Stanley Park Manor – 1915 Haro Street

Stanley Park Manor is an imposing structure from 1929. It was designed by H H Simmonds, with 122 apartments. West Coast Builders developed the $200,000 investment, described as the largest single apartment built that year. The design were described in an article in the Sun in 1931, when it was complete, as ‘from plans by Architects Hodgson & Simmons’, as H A Hodgson partnered with Simmonds. It also revealed that the developer was W A Lightheart, whose other developments can also be found throughout the West End, as can others by other Lightheart Brothers. Our image dates from when it was completed, and is from Vancouver Public Library.

When this was developed, William Lightheart had a home in Shaughnessy, but his brother Jacob’s widow, Alice, lived here, and the manager was Cecil Lightheart, almost certainly his son.

In 1950 fire broke out in what was now a 139 suite building, but most of the 200 tenants stayed put. Only two families, with children, ended up at 4.11am sitting in an auto parked on the street. The fire started when the tip of a conveyor carrying wood to the furnace caught fire.

In 1956 Donald Woodruff went missing. “Wife of a Vancouver public accountant missing since Monday night fears he may be a victim of amnesia. Donald M. Woodruff, suite 508, Stanley Park Manor, went for a walk in the park at 9:30 p.m. and has not been seen since. Mrs. Woodruff said her husband, a Second World War navy veteran, may have signed on a ship leaving Vancouver. When last seen the missing man was wearing a black suit, grey hat, brown brogue shoes, a maroon tie, pale grey shirt and an opaque plastic raincoat.”

An intriguing notice in the press in 1958 suggests something odd going on, but confirms the Lightheart development connection.

That same year an advertisment for Burrard Realty Corporation announced “Mr. C. V. Lightheart as President, Vancouver born and educated who brings to the firm a lifetime of experience in Real Estate and Property Management. He is a member of the pioneer Lightheart family with extensive property holdings and who own, among others, Stanley Park Manor and Brookland Court. His many qualifications, his personal buoyancy and boundless energy make him an ideal President.

In 1974 one of the city’s ‘cold cases’ occurred, when the naked body of 32-year-old Margarite Ann Cuff was found when police entered her apartment. The murder weapon, a knife, was still protruding from her body. Police later described her a drug addict and prostitute, and the case was never solved.

More recently the building has been a scene of intrigue in both print, and film. Several movie productions have been shot here, and it was the home of chef Jeremy Papier, author Timothy Taylor’s main character in his novel Stanley Park.



Posted 9 February 2023 by ChangingCity in Still Standing, West End

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