Lanning, Fawcett & Wilson Ltd. Store

4907 Chisholm Street
Delta, BC

Built: 1907

The Lanning, Fawcett & Wilson Ltd. Store is a two-storey, vernacular commercial structure, located on a waterfront lot on Chisholm Street. The rear portion of the structure is built out over the water on piles. It is prominently situated at the north end of Delta Street in Ladner village.

Status: Still Standing

Lanning, Fawcett & Wilson Ltd. Store - 2006
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Heritage Value

The Lanning, Fawcett & Wilson Ltd. Store is associated with the early twentieth century commercial development of downtown Ladner, Delta's original town centre. The consistent and distinctive built form of the area dates from the time when Delta was developing rapidly due to booming agricultural, canning and fishing industries, and Ladner village was its commercial centre. Originally known as the 'Big Store,' this building is a significant component of a historic group of early commercial buildings and reflects the optimistic growth and development in the area prior to the outbreak of World War One. With its uncomplicated but well-proportioned architecture, it was designed as a landmark to attract customers to its wholesale business. J.B. Elliot, who was responsible for many buildings in Delta, was the contractor for this new, modern structure, considered as up-to-date as anything in the province. The rear of the store extends out over the water, and a boat slip allowed for the easy hauling of goods, as many local farms were still reached by water.

The building is also valuable for its continued commercial use. For many years it was known simply as the 'Big Store.' It was constructed in 1907 for Marshall Smith, who had purchased Thomas McNeely's stock after his death in 1902. In 1909, Smith's business was purchased by Lanning, Fawcett & Wilson Limited. After Arthur Fawcett's death in 1945, the business was sold to McLennan, McFeely & Prior, a prominent hardware supply firm with branches throughout the province. In 1963, the building was acquired by Delta Foam Board. It is currently owned by Massey Marine Supply, who completed a major restoration project through the removal of several layers of later alterations and the reconstruction of period details.

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements that define the heritage character of the Lanning, Fawcett & Wilson Ltd. Store include its:

  • location within a compatible urban/industrial area on a waterfront lot in Ladner village, with the rear portion built on piles over the water
  • continuous commercial use
  • vernacular commercial form, scale and massing, as expressed by its two-storey height, rectangular plan, flat roof and elaborated front fa�ade
  • heavy timber construction on timber pilings
  • fixed-pane plate glass windows on the front fa�ade
  • interior volume with mezzanine and exposed heavy timber structure