075 - Kay Meek fonds

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Title proper

Kay Meek fonds

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  • Textual record
  • Graphic material

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on the creator of the fonds.

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area


  • 1940-1990, predominant 1946-1959 (Creation)
    Meek, Kay

Physical description area

Physical description

43 cm of textual records and other material

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Archival description area

Name of creator


Biographical history

Kay Meek was born Kay Menelaws in England on August 6, 1906. She was a social studies teacher in Vancouver until she married George Norgan in the early 1940s. George Norgan was an executive with Lucky Lager, who also had ownership interest in Harrison Hotsprings Hotel, and Lansdowne Race Track. In 1953, Kay and George Norgan moved to the Kew House in West Vancouver. The couple were prominent in the community, and enjoyed entertaining, golfing, and travelling. George Norgan died in 1964, and Kay married her second husband, Reginald Meek in the early 1970s. They worked together on many philanthropic projects.

The Lower Mainland arts organizations who benefited from her generosity include the Academy of Music, the Vancouver Symphony, and the Vancouver Art Gallery. Kay Meek was also a major benefactor of Lions Gate Hospital, the Vancouver Foundation, and West Vancouver Foundation.

She helped finance local projects such as the lights on Dundarave Pier, the West Vancouver Seawalk, the Silk Purse Gallery, the preservation of the Ferry Building, the Harmony Arts Festival, and expansion of the West Vancouver Memorial Library. Her contributions to the West Vancouver Seniors Centre and the West Vancouver Museum and Archives, earned her a lifetime membership in both, and a citation from the Chamber of Commerce named her citizen of the year in 1989. She was also awarded the Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal in recognition of her community spirit.

For more then 40 years, the former schoolteacher had a goal to see a learning-based performing arts centre built in the community she loved. In 1998, an arts centre trust was established and funded by Kay Meek wih an initial donation of one million dollars. In 2000, the West Vancouver School District proposed that the new arts centre be built beside West Vancouver Secondary School, and in 2002 a joint use agreement was signed between the West Vancouver School District and the West Vancouver Arts Centre Trust. Backed by another generous contribution from Kay Meek, construction commenced on the performing arts centre.

Kay Meek died on November 6, 2004, the day of the first public performance at the Centre that now bears her name. She was 98 years old. In May 2005, the Kay Meek Centre for the Performing Arts held its official grand opening. Reginald Meek died April 7, 2007 at the age of 95.

Custodial history

Scope and content

The fond consists of material relating to the personal life of West Vancouver arts philanthropist Kay Meek. The material includes two scrapbooks compiled by Kay Meek that contain photographs, postcards, newspaper clippings, magazine articles, and brochures. The fonds also includes one drawing of the Gertrude Lawson House.

Notes area

Physical condition

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Language of material

  • English

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Created March 29, 2010

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