Port Hope, Ontario

Last updated

Port Hope
Municipality of Port Hope
Port Hope Town Hall.JPG
Town hall
Northumberland locator map 2021.svg
Red pog.svg
Port Hope
Canada Southern Ontario location map 2.png
Red pog.svg
Port Hope
Coordinates: 43°57′N78°18′W / 43.950°N 78.300°W / 43.950; -78.300 Coordinates: 43°57′N78°18′W / 43.950°N 78.300°W / 43.950; -78.300
Province Ontario
County Northumberland
Named for Henry Hope
  MayorOlena Hankivsky
  Federal riding Northumberland—Peterborough South
  Prov. riding Northumberland—Peterborough South
  Land278.87 km2 (107.67 sq mi)
12.67 km2 (4.89 sq mi)
 (2021) [1]
   Municipality (lower-tier)17,773
  Density62.0/km2 (161/sq mi)
  Urban density993.6/km2 (2,573/sq mi)
Time zone UTC−05:00 (EST)
  Summer (DST) UTC−04:00 (EDT)
Forward Sortation Area
Area codes 905, 289 and 365
Website www.porthope.ca

Port Hope is a municipality in Southern Ontario, Canada, approximately 109 km (68 mi) east of Toronto and about 159 km (99 mi) west of Kingston. It is located at the mouth of the Ganaraska River on the north shore of Lake Ontario, in the west end of Northumberland County. The private Trinity College School opened here in 1868.



Cayuga people, one of the Six Nations of the Iroquois Confederacy, migrated to the Port Hope area from New York state in 1779. They had been forced from their homeland south of the Great Lakes after having been allies of the British during the American Revolution. Great Britain had ceded these lands, along with territory it occupied in the Thirteen Colonies east of the Mississippi River, after the United States won independence. [ citation needed ]

In 1793, United Empire Loyalists from the northern colonies became the first permanent settlers of European heritage in Port Hope, as the Crown granted them land as compensation for being forced to leave the colonies (much of their property was confiscated by rebel governments) and as payment for military service. The new colonists called the settlement Smith's Creek after a former fur trader. They developed mills and a town plot by the turn of the century.

After the War of 1812, the Crown tried to recruit more British settlers, and townspeople wanted a new name. After a brief fling with the name Toronto, the village was renamed in 1817 as Port Hope, after the Township of Hope of which it was a part. That was the namesake of Colonel Henry Hope, lieutenant governor of the Province of Quebec. [2] The post office dates from 1820. [3] In 1834 Port Hope was incorporated as a town.

Relatively slow growth from 1881 to 1951 resulted in much of the town's 19th century architecture surviving. In the early 21st century, Port Hope's downtown is celebrated as the best-preserved 19th-century streetscape in the province of Ontario. The town's local chapter of the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario and the Heritage Port Hope Advisory Committee are very active and advise on the restoration and preservation of architecturally or historically significant buildings.

With over 270 heritage-designated buildings throughout the municipality, Port Hope has a higher per capita rate of preservation than any other town or city in Canada. Downtown businesses are regulated by the municipality to maintain the town's unique character. This special character makes Port Hope a destination for heritage tourism and people interested in architecture.

On January 1, 2001, the original town amalgamated with Hope Township to form the Municipality of Port Hope and Hope, which was renamed to its current name in November of that same year. Prior to amalgamation, the town's census population was listed as 11,718 while the township's was 3,877.

The 2017 horror movie It and its 2019 sequel It Chapter Two [4] were both filmed in Port Hope, which portrayed the fictional town of Derry, Maine.

Radiation and cleanup

Port Hope is known for having the largest volume of historic low-level radioactive wastes in Canada. [5] These wastes were initially created by Eldorado Mining and Refining Limited and its private sector predecessors, resulting from the refining of radium from pitchblende. Radium was used in radioluminescent paint (such as aircraft dials), and in early treatments for cancer. [6]

During World War II, the Eldorado plant produced exponentially more uranium oxides, which the United States used in the Manhattan Project that created the first nuclear weapons. [7] This plant, now under the ownership of Cameco, continues to produce uranium fuel for nuclear power plants.

In 2002, a large amount of contaminated soil was removed from beachfront areas. [8] More recently, a testing program began of over 5,000 properties, with a plan to remove and store contaminated soil that had been used as landfill. Over a billion dollars is expected to be spent on the soil remediation project, the largest such cleanup in Canadian history. [5]



Besides the town proper of Port Hope, the municipality of Port Hope comprises a number of villages and hamlets, including Campbellcroft, Canton, Dale, Davidson's Corners (partially), Decker Hollow (ghost town), Elizabethville, Garden Hill, Knoxville, Morrish, Osaca, Perrytown, Port Britain, Rossmount (partially), Tinkerville, Thomstown, Welcome, Wesleyville, and Zion.


Port Hope has a humid continental climate (Dfb) with warm summers and cold winters.

Climate data for Port Hope, Ontario (1971–2000)
Record high °C (°F)17.2
Average high °C (°F)−1.8
Daily mean °C (°F)−5.8
Average low °C (°F)−9.7
Record low °C (°F)−32.2
Average precipitation mm (inches)59.0
Average rainfall mm (inches)21.0
Average snowfall cm (inches)38.0
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm)11.89.610.110.610.610.37.710.
Average rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm)
Average snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm)
Source: Environment Canada [9]


Port Hope Historical populations
1871 5,114+106.5%
1881 5,581+9.1%
1891 5,042−9.7%
1901 4,188−16.9%
1911 5,092+21.6%
1921 4,456−12.5%
1931 4,723+6.0%
1941 5,006+6.0%
1951 6,548+30.8%
1961 8,091+23.6%
1971 8,872+9.7%
1981 9,992+12.6%
1991 11,505+15.1%
2001 15,605+35.6%
2006 16,390+5.0%
2011 16,214−1.1%
2016 16,753+3.3%
2021 17,294+3.2%
[10] [1]

In the 2021 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, Port Hope had a population of 17,294 living in 7,318 of its 7,607 total private dwellings, a change of 3.2% from its 2016 population of 16,753. With a land area of 278.8 km2 (107.6 sq mi), it had a population density of 62.0/km2 (160.7/sq mi) in 2021. [11]

Canada census – Port Hope community profile
2021 2016 2011
Population17,294 (+3.2% from 2016)16,753 (+3.3% from 2011)16,214 (−1.1% from 2006)
Land area278.80 km2 (107.65 sq mi)278.87 km2 (107.67 sq mi)279.03 km2 (107.73 sq mi)
Population density62/km2 (160/sq mi)60.1/km2 (156/sq mi)58.1/km2 (150/sq mi)
Median age50.8 (M: 48.8, F: 52.8)50.6 (M: 48.8, F: 51.9)
Total private dwellings7,3157,3056,870
Median household income$72,435
References: 2021 [12] 2016 [13] 2011 [14] earlier [15] [16]

Mother tongue spoken: [15]


Top ten Port Hope industries by employment (2015) [17]
CPK Interior Products403
Cameco Corporation390
Cameco Fuel Services140
Akzo Nobel78
Standard Auto Wreckers60
Disk Tooling40
Curtis Chicks32
Port Hope Patterns12

Downtown Port Hope offers shopping and a historic main street. Port Hope is served by a Via Rail station. It has a medical centre, a walk-in clinic, and a community health centre. It has had a daily newspaper since 1878, the Port Hope Evening Guide. Until 2007, this was part of the Osprey Media chain and subsequently a part of the Sun Media organization. In 2009 the newspaper was amalgamated with the Cobourg Daily Star and renamed as Northumberland Today.com. In November 2017 the newspaper was included in the large-scale closing of many local community newspapers throughout the province of Ontario. [18]

Port Hope's Economic Development Strategic Plan aims to increase job growth at least as fast as population growth. The town has a variety of industries.

Arts and culture

Ganaraska River at Port Hope 2007.05.30 02 Ganaraska River Port Hope Ontario.jpg
Ganaraska River at Port Hope

The Ganaraska River (affectionately known as "The Ganny"), is well known to area anglers for annual salmon and trout runs. It has caused many historic floods, the most recent having occurred on March 21–22, 1980. Every April since until 2020, Port Hope has commemorated the flood with "Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny" ten kilometre boat race. [19] [20] [21] "Participants range from serious paddlers navigating the cold, fast-moving water in kayaks and canoes, to the very entertaining 'crazy craft' paddlers, floating any combination of materials down the river in an attempt to reach the finish line." [22] Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event was cancelled in 2020 and 2021, the first time in its history for such action. [23]


The Capitol Theatre is Canada's last functioning atmospheric theatre. [24] The theatre's main auditorium is styled after an outdoor medieval courtyard and rolling clouds are projected onto the ceiling. The town spent in excess of three million dollars renovating and upgrading the theatre in 2004–2005. It is also used for live events by Port Hope Festival Theatre.

John David Smith House, c. 1834 John David Smith House.jpg
John David Smith House, c. 1834

The Municipality of Port Hope is home to many heritage and cultural attractions, and events, including:



Highway 401 runs through the north end of Port Hope, with exits at County Road 2/Toronto Road (461) and Highway 28/Ontario Street (464).

Port Hope Transit provides local bus service, and VIA Rail provides passenger service from the Port Hope railway station along the Toronto-Montreal corridor. The station was built in 1856 for the Grand Trunk Railway and later CN Rail. It was restored in 1985.[ citation needed ]

Pleasure boats dock at the foot of John Street at Hayward Street and share the facilities with Cameco, which has berths for freighters servicing their manufacturing facilities at the mouth of the Ganaraska River.


Public education in Port Hope is under the management of the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board, and Catholic education is by the Peterborough Victoria Northumberland and Clarington Catholic District School Board.

Elementary schools

High schools

Notable people

See also

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Belleville, Ontario</span> City in Ontario, Canada

Belleville is a city in Ontario, Canada situated on the eastern end of Lake Ontario, located at the mouth of the Moira River and on the Bay of Quinte. Belleville is between Ottawa and Toronto, along the Quebec City-Windsor Corridor. Its population as of the 2016 census was 50,716. It is the seat of Hastings County, but politically independent of it, and is the centre of the Bay of Quinte Region.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Chatham-Kent</span> Municipality in Ontario, Canada

Chatham-Kent is a single-tier municipality in Southwestern Ontario, Canada. Mostly rural, its population centres are Chatham, Wallaceburg, Tilbury, Blenheim, Ridgetown, Wheatley and Dresden. The current Municipality of Chatham-Kent was created in 1998 by the amalgamation of Blenheim, Bothwell, Camden, city of Chatham, township of Chatham, Dover, Dresden, Erie Beach, Erieau, Harwich, Highgate, Howard, Orford, Raleigh, Ridgetown, Rodney, Thamesville, Tilbury East, Tilbury, Wallaceburg, Wheatley and Zone.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Newmarket, Ontario</span> Town in Ontario, Canada

Newmarket is a town and regional seat of the Regional Municipality of York in the Canadian province of Ontario. It is part of Greater Toronto in the Golden Horseshoe region of Southern Ontario. The name stems from the fact that the settlement was a "New Market", in contrast to York as the Old Market.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Owen Sound</span> City in Ontario, Canada

Owen Sound is a city in Southwestern Ontario, Canada. The county seat of Grey County, it is located at the mouths of the Pottawatomi and Sydenham Rivers on an inlet of Georgian Bay.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Whitby, Ontario</span> Town in Ontario, Canada

Whitby is a town in Durham Region. Whitby is located in Southern Ontario east of Ajax and west of Oshawa, on the north shore of Lake Ontario and is home to the headquarters of Durham Region. It had a population of 138,501 at the 2021 census. It is approximately 20 km (12 mi) east of the eastern border of Toronto, and it is known as a commuter suburb in the Greater Toronto Area. While the southern portion of Whitby is predominantly urban and an economic hub, the northern part of the municipality is more rural and includes the communities of Ashburn, Brooklin, Myrtle, Myrtle Station, and Macedonian Village.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Milton, Ontario</span> Town in Ontario, Canada

Milton is a town in Southern Ontario, Canada, and part of the Halton Region in the Greater Toronto Area. Between 2001 and 2011, Milton was the fastest growing municipality in Canada, with a 71.4% increase in population from 2001 to 2006 and another 56.5% increase from 2006 to 2011. In 2016, Milton's census population was 110,128 with an estimated growth to 228,000 by 2031. It remained the fastest growing community in Ontario but was deemed to be the sixth fastest growing in Canada at that time.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Port Colborne</span> City in Ontario, Canada

Port Colborne is a city in Ontario, Canada that is located on Lake Erie, at the southern end of the Welland Canal, in the Niagara Region of Southern Ontario. The original settlement, known as Gravelly Bay, dates from 1832 and was renamed after Sir John Colborne, a British war hero and the Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada at the time of the opening of the (new) southern terminus of the First Welland Canal in 1833. The city's population in 2021 was 20,033.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Cobourg</span> Town in Ontario, Canada

Cobourg is a town in the Canadian province of Ontario, located in Southern Ontario 95 km (59 mi) east of Toronto and 62 km (39 mi) east of Oshawa. It is the largest town in and seat of Northumberland County. Its nearest neighbour is Port Hope, 7 km (4 mi) to the west. It is located along Highway 401 and the former Highway 2. To the south, Cobourg borders Lake Ontario. To the north, east and west, it is surrounded by Hamilton Township.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Regional Municipality of Durham</span> Regional municipality in Ontario, Canada

The Regional Municipality of Durham, informally referred to as Durham Region, is a regional municipality in Southern Ontario, Canada. Located east of Toronto and the Regional Municipality of York, Durham forms the east-end of the Greater Toronto Area and part of the Golden Horseshoe region. It has an area of approximately 2,500 km2 (970 sq mi). The regional government is headquartered in Whitby.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Ganaraska River</span> River in Ontario, Canada

The Ganaraska River is a river in Northumberland County and the Regional Municipality of Durham in Southern Ontario, Canada. It is part of the Great Lakes Basin, and is a tributary of Lake Ontario, which it reaches at the central community of the municipality of Port Hope. The river's name is thought to be derived from Ganaraske, the Cayuga name for the village this Iroquoian nation had established in this area in 1779.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Northumberland County, Ontario</span> County in Ontario, Canada

Northumberland County is an upper-tier level of municipal government situated on the north shore of Lake Ontario, east of Toronto in Central Ontario. The Northumberland County headquarters are located in Cobourg.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Midland, Ontario</span> Town in Ontario, Canada

Midland is a town located on Georgian Bay in Simcoe County, Ontario, Canada. It is part of the Huronia/Wendat region of Central Ontario.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Regional Municipality of Niagara</span> Regional municipality in Ontario, Canada

The Regional Municipality of Niagara, also colloquially known as the Niagara Region or Region of Niagara, is a regional municipality comprising twelve municipalities of Southern Ontario, Canada. The regional seat is in Thorold. It is the southern end of the Golden Horseshoe, the largest megalopolis in Canada.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Norfolk County, Ontario</span> City in Ontario, Canada

Norfolk County is a rural single-tier municipality on the north shore of Lake Erie in Southwestern Ontario, Canada with a 2016 population of 67,490. Despite its name, it is no longer a county by definition, as all municipal services are handled by a single level of government. The largest community in Norfolk County is Simcoe, whose 2016 population was 13,922. The other population centres are Port Dover, Delhi, Waterford and Port Rowan, and there are many smaller communities. For several years in the late 20th century, the county was merged with Haldimand County but the merged entity was dissolved in 2000.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Kincardine, Ontario</span> Municipality in Ontario, Canada

Kincardine is a municipality located on the shores of Lake Huron in Bruce County in the province of Ontario, Canada. The current municipality was created in 1999 by the amalgamation of the Town of Kincardine, the Township of Kincardine, and the Township of Bruce.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Renfrew, Ontario</span> Town in Ontario, Canada

Renfrew is a town on the Bonnechere River in Renfrew County, Ontario, Canada. Located one hour west of Ottawa in Eastern Ontario, Renfrew is the fourth largest town in the county after Petawawa, Pembroke and Arnprior. The town is a small transportation hub connecting Highway 60 and Highway 132 with the Trans-Canada Highway. Renfrew is also known historically for its role in the formation of the National Hockey League. It lies about 5 kilometres from the Quebec border, about 10 kilometres by road. Renfrew makes most of Canada’s hockey tape.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Elgin County</span> County in Ontario, Canada

Elgin County is a county of the Canadian province of Ontario with a 2016 population of 50,069. Its population centres are St. Thomas, Aylmer, Port Stanley, Belmont, Dutton and West Lorne. The county seat is St. Thomas, which is separated from the county but within its geographic boundary.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Dutton/Dunwich</span> Municipality in Ontario, Canada

Dutton/Dunwich is a municipality located in western Elgin County in Southwestern Ontario, Canada.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Strathroy-Caradoc</span> Municipality in Ontario, Canada

Strathroy-Caradoc is a municipality located in Southwestern Ontario, Canada. It is 35 kilometres (22 mi) west of London.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Smooth Rock Falls</span> Town in Ontario, Canada

Smooth Rock Falls is an incorporated town in the Cochrane District in Northeastern Ontario, Canada, with a population of 1,330 at the 2016 census.


  1. 1 2 3 "Census Profile, 2021 Census Port Hope, Municipality [Census subdivision], Ontario and Port Hope [Population centre]". Statistics Canada. Retrieved February 10, 2021.
  2. "Ontario Heritage Trust - Bringing our story to life". Archived from the original on 16 March 2012.
  3. Hamilton, William (1978). The Macmillan Book of Canadian Place Names. Toronto: Macmillan. p. 167. ISBN   0-7715-9754-1.
  4. Campbell, Morganne (2019-09-05). "Small-town Ontario community featured in 'It: Chapter Two'". Global News. Retrieved 2020-05-01.
  5. 1 2 "Historic nuclear waste".
  6. "Port Hope Area Initiative" . Retrieved January 13, 2009.
  7. "Use of Canadian Uranium in the World's First Atomic Bombs".
  8. "Ontario town seeks federal inquiry into radiation pollution" Archived 2017-01-12 at the Wayback Machine , The Voice, Volume 15, Issue 43, November 16, 2007. Mandy Gardner
  9. "Port Hope, Ontario". Canadian Climate Normals 1971–2000. Environment Canada. Archived from the original on August 19, 2019. Retrieved August 19, 2019.
  10. "Port Hope census profile". 2011 Census of Population . Statistics Canada. Retrieved 2012-03-15.
  11. "Population and dwelling counts: Canada, provinces and territories, census divisions and census subdivisions (municipalities), Ontario". Statistics Canada. February 9, 2022. Retrieved March 31, 2022.
  12. "2021 Community Profiles". 2021 Canadian Census . Statistics Canada. February 4, 2022. Retrieved 2022-04-27.
  13. "2016 Community Profiles". 2016 Canadian Census . Statistics Canada. August 12, 2021. Retrieved 2019-06-25.
  14. "2011 Community Profiles". 2011 Canadian Census . Statistics Canada. March 21, 2019. Retrieved 2012-03-15.
  15. 1 2 "2006 Community Profiles". 2006 Canadian Census . Statistics Canada. August 20, 2019.
  16. "2001 Community Profiles". 2001 Canadian Census . Statistics Canada. July 18, 2021.
  17. "Port Hope Community Profile". Municipality of Port Hope. 2015. Archived from the original on 2017-01-18.
  18. "Saying Goodbye to Northumberland Today". JSource. Canadian Journalism Project. November 30, 2017. Retrieved June 25, 2019.
  19. "Visit Port Hope: Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny". Municipality of Port Hope. 2017. Archived from the original on 28 July 2016. Retrieved July 4, 2017.
  20. Fisher, Pete (April 8, 2017). "Paddlers get creative for Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny in Port Hope, Ont". Toronto Sun/Northumberland Today. Retrieved July 4, 2017.
  21. "Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny". Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny. 2017. Retrieved July 4, 2017.
  22. "Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny - Crazy Crafts". Passport2017. 2017. Retrieved July 4, 2017.
  23. "Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny in Port Hope, Ont. to return in April after 2-year hiatus - Peterborough | Globalnews.ca". Global News. Retrieved 2022-02-23.
  24. "History of the Capitol Theatre". www.capitoltheatre.com. Retrieved April 30, 2016.
  25. "About". Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny. Archived from the original on 11 March 2012. Retrieved April 30, 2016.
  26. "Canadian Fire Fighters Museum" . Retrieved 24 September 2017.
  27. La Jeunesse Youth Orchestra
  28. "Port Hope Farmers' Market". Archived from the original on 4 November 2010. Retrieved 24 September 2017.
  29. "Port Hope Archives" . Retrieved 24 September 2017.
  30. "Waterfront Trail". Archived from the original on 26 March 2014. Retrieved 24 September 2017.
  31. "Port Hope Golf & Country Club" . Retrieved 24 September 2017.
  32. "Port Hope High School: School and Contact Information". Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board. Retrieved June 25, 2019.
  33. Stren, Olivia (July 26, 2010). "Wikipedians do it for love. Really". The Globe and Mail . Archived from the original on July 22, 2015.
  34. "Ex NHLer to be honored in Port Hope". July 22, 2010. Retrieved May 1, 2013.
  35. "The Hamlet of Kendal, Ontario". tripod.com. Retrieved 3 December 2018.
  36. "Former Pro Hockey Player Dies". January 11, 2012. Archived from the original on 19 December 2013. Retrieved June 10, 2013.