Lansdowne Residences (1969)


lansdowne"Craigdarroch" and "Lansdowne" residential units, names referencing Victoria College's two previous homes (Craigdarroch Castle in Rockland and the Provincial Normal School in Lansdowne), represent two stylistic stages in the development of the Siddall office. The first, Craigdarroch, detailed in wood and stucco, reflects the current domestic side of West Coast modernism, and the second, Lansdowne, connects with international-style brutalism in its unadorned heavy concrete massing.




The Lansdowne complex consists of six four-storey reinforced concrete buildings whose exterior walls are also natural concrete. These six halls, named alter the three men and three women listed below, house in total about 280 students. They were opened in the fall of 1969. Adjoining the southwest comer of the Cadboro Commons Block, Robert W. W. Carroll Hall contains offices that were designed to accommodate the administration of Lansdowne College.



After outgrowing Craigdarroch Castle, Victoria College occupied the Lansdowne Road campus of the Provincial Normal School from 1946 to 1963; this was one segment of UVic’s split campus from 1963 to 1966. Lansdowne Road is named after Henry Charles Keith Petty-Fitzmaurice, 5th Marquess of Lansdowne, Canada's Governor General from 1883 to 1888.

Robert W. W. Carrall [Carroll], M.D. (1837–1879), born in Upper Canada and educated at McGill, moved to British Columbia in 1865 and was elected to the Legislative Council in 1869. Supporting Sir John A. Macdonald's dream of a united Canada, he went to Ottawa with Joseph Trutch and John S. Helmcken in order to negotiate BC's terms of union.

Sir Joseph W. Trutch, K.C.M.G., C.E. (1826–1904), was an English-trained civil engineer who settled in Victoria in 1859, becoming Commissioner of Lands and Works and Surveyor General. One of the delegates who negotiated BC's terms of union with Canada, he was named the province's first Lieutenant-Governor (1871–1876). Knighted in 1889, he died in Victoria in 1904.

John S. Helmcken (1825–1920), was born in London, England, arriving in Victoria in 1850 as a young physician for the Hudson's Bay Company. He was elected to Vancouver Island's first Legislative Assembly in 1855, and was later Speaker of the colonial assembly and Member of Council until 1871. He was one of the trio of delegates who negotiated BC's terms of union with Canada in that year.

Elma Sanderson (née Mongin), better known as Mme. Sanderson-Mongin, taught French at Victoria College from 1920 to 1939. Born in Langres, France, she had moved to Canada before the First World War. In Victoria, she became a dynamic force in promoting French language and culture, both on and off the campus. She died in Victoria on February 19, 1951.


Nancy Hodges (1888–1969), was educated at King's College, University of London, and came to Canada in 1912. For many years she was a columnist for the Victoria Times. Keenly interested in politics, she was elected as a Liberal M.L.A for Victoria in 1941 and served until her defeat in June 1955. On December 15, 1949, she became Speaker of the BC Legislature—the first woman Speaker in the Commonwealth.

Alice Ravenhill (1859–1954) lectured for many years at the University of London in the fields of public health, child development and home economics. Settling in British Columbia in 1910, she became an active organizer of Women's Institutes and developed a keen interest in First Nations culture. Her well-known book, Native Tribes of British Columbia, was published in 1938.


Facts and Figures


Architect: Siddall, Dennis & Associates

Structural: Read Jones Christoffersen Ltd.

Mechanical: F. T. Gardiner, P. Eng.

Electrical: Spratt & Associates

Contractor: Farmer Construction Ltd.

Contract: $1,719,500 (Nov. 25, 1968); $1,694,155

Gross area: 75,000 sq. ft.

Cost per square foot: $22.59


See UVic's maps and buildings description.