The Jury Lands (known popularly as Camp 30) Trail

A trail through the Jury Lands site linking Concession Street East with Sprucewood Crescent will be officially opened in 2016. It forms part of the eventual circle of green envisioned for a continuous trail system surrounding Bowmanville of which the land and creeks overseen by Valleys 2000, and within which the Jury Lands reside, are a major component.

The buildings and land on the Jury Lands site constantly remind us of its status as one of the earliest established training schools in Ontario for “delinquent” boys in the 1920s (and later girls as well), reflecting a new psychology of reform over punishment in everything from its programming to its prairie architecture distinction.

As well it is the last surviving intact Prisoner of War camp for captured German military personnel incarcerated in Canada, during the Second World War.

For both of these uses its inhabitants and the associated facilities were fully integrated into the everyday life of nearby Bowmanville, an independent town in the Counties of Northumberland and Durham until 1974 and now a part of the municipality of Clarington within Durham Region, east of Toronto. Generations of young Bowmanville children learned to swim in the facility pool, while from 1941 to 1945 German prisoners subscribed to a policy of Ehrenwort allowing them to leave the site to venture to nearby Lake Ontario based on their promise to return.

Following its end as a training school in 1979 it went through a number of educational purposes, but the site and its buildings are now abandoned and awaiting repurposing for new uses by future generations, while continuing to remind Canadians through storytelling and signage of a remarkable story.