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J.W. Hughes House

806 Bernard Avenue, Kelowna, British Columbia, V1Y, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1995/03/13

Exterior view of the J.W. Hughes House, 2005; City of Kelowna, Gordon Hartley, 2005
Front elevation
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Other Name(s)

J.W. Hughes House
Hughes House

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2007/03/22

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The historic place is the one-and-one-half-storey wood J.W. Hughes House at 806 Bernard Avenue, built in 1933 in Kelowna's North Central neighbourhood.

Heritage Value

The J.W. Hughes House is valued both for its association with a significant member of the early horticultural industry, and for its architecture and its context amongst the heritage structures along Bernard Avenue, east of the downtown core. The Hughes House is also representative of changing urban patterns in Kelowna in the later twentieth century.

The historic place has value for its association with Jesse W. Hughes (1887-1975). He had moved from Iowa to Olds, Alberta, in 1908 and married his wife Ruth there. They came to the Kelowna area in 1917. Hughes was an energetic innovator, always ready to try new crops and techniques. After starting an apple orchard, he progressed to apple buying, shipping, and selling. He started growing grapes in 1926, expanding from 45 acres near Okanagan Mission to 75 acres by 1933, and eventually had over 300 acres of grapes in production. He was one of the earlier growers in the Kelowna to produce grapes, which has become a leading agricultural industry. Hughes also grew cucumbers, asparagus, raspberries, and flowers, sold vegetable seeds and experimented with game and poultry farming in the 1940s. Hughes sold most of his vineyards to men who had worked for him, and shifted to growing and sending gifts of flowers to hospitals and shut-ins in BC and Alberta through the Rotary Club. Over the years, until his death in 1975, he sent about two million peonies, tulips, and gladioli.

Hughes built this substantial house himself in 1933, at the height of the Great Depression, when building a house was a bold gesture. The design of the house has value for being characteristic of architecture between the world wars. It is one-and-one-half-storeys high, with a large forward-facing dormer and projecting porch. Jesse and Ruth Hughes lived here until the mid-1950s, when they retired to their remaining property in Okanagan Mission. In 1956 this house was rented by Ivan and Norah Beadle. Ivan Beadle was a music teacher in the community.

A Heritage Designation Bylaw protected this house in 1995, giving it value as an early participant in the City's heritage conservation program. Like many of the buildings on this stretch of Bernard Avenue, it passed from residential to commercial use, representing the increasing land values and consequent new uses of the inner-city area, just east of the downtown core.

Source: City of Kelowna, Planning Department, File No. 6800-02

Character-Defining Elements

The character-defining elements of the J.W. Hughes House include:
- Location on Bernard Avenue, forming part of Kelowna's North Central neighbourhood
- Residential form, scale and massing, expressed by one-and-one-half-storey height and rectangular plan
- Steeply-pitched gabled roof
- Symmetrical, large, multi-window shed dormer facing the street
- Projecting, gable-roof entrance porch, with open sides and paired columns
- Dark cedar shingles and trim, set off against beige stucco walls
- Stuccoed chimney
- Second-floor symmetrical fenestration with double-hung wood sash windows and plain, medium-width wood trim
- Ground-floor fenestration with 1-over-1, fixed wood sash windows and plain wide wood trim
- Concrete front steps, with broad railings to entrance porch
- Mature landscaping in side yards and in front yard with lawn



British Columbia

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (BC)

Recognition Statute

Local Government Act, s.967

Recognition Type

Heritage Designation

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Peopling the Land

Function - Category and Type


Commerce / Commercial Services
Office or Office Building


Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer



Jesse W. Hughes

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

City of Kelowna, Planning Department, File No. 6800-02

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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