Lightning response by firefighters saves historic Cumberland theatre

Quick thinking by a passerby and rapid response by firefighters minimized damage to the Ilo Ilo Theatre in Cumberland Monday night.

FIREFIGHTERS INSPECT the interior of the Ilo-Ilo Theatre in Cumberland.

FIREFIGHTERS INSPECT the interior of the Ilo-Ilo Theatre in Cumberland.

Quick thinking by a passerby, combined with the close proximity of the fire department and a scheduled meeting with its members proved to be the right combination of factors in minimizing damage to the Ilo Ilo

Theatre in Cumberland Monday night.

Around 7:30 p.m., a person walking in the back alley behind the historic building spotting a fire

and called 9-1-1, said Cumberland Fire Chief Mike Williamson.

“Behind the siding and the wall, (the fire) burnt about 25 feet up the roof. Fast notification, along with a meeting in the firehall which is right next door, and we had a 45-second response time, and there was no

problem putting it out,” he explained.

The theatre is undergoing renovations, and Williamson said given a few more minutes, the building

may have suffered significant damage.

“It’s a really wide open place and there’s no drywall protection or anything like that. If we didn’t

get it quick, it could have been a real disaster in there.

“I don’t know if it was someone playing a prank or someone playing with matches, but it could have been a real serious fire in another 15 minutes; we

would have had our hands full,” he added.

Williamson confirmed there was no structural damage to the building, and Tim Patterson, project manager for the renovations, said he is grateful the fire was contained

to a small portion of the building.

“I was super relieved (to find minor damage). As you can imagine, this old building it has a lot of old, dry fir that can go up (burn) so quickly,” he said. “There was no entry point. You can see a fire had been started at this one old window

near the basement and the whole thing just took off from here.”

Patterson added he is working to return the theatre back to a live theatre, and doesn’t believe the damage should set the project back a significant

amount of time.

photos@comoxvalleyrecord.com

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A vial of Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a family doctor office, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021 in Paris. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP -Christophe Ena
Tentative COVID-19 vaccine site chosen in the Comox Valley

B.C. is moving into Phase 2 of its COVID-19 mass immunization plan

Cumberland is considering downtown densification proposals, and with that comes questions around parking, among other things. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Water bottling ban, parking key changes for Cumberland zoning

Bylaw on amendments still need adoption following March 2 hearing

Arzeena Hamir, working her booth at the Comox Valley Farmers Market. LUSH Valley was recognized last month as a partner of the year by the BC Association of Farmers’ Markets. Photo by Bill Jorgensen
LUSH Valley recognized for collaboration with Comox Valley Farmers’ Market

They won Partner of the Year award by the BC Association of Farmers’ Markets

Chelsea Harry was last seen Feb. 21. Photo via Comox Valley RCMP
Comox Valley RCMP seeking help locating a missing woman

Missing person last seen in Courtenay on Feb. 21

A Coast Range Cannabis store has been approved for the Crown Isle Shopping Centre in Courtenay. Photo submitted
Courtenay council approves seventh cannabis retailer

Coast Range Cannabis to open second store in the Comox Valley

Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding COVID-19 for British Columbia in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
7 additional deaths and 542 new COVID-19 cases in B.C.

Provincial health officials reported 18 new COVID-19 cases linked to variants of concern

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Some Canadians are finding butter harder than usual, resulting in an avalanche of social media controversy around #buttergate. (Brett Williams/The Observer)
#Buttergate: Concerns around hard butter hit small B.C. towns and beyond

Canadians find their butter was getting harder, blame palm oil in part one of this series

Construction takes place on Bamfield Main in early February 2021. (PHOTO COURTESY CTV NEWS)
Ongoing Bamfield roadwork unrelated to planned $30M fix

Construction by Mosaic unrelated to $30M upgrade ordered in wake of fatal bus crash

B.C. research reveals how pandemic has changed attitudes towards sex, health services

CDC survey shows that 35 per cent of people were worried about being judged

Preliminary design for a new composting facility at the Campbell River Waste Management Centre is ready to share with the public. Photo supplied
Facility to enable curbside organics collection in Comox Valley, Campbell River

The preliminary design for a new composting facility being built at the… Continue reading

The Regional District of Nanaimo’s board is forwarding a motion on illegal dumping to the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities’ upcoming annual general meeting. (Kane Blake photo)
Island communities asked to join forces in seeking help fighting illegal dumping

RDN resolution to be forwarded to Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon speaks in the B.C. legislature, describing work underway to make a small business and tourism aid package less restrictive, Dec. 10, 2020. (Hansard TV)
B.C. extends deadline for tourism, small business COVID-19 grants

Business owners expect months more of lost revenues

Protestors against old growth logging gather in front of the courthouse in Victoria on Thursday morning. (Don Denton/Black Press Media)
Protesters gather at Victoria courthouse to oppose Port Renfrew logging

Logging company seeks injunction to remove blockades near its Port Renfrew operation

Most Read