Home / Accueil

Urquhart House

2501 23rd Avenue, Vernon, British Columbia, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2000/02/21

Urquhart House; City of Vernon, 2010
Oblique view of front elevation, 2009
Urquhart House; City of Vernon, 2010
View of carriage house, 2009
Historic view of Urquhart House; Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #19945, no date
Front elevation, no date

Other Name(s)

Urquhart/Vallance/Alexander House
Urquhart House

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2010/05/20

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Urquhart House, built in 1912, is a one-and-one-half-storey Arts and Crafts bungalow located at 2501 23rd Avenue in Vernon.

Heritage Value

The Urquhart House is valued as an important example of the English Arts and Crafts bungalow style in a mature setting. The house comprises a central side-gabled front with two front-gabled ends. The house is richly decorated with the vernacular and indigenous materials favoured by the Arts and Crafts movement. The use of cobblestones for the foundation and tall chimneys, the shingle cladding, and the half-timbering and roughcast stucco in the eaves are all typical of the style. Other high-style details include the decorative verge posts, the fenestration with leaded-glass windows, the porch with tapered posts and decorative brackets, and the shed dormers. The house is complemented by a carriage house designed with the same Arts and Crafts details as the house and surmounted by an octagonal dovecot. The sloping grounds with mature trees and iron fence with cobblestone posts are an important part of the original estate plan. The Craftsman interior includes fir paneling, a stone fireplace, and an inglenook.

The Urquhart House is further valued for its association with Otto Beeston Hatchard (1879-1945), its architect. Hatchard was born in London, England, and trained as an architect, attending the London Polytechnic School of Arts and Crafts. In 1905, he moved to Sudan to take on the role of Chief Architect for the government. He designed many public buildings in Port Sudan and Khartoum. In 1910, he moved to Vernon to establish an architectural practice. He immediately started to build homes with Arts and Crafts and Craftsman designs. Extant examples include the Patricia Ranch House and Kinloch House, and Hatchard’s own house on 23rd Street, which he called a 'Sussex Bungalow'. Hatchard’s chosen builder for these projects was Robert Ford. All his homes exhibit the highest levels of craftsmanship.

The house is also notable for its association with its owners. While little is known of Mr. Urquhart, the original owner, subsequent owners included James Vallance, owner of Vernon Hardware Company, Dr. Hugh Alexander, one of two surgeons in Vernon during World War II, and Dr. Rudy Fischer, co-founder of Vernon’s first x-ray clinic.

Source: City of Vernon Planning Department

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements that define the heritage character of the Urquhart House include its:
- location on the north side of 23rd Avenue
- cottage scale and massing, with twin gables framing the façade
- half-timbering and plaster decoration in the gables
- decorative gable posts
- fieldstone chimneys
- fenestration with twelve-over-one leaded-glass windows
- shingle cladding
- fieldstone foundations
- Craftsman interior features, including stained fir paneling, stone fireplace and inglenook
- carriage house designed to complement the main house, with shingle cladding, gables with half-timbering, octagonal dovecot with conical roof, finial, and braces
- sloping grounds, with mature trees and an iron fence with cobblestone posts, comprising most of the original estate



British Columbia

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (BC)

Recognition Statute

Local Government Act, s.954

Recognition Type

Community Heritage Register

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design
Peopling the Land

Function - Category and Type



Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer

O. B. Hatchard


Robert Ford

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

City of Vernon Planning Department

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




Related Places



Advanced SearchAdvanced Search
Nearby Places