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St. Lawrence College plays a key role in restoring a piece of Brockville’s history

St. Lawrence College (SLC) in partnership with Correctional Services Canada’s Employment and Employability program built a main component of the replica lighthouse that was struck by lightning and burned last summer in the St. Lawrence River in Brockville.  

Built in 1856, the Cole Shoal lighthouse, also known as Five Mile Light, was one of nine remaining lighthouses on the Canadian side of the St. Lawrence River and a cherished piece of Brockville’s history. After it was destroyed by fire, a fundraising committee, chaired by Bob Runciman was established to build a replica lighthouse. 

Working with the lighthouse committee, SLC’s Corporate Learning and Performance Improvement (CLPI) program, students (who are inmates) in the eight-week Introduction to Carpentry program constructed the Lantern Cupola, which holds the light for the lighthouse at the top of the structure. 

“We are giving soon-to-be-released inmates intensive training in the fundamentals of carpentry. The program incorporates practical elements, including the construction of various structures, in this case, we are going to build a component of the lighthouse, and donate it to the Five Mile Lighthouse construction effort,” said Jamie Puddicombe, Manager, Skills, Training and Economic Development at St. Lawrence College. 

“The Correctional Service of Canada provides Employment and Employability Skills Training to offenders through their CORCAN program.” said Scott Coombs, Project Officer Employment and Employability at Correctional Service of Canada. “The goal is to ensure that offenders have the skills and training required to obtain and maintain employment when they return to the community. Having the offenders engaged in this project has provided an excellent opportunity to enhance their practical work skills and has also give them opportunity to give back to the community.”  

For more information on the Five Mile Light go to 


For more information:
Laura Tulchinsky
St. Lawrence College, Communications
613-544-5400, ext. 1291

About St. Lawrence College

St. Lawrence College is an integral part of the economic life and social fabric of Eastern Ontario, with campuses in Kingston, Brockville, and Cornwall. St. Lawrence College consistently ranks as one of Ontario’s leading community colleges, preparing students for the global economy with relevant, practical, and experiential learning opportunities. Offering over 100 full-time programs, St. Lawrence College is a close-knit community of 10,000 full-time students, and more than 96,000 alumni.