Click here! Britannia Yacht Club (BYC)

Photo # 1.  BYC's clubhouse ( The yacht basins are on the left. )
The Britannia Yacht Club is one of the oldest in Canada, and certainly one of the better known clubs on this part of the Ottawa River. It was incorporated in 1887, and nine years later, it opened its first clubhouse in what was then the middle of Ottawa's summer cottage district. Britannia's two yacht basins trace there origins to excavation work from an abandoned turn-of-the-century project to harness power from the fast moving waters of the Deschenes Rapids.

The Britannia Yacht Club is also one of the largest on the Ottawa River. It's facilities includes 280 protected moorings, a service dock with pumpout,
Photo # 2.  One of the BYC's yacht basins.
gas and diesel, moorings for keelboats as large as 40 feet in length, a dry sail area for dinghies, a beautiful year-around club house, and a junior clubhouse. Services include an active race program, a learn to sail program, winter storage, and a tennis program. BYC also maintains a park at Baskin's Beach for the the exclusive use of it members.

Photo # 1 shows Britannia's stately stone clubhouse from the water. It's distinctive red roof makes it easy to spot from Lac Deschenes. BYC's two yacht basins are located in the area to the left of the clubhouse (it's possible to make out the masts of some of the boats behind the trees). The Deschenes Rapids begin several hundred feet to the left of the area depicted in this photo. As long as people know the area to avoid, the rapids pose no real problem for boats approaching or leaving BYC.

Photo # 3.  The BYC clubhouse in early 1900's.
Photo # 3 shows the BYC clubhouse in the early 1900's when the club was known as the Britannia Boat Club. This structure was located in the water in Britannia Bay roughly opposite today's clubhouse, but was destroyed by fire in 1918. As a result, BYC began to transform its boathouse into the elegant clubhouse that we see today.

Note the steam boat "G. B. Greene" in the background of photo # 3. This paddle wheeler was known as the Queen of the Ottawa River at the turn of the century and was popular with locals and tourists for taking sight-seeing excursions up river to view the spectacular Chats Falls.

For more about BYC,
check out their web page at:

Britannia Yacht Club (BYC)
613-828-5168 (fax) 2777 Cassels Street,
Ottawa, Ontario, K2B 6N6

Click here!
Text and colour photos by Michael McGoldrick.
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