Richard Suggate
Chair Diamond Harbour Community Association
16 Whero Avenue
Diamond Harbour
Ph 0276876242
4 August 2019

This submission is made on behalf of the DIAMOND HARBOUR COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION

We wish to be heard in support of our submission.

The Diamond Harbour Community Association has historical roots back to 1931 when the local
Burgesses Association was formed, with the DHCA replacing it in 1984. It continues to perform vital
community functions such as Community Hall management, publishing of the Diamond Harbour
Herald, summer concerts and supporting the local website. The Association works with the
Christchurch City Council, Environment Canterbury, the Banks Peninsula Community Board and the
Diamond Harbour Reserves Committee and adjacent residents’ associations to promote the views of
the community and to protect its interests. The Committee is elected at an annual public meeting.

This submission is from the Committee and represents a cross-section of community opinion as
gathered over recent years and heard from people since the consultation document was released.
We have been unable to read the submissions sent to the Council from the public and there may be
greater weighting put to certain proposals than we can represent, in what we are writing here. I
have asked that the Banks Peninsula Community Board receive a deputation from the Community
Association at the its meeting on 3 September, when it considers Council’s response to the
submissions. This will enable the Association to speak about the range of views received by Council
and the staff suggestions for action.

Principles for decision-making.

In November 2015, the Association drew up principles for redevelopment of the Godley House site.
These have been updated and we wish the Council to take them into account in making decisions on
the site.

1Recognise the previous
work by the
Community and Council
Use the 2011 Community Comments, 2013 Getting to the Point,
2013 Stoddart Point Reserve Management Plan, 2017 Village
Concept Plan and Lincoln University Landscape Architecture
student designs (2013-2015) as foundation documents.
2Recognise the previous
uses of the site.
Godley House was a functioning hotel with bar, dining,
entertainment areas and accommodation. Prior to the quakes
there was a gift shop and garden centre on the Dark Star site and
then post-quake a café/bar. These are all activities suitable for
the Banks Peninsula Commercial zoning in the district plan and
allowed by Council despite the 2006 gazettal as a recreation
reserve. There is an expectation in a wide section of the
community that such social and commercial functions be allowed
to continue.
3Recognise existing site
These are associated with its landscape, biodiversity and
heritage. They include the spacious lawns, trees, garden layout,
harbour views and Godley House footprint, which should be
incorporated into future design.
4Respect for historical
remnants and heritage
Retain main features of large lawn and garden alignment and
significant trees. Do we retain brick foundations and totara piles
in situ if they are an impediment to best use of the space? They
could be built over without their removal. The steps, concrete
path and the gardens around the Godley House are all significant
heritage features worth retaining and visible. The well could
become an under-floor feature. See CCC Stoddart Point Reserve
Landscape History and Conservation report, June 2016.
5 Open space v buildingsThere are a range of views in the community from leaving most
of the area Open Space to having sites for building development.
Any buildings can be concentrated on the western side, on or
adjacent to old Dark Star café site. The lawns should largely be
retained and the views across to Lyttelton not impeded. There
should be space for concerts in the summer. There could be
buildings around some open space enclosing it (partially) with
structures. There is an option to reuse part or all the Godley
House foundation site, if the area has adequate protection from
modification. The area is adjacent to the village shopping centre
and recreation reserve land, so a blending of activities is
6 Public/community use
of space v private use
of space
Multiple public use is envisaged and generally a wide range of
users rather than a select few limited by cost or function. Private
occupation excluding the wider public is not supported by the
Association. A Council multi-service hub is a potential option.
7Private v public
ownership of assets
(commercial viability,
CCC funding)
Our preference is for public ownership of the built structures
with the opportunity for leases for any commercial functions. If a
Trust eventuated to own buildings that would also be supported.
A less preferred option is for some building(s) to be privately
owned, but the Council retaining land ownership.
8Duration and ground
size of any lease
The duration of any lease will depend on the significance of
investment by any private operator. The size of any lease will be
governed by any function and should be for building footprint
9Use of insurance $There is a very strong expectation in the community, that the
Council (as it received insurance money for GH) will commit
funding to replacement facilities.
10Local v visitor
destination usage
The site should continue to provide for locals and visitors. Visitors
bring viability to community businesses and are often visiting
Christchurch residents. The local people are strongly attached to
the site and wish to see it used wisely.
11SustainabilitySustainability is very important for the buildings (e.g. use of materials and energy conservation). Also important are the
human scale elements for walking, relaxing – not car dominated.
Any structures should be architecturally designed to fit into the
landscape. Design guidelines should be updated for the town
centre area, if there was enough development to justify.
12Compatibility with
surrounding reserve
and town centre
Any design for the Godley House area must be part of a wider
design for the town centre and the surrounding reserve. Plans
drawn up by local Registered Landscape Architects Nancy Vance
(from Lincoln University student design exercises 2013-15) and
Tracey Ower (in Getting to the Point) reflect this. The Village
Concept Plan should be followed (circular roading and parking).
There must also be Stoddart Point Reserve Management Plan
compatibility, regardless of whether all the area retains
recreation reserve status. The Christchurch District Plan zoning of
Banks Peninsula Commercial provides for flexibility of usage.
13Complements (not
competes) with other
nearby services (e.g.
adjacent shops,
Community Hall;
Church Bay shops;
Stoddart cottage;
medical centre; picnic
There may be reasons for duplication e.g. there is demand for
two cafes at the village centre. The community hall will be here
for many decades ahead and that functions that are best suited
there should not be duplicated. The hall is used for cultural and
sporting activities and large community meetings and
entertainment. However, it has poor acoustics and a non-
intimate atmosphere. If the library was to be relocated to GH site
its existing space could be used for another function.
While there is a proposed café/theatre at the Church Bay shops,
it is not expected to draw significant custom away from two
Village Centre cafes as this is a destination location for ferry users
and drivers and a focal point for DH residents.
14Vehicle/walking access
points on to the site
There are two main entrance ways to site. Down Waipapa Ave
and walking up from ferry. Walking and vehicles need to be
separated. Implementing the Village Concept Plan will finalise
this. The walking tracks down to the ferry carpark and to the
playing field has been a first step.
15Car-parking location Implement the Village Concept Plan. Accessible, signed, short
and long-term parking is required. Pedestrian separated. Calmed
traffic from Marine Drive to village centre. Priority is to get the
carpark on the south-east of the GH site properly signed and
surfaced to reduce congestion in front of the shops, with the
one-way road completed to the cemetery. This roading is needed
but is not very compatible with recreation reserve status.
Additional car-parking can be developed opposite the croquet
16Landscape and
architectural design
are essential
Implementation of Council decisions should be through staged
planning, ensuring natural and built elements are harmonised
with the garden landscape, outstanding views and heritage
features. Getting to the Point and Lincoln University landscape
plans should be referenced.
17Land status to reflect
agreed community
Over the past 20 years, Council misaligned site usage and leasing,
site statutory status and its district plan zoning. The zoning and
the land status should reflect the agreed use and protection of
the site not vice versa. All or part of the area could become local
purpose reserve like the land under the community hall. This would provide greater flexibility of use. The Association considers
that if necessary, the reserve status could be uplifted off those
areas of the site that lack reserve values; namely the roading and
parking on the south-east side and the Dark Star site which is
now an earthen hillside.

Site values to be retained

  1. Landscape. Spacious lawns, trees, garden layout, harbour views. Built structures should be
    placed around these and not block them out or detract from historical alignments.
  2. Built Heritage. Godley House brick foundations do not have to be visible and could be built
    over without their removal. Alternatively, they could become an enclosed lawn feature,
    providing a frame for other uses. The steps, concrete path and the gardens around the
    Godley House are all significant heritage features worth retaining and visible. The well could
    become an under-floor feature.

Preferred uses of the site

The Committee ranked the preferred uses of the site. They are in priority order (highest first) and
may include buildings that are adjacent or have multiple functions:

  1. Public toilets. The toilets beneath the Community Hall and Stoddart Point carpark are too
    far from the main village area. The Preserved Café currently experiences high public non-
    customer usage of their toilets.
  2. A licensed café / tea rooms with bar functions and entertainment area. If it is a café it
    should be licensed to provide restaurant and bar service. With a large deck for indoor
    outdoor seating. There is strong community support for this as evidenced by the 3,000
    signatures on the Dark Star petition. The one café left cannot cope with demand in summer
    months. It is not expected that a Church Bay café (if it eventuates) will diminish demand at
    Diamond Harbour a lot, as the Village Centre is a destination for visitors. The amount of
    people coming over by ferry is increasing every summer. Black Cat are expected to get a new
    and larger boat soon.
  3. An amphitheatre with a sheltered stage area. To provide for public concerts and to have
    enough shelter from wind, sun, and rain for performers. An additional bonus would be if it
    had the flexibility of an attached indoor entertainment area if the weather was too bad. This
    should not be an area under private control – it should be useable for public functions, not
    associated with a privately-run café/bar. Preferable that it should allow views across the
    lawns and harbour to utilise the current ambience of the site.
  4. Relocate library from under the Community Hall. The current library under the Community
    Hall is poorly located, too dark, too small and the roof leaks. There is no room for any
    expansion or greater computer facilities. A library could also provide some information
    services for visitors. It would be a cornerstone of a Council mini Service Centre concept for
    the site.
  5. Covered outdoor seating areas. Associated with the outdoor entertainment area. To
    provide protection against wind and sun. As well as picnic tables. Barbecue areas are
    possibly more suitable down at the Domain carpark.

Other options

  1. Relocation of post boxes and postal services. If this matches the future services on the site.
    The owner of the current post-office box site building (the Hairdresser) would be happy for
    them to move and the Preserved Café at present provides limited postal services.
  2. Market Space. Previously local people have run markets selling produce or craft in the
    Village Centre. An indoor/outdoor entertainment centre could also provide the option for
    market space.
  3. Playground. There is a small playground opposite the Community Hall. There could be an
    additional play area associated with a relocated library, cafe or entertainment area.

Not supported

  1. Community Gardens. The lawn which is the main flat area has heritage value and should be
    largely maintained as is. There are better sites elsewhere in Diamond Harbour. However,
    there could be some edible garden plantings associated with reconstruction of the Godley
    house garden.
  2. Edible tree crops. It is not suitable for mass plantings. There may be small areas in the site
    where individual trees could blend in with existing layout and not obstruct views. Any trees
    should not detract from existing garden layout. There are better sites elsewhere in Diamond
    Harbour for orchards.
  3. Arboretum. The site is too small and has too many existing landscape and heritage values.
    There is an arboretum at Orton Bradley Park.
  4. Exhibition area for arts and crafts. This would compete with the arts and crafts exhibition
    and sales area in Stoddart Cottage, which are important for its viability. There could be
    minor display areas associated with a café or library.
  5. Skatepark. High maintenance and high visibility site needed. Demand is relatively low and
    other locations on the Point can be found.
  6. Takeaways. Mobile caravans or takeaway bars would detract from the ambience of the site.
    We would like permanent facilities. Mobile or temporary food services/stalls may be allowed
    at concerts, or during the peak summer months until a permanent café is established.


The Community Association would like to have ongoing engagement with Council staff and the
Community Board as proposals for the site develop. We strongly support the Community Board
recommending an allocation in the 2020-21 Annual Plan for the design and construction of facilities
to meet the community needs expressed in this consultation process.