|Bay Roberts Heritage Society
Bay Roberts Heritage Society 2014 All rights reserved.
Newfoundland & Labrador
The Cable Building
321 Water Street
N 47.5963, W 53.2543
SHORELINE HERITAGE WALK
The settlement of Bay Roberts began in the late 1500s at the most easterly cove known as
Juggler’s Cove, and then slightly westward at French’s Cove. These coves were chosen
because of their close proximity to the fishing grounds, and the flat rock beaches on which to
sun cure their fish without building flakes. Both settlements were plundered and burned by the
French under d’Iberville in 1697 and again in 1705. As the population increased and more
land was required, settlement gradually extended westward to Mercer’s Cove and beyond.
With improved transportation (motor boats), and the desire to be nearer schools, churches,
and other services, the area was eventually vacated. Rock structures, cemeteries, and
pathways give the evidence of former occupation.
In keeping with its mandate, the Heritage Society initiated a plan to develop the region into a
recreation area suitable for all ages, while preserving and presenting a part of our history and
culture. Funding was obtained under the TAGS and Green Programs to retrain displaced
fisherpersons and plant workers through classroom instruction and fieldwork to proceed with
the project. The first phase included rebuilding and restoring the retaining walls, walkways and
cart paths. The second phase was to enhance the area by rebuilding root cellars, adding
outhouses, picnic areas, interpretative panels and signs. After the completion, stewardship was
given to the Town as it remains one of the Town’s main tourist attractions and a pristine
recreation area for residents to enjoy.
The Shoreline Heritage Walk has been praised by professional organizations, featured in two
books, and newspaper articles, and traversed by thousands of people, local and international.
It has already proven itself as a major tourist attraction. Mr. Harold French, a former French’s
Cove landowner, who now lives in the USA, stated the area as presented by the Society is a
memorial to his ancestors and he would not want to see it any other way.
In 2002, the Society received the Manning Award of Excellence from Historic Sites Association
of Newfoundland and Labrador for the restoration and presentation of the Shoreline Heritage
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