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Britannia Beach

Britannia Beach is a small unincorporated community in the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District located approximately 55 kilometers north of Vancouver, British Columbia on the Sea-to-Sky Highway on Howe Sound. It has a population of about 300. It includes the nearby Britannia Creek, a small to mid-sized stream that flows into Howe Sound that was historically one of North America's most polluted waterways.The community first developed between 1900 and 1904 as the residential area for the staff of the Britannia Mining and Smelting Company. The residential areas and the mining operation were physically interrelated, resulting in coincidental mining and community disasters through its history.Today, the town is host to the Britannia Mine Museum, formerly known as the British Columbia Museum of Mining, on the grounds of the old Britannia Mines. The mine's old concentrator facilities, used to separate copper ore from its containing rock, are a National Historic Site of Canada.HistoryBritannia Beach took its name from the nearby Britannia Range of mountains, which form the east wall of the mountainous shore of Howe Sound south of Britannia Beach. About 1859 Royal Navy hydrographer Captain Richards of HMS Plumper named the range of mountains for HMS Britannia, the third of a series of vessels to bear that name. The Britannia was never in these waters.
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