History of Beach Metro News: The Beach was booming in 1982

Often when a picture of a child was needed in the paper’s first 10 years, this young girl’s photo, probably taken at the YMCA, was used. She appears in the 1982 pages. She must be about 40 by now. If this is you, please call us at 416-698-1164 ext. 24.

In March 1982 the newspaper reached a milestone – its 10th anniversary. It celebrated with a party held at its headquarters in the YMCA on Kingston Road, with over 150 of its volunteers attending.

At its Annual General Meeting, Geoff Jarvis took over from Nanci Lugsdin as president, Linda Greer became vice president, Pauline Plooard started a second year as secretary, and Gord James stayed on as treasurer.  The retiring past president, Lenore Diaz, was thanked for her 10 year’s commitment to the paper in various roles from paid staff to volunteer carrier, bundler, babysitter and bottle washer.

Barbara Neyedly, a third year Ryerson student, took over the part time photography and reporting position vacated by Kirsten Ring, who had moved on to a full-time job.

The Beach was the main baby boom area in the city according to the Childbirth and Education Association. So many pregnant Beachers attended childbirth classes at its main office that a local program was being set up at Community Centre 55.

Tenants at 72 Hubbard Blvd. felt they were on the edge. City inspectors determined that the 12-unit building had sunk 1/4 inch in three months. It was over a foot off centre, rotating on its axis, twisting and sinking at the same time. To keep furniture from skittering across the floor, tenants were forced to put wedges under the legs of tables and chairs. In mid June the building was declared unsafe, and the owner was ordered to bring it up to standard. Inspectors also found that a number of houses nearby on the east side of Glen Manor were leaning on their neighbours for support. Owners of these structures were ordered to make repairs.

Unhappy tenants at 3008 and 3010 Queen St., between Blantyre and Fallingbrook, said they were being squeezed out by new owners who made minor improvements then jacked up the rent. Tenants picketed the Hill Crescent home of the owners. A tenant spokesperson said that “the apartment renovation epidemic has to stop. People have to stand up for their rights. Those who had already left the Queen Street apartments had trouble finding affordable accommodation, even as far away as Pickering and Oshawa.”

The old Norway Post Office at 314-322 Kingston Rd. was about to bite the dust.  The two board and batten buildings, which had deteriorated over the years, were the last remaining visual links with the old village of Norway, which began around 1835 with the establishment of the Norway Steam Mills.

The hottest local issue in years was an offer by St. Leonard’s Crossroads Association to purchase 128 Glen Manor Dr., just north of Queen and establish a group home for parolees, without any community consultation or fore-knowledge. Home owners on Glen Manor formed a company to sell 205 shares at $1,000 each to purchase the house and prevent it from becoming a group home. Within three hours of going door-to-door they had raised the first $70.000. They formed a group, Nine Alive (this was still Ward 9) to ensure a voice in the community through various political and legal initiatives working with all levels of government, including  a review of existing bylaw and zoning restrictions. The federal government withdrew its funding and the project stopped.

Another concern in 1982 was the proposal to bring early French immersion to some senior kindergarten classes, with some parents feeling that English speaking students would be short changed, while others were lining up to enrol their offspring.  The program began at two local schools, Gleldhill and Williamson Road.

Glen Ames Senior School won the first Toronto Board of Education award for the best school play based on a Canadian experience. Teachers Allison Valliant and Roy Riggs collaborated on a musical based on the Toronto Islanders fight to keep their homes.

City Planner Albert Saif felt the Beach area would probably not change physically in the future, because existing planning policies are geared toward stabilization. The only change might be revitalization of commercial strips. A few years earlier residents had complained of house owners converting their properties to multi-unit dwellings, he said. Now this trend was reversing, especially along Queen Street where people with higher incomes were moving in and changing the houses back to single family homes.

Cecil Bosher of Balsam Avenue had the idea of showing support and raising funds for Polish families caught up in the Solidarity struggle by selling 10,000 buttons bearing the word Solidamosc (Polish for Solidarity) in local churches and stores. Ms. Bosher and her supporters raised over $1,000.

Graphic artist Barbara Warner, 23, lobbied the federal government until it agreed to issue a stamp in memory of Terry Fox. A contest was held to design the stamp, and although Warner’s entries were not chosen, she was one of 250 young Canadians invited to dine with the Queen and Prince Philip.

When Ed Broadbent, then leader of the federal New Democratic Party, came to the riding for a fundraiser, organizers wanted to give him a gift with a local flavour, so they presented him with a Ward 9 News “Word Power” t-shirt.

Fashions from local stores was the theme of a two-night show at the Balmy Beach Clubwith clothing supplied by Bimini, Designers Market Place, Basics, California Dreaming, Echo Beach, Fashion Tree, Gazebo, Texas Rose, The Wardrobe Designer, and Fashion Party. Who remembers shopping at these stores, none of which exist today?

Glenn Gould, one of the best known classical pianists of the 20th century, died on Oct.4. The 50-year-old world-renowned interpreter of J.S.Bach’s music grew up on Southwood Drive, and attended Williamson Road P.S. and Malvern Collegiate.

One of the biggest upsets in the municipal elections on Nov. 8 was the election of former school trustee Tom Jakobek as the senior alderman for the area, pulling in over 11,000 votes, some 2,400 more than incumbent Dorothy Thomas. At 23, he became the youngest Metro councillor ever.  David Moll and Dorothy Ottaway were returned as public school trustees. Sister Tony Sheehan became the Separate School representative.


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