Frequently Asked Questions

No. As of March 2019 Point Ellice House Museum & Gardens is under new management. Regular tea and food service are not offered.

Except for service/support animals, pets are not permitted at Point Ellice House Museum & Gardens.

Point Ellice House Museum & Gardens is operated on behalf of the Province of British Columbia by the Vancouver Island Local History Society (VILHS), a non-profit and charitable society dedicated to the promotion and support of local history initiatives. A board of directors oversees governance of the society.

The Vancouver Island Local History Society (VILHS) is a non-profit society dedicated to the promotion and support of local history initiatives. Our mission:

  • To promote, encourage, and engage the study of local and regional history within the communities of Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands.
  • To develop and support local history initiatives that take a critical and exploratory approach to Indigenous and non-Indigenous relations.
  • To develop and support projects that are inclusive, diverse, and representative of communities in the past and present.
  • To act as a facilitator of local efforts that build relationships between organizations and communities and situate history as a foundational or key element

We feel that Point Ellice House is an ideal site for local history to be exhibited, discussed, and researched. We believe that Point Ellice House reflects the history of BC and can serve as Victoria’s museum – a site for encountering stories about the communities around us.

We believe that public history plays a vital role in truth and reconciliation. Point Ellice House is deeply enmeshed with the colonial history of Victoria and British Columbia and we will work with First Nations and Indigenous-serving organizations to develop educational opportunities and dialogue regarding the history and legacy of colonization.

We value the location of Point Ellice House within the Rock Bay and Burnside Gorge neighbourhoods. We believe that building relationships and partnerships with our diverse neighbours will serve the future of this rapidly changing area.

We are a non-profit and charitable society. A board of directors oversees governance of the society. A full-time executive director (ED) is responsible for day to day operations of the site and its programming.

Executive Director: Dr. Kelly Black

VILHS Board

President: Dr. Misao Dean
Vice President: Aimee Greenaway
Treasurer: Colleen Hobson
Secretary: Beatrice Toner
Directors at Large: Dr. Yasmin Amaratunga Railton, Cameron Gray

We are seeking volunteers for a number of areas! Sign up for our email updates by clicking here or check our volunteer page by clicking here.

Job opportunities at Point Ellice House Museum & Gardens can be found by visiting our employment opportunities page, click here.

Due to limited resources we are not able to offer site rentals at this time.

Regular visits to Point Ellice House Museum & Gardens are self-guided, but if you would like to arrange a guided visit for your large group, we can accommodate you. You can find more information about booking a guided group visit here.

Please note that due to the need to arrange staff and volunteers for guided visits, we require at least one month’s notice, and availability is subject to staff scheduling.

Point Ellice House is a one storey building with ramps at the entrance and exit – it is accessible to persons with mobility aids. The narrowest doorway inside the house, between the north hall and servery, is 29 inches wide. Other doorways in the house range between 30 and 31.5 inches.

The Visitor Centre building is accessible to persons with mobility aids. All doors in the visitor centre have lever handles.

The gardens and lawn are accessible via a hard-packed gravel path.

An accessible washroom is located inside the Visitor Centre. This washroom has a baby change table. There is one accessible parking stall located beside the Visitor Centre main entrance.

The Visitor Centre loft and the dock are not wheelchair accessible.

We welcome service animals and support persons. Support animals/persons are not charged a fee for entry.

Parking is available for fifteen cars, including one accessible stall. A limited number of street parking spots are available. Public transit, carpooling, taxi service, or water taxi service is advised for large groups.

The gardens and grounds are free to enter and open to the public during our operating hours.

“Is the house haunted?” This is probably among the top five questions visitors ask. There are many stories of ghostly encounters at Point Ellice House, both inside and out. The most well known story involves a family coming for a visit during the 1960s and accidentally getting a tour from the ghost of Kathleen O’Reilly. Other stories involve apparitions of a woman on the grounds (possibly Caroline O’Reilly), sightings of a boy in a window, and ghost lights travelling across the Point Ellice Bridge. Staff and visitors to Point Ellice House have experienced a number of unexplained events, sounds, and feelings – including lights turning on by themselves and mysterious footsteps on the stairs.

Paranormal investigations conducted at Point Ellice House have sparked further questions. Visitors participating in these investigations often capture electronic voice phenomenon (EVP) and other unexplained phenomena. Point Ellice House Museum and Gardens hosts investigations a few times each year – sign up for email updates to receive notification about our these and other upcoming events.

What do you think? Is Point Ellice House haunted?

FAQs about COVID-19 and Visiting Point Ellice House

Information to Plan Your Visit