Geographically, the basin is situated entirely within the Halifax Regional Municipality and is oriented northwest-southeast, measuring approximately 8 kilometres long and 5 kilometres wide, surrounded by low hills measuring up to 160 metres (525 feet) in elevation, although most elevations range up to 30-60 m (100-200 ft).
The basin is quite deep with some areas measuring several dozen metres in depth; the good holding ground (mud) on the basin floor make it an ideal protected anchorage. The basin's geologic history can be traced to the Wisconsin Glaciation when it, along with "The Narrows", formed part of the pre-historic Sackville River valley.
Bedford on the northwestern corner takes its name from the basin, while Dartmouth sits on its eastern shore and Rockingham occupies the majority of the western shore. Africville (now Seaview Park) is situated on the southern shore near the entrance into The Narrows. Bedford (2006 pop.: 16,589) is a community in the Halifax Regional Municipality, Nova Scotia, Canada. It was an independent town from 1980-1996. Bedford lies on the northwestern end of Bedford Basin, an extension of the Halifax Harbour. Bedford is located at the junctions of Trunks 1, 2, and 7.
The history of Bedford began when Governor Edward Cornwallis organised his men and began the construction of a road leading to Minas Basin on the Bay of Fundy after establishing the garrison at Halifax. To protect it, he hired John Gorham (military officer) and his Rangers to erect a fort on the shore of Bedford Basin. It was named Fort Sackville after Lionel Sackville, 1st Duke of Dorset. The area around the fort became known as Sackville until the mid-1850s when it became Bedford.
In 1752, among the first to receive a large land grant was military officer George Scott in the Fort Sackville area. George Scott later participated in the Expulsion of the Acadians, specifically the St. John River Campaign (1758). George Scott's brother Joseph, was paymaster at the Halifax Garrison in the 1760s received two grants in 1759 and 1765. He built Scott Manor House in 1770.
There is a popular walkway along much of the Bedford Basin waterfront that begins at DeWolf park, and continues as the Bedford-Sackville Connector Greenway, a crushed gravel covered trail that meanders along the Sackville River. There is an outdoor 25m pool and smaller splash pool located at the Lions Park on Shore Drive. In the summer there are numerous lakes suitable for swimming. The topography of the area limits the possible locations for soccer and football fields. However, there are fields at Basinview Drive School, Sunnyside Elementary (Eaglewood location), Bedford Junior High, Charles P. Allen High School,Bedford South and Range Park. The community is currently home to six ice surfaces, at the Lebrun Centre, Gary Martin Bubble Dome and the BMO Centre. Bedford is a well-established sailing community, and is home to the Bedford Basin Yacht Club and Marina. Its also home of the Basinview Bedford Street Hockey League/Championship. There is also a system of trails in the Ravines where many families enjoy walking their dogs.
Bedford Days has occurred annually at the end of June and beginning of July for over 30 years. Currently, most events take place at Dewolf Park. There is an Opening Celebration, Rubber Duck Dash, Free pancake breakfast, Dog show, Scott Manor House Tea Party, Kids' Extravaganza, Kids' Triathlon, Movies in the Park and a Canada Day Celebration.
The Light Up Bedford Parade is an annual parade that goes along the Bedford Highway from Bedford Place Mall and ends at DeWolf Park. At the park there is a hot chocolate stand, Christmas carol singing and contests and prizes. At the conclusion of the parade, a Christmas Tree is lit. In addition to bringing the community together to celebrate the beginning of the Christmas season, the parade serves as a fundraiser for the Turkey Club Society, which raises funds to ensure all residents of HRM are able to provide a Christmas dinner for their families. The parade takes place on the Sunday following the Light Up Halifax Parade, which is usually mid-November.
Depending on where they live, students may attend the following schools in the Bedford area:
- Fort Sackville Elementary - Grades Primary and grade one, offers early French immersion
- Waverley Road Elementary - Grades Primary to 3
- Basinview Drive Elementary School - Grades Primary to 6
- Bedford South School - Grades Primary to 9
- Eaglewood Drive Elementary - Grade 2 to grade 6, offers early French immersion
- Bedford Junior High School  - Grades 7 to 9
- Charles P. Allen High School - Grade 10 to Grade 12
- École Beaubassin - Grades Primary to 9, entirely Francophone
- FLEC's (Flexible Learning Education Centres) - Grades 10 to 12, "A Different High School Option"
Bedford area also has two private schools :
- Bedford Academy - Grades Primary to 9
- Sandy Lake Seventh Day Adventist Academy - Grades Primary to 12
The Bedford School System is considered one of the best school systems in Nova Scotia. It has two smaller elementary schools and two larger elementary schools a Primary to nine school a junior high (7-9) and a senior high (10-12) a FLEC school a 100% French school and two private schools. For more information on the individual schools & to check the schools your child would attend by home address, please visit http://www.hrsb.ns.ca/ .
Bedford is alo home to Mount Saint Vincent University http://www.msvu.ca/en/home/default.aspx .
Bedford is served by Halifax Regional Municipality's transit authority, Metro Transit. Routes 66, 81, 82, 86, 88 and 89 directly serve Bedford while many more routes serve the nearby Cobequid terminal in Lower Sackville.
There is a fast ferry service planned for the Mill Cove area that would connect to the Ferry Terminal in Downtown Halifax. However, this proposed service is controversial due to disputes over projected costs and ridership levels.
Bedford is well serviced by taxis, buses, roads, highways, and sidewalks/walking paths.
Some of the top 10 most popular restaurants to be enjoyed in Bedford, accordin to the UrbanSpoon include:
For more information & reviews of HRM restaurants, please visit http://www.urbanspoon.com/n/235/40530/Atlantic-Provinces/Bedford-restaurants