Tilbury, Ontario

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Unincorporated community
The Tilbury water tower.
The Tilbury water tower.
Nickname(s): small village
Motto(s): "The Light Between The Lakes"
Coordinates: 42°15′30″N 82°25′55″W / 42.25833°N 82.43194°W / 42.25833; -82.43194
Country Canada
Province Ontario
Municipality Chatham-Kent
 • City Mayor Randy Hope
 • Governing body Chatham-Kent Municipal Council
 • Councillors - Ward 1 - West Kent Bryon Fluker
Mark Authier
 • Total 5.80 km2 (2.24 sq mi)
Elevation 198 m (650 ft)
Population (2016)
 • Total 4,768
 • Density 2,053.6/km2 (5,319/sq mi)
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
Forward sortation area N0P 2L0
Area code(s) 519 and 226
NTS Map 040J08
Website tilburyontario.com

Tilbury (2016 population 4,768[1]) is a community within the municipality of Chatham-Kent, Ontario, Canada. It is located 26.5 kilometres southwest of Chatham and 57.3 kilometres east of Windsor on Highway 401.


  • 1 History
  • 2 Notable businesses
  • 3 Economy
  • 4 Healthcare
  • 5 Transportation
  • 6 Community
  • 7 Media
  • 8 Downtown Tilbury and area renovations
  • 9 External links
  • 10 References


The nearby townships of Tilbury West in Essex County and Tilbury East in Kent County were named for the port of Tilbury in the English county of Essex. A settlement, called Henderson after the local postmaster, was established with the construction of the Canada Southern Railway in 1875. The name of the post office was changed to Tilbury Centre after the adjoining townships and the community was incorporated as a village in 1887. The name changed again to Tilbury a few years later and incorporation as a town followed in 1910. Tilbury is also home to the largest antique mall in Southern Ontario.[2] Tilbury is also famous for its murals which depicts part of its history.[3]

A mural in Tilbury showing its automotive history.

In 1998, the town was amalgamated with the City of Chatham and all municipalities of Kent County to form the municipality of Chatham-Kent.[4] The former town hall at 17 Superior Street is now Tilbury Municipal Centre and Chatham-Kent Police station.

Maxine Gardner (sp?), the town librarian for decades, referred to Tilbury as 'the Gateway to Ontario' because all traffic coming from the United States had to pass by through the 401 or old Highway number 2. I often think that name would be the best way to brand the town.

Notable businesses[edit]

Some notable stores in Tilbury include grocers Foodland,[5] No Frills,[6] retailers Canadian Tire,[7] Home Hardware,[8] and Dollarama.[9] Tilbury is also home to many locally owned restaurants and bars including most popular Roses Restaurant and the18 Wheeler Restaurant,[10] Naples Pizza,[11] The Dog House,[12] and FlapJacks.[13] Tilbury is also home to larger franchise restaurants such as Tim Hortons,[14] Subway,[15] KFC,[16] and Little Caesars Pizza,[17] as well as Burger King on the service centres on Highway 401. There are several gasoline stations in Tilbury that serve regular fuel and diesel, including flying j travel center, Mac's,[18] Shell,[19] UPI,[20] and two Esso stations[21][22] as well as two Canadian Tire gas stations on Highway 401.[23][24] In 2011, Mac's moved their convenience store from Queen St. to Highway 2 and added a fuel station that serves gasoline and diesel. There are 2 electric car charging stations within a 15-minute drive, one at Lanoue Chev at Tilbury Auto mall (level 2), and one in nearby Comber (Hypercharger/Level 3 Tesla EV chargers), the rest are within nearby communities, mainly toward Windsor, with one or two in Leamington and in Chatham. [25][26] There are several car dealerships in Tilbury. The 4 main dealerships are Chevrolet, Ford, Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep/Ram, and General Motors brands. All of which are part of a stretch of road called "The Tilbury Auto Mall".[27]


Tilbury is home to a number of industries related mainly to the auto sector. Companies present in the community include Mahle, Autoliv, AP Plasman and others. A number of plants have closed in recent years, including Woodbridge Foam in 2012, Fleetwood Metal Industries in 2006 and KS Centoco in 2005 and recently ArvinMeritor (formerly Rockwell International), in June 2009. Tilbury is also home to many small businesses and also has an economic relationship to agriculture and renewable energy.

Tilbury's post office.


Tilbury has two clinics. One is the Tilbury District Family Health unit, next to Shoppers Drug Mart and another one is the walk-in clinic. There is also an eye care clinic and a dental clinic. There are no hospitals in Tilbury with servies either at Chatham Hospital or Leamington District Memorial Hospital.


Tilbury is served by Highway 401 and Ontario Highway 2.

Public transit is provided by CK Transit's interurban Route D Chatham-Tilbury-Merlin.

Closest airports are Chatham-Kent Airport or Windsor International Airport.

There is no trains servicing Tilbury directly, the closest being VIA Rail's Chatham railway station (Ontario).


Tilbury is also home of the Titans of Tilbury District High School, with an attendance of around 300 students. There is also a French elementary school (École élémentaire Saint-Francis), a public elementary school (Tilbury Area Public School) as well as a catholic elementary school (St. Joseph Catholic School).

Famous residents include actress Margaret Mather. Along with the former townships of Tilbury East and Dover, Tilbury is a designated French language service area under Ontario's French Language Services Act. Tilbury has an arena located next to the Knights of Columbus hall and provides free skating in the wintertime. Tilbury also has a splashpad near Tilbury Arena and Memorial Park has a skateboard park, a tennis court, an outdoor swimming pool, and a baseball field. Near the end of June, the organizers host a Canada Day fireworks event around dusk at the park. Organizers hosts the Tibury Santa Claus Parade in late November or early December and the Canada Day Parade in late June.

Tilbury is also the birth place of the band "Free Beer and Pizza". They have released 2 EP and 1 LP records. They have played the last 3 Tilbury fun fest.


Tilbury has a weekly newspaper named the Tilbury Times. It features local news, sports, and highlights. In some instances, news from Tilbury may be heard on CKSY-FM 94.3, Country 92.9 FM/AM 630 CFCO and CKUE-FM 95.1 Cool FM on radio, as well as television stations CBC News Windsor (CBET-DT) and CTV News Windsor (CHWI-DT).

Downtown Tilbury and area renovations[edit]

In 2014 sidewalks in Tilbury were replaced, and new streetlights installed. In 2017, streetlights got new types of bulbs as LEDs are used for night illumination.

External links[edit]

  • Tilbury at Geographical Names of Canada
  • Tilbury's Website

Coordinates: 42°15′30″N 82°25′55″W / 42.25833°N 82.43194°W / 42.25833; -82.43194


  1. ^ "Chatham-Kent Community Profile". Municipality of Chatham-Kent. Retrieved January 1, 2012. 
  2. ^ "Southern Ontario Tourism--Tilbury, ON". Southern Ontario Tourism. Retrieved January 1, 2012. 
  3. ^ "Southern Ontario Tourism--Tilbury, ON". Southern Ontario Tourism. Retrieved January 1, 2012. 
  4. ^ "Chatham-Kent Merge". www.angelfire.com. Retrieved January 1, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Tilbury Foodland". Facebook. Retrieved January 1, 2012. 
  6. ^ "No Frills". No Frills. Retrieved January 1, 2012. 
  7. ^ "Canadian Tire". Canadian Tire. Retrieved January 1, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Home Hardware". Home Hardware. Retrieved January 1, 2012. 
  9. ^ "Dollarama". Bing Maps (Microsoft). Retrieved January 1, 2012. 
  10. ^ "18 Wheeler". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Naples Pizza". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  12. ^ "The Dog House". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  13. ^ "FlapJacks". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  14. ^ "Tim Hortons". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  15. ^ "Subway". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  16. ^ "KFC". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  17. ^ "Little Caesars". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  18. ^ "Mac's". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  19. ^ "Shell". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  20. ^ "UPI Energy". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  21. ^ "Esso #1". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  22. ^ "Esso #2". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  23. ^ "Eastbound Station". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  24. ^ "Westbound Station". Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  25. ^ "CAA Electric Vehicle Charging Station Locator". CAA Canada. Retrieved 8 April 2017. 
  26. ^ "Find Us - Tesla Canada". Tesla Canada. Retrieved 8 April 2017. 
  27. ^ "Tilbury Auto Mall". Retrieved December 31, 2011.