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Heritage, Beautification and Cemeteries Committee

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Tillsonburg Cemetery showing stones with Canadian flag in background

Committee Mandate

The Heritage, Beautification and Cemetery Advisory Committee advises and make recommendations to Council on all matters with respect to architectural and historical significance, beautification of public spaces, including trees and Tillsonburg cemeteries.

The Heritage, Beautification and Cemetery Advisory Committee is responsible for:

  • Advising Council of new and relevant legislation and funding initiatives
  • Making recommendations and assisting with the development of education programs
  • Acting as a liaison with the community and other organizations to promote Tillsonburg's heritage, beautification and cemeteries

Learn more

Terms of Reference 

To view a copy of the Heritage, Beautification & Cemetery Advisory Committee's Terms of Reference.

Committee Composition 

The Heritage, Beautification & Cemetery Advisory Committee is comprised of nine members of the public and includes representation from the local Funeral Homes, a member of Tillsonburg Town Council and two members of Town staff.

Meeting Time & Location

The Heritage, Beautification & Cemetery Advisory Committee meets on the first Thursday of the month at 9:00 a.m. in the Marwood Lounge of the Community Centre, 10 Lisgar Avenue, Tillsonburg, ON.

Heritage Designation

Heritage designation of a property is an important process in the identification, conservation, protection and recognition of a community's cultural heritage.  Properties which have been identified and designated for their cultural heritage value or interest "are important in our everyday lives, give us a sense of place, and help guide planning in our communities", Ministry of Culture.

The Town of Tillsonburg is guided by the criteria and principles of the Ontario Heritage Act and the Provincial Policy Statement of the Planning Act in the designation of cultural heritage properties within the municipality.

It is important to note that a property does not have to be "old" to be designated and may feature elements in their design, craftsmanship, function or ownership that make them eligible for consideration. 


Municipal Heritage Register

The Clerk's Office for the Town of Tillsonburg maintains the Municipal Register of properties within the community that have been designated under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act

The Register not only lists the cultural heritage properties that have been identified as being important to the community, but serves as a valuable tool for the Town's Planning Department when development proposals or permits are being considered. 

What types of properties can be designated under the Ontario Heritage Act?

  • Archeological & Marine Sites
  • Buildings (i.e. Barns, Residences, Churches, Schools, Industrial Complexes, etc.)
  • Building Interiors
  • Cemeteries & Gravestones
  • Monuments (i.e. Cenotaphs, Public Art, Statue)
  • Natural Features
  • Spiritual Sites
  • Streetscapes & Landscapes (i.e. Villages, Battlefields, Gardens, Roadways, etc.)
  • Structures (i.e. Water Tower, Culvert, Fence, Bridge, etc.)

Why is Heritage Designation important?

Heritage Designation of a property is important for a number of reasons, including:

  • Recognizing the importance of a property to the local community
  • Protecting the property's cultural heritage value & attributes
  • Encouraging good stewardwhip & conservation
  • Promoting knowledge & understanding about the property  

How does a property qualify for heritage designation?  

To qualify for heritage designation, a property must meet (1) or more of the following criteria as stated by Ontario Regulation 9/06:

  1. The property has design value or physical value because it:
  • Is a rare, unique, representative or early example of a style, type, expression, material or construction method,
  • Displays a high degree of craftsmanship or artistic merit, or
  • Demonstrates a high degree of technical or scientific achievement.

 2. The property has historical value or associative value because it:

  • Has direct associations with a theme, event, belief, person, activity, organization or institution that is significant to a community,
  • Yields, or has the potential to yield, information that contributes to an understanding of a community or culture, or
  • Demonstrates or reflects the work or ideas of an architect, artist, builder, designer or theorist who is significant to a community.

3. The property has contextual value because it:

  • Is important in defining, maintaining or supporting the character of an area,
  • Is physically, functionally, visually or historically linked to its surroundings, or
  • Is a landmark.

How does Designation affect my property?

Heritage Designation in the Town of Tillsonburg only applies to the exterior of a building.

Designation will not impact upon the following:

  • Interior maintenance or renovations done to a property
  • Insurance Premiums
  • The use of a property
  • Sale of a property or lower property values
  • The property owner is not required to restore the property to its original condition
  • The property owner is not required to open a designated home to the public.

Properties that have been designated under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act will have certain restrictions applied to them to preserve and protect the cultural heritage attributes of that particular property.

Property owners are asked to consult with the Heritage Committee when considering the restoration or alteration of the designated heritage attributes of a building.


Applying for Heritage Designation of a Property

An Application for Heritage Designation of a property may be submitted to the Heritage, Beautification & Cemetery Advisory Committee for consideration through the Clerk's Office at or through the on-line form.

There are a series of steps taken as part of the designation process, including:

  • Heritage Application is received & reviewed by the Heritage Committee.
  • Research & Evaluation is conducted on the property.
  • A determination is made if the property meets the criteria for designation.
  • Report & Recommendations are submitted to Council for consideration.
  • If approved by Council, a Notice of Intention to Designate is published once in the local newspaper.
  • If any objections are received within (30) days, they are forwarded to the Conservation Review Board, which acts as an independent Provincial Tribunal.
  • If no objections are received, a By-Law is adopted by Council and registered on Title.
  • The property is listed on the Municipal & Provincial Heritage Registers.

Should you have any questions about the Heritage Designation process, contact the Clerk's Office at or 519-688-3009 ext. 3221.