Robert Stapells

Bob Stapells died Saturday, November 3, 2018, at 74.

The radio-ad-salesman-turned-developer-turned-city-councillor-turned-entrepreneur was one of Halifax’s larger-than-life characters. While I didn’t always — often, hardly at all — agree with his views, he was inevitably a charming, fun-to-be-around person who wore his heart, and his heartaches on his sleeve.

I wrote this profile of him for Halifax Magazine in 1978 at a time when he was trying — and failing — to convince Halifax city council to allow him to develop Time Square, a downtown office project opposite Citadel Hill and the Town Clock.

Bob Stapells, RIP.

  1. Hello Neil Flowers …. Your response to Stephen Kimber’s article on my brother Bob Stapells certainly touched my heart. I want to thank you for sharing your story of your friendship with Bob. There are many to be sure, but yours is one which was new to my memory; a welcomed addition to my family archive. Please know of our appreciation of your very kind reminder that Bob’s memory is held in high regard even after 60 years. Bob would love sharing that memory with you! Thank you for sharing it with us!
    Patricia Wright (Paddy Stapells)
    Edmonton, Alberta


  2. Hello:
    I knew Bob when we were young teenagers. We lived in roughly the same neighbourhood, in Etobicoke, a suburb of Toronto. He and our mutual friend, Peter Legault, had some adventures. This included pooling money together to buy a 1936 Chevrolet, a fact we failed to tell our parents about. We bought it in the country and figured we’d sell it in The Big City for a small fortune as an “antique” car. Unfortuntely, no sooner had we bought it than it broke a rear axle, which necessitated more money, which meant that….Well, you can guess the rest…Our parents found out and made us sell the car. Bob, Peter, and I had fun and I remember well his sense of humour and fondness for jokes. I haven’t seen him in almost sixty years, but I’ll miss him. Incidentally, I became a writer, of films as well as other genres. I wrote a comic screenplay about our buying that 1936 Chevy. It’s called LEARNER’S PERMIT. Elvis turns up in it, but it’s the three teenage boys who are the central characters, with Bob being the wheeler-dealer who provokes the purchase and elaborates the scheme to sell the car in Toronto. It’s kind of an homage to Bob, Peter, and the naïveté and adventurous spirit of teenage boys. The script is still unproduced but I think it’s funny and faithful to the the time and the characters, and I am still trying to sell it. Best thoughts, Neil Flowers


    • Hello Mr. Flowers. I am Bob’s daughter. I very much enjoyed reading your story, thank you for sharing. I would love to have the opportunity to read the screenplay if you would ever consider it.


  3. Thank you for writing this article on my father. He was truly a remarkable man. His kindness will be remembered.


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