Posts Tagged ‘Christchurch’

Today was my first visit to the new ANZ Centre.  The seven metre high tree in the atrium is spectacular, although a real one would have looked better.

The centre is pleasant to walk through, and the clothing stores seem not as upmarket as the ones in the Restart Mall – a welcome change.

By contrast, the old BNZ site is now a lake:

At least there’s progress here, of sorts.

“A bright new centre, ANZ
the BNZ’s a lake instead.”


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The national earthquake memorial is huge.  The marble wall looks bland from across the river.

But close up there’s lots to see and contemplate.

I did wonder about the blank parts of the wall.  It’s almost as though they’re waiting for more disasters to be inscribed.  The Mauri with its constantly running water is a great idea.

No memorial will suit everyone, and this will meet many needs.  I still find the 185 chairs more moving.

“For me, the chairs just say it all
and I prefer them to the wall.”

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This sign was on Oxford Terrace by the Restart Mall on 8 March, so is definitely out-of-date for any ‘temporary’ road closure supposed to end on 14 February.  I can appreciate that it’s hard to know just when roadworks will finish, but I’d rather they gave no date at all than raised false hopes.

“If they don’t know the actual day
it would be better not to say.”

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Beside the water play area at the Margaret Mahy Family Playground a new building is taking shape.


I’m told it is to be a ‘concession stand’ for food truck vendors providing shelter from the weather and shade for waiting customers.  I’m still waiting for them to provide seats with back support for people watching children play.

“Some shelter for each foodie truck
and food scraps for a hungry duck.”

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The Women’s Centre has attractive new premises at 242 Ferry Road in Waltham.


This organisation is dear to my heart.  We bought our Cottage from one of the founders, and were intrigued to learn that this home had previously been used as a women’s refuge and been the venue for meetings held to establish the Women against Violence Centre which later became the Women’s Centre.  In 1993 when I was studying Community Skills at Polytech I joined the Centre as a volunteer Support Worker.  Later I became their paid Finance worker and Fundraiser and was a collective member.  At this time they were in the old Atlantis Building in Cathedral Square.  The Centre later moved to Greenwich/witch House and another premises in Manchester Street. Many of the workers were close friends, and I have continued an association with the organisation.

Forced to leave Manchester Street after the earthquakes, they had two other homes before moving at the end of last year to these new premises, and yesterday was their official opening, as well as a belated 30th birthday celebration.  It was a pleasure to be there among so many friends.  Some were wearing pink pussyhats, as seen at the Women’s March on Washington on January 21st.


Mayor Lianne Dalziel (right) cut the birthday cake with Centre Manager Ardas Trebus.


“The Women’s Centre is a place
where women have their special space.”

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The grate at the end of our gutter had disappeared this morning.  This left a large hazardous hole, which I rang the Council to report.  Within two hours a man arrived with a replacement grate.

Grate fix

Grate fix

Apparently newer grates have longer “ears”, so he had to clean out the relevant earholes to make it fit.  I told him how pleased I was with this excellent service, and he said “Always a pleasure, never a chore”.  What a great (grate?) response.

“He soon replaced the missing grate,
returned our road to healthy state.”


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Tram Travel

We caught the tram at Cathedral Junction and did a double loop around the inner city.  This was the first time I’ve ridden on the little Invercargill Birney Tram number 15.

Birney no. 15 tram

Birney no. 15 tram

There are only two of these trams left in New Zealand (the other’s in New Plymouth and not mobile).   In 1952, after more than thirty years of service, Birney no. 15 made its last trip to South Invercargill, the most southerly tram line in the world.  After years spent as a farm sleepout this tram came to Ferrymead in 1985, and restoration started in 2009.  It was finally completed in late 2013, since when the tram’s been running in the central city.  This little tram needs only one staff member, as the only door is at the front.  It was therefore more economical for a smaller city like Invercargill.

Inside the tram

Inside the tram

“This is a darling little tram
all done up now and looks so glam.’






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