By Jesse Ferguson, 4BRANT
A ceremony celebrating the 56th Field Artillery Regiment took place at the Brantford Armoury on Brant Avenue (adjacent from Dalhousie; pictured below) on Saturday, May 26 between 1-4PM
The Brantford Armoury is the proud home of the 56th Field Artillery Regiment. Major Ortiz-Sosa, a leader of the regiment, sees this 56th Regiment as different than others. “We see ourselves as a family. History and that family combination sets us apart,” he said.
Over 100 guests and military personnel took in the event at the Armoury as estimated by the secretary of the 56th Field Artillery Regiment Association, Nancy Sherritt (below photos courtesy of Ms. Sherritt).
This year happens to mark the 150th anniversary of this regiment. Also, today just so happened to be Artillery Day (perhaps not coincidentally), so the stars had aligned.
Guests arrived at the recently renovated Armoury to witness the event, which was ran by Honourary Lieutenant Paul Williamson (image below, right).
“As a civilian, this is another world,” Williamson explained. “A world well worth exploring,”
The event today included a brief history of the Armoury, a display of the various functions of the Armoury, as well as soldiers who were displaying the items on display and their skills on them.
They had a musical band as well– The 7th Toronto Regiment Band (pictured below) led by Captain Nicolo Arrigo– at the event whom played several historic marches reminiscent of tunes played in times of battle.
Also, Devlin’s catered the event with great food via a buffet.
Each province’s flag dawned the building like badges as the band began to play their symphonic marches for the crowd.
After the presentation concluded, Captain Mattheson showed me around. The upstairs is very impressive! There are officer hangouts, bars, poker and pool tables, TVs, and even video games apart of the massive renovations for the soldiers living areas. Mattheson was quick to point out that all of this was made possible by Williamson’s kind donations.
I made my rounds and took part in a virtual shooter on a screen with a gun alike ones used in battle. After my target was sufficiently defeated, I moved on with time waning down on the event. In fact, soldiers were tidying up but there was still much I wanted to check out!
According to Ortiz-Sosa, who spoke with me after time elapsed on the event, the Armoury opened in October 1893. The public may have to wait for an open house to check out everything here. According to Ortiz-Sosa, the government specifies when they can field such open houses for the public.
“This regiment appreciates all the support,” Ortiz-Sosa (above) said of the donations and of the attendees today, but generally too. He encourages people to come out and see what they have going at the Armoury.
One crest that dominated plenty of the upstairs– on couches, cushions, even rugs– of a Latin phrase that loosely translates to “Glory surrounds us.”
“I want you to feel this place because it’s important,” Williamson said in his speech.
There is much to be proud of here– and is there ever a lot to learn.