I've had a lot on my mind lately with everything going on in the world so I thought that this was the right time to add my first journal post to the website.
After much thought, and many conversations, I've decided to change the name of the company from Dundas Valley Trail Co. to Valley Town Trail Co.
I want to send a big thank you to everyone who took the time to listen to me and help me look at this from multiple perspectives, as I worked through all of the thoughts in my head. Every conversation and new piece of information in life is an opportunity to grow and change what you know or how you frame the opinions you already have. This is important to me in all aspects of life.
After recently learning that the town of Dundas was named after Henry Dundas, and learning about the role he played in delaying the abolition of slavery in the British empire by 15 years, I was no longer comfortable using his name to represent my company. In the city of Edinburgh, where a statue of Henry Dundas stands, they are adding a plaque that includes the words “In 2020 this was dedicated to the memory of the more than half a million Africans whose enslavement was a consequence of Henry Dundas’s actions.” They are not erasing history, they are teaching it and adding to it.
I am absolutely in love with the Dundas Valley and have been since growing up close by. The majority of my favourite memories as a child take place in the woods with friends—often on bikes. I really don't think there is a more beautiful area around to grow up as a child or to continue to grow as an adult. The forest, the trails, the wildlife, and the people I share those things with, bring me to my happy place and that is what I have always wanted to celebrate through my designs. None of that will change.
This was a hard decision because I know that most of us did not even know who Henry Dundas was a month ago, and most of us do not associate the values of this town to the man himself. Knowing what I know now, this was the right decision for me.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.