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Report - Mount St. Joseph Convent Revisited, April 14 - Peterborough, Canada

jerm IX

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#1
The first visit from last year and the fascinating history can be found here for those interested...

http://jermalism.blogspot.ca/2013/06/abandonment-issues-mount-st-joseph.html


Here is the new update just added to that post...

The long, cold and miserable winter is finally coming to an end, and it is not being kind to the old convent, which was in near pristine condition when we toured it last autumn. Despite the best efforts of the Mount volunteers to control the damage that the spring thaw is inflicting, Mother Nature is winning the battle by a long shot.

Two weeks ago, several areas of the building were flooded, and much to our dismay, the gorgeous original parquet flooring was buckling to such extremes that much of it will be beyond repair. Unfortunately, this was happening in most of the areas with parquet flooring, but the worst of it had ravaged and destroyed the floor of the beautiful cathedral and had also started to affect the base of some of the pews.

The volunteers monitoring the building were trying their best, but simply not well enough equipped to fight the plague of water that had besieged them. Many recurring visits confirmed this. They were opening and closing windows as dictated by the weather, and using buckets, pails and garbage cans to collect dripping and running water. But it was a long winter with a ton of snow and several Arctic cold snaps creating many layers of ice to form. It was just to much for the convent and the volunteers to keep up with.

The hospital addition which is the only area not designated with heritage status, and is planned to be converted into condos, well, that was flooded an inch or two deep on all three floors. Some of the historic areas also had many puddles here and there and seemingly everywhere, but not to the same extent as the hospital flooding.

In the basement, the water was sporadic, puddles here, flooding there, a backfiring sump pump blasting water like an open fire hydrant on a hot day in my childhood. Mother Nature still winning the war.

By last week, the damage had been done. The water had receded in the historic areas and only the hospital addition and basement were still flooded. But sadly, the parquet flooring was indeed buckled beyond salvation in the cathedral.

This week, not much has changed.

Hopefully with the thaw now complete there is a plan in place to tend to the deteriorating conditions immediately. It would be a shame to see this building deteriorate any further, and I am all to well aware of how quickly Mother Nature can inflict irreversible damage on a heritage building in such a vulnerable state. For example Sidbrook Hospital and the Prison For Women.

All of these return visits have given me the opportunity to get to know the building a lot better and discover every single nook and cranny. I've now taken a handful of friends on our own private tours, which has given me plenty of opportunities to take my time when turning my camera on the convent. I've added some images merely to illustrate the flooding and water damage as described, but mainly tried to continue to focus on the beauty contained within this magnificent historic building.

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Last edited:

wellingtonian

Subterráneo
Regular User
#3
Re: Mount St. Joseph Convent Revisited (April 21, 2014 - Peterborough, ON, Canada)

Good stuff, was particularly drawn to that awesome Cobalt blue ceiling. Very striking :thumb
 

jerm IX

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#4
Re: Mount St. Joseph Convent Revisited (April 21, 2014 - Peterborough, ON, Canada)

Thank you both, the place is very special. To watch it begin to decay is quite sad. I'm hopeful the developer will act quickly to reverse the damage.
 

catbalou

off the wall
Regular User
#6
Re: Mount St. Joseph Convent Revisited (April 21, 2014 - Peterborough, ON, Canada)

havent seen this one before, lovely looking place. shame to hear about the water damage.
 

krissigalores

Poison Ivy
28DL Full Member
#8
Re: Mount St. Joseph Convent Revisited (April 21, 2014 - Peterborough, ON, Canada)

Carpentry is top notch.
Looks like it would have been lovely to wander about.
It looks quiet and peaceful?
 

jerm IX

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#9
Re: Mount St. Joseph Convent Revisited (April 21, 2014 - Peterborough, ON, Canada)

Yeah, so I got caught in here, and the local newspaper got involved and it was a whole thing. The story has been added to the end of th blog post.