Fire damages three storeys of Sunnyside in Petrolia: with Photos

Fire damaged three storeys of Fairbank House Saturday morning. Photo by Dawson Currie

Fire has damaged three floors of an iconic house in Petrolia.

Saturday morning around 7:30, a man inside Sunnyside Manor – commonly called Fairbank House for its original owners – was awakened by a smoke detector and called for help, according to Petrolia/North Enniskillen Fire Chief Jay Arns.

The man and his two dogs escaped without injury.

“There was smoke showing from the third floor from the eaves of the house when we arrived on scene,” Arns told The Independent. The fire was not visible from the road but it was extensive. “Because there is so much space inside the house it was able to contain a lot of smoke.

“We had fire on all three floors,” says Arns. “As soon as we got the backdoor open there was fire right there.”

“It was mostly in the back portion of the home…not in the front where the old fire was,” says the chief referring to a 2002 fire which heavily damaged the home.

“We saved a lot,” says Arns. “We lost one floor and smoke damage throughout.”

Arns says since the home stripped to the studs in many places the fire burned quickly.

Investigators from the Petrolia/North Enniskillen department will return to the home Monday to try to figure out how the fire started.

While the chief didn’t want to give a damage estimate at this time, the Ontario Fire Marshal’s office is called in if damage is over $500,000.

Photos by Dawson Currie


  1. this was a beautiful home when I was growing up – it would have made a wonderful bed and breakfast or even a museum for Petrolia’s history – the library was amazing and the staircase was grand == it is sad to see it come to this!

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