Ajax residents recently celebrated the community opening of the Quaker Meeting House on Kingston Road West. They had an opportunity to tour one of Ajax’s oldest buildings, learn about the history of the Quaker’s and Pickering Village and enjoy the string quartet entertainment of Music4Life Ensemble.
The structure was originally built in 1867, Canada’s Confederation, by the Society of Friends (Quaker) congregation. The building was purchased and renovated by local Freemasons in 1943, and had come into disrepair over the last decade.
Council approved the transfer of the building and property to the Town in 2015. The transfer aligned with the Town’s Heritage Advisory Committee’s mandate to preserve historical sites, architecture and promote cultural history of the Town of Ajax. The Town was successful in receiving a grant in the amount of $434,800 through the Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program to offset the planned renovations costs for the building. As a result, the historic Quaker Meeting House has undergone an extensive renovation to create additional community space and neighbourhood programming.
The building will continue to be home to a number of masonic lodges and affiliates which have joined Doric Lodge at this location over the years. Upgrades include adding a full basement, a new front entrance and rear kitchen addition, and interior accessibility modifications.