In the interest of transparency for the lack of notice to the public and any concern/understanding that may have resulted from the removal of the cairn, we most humbly apologize. We offer the following as an explanation and outline our future plan for the site.
In 2016 the Session of St John’s Presbyterian Church in Cornwall determined that the cairn at the cemetery located at the corner of Sydney and Sixth Streets had to be removed. The past winter has been particularly hard on the cairn. Action was required to ensure the safety of the public using the park to ensure children and youth are not jeopardizing their personal safety because of crumbling walls and stone despite the wrought iron fence. Over the past few years there has been major deterioration of the cement holding the headstones in place, many of the headstones were badly cracked and some of the rebar exposed. Several stones were completely broken and had fallen away. Major repairs in the 1987 has not stopped the deterioration. The fence does not prevent youngsters climbing and playing on it. Our plans were communicated to Heritage Cornwall, a committee of the city, thus exercising due diligence and careful consideration.
The general condition of the cairn was inappropriate for the proper respect for our ancestors. Consistent with the Cemeteries Act of Ontario we followed our course of action on Monday recognized this obligation.
Please read the attached letter below for more details on the condition of the cairn and our plans for the future.