City of Surrey grants building permit for school kids’ gingerbread houses


There was a little bit of merry-making ahead of Christmas this month as a group of elementary school students applied for–and were granted–a building permit from the City of Surrey to construct a “gingerbread community.”

The students of Division 13 at Bayridge Elementary hand-wrote their application to Surrey’s Planning Department, specifying the construction would take place in their neighbourhood on Friday, December 15. No land would be needed, and no trees would be cut down.

The building materials: “6 crackers, (graham) candies, icing, and chocolate.”

Surrey’s Planning Department obliged, and issued an official permit, including naming the contractor as “Santa’s Little Elves” from the “North Pole, HO HO HO.”

Additionally, the permit denotes the plans allow for access for Santa and his reindeer, along with candy canes, cookies, and icing–but no crumbs or cavities.

gingerbread permit surrey

The actual letter from the school kids and the permit have been shared on Reddit. We’ve reached out to the Surrey Planning Department, however due to the holidays they and Bayridge Elementary are closed, so we weren’t able to obtain comment.

Hopefully construction went well, and the kids enjoyed a delicious demolition.

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Lindsay is the Managing Editor of Vancouver Is Awesome, and the co-host and co-producer of the Vancouver Is Awesome Podcast. A fifth generation Vancouverite and life-long foodie, Lindsay also serves as a judge for the Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards. Previously the Food Editor of Daily Hive, Senior Editor of Vancity Buzz, and Editor-in-Chief of, in her past life in L.A. she earned an MA in English, attended culinary school, and was an English professor. Lindsay's first published piece was December 1980 in The Province; it was her letter to Santa. E-mail: // Twitter/Instagram: @squashblossom