Notice of intention to designate: 408 Willow Road

Take notice that the Council of the Corporation of the City of Guelph intends to designate 408 Willow Road as a property of cultural heritage value or interest under section 29, Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act, R.S.O. 1990, Chapter 0.18.

Description of the property

The current legal description of the subject real property is Block H, Plan 615, City of Guelph.

Statement of cultural heritage value or interest

The subject property is worthy of designation under Part IV, Section 29 of the Ontario Heritage Act because it meets six of the prescribed criteria for determining cultural heritage value or interest, according to Ontario Regulation 9/06 as amended by Ontario Regulation 569/22. The heritage attributes of 408 Willow Road display: design or physical, historical or associative, and contextual value.

Design/Physical Value

The subject property meets Criterion 1 because the building exhibits design or physical value as a representative example of Georgian architectural style from the mid-19th century in a rural residential building design. The subject property meets Criterion 2 because the building has high physical integrity in that it has retained most of its original architectural design features in limestone and granite displaying a high degree of craftsmanship.

Historical/Associative Value

The Hood farmhouse known as Fountainhead Farm meets Criterion 4 of Ontario Regulation 569/22 being of historic and associative value because of its direct ties to Guelph’s agricultural history and to the Hood and McCorkindale families, both important settler families of Guelph Township and what is now the City of Guelph. The Hood family has a long history in the area and the farmhouse is tied to three generations of the Hood family – George Hood, and primarily his son Gideon Hood and grandson George D. Hood. George Hood was a merchant miller in Selkirk, Scotland and emigrated to Canada arriving with his family in Guelph Township in 1832. George’s son Gideon Hood was described in the 1906 Historical Atlas of the County of Wellington as becoming one of the most notable men in the district of Guelph Township. Gideon did the first regular teaming between Guelph and Hamilton and carried the first mail between the two places. Gideon Hood made Fountainhead Farm into a very successful agricultural business and by 1871 owned 1,250 acres and seven dwelling houses, as well as 14 barns or stables, three carriages or sleighs, six wagons, four plows, and two fanning mills. The Fountainhead Farm was granted to Gideon’s son George D. in 1888 who continued to manage the farm until it was sold to the McCorkindale family in 1920.

The McCorkindales were part of the original Scottish immigrant group to settle the Paisley Block area of Guelph Township shortly after 1827. Robert and Jessie McCorkindale purchased Fountainhead Farm in 1920. Their older son William Cleghorn (Bill) McCorkindale became the youngest graduate from the University of Guelph’s Veterinary College in 1932. Bill McCorkindale moved back to Fountainhead Farm from Mount Forest where he continued his veterinary practice until the McCorkindales sold the property in 1960.

Contextual Value

The subject property meets Criterion 7 because it is important in defining, maintaining and supporting the architectural character and agricultural history of the Willow Road area. The subject property meets Criterion 8 because the stone farmhouse at 408 Willow Road and the adjacent stone carriage house at 404 Willow Road maintain their original configuration and are functionally, visually and historically linked. The subject property meets Criterion 9 because the building’s distinctive form, building footprint and combined limestone and granite construction has become a landmark within the historic Willow Road streetscape.

Description of heritage attributes

The following elements of the property at 408 Willow Road should be considered as heritage attributes in a designation under Part IV, Section 29 of the Ontario Heritage Act:

  • Form and massing of the 2 storey, 3-bay, side gable, limestone

farmhouse with 1.5-storey tail and 1 storey extension in granite and limestone;

  • Limestone chimney shafts rising from ridge of both side gable walls; · Limestone exterior walls with roughly squared quoins and voussoirs over windows and front door;
  • Central, 6-panel front door with Georgian transom, wooden reveal panels and a wooden pilaster surround;
  • Location and shape of all original window and door openings;
  • All stone lintels and stone or wood sills at window and door openings; and
  • L-plan of 1.5-storey tail and single storey extension with split-faced granite walls and limestone quoins, lintels and sills

It is intended that non-original features may be returned to the documented earlier designs or to their documented original without requiring Council to amend the heritage designation by-law.

A more detailed description of the property’s cultural heritage value may be found in staff’s report to City Council dated June 11, 2024 at

Notice of objection

Any person may send a notice of objection to this proposed designation, before 4 p.m. on Friday, July 12, 2024. This notice must be sent by registered mail or delivered to the Clerk of the City of Guelph and must set out the reason for the objection and all relevant facts. If a notice of objection is received, the Council of the City of Guelph shall consider the objection and make a decision whether or not to withdraw the notice of intention to designate the property within 90 days after the end of the 30-day objection period. If Council decides not to withdraw its intention to designate, a heritage designation bylaw must be passed within 120 days after the date of publication of the notice of intention to designate. Council must publish a notice of passing of the designation by-law which is followed by a 30-day appeal period when appeals of the by-law may be given to the Ontario Land Tribunal for a hearing and decision.

Dylan McMahon
Acting City Clerk
City of Guelph
1 Carden Street, Guelph ON N1H 3A1

For more information

Stephen Robinson, Senior Heritage Planner
Planning Services 519-822-1260 x 2496
[email protected]

Notice date: June 13, 2024