Agreement reached on Cathedral reinstatement

  • Hon Dr Megan Woods
Greater Christchurch Regeneration

The Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Dr Megan Woods, is pleased to announce significant progress on the reinstatement of Christ Church Cathedral.

“I am delighted to announce that we have reached agreement in principle on the Joint Venture terms after complex negotiations spanning a number of months.

“In addition to this, I have approved Christchurch-based Justin Murray as independent Chair of Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Limited (CCRL), which is the official name of the joint venture company.

“Justin will be a strong leader to steer the delivery of the project and deliver results. With agreement from all parties involved, we can now begin the important work of reinstating this local icon.

 “I am anticipating, thanks to the work the Church Property Trustees has already done, that the site clearance and decontamination work will start by the end of July, subject to regulatory approvals. This comes ahead of pre-construction site work that will be undertaken by the Joint Venture.

The next steps will be for other Directors to be appointed and the Joint Venture Company will be looking at finalising the concept design, the scope of works, project budget and time-frames. We expect this work to take at least three to six months.

“The ultimate goal for all concerned is to return this important historical and cultural icon to the people of Canterbury and New Zealand. 

“Like many Cantabrians, I look forward to one day seeing the Cathedral connected again to the Square in a vibrant way, being able to function again for the worship and spiritual purposes of the church, as well as offer an attractive, safe and viable space for civic and other functions,” says Megan Woods.

Chair of the government-appointed Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Trust Peter Guthrey says it’s a poignant moment.

“The Joint Venture Agreement is an incredibly detailed document. It was vital that we took the time to get it right, and we are confident that we have. I am also delighted to welcome Justin Murray to his new role and look forward to working with him, his Board and the Church Property Trustees to reinstate the Cathedral,” says Mr Guthrey. 

The Very Rev’d Lawrence Kimberley, Dean of the Transitional Cathedral, welcomes news that this milestone has been reached, and acknowledges with deep gratitude the hard work of those on both the CPT and the Reinstatement Trust that has brought this to fruition.

Moka Ritchie, Deputy Chair of CPT is pleased with the progress.

“We appreciate having Justin Murray as Chair and having him lead the CCRL in the reinstatement of the Christ Church Cathedral. CPT has agreed in principle to the key points of the Agreement and looks forward to finalising it in conjunction with CCRT and the CCRL. CPT is thankful that the reinstatement journey is progressing and looks forward to the Christ Church Cathedral being reinstated as a beacon of hope in the central city. 


About Justin Murray:

Justin Murray has a strong background in business, board governance and finance. He is currently the Executive Chairman of investment banking firm Murray & Co, which he founded in 2004. He is a Director of Christchurch International Airport (where he chairs the Property and Commercial Committee) and was previously Deputy Chair of the Christchurch Earthquake Appeal Trust Advisory Board. 


About the Joint Venture agreement:

The Joint Venture agreement sets out the terms between the Reinstatement Trust and the Church Property Trustees (CPT) in relation to the implementation, execution and completion of the project. Among other things, it covers the ownership and management of the Company and the shareholders’ rights and obligations. Having been agreed in principle by the Reinstatement Trust and CPT, CCRL will also become a signatory to the agreement.