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Former County school featured in HGTV special ‘Great Canadian Homes’

Remember this space? It is now converted into a kitchen, dining and living area. – Great Canadian Homes photo

To celebrate Canada turning 150 years old, HGTV’s Tommy Smythe is travelling across the nation to go inside the country’s most historic and iconic homes – including one in Prince Edward County.

The former South Marysburgh Public School is now a home and B & B – South in Milford photo

The former South Marysburgh Public School converted to a home and B&B by the Hawkins/Parker family will be among those featured in an HGTV special ‘Great Canadian Homes’ during a segment focusing on conversion homes.

“Modern conversions of pre-existing buildings are very popular with the HGTV audience,” said Smythe. “The Hawkins kept the aesthetic integrity of the school intact but with a new, creative vision.”

Alysa Hawkins and Jesse Parker bought the 1960s school for under $200,000 (in 2013) and moved to their new 10,600 square foot home with their three daughters. It had closed in 2011 due to low enrolment and students moved down the road to Athol Central School (Now called Athol South Marysburgh School).

The school gym became the combo living/dining/kitchen and each of their daughters have a different classroom for their bedrooms. The other classrooms have been converted into huge bed and breakfast suites.

Classroom converted into B&B space. – South in Milford photo

In another County connection, the show will also feature Earnscliffe Manor, the legendary home of Sir John A Macdonald, in Ottawa. Canada’s first Prime Minister won his first court case as a young lawyer in Picton, in 1834.

Great Canadian Homes premiers June 18 at 11 p.m. on HGTV, Smythe will showcase historical and one-of-a-kind private homes from all over the country, each with their own distinct piece of history and personality, as told and toured by their current occupants. If you miss it, keep an eye out as the one-hour special will have a number of repeats as part of HGTV’s Canada 150 programming.

Tune into HGTV’s Great Canadian Homes special to learn more about:
Victoria County, NS: Bienn Breagh (built by Alexander Graham Bell 1893)

Montreal, QC: Grassi House (1935, Art Deco, designed by Rene Rodolphe Tourville)

Montreal, QC: Habitat 67 (Post Modern, built for World Expo 67, designed by Moshe Safdie)

Ottawa, ON: Earnscliffe Manor (1855, Home of Sir John A. MacDonald, currently home to British High Commissioner of Canada)

Toronto, ON: Abbey Church Lofts (Modern Church Conversion)

Toronto, ON: Integral House (2009, designed by Bridgette Shim and A. Howard Sutcliffe for renowned mathematician James Stewart)

Kitchener, ON: Zeidler House (1959, designed by Eb Zeidler)

Picton, ON: Schoolhouse Conversion (converted and occupied by the Hawkins Family)

Canmore, AB: Canmore Castle (2000 by architect Bill Marshall and designer Norman Flan)

Calgary, AB: Dairy Barn Conversion

Vancouver, BC: Hugo Eppich House (1979, designed by Arthur Ericsson)

Vancouver, BC: Disher House (1912, Arts & Crafts style)

Gulf Islands, BC: Origami House (2014 Pre-Fab, designed by Tony Robins)

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    this was my school…1960 -64…HOW WONDERFUL TO C IT BROUGHT BACK TO LIFE ONCE AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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