Aug 2, 2009

Christchurch Heritage Tragedy


It was announced on the 31st of July, 2009 that a two storey Sydenham warehouse dating from the late 1860s is to be demolished to make way for a new terminus for Leopard Coachlines.

Situated on the eastern side of Montreal Street, between the railway line and Disraeli Street, and forming part of the complex of buildings that has been the premises of CRC Salvage and Demolition since 1984, it is Christchurch's oldest surviving industrial building.

Canterbury Heritage calls upon the Christchurch City Council and the Historic Places Trust to save this historically significant part of our cultural heritage from destruction.


LINK TO PHOTO SET OPENS IN A NEW TAB OR WINDOW

Above: details from street and rear views of the historic warehouse, from a set of seven photographs by Greg O'Beirne.

24 comments:

Sarndra said...

This is sacrilege! We must prevent these things happening Mr CH. The next step? I'm there!

Canterbury Heritage said...

Strategic lobbying has commenced with drawing this impending tragedy to the attention of Anna Crighton, who is both a member of the Historic Places Trust Board and a Christchurch City Councillor.

Jayne said...

Ohh, there's a plague of idiocy sweeping through the halls of power, we have a "planning minister" who's approved the demolition of a beautiful Art Deco building in the heart of Melbourne, Lonsdale House.
I hope this warehouse is able to be saved, there is too much of the "disposable" mentality disposing of our irreplaceable heritage.

gobeirne said...

I went past yesterday afternoon and took some photos. I agree with Sarndra - let me know what I can do. There must be a workable solution out there.

Canterbury Heritage said...

Thanks Greg, I've taken the liberty of adding a detail from one of your photographs (with a link to the set) to the article.

Anything that you could do to bring the plight of this historic building to the attention of the mainstream media could prove most helpful in improving its chances of survival.

Anonymous said...

I had a close look at this building on Saturday afternoon taking the chance to walk around it upstairs and down and I'm not that sure that it is worthy of preservation. It seems to be much altered, in very poor condition and of little architectural merit. I feel that the ravages of time have already got to this building. Its also not sited within a similar grouping precinct. Age for itself is not always the sole reason to save something. it must also have an intrinsic value. Sadly I didn't see anything there of such merit.

mind you my mind is open to be convinced.

Steven

Canterbury Heritage said...

Having ignored representations for the preservation this unique building from the first era of settlement, the local branch of the Historic Places Trust and the Christchurch City Council would appear to share your opinion.

But if it were sited in either Auckland or Wellington its protection would be assured.

Anonymous said...

This early agricultural storage warehouse was built in the 1860's for closeness to the railway; it is sandwiched between newer brick buildings but is in very original condition, you can see this from the beam structures on the inside of the building. There is NOTHING left in Christchurch to represent this genre of architecture of the 1860's era, it is this unique status that should save it!
This building may not be grand but it is part of the history that made the Canterbury sttlement a success, it tells a story that no other buildings can...there are no others like it left. What a shame that this is allowed to happen; just like we lost buildings in the 1960's-1980's because people did not understand their historic significance, people will say in years to come "why did they let this happen?"
Liza Rossie M.A. Local history.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Steven, I too have had a look round this building, and apart from its age there are little other redeeming features to make it worth the effort

John

Lynne said...

As chairperson of the Canterbury Branch of the New Zealand Historic Places Trust I am unaware of the representation made to the Branch by Canterbury Heritage. Now that I am aware of the threat to this building the issue will be placed on the agenda for our next meeting.

Sarndra said...

That's fantastic Lynne! Every voice counts and certainly one from your organisation is a brilliant start :-)

Much appreciated!

gobeirne said...

This is slightly off-topic, but an article in this morning's Herald discusses some of Auckland's architectural losses.

Around the World said...

We have included your blog in our guide Around The World.

The guide is both a record of old blogs and a listing of new blogs. Although originally arising from the "City Daily Photo Blog" lists this is an independent publication. Inclusion here does not imply that a blog qualifies for nor is officially a CDPB. Our criteria are that photographs mainly from and related to a specific geographical location (not necessarily a "city" but usually more specific than a whole country or region) are posted at dated intervals (not necessarily daily) and archives are kept which are readily searchable by date.

Please keep us informed of any changes to your details.

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Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

Where oh where has Canterbury Heritage gone? What is it, about 18 months now? Did the blog owner drop dead?

Now more than ever, we need you Canterbury Heritage Man, our city is being demolished before our eyes, with nobody to stand up and say "STOP!".

Canterbury Heritage said...

Canterbury Heritage Man regrets that academic priorities currently preclude further contributions to the blog.

Early Canterbury Photography said...

"currently" gives us hope

maxmetro@live.com.au said...

If not already demolished why could these buildings not be moved to public land made vacant by the earthquakes. Give the people of Christchurch back what little of their history thats left.

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