Who was Hamilton Mack Laing
Hamilton Mack Laing was an important Canadian naturalist, photographer and writer. He moved to Comox in 1922, cleared his land and built his home from a “Stanhope” Aladdin Ready-Cut kit. In 1927, he married Ethel Hart of Portland and they established a successful and commercial orchard which included walnut, pecan, filbert, hazelnut, apple and plum trees. They also grew mushrooms and vegetables. After his wife, Ethel, died in 1944, he sold his original home, Baybrook, and built a new home, Shakesides, on the adjoining lot. He bequeathed the waterfront property to the Town of Comox and it became Mack Laing Nature Park — excerpted from content on the Mack Laing Heritage Society‘s website.
A BC Supreme Court has granted the Mack Laing Heritage Society intervenor status in the Town of Comox’s application to alter the naturalist’s public trust. MLHS hopes the new council is open to out-of-court discussions
The timing of the Tow of Como’x new information hub about Mack Laing seems to indicate that it will function mostly to justify the town’s controversial decision to have the terms of the Mack Laing Trust altered by the B.C. Supreme Court and to report on the outcome of the case.
Why is the Town of Comox fighting so hard and spending so much money on lawyers to keep the Mack Laing Heritage Society from presenting evidence during a BC Supreme Court trial to decide whether the town can vary the terms of the famous ornithologist’s financial gifts in trust to municipality?
The Mack Laing Heritage Society has won a major legal ruling in its battle to force the Town of Comox to honor trust agreements with the famous naturalist. It’s the first step in a case that will decide the future of Laing’s iconic home and clarify the status of his trust agreements.