Remembering former MLA and entrepreneur Clive Tanner

Oct 20, 2022 | 42-3, Blog, Governance, Legislature, Sessions, Statement, Video | 1 comment

In September, former Saanich North and the Islands MLA and Sidney businessman Clive Tanner passed away.

In my statement this week I stood to recognize Mr. Tanner and the significant contribution he made to our community and province.


Today I stand to celebrate the life of a community leader and former member of this Legislative Assembly.

It’s with sadness that I announced in this chamber, the passing of Clive Tanner in his home on September 9, 2022. If you’ve been to Sidney, then you have likely seen the bookstore that still carries his name today. Tanner’s is synonymous with Sidney, and its reputation as a book town is a result of Clive and Christine’s effort to make their community more than just a little industrial town next to an airport.

Born in London, England in 1934, Clive came to Canada as a boy with his mother and siblings during the Second World War. He returned to his birth country, serving in the Royal Marines in Malta and Egypt. But Canada soon became home — first Toronto and Montreal, then Ottawa, where he met Christine, his wife of 61 years. Christine and Clive had four children — Marc, Peter, Rebecca and Gisele.

Clive worked on the railroad and sold magazine subscriptions. But as Christine described him, he was a natural businessmen and adventurous. The Tanner family moved to the Yukon, where they owned Mac’s Fireweed Books newsstand and art gallery and where Clive took his community leadership to the world of politics.

[2:05 p.m.]
In the 1970s, Clive was elected to the Yukon territorial council, serving as the Minister of Health. After settling in Sidney in the 1980s, Clive, a lifelong Liberal, served as the MLA for Saanich North and the Islands from 1991 to 1996.

Thank you, Clive. You’ll be missed in our community, and it is with deep gratitude that I acknowledge the contribution you and Christine have made to life and business on the Saanich Peninsula. HÍSW̱ḴE SIÁM.

1 Comment

  1. Gail Pettinger

    Thank you for this sharing Adam. Tanner’s was very likely the first store visited when getting to know Sidney and it is so true that the book stores seem to anchor the community. Clive lived a life of service and we appreciate knowing of his journey.


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