Sylvia Holden drops in!

Glebe luminary Sylvia Holden (centre) with Paul O’Donnell and Sarah Routliffe at the Glebe Community Centre, October 12. PHOTO: MARGARET LAVICTOIRE

Yes, the Sylvia Holden, whose name graces the park at O’Connor and Fifth.

Holden, 93, who lived on Renfrew Avenue for 20 years and now lives in Burlington, Vermont, dropped in at the Glebe Community Centre and the offices of the Glebe Report on October 12 for a short visit. Her son Alfred Holden accompanied her. Alfred was an occasional editor of the Glebe Report from 1977 to 1980.

Sylvia Holden was a tireless neighbourhood advocate from the 1970s to the 1990s, working for, among other things, better recreational facilities in the Glebe, especially parks. She had a large role in the creation of the tot lot later named Lionel Britton Park and worked hard to obtain parks on Clemow and to the northeast of Lansdowne (the park now named Sylvia Holden Park). The original Sylvia Holden Park, moved to accommodate the redevelopment of Lansdowne, was at the corner of Holmwood and Bank.

Holden was active in the Glebe Community Association and, in addition to parks and recreation, worked hard on causes such as recycling (before the city’s recycling program), the peace movement and local elections. She was circulation manager for the Glebe Report from its inception in 1973 to 1989.
In a 2010 Glebe Report article, Holden recalled her years in the Glebe: “The quality of life in Ottawa was wonderful – people looking out for one another. We worked together at parenting, not just our own children but each other’s.”


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