Victoria Park Square
65 Market Street
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
Victoria Park Square, located at 65 Market Street is bordered by Wellington Street to the north, Darling Street to the south, Market Street to the west, and George Street to the east, in the City of Brantford. This park was designed in the Victorian Formal Park style by architect John Turner and was landscaped in 1861.
The property was designated by the City of Brantford for its historic and architectural significance under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act (Bylaw 164-86).
Victoria Park Square was first laid out as a park in Lewis Burwell's original Town Plan of 1830. In 1861, it was landscaped based on plans by John Turner. Turner's plans, in keeping with Upper Canada's link to Britain, were based on the configuration of the Union Jack, with four paths intersecting at the centre of the park. Three buildings designed by Turner overlook the park: St. Andrew's United Church (1859); Brant Community Church (1883); and his most significant building, the Brant County Court House (1852). Victoria Park Square is a gathering place for local citizens. At the turn of the century, when Brantford was a well-developed industrial town and the hub of regional trade, the park was frequently used as an informal meeting place and a centre for leisure activities. Its busiest times were in the evenings and on Sundays reflecting the era when key time was available, to the working class. The square was intimately connected to the adjacent churches, as the congregations would linger after services, or gather to enjoy church sponsored activities.
Victoria Park Square houses two significant structures: an elaborate drinking fountain and a monument to Captain Joseph Thayendanega Brant. The drinking fountain is made of granite and was donated, in 1892, by A. Harris, Son and Co. The fountain represents a tangible historic link between the city and its corporate citizens. Located at the centre of the park, the Joseph Brant Memorial, after whom the city is named, was designed by Percy Wood and was unveiled in 1886. The monument features a colossal statue of Brant; two groups of three life sized figures, which represent the Mohawks, Oneidas, Onondagas, Cayugas, Senecas, and Tuscaroras; and four panels which depict totems of the Six Nations. Each statue is cast in bronze, while the pedestal is grey granite from Cornwall, England. This statue is the central focus of the park.
Sources: City of Brantford By-Law 164-86;Victoria Park Square Brochure, City of Brantford.
Character defining elements that contribute to the heritage value of Victoria Park Square include its:
- shape and size, laid out as the Union Jack
- elaborate granite drinking fountain
- Joseph Brant Memorial, including the bronze casts of Brant, the Six Nations, and four totems
- proximity to the adjacent local churches
- its proximity to the Victoria Park Square Heritage Conservation District.
Local Governments (ON)
Ontario Heritage Act
Municipal Heritage Designation (Part IV)
1892/01/01 to 1892/01/01
1986/01/01 to 1986/01/01
1886/01/01 to 1886/01/01
Theme - Category and Type
- Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
- Sports and Leisure
Function - Category and Type
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
City of Brantford
100 Wellington Square,
Brantford, ON N3T 5R7
Cross-Reference to Collection