Book the Old Church in Smithers, BCHistory

The Old Church was first constructed in 1913 as the St. James’ Anglican Church. For over sixty years the Church was a spiritual and community centre in Smithers.

After the parish of St. James moved to its new home on Princess St. in 1975, the original church was left unused and suffered disrepair and neglect. In 2005, thanks to the dedication and vision of a dynamic group of volunteers, the building was resurrected as a community hall. Administered and maintained by the Bulkley Valley Museum, today the Old Church is a popular community events space for dozens of weddings, lectures, parties, meetings, concerts, and performances each year.

The Old Church Garden was developed in 2006 as a public urban green space. The gardens rely on the work of enthusiastic volunteers for their upkeep. If you are interested in helping out, please contact the Museum at 250.847.5322 or info@bvmuseum.org

Renting the Old Church

The current rental fee is $30 per hour (minimum 2 hours) + $25 cleaning fee. For full fee information, including special rates for longer rentals, as well as deposit information and pricing for additional amenities please click here to view a copy of the Old Church Rental Package. (note: if you are using Chrome, download the PDF to your computer to view. Pages 3-5 do not show up in the Chrome browser’s PDF preview)

For availability please contact the Bulkley Valley Museum 250.847.5322 or by email at info@bvmuseum.org.

Address: The Old Church is located at 3704 First Avenue (corner of Main and First).

***Current Status: Per current health orders in the Province of BC and per current restrictions on events and gatherings in Northern Health as of November 18th 2021,

  • Masks that fully cover the face (nose, mouth, chin) must be worn at all times in the Old Church for any type of event
  • All indoor organized events (as defined by the Northern Health order) at the Old Church:
    • are limited to a maximum of 50 people (including attendees, organizers, speakers, etc.), all of whom must have received two doses of a Covid-19 vaccine (i.e. “fully vaccinated”)
      • based on size of the venue, the museum currently recommends no more than 15-20 people at an event in the Old Church. However, we recognize that up to 50 are allowed under current health orders. It is up to the event organizer to determine what capacity is appropriate for their event.
    • Event organizers must verify vaccination status of all participants by viewing BC Vaccine Cards
    • a Covid-19 safety plan is required. Click here for a Northern Health safety plan template.
      • A copy of this plan must be provided to the BV Museum (email or hardcopy) before you receive your keys. We will not be evaluating or providing any advice or feedback on its contents, but need to see that it has been completed.
    • Event organizers are required to collect first and last names, and contact information for every event attendee, and retain the information for 30 days for contact tracing
  • Personal gatherings are limited to five people, all of whom must be fully vaccinated against Covid-19. Masks must be worn for personal events.

Renters are responsible for reading all public health policies and ensuring their use of the Old Church is allowed under current health orders, and additional restrictions in the Northern Health health authority. Museum staff are not responsible for providing guidance on, or interpretation of, the health orders beyond the basic details posted here. Please contact Northern Health if you have specific questions related to occupancy, food preparation and service, etc. The Museum reserves the right to decline bookings at staff discretion.

­Amenities

Basic amenities: All renters have use of the Northern Health approved kitchen, including dishes, fridge, stove, coffee makers, kettles, etc. Amenities available with every rental include use of the tables and chairs, the piano, two gender-neutral washrooms (one accessible), and a screen and projector system. The Old Church has free wireless internet, supported by CityWest.

Additional amenities available for rent: wine glasses ($22), sound system including microphones ($22), stage lighting system (for concerts and performances, $22). The Old Church sound system includes an induction loop system (hearing loop or t-coil) to assist those with hearing impairments.

Click here to view Frequently Asked Questions about renting the Old Church.

Take a look inside!

Click here to virtually see inside the Old Church using Google Street View. Thank you to Eric Becker for doing the capture for us!

***Please note that these images are provided to give a general overview of the Church interior, and that specific decor or amenities are subject to change without notice.