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Bradford park to be renamed after former councillor

Ron Simpson instrumental in guiding design, construction of local police station, library and leisure centre

A park in Bradford West Gwillimbury is being renamed to honour the late Ron Simpson, a former town councillor who was passionate about community.

The park at 251 Crossland Blvd., known as Dreamfields Park, will be renamed the Ron Simpson Memorial Park, BWG council voted this week.

“Ron would be tickled pink (by this). He was passionate about building. He was passionate about this community,” said Coun. Mark Contois.

Simpson was first elected to the Township of West Gwillimbury council in 1986, and he was on the inaugural amalgamated council of Bradford West Gwillimbury in 1991.

With the exception of one term, he served on council until 2014, the year he died.

Simpson was a member of the Bradford Lions Club and the Probus club.

He was chair of BWG council’s facilities committee, and he was instrumental in guiding the design and construction of the South Simcoe Police Services’ Melbourne Drive building and the BWG Public Library and leisure centre, read a town staff report.

“The manner in which these key civic buildings have been embraced by the community is testament to the careful oversight that Councillor Simpson provided in seeing them through to completion,” read the report.

“Throughout his time on council, Councillor Simpson was known as a pragmatic man who took a great interest in all elements of community building — often drawing from his deep professional experience as a custom home builder.”

The park that will bear Simpson’s name features a playground, basketball course, soccer pitches and a splash pad.

Several members of BWG council spoke in support of the park’s renaming at a council meeting Tuesday evening.

“We’re not honouring Ron — we’re honouring the town by having his name on that park,” said Coun. Raj Sandhu.

“It’s time his name will last forever in this town,” added Coun. Ron Orr.