Battle of Jericho, Thursday 15 October 1970
After a temporary youth hostel was shut down at the Beatty Street Drill Hall, hundreds of young people squatted the empty military barracks at what’s now Jericho Park. As many as 400 people slept there each night, even though there were only six toilets and one shower. On 2 October 1970, notice was given that the occupiers had to vacate the building. Many did, but a core group of a couple hundred were determined to stay. Their eviction and subsequent riot on 15 October was dubbed the “Battle of Jericho” by the Vancouver Sun:
The 1970 Battle of Jericho started Thursday at two minutes to 2 p.m. It was to last 3 1/2 hours and involved nearly 250 police officers and an army unit.
When it was all over, 200 young transients had been cleared, not only from their hut hostel on the Jericho armed forces base, but from the Point Grey area.
(Read the rest of the Sun’s coverage here).
Less than a year after the mêlée, the 300-bed HI-Vancouver Jericho Beach opened at the site and at the time was the largest youth hostel in North America.
Source: Vancouver Sun, 16 October 1970
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