-Salmon Arm Observer)
Sheep start up ATV, sit in cars and go for walks in Salmon Arm

Until they bought two sheep, Ken and Karleen Kantymir didin’t realize just how social the animals are

Most Read