Toronto Hunt Club

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The entrance to the Toronto Hunt Club

The Toronto Hunt Club was established in by British Army officers of the Toronto garrison (Fort York) in 1843. It held gymkhana equestrian events at various sites around the city. In 1895 it acquired its first permanent home in a rural area east of the city between Kingston Road and the waterfront. In 1898 the streetcar was extended eastward to the site, and soon the area became a cottage district and then streetcar suburb of Toronto. This forced the equestrian activities to move further afield. In 1907 the horses were thus moved to a site in Thornhill (Steeles' Corner at Steeles Avenue and Yonge Street).

In 1919 the club moved to a location closer to town at Eglinton Avenue and Avenue Road. Known as the Eglinton Hunt Club, a polo arena, clubhouses and other facilities were erected. The 1930s saw the club run into financial difficulties, however. In 1939, with the outbreak of the Second World War, the large site was purchased by the federal government and turned into a secret RCAF research facility, the No. 1 Clinical Investigation Unit. Noted scientists Frederick Banting and Wilbur R. Franks were employed there, and it was at the CIU that Franks invented the anti gravity g-suit. After the war it became the RCAF Staff School, and remained an officer training facility of the Canadian Forces until closed in 1994. The surrounding area of the Eglinton Hunt Club is now an established residential neighbourhood of Forest Hill.

The original Hunt Club site in Scarborough was turned into a nine hole golf course in the 1930s, and it remains an exclusive private golfing club today. The current club champion is Chris Jones as was determined on the annual Champions Day, September 18, 2010.

References[edit]

Filey, Mike. "From the Hunt to the Skies." Toronto Sketches 3. Dundurn Press Ltd., 1996

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 43°40′51″N 79°16′19″W / 43.680918°N 79.272022°W / 43.680918; -79.272022