For their hard work and dedication, which helped bring The Vault Cultural Collective to where it is today, Lynne Fair and Loralee Laycock were honored with lifetime memberships in the arts organization.
The awards were announced at the cultural collective Vault’s annual general meeting on March 4.
Carolyn Steeves, president of the Vault Cultural Collective, explained that there were about 20 people present at the AGM, almost the entire board and local volunteers.
“We wanted to do a few special things because of the situation we find ourselves in as a start-up company in Strathmore,” she said.
“It went on for about 18 months and Lynne Fair decided to step down from the board. She is very actively involved with the Western District Historical Society and wanted to put her energies into that area which is directly involved with the Vault,” said said Steves.
“We thought, ‘How can we thank her? How can we recognize it in a meaningful way? and what we decided to do is give him a lifetime membership in the Vault,” she said.
Steeves explained that over the past few months, the collective has launched a new membership campaign where people can purchase a selection of memberships including individual, artist and corporate memberships.
It was the first time the collective had selected a person for a lifetime membership.
“We wanted to recognize all that she did as a member of the Western District Historical Society, with Rhonda Stockwell to get the Vault started, all that initial planning, the infrastructure that they put into the Vault. All of these meetings every week on Tuesday morning at 10:00 a.m. and working hours and hours. And we thought that would be really meaningful to her and it was a complete surprise,” Steeves said.
Loralee Laycock was also honored with a lifetime membership for her investment in creating the Vault.
“Loralee was unable to attend the Annual General Meeting on Friday evening, but she is also an early board member who has been involved as the Vault for 18 months and helped start the Vault, especially in the very early stages determining what was going to happen with the building and what direction we were going to go,” Steeves said.
“She was on the Vault as a member of the Strathmore Children’s Choir. She decided to step down as well and again just to recognize her for all that she has done for starting the Vault and all of us working hard together wanted to recognize her as well,” she said.
Fair had this to say about being recognized.
“I’m so honored to be the recipient of the Vault’s first-ever lifetime membership. I’ve been involved with it from the very beginning before it was even a formal society and I believe in everything we’ve tried to do there, and I think we’ve gotten off to a good start and people’s interest has been piqued now.
“We really hope to get more people to our door when the weather is better and there are more people on the streets and more events are happening, we want to be a part of that,” she said.
Regarding her work with the Western District Historical Society, she said, “I’ve always been really passionate about history, partly because my family has been in this community since about 1910 and since my mother was came here in 1927 to teach at the school, I have absorbed the story of Strathmore all my life.
“I am very passionate about the Historical Society and have been a member since our very beginnings before we even became a society,” she said. “I am very grateful that we are also part of the vault.”
In the Vault facility in downtown Strathmore, there are a number of display cases displaying historical artifacts unique to the town of Strathmore. Some of the items include calendar plates, original editions of the Strathmore Standard newspaper and antique china, as well as the history of the Vault building which over the years changed hands from Union Bank to Royal Bank , The Strathmore Standard and The Standard Shoe Store.
“I think it’s important for people to realize that this is one of the last remaining historic buildings on the main street,” she said.
She noted that some residents may not realize the building dates from 1910.