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Ont. barn owner looking for repair help

Ont. barn owner looking for repair help

Carol Claus has had no luck getting someone to commit to the project

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

Carol Claus has memories of spending time as a young girl inside the barn (pictued above) on her property.

“Jumping in the hay bales was always fun,” she told “I also used to help my grandfather hand-milk the cows and I loved watching the barn cats try to get in there to get a squirt of milk every once in a while.”

But now that barn in Ridgeway, Ont. is in need of repair or else it risks becoming its own memory.

The structure, which has been in Claus’s family since the 1890s, needs some help.

She’s tried putting advertisements in media material for the Niagara Antique Power Association.

She’s had people come out to look at the project, but that’s typically where the discussions end in terms of the repair.

“We’ve either had people tell us they’ll call us and don’t, or people come out to look at the barn and then tell us they’re too busy,” she said.

Multiple builders have also suggested replacing the whole barn.

“We’ve had more interest in tearing down the barn and rebuilding it from scratch than doing the repairs,” said Claus. If this barn came down, I’d really miss the heritage of it and the family memories stored inside it.”

The family is so keen on keeping the barn they’ve visited neigbouring farms asking for help.

“My mom drove around looking for barns and would knock on the door to ask the people living there who does the barn repairs,” Claus said.

Letting these older barns deteriorate and having them come down is a sign agriculture isn’t taken as seriously as it once was, Claus said.

“The reason I have a full-time job is because farming isn’t paying what it used to or it isn’t appreciated the way it used to be,” she said.

Anyone who would like to contact Claus about her barn can send her an email.

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