Towards the end of our walk around the Christchurch CBD (see previous post) we sought out the earthquake exhibition place to see what it was about. There was a lovely stained glass church window there – or three of them to be exact. It took a while to realise that we were looking at the windows we’d seen back in 2007 on the Mt Peel farm station in Mid-Canterbury.
Wyn and I had gone camping over Easter 2007 at Peel Forest, in Mid-Canterbury. This was before our motorhome days. We did some walking and also went for a drive up the Rangitata Gorge Road. To see where it went – more or less. We came across a beautiful little church, on the Mt Peel farm station. It was open for us to look inside; and the inside was stunning. Simple, with exquisite stained glass windows. The Church of the Holy Innocents. The church is named in remembrance of three infant children who died between 1864 and 1869 and are buried in the churchyard cemetery. Crikey; there’s some power and emotions in there…
And almost seven years later we came across some of the same windows downtown in Christchurch. Now that was a surprise. It turns out the little church was badly damaged in the September 2010 Darfield earthquake and the windows were shattered. Much of the glass was recovered and pieced together or used to colour-match. So that eventually the windows were rebuilt.
I have found a story about the church and the damage and the recovery of the windows – see here. Plus a blog post that includes photos of the damaged church – see here.
It’s good to see what can be done to recover treasures. Maybe it isn’t necessary to restore every last lost window and church and building. Maybe it will be enough to rescue some, to represent the lost ones?
Gallery of photos – Christchurch CBD – December – January 2013-2014
Click on thumbnails to see full size. (And then you can click through them)