The Blue Mountains Public Library is the dynamic centre of community engagement where everyone is free to create, explore, learn, research and connect in an inclusive environment. Updated May 2018 by community vote.
To be a multi-branch library system, with a thriving museum and gallery, that meets the ever-changing interests and needs of the diverse population of the Town of The Blue Mountains. Approved September 2018.
The BMPL is comprised of a Gallery, Library, Archive and Museum. At the time of the establishment of BMPL in 1995 and the opening of L.E. Shore in 1996, the organization was an early trail blazer of the GLAM by including a gallery within the building. For this, and the design of the facility, BMPL won awards. In 2016 the Board and TBM further established the organization as a GLAM when the Craigleith Heritage Depot community museum became a part of the BMPL. GLAMs are now understood to be the culture hubs of communities across the province, and more regularly have been seen to have a single operational body, such as in the BMPL model. For information on each of the GLAM Mandates, visit POL-SYS.2018.71 Mission & Mandates on our policies page.
The Blue Mountains Public Library (BMPL) was established with the opening of the L.E. Shore (LES) site in December of 1995. The Shore Foundation provided a contribution of $1.5 million dollars, a sizeable donation intended to create a union library between Clarksburg (in the former Township of Collingwood) and the Town of Thornbury. Two stipulations were made including that the Shore Tilbe Irwin & Partners architectural firm be used in the design, and that the smaller libraries in Thornbury and Clarksburg be closed. The Town of Thornbury and Township of Collingwood accepted the gift and the conditions and paid for the balance of the award-winning facility. Citizens of Town of Thornbury and Township of Collingwood contributed with extensive fundraising and many donations for furnishings and collections.
Following amalgamation and the creation of The Town of The Blue Mountains in 1998, the Town retained the property for library purposes for as long as a library shall reside in the space. In 2020 BMPL will celebrate our 25thanniversary.
CHD was the original Craigleith Railway Station (circa 1880-1960). More recently the site was used as the Depot Fine Dining (Restaurant) 1967-2001. Due to strong community support and fundraising, the CHD was acquired and restored by the Town in 2001. It was operated as a Tourist Information Centre and turned into a museum in 2008. Sitting within the Wyndot/Wyandotte original territory, the museum shares a strong relationship with both our ancient and contemporary past. In 2016 the Blue Mountains Public Library Board acquired the Craigleith Heritage Depot community museum, added a book deposit station within the museum as a pilot study, and increased the hours of operation from seasonal one day a week to six days a week year-round. 2018 is the 10th anniversary of CHD as a community museum. Visit CHD History for a complete history of the site.
Since the inception of the L.E. Shore branch, The Gallery at L.E. Shore has been an integral component of the facility. With over 250 exhibits to date and over 1,300 individual artists shown, our gallery is an important hub for arts and culture in The Blue Mountains.