Home' Christchurch Mail : November 8th 2012 Contents 3
CHRISTCHURCH MAIL, NOVEMBER 8, 2012
A Good Look Needs Great Hair!
Let La mode create the ultimate Cup Day look!
For our weekly colour specials find us on Facebook!
or an Elegant Updo
perfectly placed for
110 Marshlands Road
Garden Hotel Complex
Ph: 385 6193
Site is prime stock
LOOKING BACK: The Addington Stockyards in the 1920s, with a bar, pavilion, and heart totara fencing.
Photo: G L ADKIN COLLECTION, ALEXANDER TURNBULL LIBRARY
Next year the Addington Stockyards on Deans Ave will celebrate its 140th birthday. But
despite its purchase by a foreign investor more than 10 years ago, the land still sits
vacant. Some in the city have called for it to be turned into a parking lot, others have
suggested a bus exchange. One person even suggested seizing the land for a temporary
post-quake CBD. ABBIE NAPIER takes a look at the site's history and future.
IN THE late 1800s the roads
were mostly dirt and the live-
stock trade was a cornerstone of
Christchurch colonial industry.
Stockyards popped up all over
the city in Papanui, Woolston
In 1873 an enterprising bunch
of gentlemen formed the Canter-
bury Saleyards Company and
purchased a 10-acre plot on
Deans Ave for the princely sum
of £2000. Almost 130 years later
Taiwanese company Neowell
Investments purchased the land,
stockyards now derelict, valued
at $11.7 million.
The purchase led to a six-year
playground spat between Neo-
well and the city council, as
planning negotiations broke
down time and again.
A court case brought against
the CCC further stressed the
relationship. It was eventually
dropped in 2005, costing Neowell
Two years later, mayor Garry
Moore tried to smooth things
over, planning a high-rise apart-
ment development. Negotiations
broke down, the recession hit,
and it wasn t until 2010 the sub-
ject was broached again.
Neowell s stressful relation-
ship with the council smacked of
the previous owner s troubles.
During the early 1900s, Add-
ington residents began to
grumble discontentedly about
the stockyards -- the noise, the
smell, the crazed cattle stam-
pedes endangering life and limb.
By this time Addington was
becoming more residential than
When the yards were finished
in 1874, support for the venture
had been both loud and good-
natured, as evidenced by a news-
paper report detailing the lavish
opening dinner and champagne
toasts from the city s leaders.
The opinion pretty generally
entertained is that a better and
more convenient site could not
have been selected, said the
Day one of operations saw the
sale of 73,000 sheep and 532
cattle -- a raging success. The
yards soon grew to be the busiest
in the city.
However the glory days were
short-lived and in 1916 the city
council paid the company direct-
ors a visit. Their visit aimed to
shoehorn the Saleyards Co into
moving closer to the abattoir at
Reasons cited included the
general nuisance of the yards
and unnecessary cruelty to
The driving of cattle is a con-
stant menace, said the council.
The cattle starves at the
abattoir, said the company.
Despite the friction, the yards
endured until 1997. Cattle stam-
pedes remained an occupational
hazard well into the 1950s.
In 1985 the council put its foot
down and refused to expand the
yards. It eventually relocated,
leaving the yards a vacant,
Fortunately for the city, graf-
fiti artists and taggers saw the
blank walls as an invitation to
express themselves. Over the
years the yards became a local
Some tags were more artistic
In September a community
group painted over the walls vis-
ible from the road in shades of
insipid beige. Undoubtedly the
makeover will not last long --
tags are already popping up.
The internal walls remained
largely untouched by the neutral
Meanwhile, the earthquakes
have brought an end to talks
between Neowell and the city
council. Lawyer Murray Withers
said the company was consider-
ing the best use of the site.
It is unclear what form this
development might take.
Links Archive November 1st 2012 November 15th 2012 Navigation Previous Page Next Page