Surrey history book wins Heritage BC Award

(L-R) Michael Gibbs, Surrey Historical Society President; Ryan Gallagher, City of Surrey Heritage Administration Manager; K. Jane Watt, author; Penny Priddy, Surrey Heritage Advisory Commission; and Councillor Dave Woods, City of Surrey.

IT has been a victorious year for “Surrey: A City of Stories,” the City of Surrey’s legacy book produced as part of Canada 150 celebrations. The book, which pays tribute to Surrey’s diverse and vibrant history, has won a Heritage BC Award, while also being a finalist for a BC Book Prize.

“’Surrey: A City of Stories’ is a wonderful legacy that invites us to reflect on our past and celebrate the accomplishments of our growing city,” said Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner of the Heritage BC Award that was handed out on May 11 at Heritage BC’s annual conference in New Westminster. “I am delighted to see that the book is being recognized for its contributions to Surrey. The accolades received are truly a win for community effort.”

Recognizing sustainable conservation of British Columbia’s unique cultural heritage, Heritage BC presents the annual awards, which celebrate the outstanding and significant achievements in heritage conservation of individuals, organizations, groups, businesses and government in communities across B.C. “The Surrey: A City of Stories” book project was marked by collaboration and support through all levels of community. It was initiated by the Surrey Heritage Advisory Commission, supported by Heritage Services and championed by the community, including the Surrey Historical Society.

“The support and enthusiasm from the community for this book has been tremendous,” added Surrey Councillor Dave Woods. “The Heritage Commission had high hopes for this project and could not be happier receiving this award.”

“Many people came forward to share their stories and documents, and to urge others to do so,” said author K. Jane Watt, also noting that the community collaboration that made this project possible runs much deeper than the book. “’Surrey: A City of Stories’ depends on archival collections that are the gifts of individuals and families and businesses over time. Archives and museums depend on trust to grow their holdings, and the civic collection that this book showcases is a legacy of that community trust over a long period of time.”

“Surrey: A City of Stories” was released in September of 2017 as a Surrey legacy project in honour of Canada 150 celebrations, and features more than 500 visuals, including 332 photos, 40 maps, 73 artifacts and 61 documents.

“Surrey: A City of Stories” can be purchased for $25 at any City of Surrey facility and Black Bond Books locations. The Surrey Heritage Advisory Commission has purchased a copy for every Surrey school and branch of Surrey Libraries.

For more information, visit or call 604-502-6459. Follow City of Surrey Heritage Services on Facebook @HeritageSurreyBC.