‘Sad and happy’: Owners of longtime Nanaimo business decide to close its doors

'Sad and happy': Owners of longtime Nanaimo business decide to close its doors
Skye Ryan/CHEK News

A fixture of downtown Nanaimo has announced it is closing its doors.

Bastion Jewellers set up shop on Commercial Street in 1985 and the family business has become part of many residents’ most important events, but now its owners are retiring.

For 36 years, Bill Carter has carefully crafted jewelry in the back of his Commercial Street shop.

“It’s awesome, it’s been just a beautiful experience,” said Bill Carter, co-owner of Bastion Jewellers. “We’re a part of a lot of people’s lives and special moments and that is hard to describe. We’ve made a wonderful life in this little room behind us.”

Bill and Jean Carter have spent their career making one-of-a-kind pieces to mark the biggest events of people’s lives.

Wendy McQueen, a resident of Nanaimo, says her wedding ring was made there.

“I never take it off. I’m just so happy with what they have done with it,” said McQueen.

Another resident, Giorgio Pantano, had her late Dad’s ring fitted here so she could wear it and feel some of his spirit again.

“He never quit,” said Pantano. “Every time I put this on, it gives me strength.”

Now, Bill and Jean Carter are preparing to close Bastion Jewellers for good and retire after 36 years.

“Yes. Sad and happy,” said Jean Carter, co-owner of Bastion Jewellers.

“We’ve made rings for people and then made rings for their children,” added Bill Carter.

Bastion Jewellers will close for good at the end of June. Marking an end of an era in Nanaimo, but one that will live on in every piece that Carter’s crafted over those years.

Skye RyanSkye Ryan

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