In memory of Nancy Wooden

July 31st, 1945 – December 2nd, 2018

Last week, I was digging through the Halifax municipal files for a Spryfield-related research task and I stumbled across Alderman Wooden’s file for a requested wilderness recreational park in the Purcell’s Cove Backlands, circa 1981. As it happens, the park never came to pass as she envisioned it, but as I looked at the file I thought, “Wow, Nancy was really ahead of the curve,” as a nearly identical wilderness recreational area in the area is likely to become reality soon, nearly 40 years after she proposed the idea. I’ll admit that random encounter in the Archive with her civic work served to temper some of the sadness with which I read her obituary.

I remember fondly when Nancy warmly invited Crysta and me into the meetings of the Spryfield Resident’s Association and generously shared her time, experience and wisdom. As a result, she lent us the confidence to carry on her work with a group modeled closely on the Spryfield Resident’s Association, so closely that we basically just stole the name: the spirit of the SRA lives on with the Spryfield Community Association, or at least I sincerely hope it does. If this group can accomplish the smallest portion of what she achieved in her community work, we’ll consider our work very well done, but whatever the result we will be pleased to think that we are honoring her wish of donating our time to others in her memory. As she proved, that’s time spent wisely indeed.

Her obituary was published in the March 2019 edition of Chebucto News, and her memorial site can be found at