Sir Robert Barrie Day

The City Council of Barrie, Ontario, Canada is set to establish the 7th June as Sir Robert Barrie Day.

This is to honour the anniversary date of the signing of the Twinning Certifcate with Harrogate, which was completed at Ripley Castle on that date in 2013, and the 180th anniversary of Sir Robert’s death.

Sir Thomas Ingilby was instrumental in the formation of the twinning relationship with Harrogate, and with a strong family connection. Sir Robert married Sir Thomas’s ancestor, Julia Wharton Ingilby, on 24 October 1816, and Sir Robert is buried at Ripley Church.

“In early 1824, Commodore Barrie took up the post of commissioner of the Naval Dockyard in Kingston, Upper Canada. He was instrumental in developing the facilities at Kingston, as well as supporting the building of the Rideau and Welland canals.

He came to the Barrie area to inspect the Nine Mile Portage, a key trading route from Kempenfelt Bay to the Nottawasaga River and Georgian Bay. Lady Julia Wharton-Ingilby, Barrie’s wife, thought the area at the end of Kempenfelt Bay one of most beautiful places on Earth and suggested they settle there.

In 1833, that area was named Barrie in his honour.

In mid-1834, Barrie returned to England and King William IV made him a knight commander of the Royal Guelphic Order. He was promoted to rear-admiral in 1837 and knight commander of the Order of the Bath in 1840. 

Barrie lived in retirement in Swarthdale, Lancashire and died on June 7, 1841.”

Deputy Mayor Barry Ward, who was a guest of Harrogate for the 2019 World Cycling Championships, stated,

“It is always a good idea to celebrate our heritage and teach residents about the person our city is named after. Sir Robert Barrie had quite an interesting life, both as a military commander and administrator in what later became Canada. June the 7th marks both the anniversary of his death and the anniversary of the signing of the city’s agreement to make Harrogate (North Yorkshire, England), where he is buried, a twin city of Barrie.”

A full and intersting biography of Sir Robert can be found on Wikipedia, and can be accessed with this link:

Robert Barrie – Wikipedia

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