(March 27, 2023)

At Monday night’s Stratford City Council meeting, nine thoughtful, intelligent presentations argued in favour of designating Avon Crest. You can watch the video of the meeting here:

Speakers argued for designation to protect our 132-year old hospital on the basis of its architectural, historical and heritage value, in order to avoid the environmental hazards of unnecessary demolition and to avoid economic waste and foster development potential. There were two proposals by architects (Robert Lemon and Rob Ritz) for repurposing Avon Crest and even for accommodating new development (such as the Revera proposal) on the existing site, with no demolition.

Many speakers devoted time not only to facts and solutions but to countering misinformation spread by the Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance (HPHA). Speakers were also forced to pivot quickly in response to a last-minute, strategically announced partnership between HPHA and Revera Canada to locate a long-term care facility on the Avon Crest site. (

It should be noted that the Revera Canada proposal for a 128-bed long-term care facility would only add 38 new beds as the plan calls for closing the existing facility in Sebringville and relocating those residents to Stratford. You can read about past and ongoing class action lawsuits against Revera Canada here: and here:

In his own delegation, Andrew Williams (HPHA CEO), made two truthful statements:

1- that HPHA wants to demolish Avon Crest

2- that he acknowledges allowing Avon Crest to deteriorate. Otherwise, Williams used his time to repeat the same misinformation and specious arguments that he has been peddling since 2020. He gaslighted all previous speakers, labelling them “emotional,” and then ignored the points they raised

Ultimately, City Council opted not to vote on designation until they could seek legal advice in relation to Bill 23.

Here then, is Save Avon Crest’s rebuttal to HPHA and to council’s apparent need for legal opinion.



Robert Lemon (excerpt from letter dated Thursday, March 30, 2023)

Dear Mr. Williams,

You claim to want to hear ideas and proposals … but you flatly refused my offer to meet and workshop site development options. The offer is still open.

If we had met and worked together you may have seen a way to fit a 128-bed long-term care facility on the site, either beside or within Avon Crest with an addition.

HPHA does not own the site and does not speak for the “community”. You were the sole person speaking against designation so you cannot say that you represent the community. You have never asked the community or the counties of Huron and Perth for their opinions. Not one open house, workshop or opinion poll has been hosted by you.

I believe you are on the wrong side of history in espousing that demolition is “best for the environment” in 2023. The climate does not stop at the boundaries of the city of Stratford.

Robert Lemon, BArch, MA , retired architect AIBC

(Read the full text of Robert Lemon’s letter here.)



Dan Schneider (excerpt from email sent Tuesday March 28, 2023)

There is NO legal impediment to city council issuing a notice of intention to designate Avon Crest. None.

This is a red herring thrown out at the last minute to cloud and defer the issue.

Dan Schneider, LL.B., CAHP

Dan Schneider Heritage Consulting

(Read the full text of Dan Schneider’s email here.)

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