Shiloh residents watch the end of an era

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The Shiloh School has been a part of Irwin Syer’s life for as long as he can remember.

Syer, who lived just “a mile down the road” from SS No. 12, started going to school there when the building was just four years old in 1938.

Syer was one of about 40 people who were on hand as the former school which was a community centre since 1968 was auctioned off Monday. He sat in the teacher’s chair as some of the smaller items were sold.

Miss Hyden was Syer’s first teacher when he arrived. He remembers Miss Pough from Alvinston the best.

As a child “I didn’t get a chance to sit in the teacher’s chair,” says Syer.

The man who farmed the land near the school was sentimental about the community center being sold. “I wish they (Enniskillen Township) could have kept it for a community center,” he says.

But that was not to be. Township officials say there were fewer rentals as the years rolled on. Then, the furnace was condemned and had to be replaced. Council didn’t think rental fees would cover the cost of the repairs.

Syer spent many nights in the community center playing cards and says it may have still been viable if people didn’t rely on home entertainment, like television, so much.

As the auction started, Syer said he wasn’t sure he would buy anything. “Maybe just this chair,” he smiled tapping Miss Hyden’s wooden bucket chair. It was sold to Syers’ son, who also picked up two baseball bats once used at the school he attended, mementos of the school which will soon disappear.

Enniskillen Mayor Kevin Marriott purchased the property during the open auction. The only condition placed on the sale of the property is that the building be taken down.

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