Letters: Will someone help keep Gabriola Automotive open?

Wednesday, January 22 2020

I love living on Gabriola and am extremely grateful for the various enterprises which allow me to do so without ever having to worry about the ferry lineup. I can see a doctor, fill a prescription, buy groceries and get books from the library. And for the past 11 years I’ve been able to get my car checked, my tires swapped, and have any work needed done by the lovely people at Gabriola Automotive.

So I was gutted to read in the Sounder this week that Gabriola Automotive is being forced to shutter its doors in March. 

For me – and I suspect many others like me who live on low incomes – this particular small business isn’t just a treasure, it’s an essential service. My life will be poorer – and not just financially – if we lose their services.

I would like to beg the owners of any commercial property on Gabriola to consider the wellbeing of the community, and make an effort to find a way for this business to continue operating on Gabriola. I am only one of many, many people who would be very grateful if someone did.

In the fervent hope that March 15 might not be the last day I see them at work on Gabriola, I would also like to thank Bill and Ilona, Ray, Shawn, Dave and Deb for everything they’ve done for me and for our island in the past 11 years.

~ Miranda Holmes


At a time when businesses are being encouraged to create jobs and provide different services, this island will be losing an ICBC licenced repair facility. 

I’m sure it has been used at one time or another by the majority of the residents to fix a flat tire or have your vehicle’s oil changed or to have some major work done. If you want this work to be done by a licenced facility, you will now have to go to Nanaimo. 

This is a business that Bill and Ilona Beedie have had here for many years, serving the needs of their customers, employing people and contributing to the community.

My son has worked there for five years since moving here from Calgary. He loves living here and he loves working at Gabriola Automotive. If he and his fellow employees are loosing their jobs, he does not know if he will be able to stay here in the future.

There was a lot of concern and support when Bill and Ilona posted the press release about the closing. A lot of people do not want to see this service shut down.

If any commercial landlord would give Bill and Ilona a chance, we would not lose this service and the employees would still have their jobs.

Bill and Ilona would like to carry on but, without the lease of the building, there is no choice but for them but to close their doors and let their employees go.    

It will be a big loss to this island community.

~ Dan Eliuk


Dear Editor,

I read the announcement of the coming closing of Gabriola Automotive with great sadness. As a relatively recent resident (3 years) of Gabriola, I counted this garage as one of the perks of Gabriola. Not only close to where we live, but the service was outstanding - extremely friendly, efficient, and thorough and right on Gabriola. Another one of the many businesses on Gabriola that make us able to stay on the island for all our needs. Now it will be gone - what a loss - of jobs for its employees, and to the residents of Gabriola who will not be able to have their vehicles serviced locally in such  a well set-up facility. Can nothing more be done? 

~ Jody Cameron