A history of the Alders Beach Resort

Before 1910 the Alders was a Comox Logging camp. It was used as a vacation spot by the employees of Camp 3 which was originally located at Black Creek near the present location of the Black Creek store. Camp 3 was later moved to an area beyond the end of Endall Road near Northey Lake. It was burned out and rebuilt in 1925. After the total destruction of Camp 3 from the third serious fire in 4 years and the harrowing escape of the women and children, many children and families moved to the safety of the Williams Beach camp for up to 3 months during the summer fire season.

In the 1920’s Bob Filberg of Comox Logging had bought the old picnic property at Williams Beach and turned it into an unofficial company resort. He hired carpenters to put up some 2 x 4 and 2 x 6 cabin frames in a couple of rows along the beach. He then brought in some lumber and shakes and invited men from Headquarters and Camp 3 to build their own summer cottages. “If you want to put up a summer house, I’ll give you the lumber”, he said. Filberg’s offer was open only to married men and their families, and it was an unwritten rule that those who didn’t go to the beach every year lost this perk.

Approximately 34 cabins were built. There was an extensive row of cabins built up on higher ground, but they were very poorly made. Around 1944-45 some of the cabins were sold by the Comox Logging and Railway Company to men in the Navy. Many of the other cabins were badly deteriorated.

In 1945 the area was bought from Mr. Filberg by Carl and Ada Severson and made into a resort. Filberg was helping out a returned veteran. The agreement reached was a lease at $1.00 per year then after 5 years a payment of $5,000 was made. They installed indoor plumbing and refrigeration. They made the largest building into a dining room. This was unsuccessful. The resort was too remote to receive much business. The Severson’s completed renovations to the 6 cabins that were at beach level and the rest of the cabins continued to deteriorate. The Merville residents were a bit resentful that the area was turned into a resort because the Severson’s tried to turn the beach into a private region. In 1947, the Severson’s sold the resort to a Mr. Farrington (with the permission of Mr. Filberg).

In 1959, Mary and Art King purchased the resort. There were only about 3 or 4 cabins on the higher ground left by this time and they were in such bad condition that they were demolished. The Kings improved and managed the resort. They installed a telephone and electrical wiring on the site. Power was generated by a self-owned generator that produced only direct current.

In 1973, the resort was sold to a family named Pawson from Ontario. Two years later, in 1975, a group of 15 interested couples bought the resort and own it to this day.

The wooden housekeeping cottages still retain a pioneer feeling, being situated in a relatively secluded forest setting where wildlife abounds.