To be honest I do like the name Selwyn Township. Was it my top choice? No, but I am not sure if I even had a top choice. There was so many bad names being thrown out there I am just glad the council picked this one that we can be proud of.
Selwyn is originally an Anglo-Saxon name, also occasionally spelt Selwin, deriving from ‘Sel’ (castle/house) & ‘wyn/win’ (friend), roughly meaning “friend in the house” or “friend in the castle”.
The name Selwyn later became an English surname as well after the Norman Conquest of 1066 introduced the concept of family surnames to England. Its renewed popularity as a Christian-name in England in the 19th century was largely due to the fame of the eminent Bishop George Augustus Selwyn.
Selwyn is quite uncommon as both a first name and family name.
Council hired wedesign to help with the name choosing. Here is what they say about Selwyn:
- short and easy to say
- well known in the area
- infers the SEL from each of the townships
- positive online implications
The Research Summary also did conclude that if we were going to use Selwyn it should be spelt Selwin for a higher ranking in the summary. The spelling Selwin would give a better online presence and better Geographic Impact. (Note: we are going with Selwyn)
It was interesting that Chemong was not even on the radar of council in my opinion even though it was what was voted on. Only Councillor Donna Ballantyne supported the name. Chemong rated higher in the Research Summary if we did not choose Selwin (note the spelling) and the overall will of the people in the township supported Chemong as a new name. Votes received by the township had Chemong with 25% of the vote while Selwyn came in with 8% of the vote.
Council seem to struggle at first how to proceed with the meeting until Deputy Mayor Andy Mitchell stepped in and suggested they should first vote if the name should be changed which carried 5-0. I felt after listening to the meeting that Selwyn was more a personal choice for the councillors that voted for the name not what the constituency wanted. The two councillors that voted against the name Selwyn seemed that they were not comfortable with Selwyn because their constituency did not want that name. I respect them coming to the table without personal feelings on the subject. I was surprised that before council concluded the final vote, the public did not have a chance to speak at the meeting. The motion was carried without that opportunity.
One other note I want to make. Council made it clear Selwyn is not replacing Ennismore, Lakefield, Bridgenorth, Youngs Point, etc. It is a collective name of all of our community’s. Deputy Mayor Mitchell also made it clear that all individual hamlets and towns will be celebrate in its fullest by the township. So Ennismore you will still be known as Ennsimore. Lakefield, you will still be known as Lakefield. You get the picture.
Overall the process was not good and council recognised that. I was upset last night about it. After some more though, we had no choice to get this done as quickly as possible due to the changes of Canada Post. Good job by all involved.
Welcome to Selwyn Township. Home of Smith, Ennismore and Lakefield.