Bathurst, New Brunswick

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Bathurst waterfront
Bathurst waterfront
Coat of arms of Bathurst
Coat of arms
Motto: See What Awaits You
Bathurst is located in New Brunswick
Location within New Brunswick.
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Country  Canada
Province  New Brunswick
County Gloucester
Parish Bathurst
Settled 1600's
Town Status 1912
City Status 1966
Electoral Districts   

Provincial Bathurst
 • Type City Council
 • Mayor Stephen J. Brunet
 • Councillors
 • Land 91.86 km2 (35.47 sq mi)
 • Urban 69.85 km2 (26.97 sq mi)
 • Metro 2,087.97 km2 (806.17 sq mi)
Highest elevation 62 m (203 ft)
Lowest elevation 0 m (0 ft)
Population (2011)[2]
 • City 12,275
 • Density 133.6/km2 (346/sq mi)
 • Urban 18,154
 • Urban density 260/km2 (700/sq mi)
 • Metro 30,424
 • Metro density 15/km2 (40/sq mi)
 • Pop 2006-2011 Decrease 3.5%
 • Dwellings 6,257
Time zone AST (UTC-4)
 • Summer (DST) ADT (UTC-3)
Postal code(s) E2A
Area code(s)
Route 8
Route 11
Route 134
Route 180

Route 315
Route 322
Route 430
NTS Map 021P12

Bathurst (2011 population; UA 12,275; CA population 13,424) is the County seat for Gloucester County, New Brunswick, and is at the estuary of the Nepisiguit River.[3]


Bathurst's former post office

Bathurst had been the location of the annual Mi'kmaq summer coastal community of Nepisiguit prior to European settlement.[4] Early settlers from France came to the area in the 17th century in what became part of the colony of Acadia.[citation needed] Following the fall of this part of Acadia to British control in the Seven Years' War, the region saw the arrival of numerous English and Scottish settlers, particularly during the latter 18th century through to the 20th century, such as Hugh Munro, around 1800 founder of “the first and most ancient establishment” in the timber trade of Nepisiguit Bay.[5] In 1807 Munro was appointed a justice of the peace and judge of the Inferior Court of Common Pleas for Northumberland County,[5] and in 1828 was elected to sit in the 9th New Brunswick Legislature when the county of Gloucester was given its first representative.

The community, which up to that point had been named St. Peters,[5] was renamed by the Governor, Sir Howard Douglas (1823–1831), in honor of Henry Bathurst, 3rd Earl Bathurst (1762–1834), Secretary of State for the Colonies of the British government.

The Annual Report of the Department of Fisheries for 1868 lists a so-called "Marine Hospital" located in Bathurst, and the place of work for a Fisheries Officer. Bathurst once had a fish processing plant. Navigation in this County consisted of the carrying of wood, fish and grindstones from Bathurst to Britain, ports of the Dominion, Newfoundland, Miquelon, the United States, South America and Italy. In the wood trade, Bathurst employed in 1868 vessels of from 50 to 1,200 tons. The beacons at that time were unlit, a cause of some concern.[6]

In 1871 Bathurst had a population of 600.[7]

The opening of the Intercolonial Railway of Canada in 1876 provided a fast connection from the port of Bathurst to the rest of North America which was essential for developing the region's principal industries in forestry and zinc mining.

In 1881, the Roman Catholic Church constructed the Sacré-Coeur Cathedral.

In 1904 Bathurst was a seaport, a port of entry on the Intercolonial Railway and the Caraquet and Gulf Shore Railway and a town with a post office, 35 stores, six hotels, a steam sawmill, a shingle mill, a flour mill, three fish freezers, two carriage factories, a printing shop, three churches and a population of 3,000.[7]

Bathurst was incorporated as a town in 1912.[7]

The Bathurst Power and Paper Company Ltd. built a mill in Bathurst, New Brunswick in 1914. Majority control of the company was obtained in the late 1930s by Arthur J. Nesbitt and his partner Peter A. T. Thomson through their holding company, Power Corporation of Canada. In the early 1960s, Power Corporation bought the Consolidated Paper Company. When Paul Desmarais acquired control of Power Corporation in 1968, the two companies were merged to become Consolidated-Bathurst Inc. In 1989, the company was sold to Stone Container Corporation of Chicago, Illinois who renamed it Stone Consolidated Inc.

Bathurst was incorporated as a city in 1966.[7]

In 1972 The Bathurst Alpine Papermakers won The Hardy Cup defeating The Rosetown Red Wings 3-0 at the old Bathurst Arena. The Hardy cup was the Canadian national Intermediate "A" ice hockey championship from 1967 until 1984. From 1985 until 1990, the Hardy Cup was the Canadian national senior championship for Senior "AA" after senior and intermediate hockey were merged by the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association. The trophy was retired to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1990

In 1998, the Laval Titan QMJHL franchise relocated to Bathurst, taking the name Acadie–Bathurst Titan. They play at the K.C Irving center in Bathurst

The Nepisiguit Centennial Museum/Cultural Centre (c. 1967) is designated a local historic place under the provincial Community Planning Act.[8] The Herman J. Good V.C Branch No.18 Royal Canadian Legion War Museum (c. 1956) is also designated a local historic place.[9]


Bathurst is located, and has a station, on the Canadian National railway line. Via Rail provides a Wednesday, Friday and Sunday passenger service in both directions. The economy is primarily focused on mining, fishing and forestry. Other sectors include: tourism, phone call centres, manufacturing, and provincial and federal government. The service sector is the city's largest employer. The city is serviced by one health care facility, Chaleur Regional Hospital.

A regional Tax Services Canada and a Transport Canada Marine Safety Service centre are located in the old downtown. Bathurst Marina is listed as an official Port of Entry for small vessels.[10][11][12] It is listed as a non-compulsory pilotage zone.[13] The port authority was transferred in February 2003 to a private consortium.[14] Bathurst is located 50 km south of the deep-water Port of Belledune, where a petroleum tank farm and a coal-fired electrical generating station are located.[15]

On December 17, 2010, it was determined that an environmental assessment was required in relation to an expansion of a sawmill project because the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency considered providing financial assistance to the proponent. The project consists of building an expansion of approximately 297 square meters (m2) that will be added to the existing building of approximately 372 m2.[16]

Bathurst is one of four airports in the province with regularly-scheduled flights. Bathurst Airport accommodates general aviation, along with service to Montreal, Quebec via Air Canada.

The Smurfit-Stone paper mill (formerly part of the Power Corporation of Canada empire) ceased operations in 2009, and the plant is in process of being demolished. The 225ac of industrial wasteland was sold on in January 2010 to the Green Investment Group partners. Their goal is to create innovative, alternative energy projects that enhance the Bathurst region and Northern New Brunswick. The plan anticipates attracting companies that utilize technologies focusing on energy generation, alternative fuels and waste-to-energy conversion.[17] The property was as of July 2015 in violation of the city's dangerous and unsightly premises bylaw, but the owner is located outside the country, and was unwilling to deal with the property despite being given final notice by the city.[18] There are almost a $1 million in back taxes and environmental reclamation costs associated with the former mill site.[18] There were almost $1 million in back taxes and environmental reclamation costs associated with the former mill site as of July 2015.[18] The provincial Department of Environment and Local Government Minister, Brian Kenny, issued a ministerial order, which required the company to clean up the site within 120 days, but the deadline passed on 14 August, so the file was passed on to the Attorney-General in order to determine whether charges would be laid.[19]

GDF Suez operates the inland Caribou Wind Park energy farm approximately 70 km west of Bathurst under a Power Purchase Agreement scheme contracted with NB Power, with a nominal power output of 100MW.[20]


A topographic map of Bathurst.

Bathurst is situated on Bathurst Harbour, an estuary at the mouth of the Nepisiguit River at the southernmost part of Chaleur Bay. Two spits of land, Carron Point and Alston Point, form the enclosure for the harbour. Youghall Beach Provincial Park lies to the north of town.[21] Bathurst is located 90 km south of Dalhousie, and 90 km north of Miramichi.


Bathurst is officially bilingual with French, Irish, Scottish and English heritage. The city is also home to Míkmaq natives, with the Papineau First Nations (Kekwapskuk) community located on the outskirts of the city. Recent immigration to Bathurst has brought new residents from countries such as the Philippines and Korea.


Historical Census Data - Bathurst, New Brunswick[24]
Year Pop. ±%
1871 600 —    
1901 1,044 +74.0%
1911 960 −8.0%
1921 3,327 +246.6%
1931 3,300 −0.8%
1941 3,554 +7.7%
Year Pop. ±%
1951 4,453 +25.3%
1961 5,494 +23.4%
1971 16,674 +203.5%
1981 15,705 −5.8%
1986 14,683 −6.5%
1991 14,409 −1.9%
Year Pop. ±%
1996 13,815 −4.1%
2001 12,924 −6.4%
2006 12,714 −1.6%
2011 12,275 −3.5%


Canada Census Mother Tongue - Bathurst, New Brunswick[24]
Census Total
French & English
Year Responses Count Trend Pop % Count Trend Pop % Count Trend Pop % Count Trend Pop %
5,860 Decrease 6.5% 49.39% 5,585 Decrease 2.6% 47.07% 230 Decrease 4.2% 1.94% 190 Increase 31.0% 1.60%
6,265 Increase 1.0% 50.58% 5,735 Decrease 4.7% 46.31% 240 Decrease 28.4% 1.94% 145 Increase 107.1% 1.17%
6,205 Decrease 6.3% 49.15% 6,015 Decrease 8.7% 47.64% 335 Increase 19.6% 2.65% 70 Decrease 12.5% 0.55%
6,625 n/a 48.82% 6,585 n/a 48.53% 280 n/a 2.06% 80 n/a 0.59%



La Promenade Waterfront is cluster of shops, art, boutiques, a visitor information center, and an outdoor pavilion that hosts a variety of activities throughout the year. There are boardwalks with views of the Bay of Chaleur.

Youghall Beach Park offers swimming, volleyball, and windsurfing. Bathurst Marina is located next to the beach.

Bathurst Hospitality Days is a week-long festival with many activities for young and old. It includes four nights of concerts, featuring a mix of classic rock, Acadian and maritime music.

Bathurst Chamber Music Festival is an annual week-long classical music festival which features over 30 emerging musicians and composers from around Canada and abroad. It was created to help build appreciation, as well as to create a necessity for classical music within the community.

Notable people

Sir James Dunn of Algoma Steel and Canadian Steamship Lines was born in West Bathurst[25]

Community Organizations & Churches

Bathurst is gifted with many community-based organisations, for example:

  • Synergies Chaleur[26]
  • Royal Canadian Legion, Branch No. 18
  • New Brunswick Association for Community Living[27]
  • Maison Doucet Hennessy House[28] (an architectural heritage project)
  • Anglican church[29]
  • Baptist church [30]
  • Catholic church[31]
  • United church[32]
  • Pentecostal church[33]
  • Mormon church[34]

Phantom ship legend

The Bay of Chaleur is known for its phantom ship legend, which dates back more than two centuries.[citation needed] The story (and witnesses) claim that a sailing ship burned in the waters north of the city, possibly from the Battle of the Restigouche, and is visible in certain weather and light conditions. A drawing of a ghost wielding an anchor and menacing two sailors could be seen on the city's old welcome sign.[35]


The climate of Bathurst is classified as humid continental (Köppen climate classification Dfb).

Bathurst experiences four distinct seasons. Summers are warm and occasionally hot and humid. Winters are often cold, windy and snowy. Spring and Fall, although short, bring chilly to warm temperatures. Late heat waves known as "Indian summer" are a common occurrence.

During winter, snow stays on ground from about December to April.

See also


  1. Government of New Brunswick website: Bathurst
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2011 Statistics Canada Census Profile: Bathurst, New Brunswick Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "cp2011" defined multiple times with different content
  3. New Brunswick Provincial Archives - Bathurst
  4. "Micmac Locations". Micmac Tribe. Access Genealogy. Retrieved 27 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 DCB: "MUNRO, HUGH"
  6. "Annual Report, Department of Fisheries"
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 "Where is Home? New Brunswick Communities Past and Present - Bathurst"
  8. Nepisiguit Centennial Museum/Cultural Centre. Canadian Register of Historic Places. Retrieved 8 July 2012.
  9. Herman J. Good V.C Branch No.18 Royal Canadian Legion War Museum. Canadian Register of Historic Places. Retrieved 8 July 2012.
  10. Canadian Customs - Ports of Entry (TRS/M’s)
  11. "Canadian Border Services: Bathurst"
  12. "Bathurst Marina"
  13. "Atlantic Pilotage Tariff Regulations, 1996 (SOR/95-586) - SCHEDULE 1: PORT AND HARBOUR AREAS"
  14. "Transport Canada - Deproclamation Notice Subsection 2(1)"
  15. Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency: "Archived - Reactivation of the former Shell Canada Petroleum Products Bulk (Designated) Oil Handling Facility at Belledune, NB, now owned by the Belledune Port Authority."
  16. Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency: "Archived - Expansion of a Sawmill"
  17. "Projects - Brunswick North Industrial Park – Bathurst, New Brunswick"
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 "Bathurst fed up with cleanup delays on old Smurfit-Stone site", 24 Jul 2015
  19. "Bathurst mill site past cleanup deadline", 19 Aug 2015
  20. "Annual Report 2009/10"
  21. "COMMODORE GEORGE WALKER AT ALSTON POINT, NEPISIGUIT 1768-1777", Manuscripts in Archaelogy 31
  22. "2006 Community Profiles". Canada 2006 Census. Statistics Canada. March 30, 2011. Retrieved 2014-03-23.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  23. "2001 Community Profiles". Canada 2001 Census. Statistics Canada. February 17, 2012. Retrieved 2014-03-23.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  24. 24.0 24.1 Statistics Canada: 1996, 2001, 2006, 2011 census
  25. Sir James Dunn
  28. MAISON DOUCET HENNESSY HOUSE, BATHURST, NEW BRUNSWICK - Architectural Description and Proposed Restoration
  35. City Hall of Bathurst
  36. "Bathurst A, new Brunswick". Canadian Climate Normals 1981–2010. Environment Canada. Retrieved 30 March 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  37. "Bathurst A, New Brunswick". Canadian Climate Normals 1981–2010. Environment Canada. Retrieved 30 March 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links

Media related to Bathurst, New Brunswick at Wikimedia Commons

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