City of London
Cultural Heritage Plan
2012 - 2013
In 1946, the Federal Department of Veteran Affairs opened the Western Counties Health and Occupational Centre as a rehabilitation centre for veterans returning from World War II. The eleven-building centre was one of the largest rehabilitation facilities built by the Department of Veteran Affairs. The centre had two primary functions; to serve as a physiotherapy clinic, and to serve as a place where veterans could learn skills necessary to enter the civilian workforce. The Western Counties Health and Occupational was designed around the concept that landscape and pastoral settings possessed important healing qualities. It was based on a similar prototype facility which the federal government deemed most appropriate for health and rehabilitation centres at the time. Between 1950 and 1989, the centre, then known as the Western Counties Veterans Lodge, served a as home for aging veterans. By 2000, all but four of the eleven buildings had been demolished.
In 2012, the City of London retained MHBC to prepare a cultural heritage plan for the site. In conducting the study, emphasis was placed on protecting and conserving remaining heritage resources as well as analyzing the potential for future recreational uses at the site.