A legal battle to stop Christchurch’s landmark cathedral being demolished has been lost.
In a decision released today the Court of Appeal has upheld a High Court decision clearing the way for the Church Property Trustees (CPT) to continue demolishing the quake-damaged Christ Church Cathedral.
The decision will come as a blow to those campaigning to save the Cathedral, who have been pinning their hopes on a favourable outcome through the courts.
The CPT resolved in March last year to partially deconstruct the cathedral to bring it down to a safe level, but the lawfulness of its decision was challenged by the Great Christchurch Buildings Trust (GCBT).
It sought through the High Court a declaration that the decision to deconstruct the cathedral was a breach of the trusts upon which the CPT holds and asked the court to set aside that decision.
But the High Court found that CPT was entitled to deconstruct the damaged cathedral, provided the deconstruction was undertaken for the purpose of constructing a new cathedral on the same site.
The High Court made a declaration that, while the cathedral trust required there to be a cathedral on the site, the building did not necessarily have to replicate the cathedral as it stood before the earthquakes.
Unhappy with that ruling, the GCBT decided to challenge the decision in the Court of Appeal, but it has unanimously upheld the High Court’s decision and rejected all three of the arguments put forward by GCBT’s lawyers.
What a waste of time and money. I hope the Anglican Church gets full costs against GCBT.
The decision is a decision for the Anglican Church. Not for Jim Anderton, or anyone else with a contrary opinion.