Letters to the Editor for October 23


Writer says The Ivey Falls is a natural waterfall

The Oxford dictionary defines a dam as a barrier built across a stream to raise its level. There was such a structure on a heritage property, the site of the second oldest home in Port Dover.
The Ivey Falls originated in the aftermath of the departure of the last Ice Age, being temporarily interrupted in the last 200 years by man-made dams which created a small and shallow millpond, which drained half a century ago when the dam failed, the millpond drained completely and the natural waterfall returned in all its beauty.
Thus, except for a span of 200 years, there has been a waterfall over a natural limestone table, a Port Dover miniature of the limestone table creating Niagara Falls.
Since the millpond drained 50 years ago, there has been NO DAMMING of water, the stream width at the waterfalls has remained the same as the stream width upstream and there is no increased water depth above the falls. The stream is far wider several miles upstream under the old railway bridge.
Mayor Travale, of upstream Simcoe, doesn’t understand the origin of silting. A limestone stream bed does not create silt. The few grains of sand and silt originating immediately above the Ivey Falls is ultra-miniscule compared to the silt that is carried from the farm areas surrounding Simcoe.
The brown water, washed into the Lynn River from Travale’s environs, carries large amounts of silt downstream and can be seen roaring over the Ivey Falls after a heavy rain. As the water flow slows down, the silt particles previously suspended in turbulent water flow drop out of suspension and the water becomes clear as the silt falls to the bottom.
Honest citizens, with the help of local people who are loyal to Port Dover – at considerable ongoing expense – for years have striven to maintain a beautiful old house for the people of Port Dover to cherish for its local historical significance.
For Mayor Travale of Simcoe to cast the blame on innocent people for the brown silt that comes from his own area and deposited far downstream, is unacceptable.

Gavin Hamilton
(author of “The Nurses are Innocent”)
London, ON


Community needs people in charge to lead the charge

We read with curiosity in last week’s Maple Leaf the Mayor’s response to a submission by Tim Warris published in the Reformer October 3. The article regarded ideas for transforming Silver Lake using a model developed in Tillsonburg. The Mayor’s letter, published in the Maple Leaf left many residents mystified especially if they had not read the Reformer.
As you will recall, we had been encouraged by Council at the Silver Lake Town Hall meeting last fall that it would be appreciative of positive suggestions put forward by local residents for dealing with Silver Lake. There was nothing in the Mayor’s response that could be interpreted as appreciative.
We are beginning to think that we do have a bigger issue. It is not about who owns anything. It is about what our community needs to sustain our lifestyle, preserve habitat and its indigenous species (plants and wildlife), bring in more visitors to support our local businesses and fundraising capacity for local charities.
The land is in Norfolk County and we are looking for a governance body that has the vision and will to lobby for help from whomever they feel has responsibility.
It is not about policy and job descriptions and doing things right. It is about doing the right thing and in this case we need people in charge who have the will and drive to lead the charge with passion. It is not about ascribing blame and correcting small details. The only word I can think of is “leadership”.
Two dragon boat races would have been enough to raise $200,000 for the library from money brought in from external visitors participating in the races and in addition boosted local economy from patronage at local retail stores and eateries.
How many perch dinner/auction fundraisers can local residents afford or eat? We are tapped out and we need to build on our natural community resources in order to flourish. We need to preserve the “hidden jewels” in each little Norfolk hamlet so that we remain destinations for day trippers.

Gordon and Diane Leaker
Port Dover



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