One of the very best things we’ve discovered on our travels and explorations of Vancouver Island has to be the wonderful quaint community of Fairbridge in Cowichan Station.  Today’s feature post continues our running photoblog series “The Children of Fairbridge“.  In our previous post we promised to take you up into the clock tower where we were going to showcase the incredible inner workings of the clock we see in the tower of the chapel, however I haven’t post-processed those shots quite yet and they will be part of an upcoming post.

Fairbridge - Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Fairbridge – Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada –

We’ve featured this shot in previous posts on Fairbridge and thought this would be a good way to start on today’s article.  On a particularly beautiful day when Mrs. Toad and I were hopping about the Cowichan Valley on a search for great photography subjects, we came across the community of Fairbridge.  We almost missed it, but as we were driving down the back-roads of the valley I thought I had noticed something awesome.  People who know us believe we have radar for this sort of thing; I am not convinced this isn’t true.

The architectural styling is distinctly European in nature, and the warm wood features make this a quintessential Vancouver Island treasure.  In some ways you really feel like you’ve stepped out of Canada and into a whole new world when you visit.

Fairbridge - Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Fairbridge – Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada –

This is the clock tower you hear us referring to so often.  It’s easy to see why we could spend an entire career photographing the chapel itself, yet there is so much more to see and learn in the community.

Fairbridge - Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Fairbridge – Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada –

Fairbridge - Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Fairbridge – Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada –

As we explore the chapel in more depth, vignettes begin to emerge that are simply enchanting.  The chapel itself takes on a completely different personality depending on the time of year and the weather, and is a favorite place for us to return often.  In these shots we can clearly see some of the wonderful textures and details prevalent in the chapel.

Fairbridge - Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Fairbridge – Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada –

Standing alongside the chapel is what we understand to be the original schoolhouse.  In today’s age where it’s common for schools to have student bodies that number sometimes in the thousands, it can be difficult to get your head around how a single room building like this could serve and entire community.  Yet, it did.

We’ve mentioned the community itself many times in our previous posts, and today let’s check that part of Fairbridge out.  The entire community sits on a cul-de-sac that finds homes from the original structures and cottages that have been renovated and re-purposed as homes, as well as newer homes built into the subdivision itself.

Fairbridge - Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Fairbridge – Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada –

Fairbridge - Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Fairbridge – Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada –

Fairbridge - Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Fairbridge – Cowichan Station, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada –

Through our work at Fairbridge we’ve met some really wonderful people.  One of these folks is our main contact into the community who makes the chapel available to us when we visit.  These shots feature his wonderful house.

What once was the main office for the Fairbridge community is today a lovely west coast home.  The cottage styling of the architecture lends great character and a true inviting feel, doesn’t it?  As you make your way around the community you see so many of these types of homes, all lovingly maintained to perfection.

As promised, our next post will find us up in the clock tower of the chapel itself learning all about the wonderful clock and bell.  You won’t want to miss that, so please do stay tuned!

Thanks for your visit today here at The Hollow.  We always love to hear from all our visitors, so please feel free to leave us any comments you may have below.  And on that note, I bid you all adieu for now!




  1. avatar Rachel Cohen says:

    Wonderful scenes and architecture Toad! So lovely and quaint! I look forward to those images as you process them my dear friend! 🙂

  2. avatar Edith Levy says:

    Beautiful work Toad. What an incredible place.

  3. avatar joyfulgozo says:

    It is sure is a beconing sight. I’m in the pst zone but way south of U. So, ur pictures will be my source for enjoying it.
    /// I look forward to ur next post.//Joyfulgozo

  4. avatar Len Saltiel says:

    Love the architectural style Toad. You seem to find the best places. My favorite image is the first one although all of the others are quite good.

  5. avatar Rick Louie says:

    Beautiful rich colors in that architecture! You can definitely see the European influence. Wonderful captures, Toad!