MVCA looking at future of Mill of Kintail

CARLETON PLACE— A special advisory committee will be struck to examine the future of the R. Tait McKenzie and Dr. James Naismith collections in the museum at the Mill of Kintail Conservation Area.

That’s the direction from the Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority (MVCA) board of directors following a meeting earlier this week.

The MVCA began reviewing its programs and services in order to manage new funding constraints imposed by Provincial Bill 108 (More Homes, More Choice Act), passed in June, 2019. Since the regulation expected later this fall will likely limit core funding to these types of museums, the MVCA initiated discussions on how to keep the heritage building open for community use.

“We heard loud and clear from the public at this month’s Policy and Priorities committee meeting the R. Tait McKenzie and Naismith collections belong at the Mill of Kintail,” said MVCA chair Janet Mason. “We look forward to working with the special advisory committee to reach a viable and sustainable solution that satisfies the community while respecting the authority’s role and regulation handed down by the province.”

Carleton Place Mayor Christa Lowry says the MVCA had done a great job of looking after the collection.

“The MVCA board of directors has been an exceptional steward of the Mill of Kintail property and collection since 1972,” she said. “As we move into this next chapter for the museums, I have every faith that the MVCA Board will continue to make decisions to ensure that the legacy of Dr. R. Tait McKenzie and Dr. James Naismith will be respected and preserved for future generations. While change may be inevitable, let our collective goal be to shape this change into a positive, new opportunity to celebrate Ramsay and Canadian history.”

Advisory committee members will include MVCA staff, board members and volunteers, as well as experts from the museum and fundraising sectors and government and non-government agencies. While the timeline won’t be determined until the regulation is released by the Province, it’s anticipated the committee will meet monthly beginning in October and throughout 2020.

At the Sept. 18 MVCA meeting, the board of directors also approved the Mill of Kintail Museum Strategic Plan which contains long-term goals and objectives and meets the required criteria for provincial funding via the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport’s Community Museum Operating Grant (CMOG), which can now be accessed to support implementation.

The MVCA is one of 36 Conservation Authorities in Ontario. Formed in 1968, MVCA’s mandate is to manage the watershed’s resources in partnership with our eleven member municipalities and the Province of Ontario. For more information, visit