Tag Archives: The Press

Christchurch Cathedral : Marcus Brandt and the People’s Steeple Project

christchurch-cathedral-steeple-by-country-farm-garden-photos-cfgphoto-com-render1-1

While Bishop Victoria and the Anglican church property trust (CPT) continue to sit on their hands perhaps awaiting devine intervention, who knew, it turns out that a group of stalwart people in New Zealand – with an incredible level of international assistance – are busy planning a very special Cathedral project.

From: Mark Belton
Sent: Sunday, February 26, 2017 11:11 PM
To: [Elizabeth Kerr + RCC Mailing List]
Subject: Introducing The People’s Steeple

Dear Cathedral Restoration supporters

Below is a link to a video clip of the People’s Steeple proposal being demonstrated by its creator Marcus Brandt. Marcus has been in CHCH this last week promoting the People’s Steeple Project.

The People’s Steeple is a mind blowing proposal…audacious, visionary, inspiring. Lifting telescoping timber sections of the spire 60 metres into the sky…powered by about 500 trained people working 16 capstan winches placed around Cathedral Square, watched by up to 50,000 people in the Square.

The US based Timber Framers Guild (TFG), a professional organisation of engineers and timber framers has offered to be the lead contractor to build, assemble, and erect the People’s Steeple. The lead NZ engineers would be renowned CHCH timber engineer – Prof Andy Buchanan whose report on the project is attached.

Skilled TFG members from the US and around the world would gift their time, working in the Square preparing and assembling the timbers, and then helping lead the steeple’s erection. Up to 300 TFG members along with locals could be involved working in the Square over a period of about 6 months.

The TFG have successfully undertaken 75 community building projects over the last 25 years in the US and around the world. They are super keen to offer their services to CHCH. The TFG emphasise their projects are about ‘building communities’.

Marcus says would take only 2-3 hrs to lift and secure the telescoping sections. Flooring and bells would be assembled the same day and in the evening the bells would ring out…proclaiming to the world – ‘Christchurch is back’….and a Hangi feast would be opened…for a crowd of 50,000! International media would broadcast the event around the world…the whole enterprise being about engaging our community in the most positive way…and it would ignite fund raising for the restoration of the cathedral. It is envisaged the construction of the People’s Steeple would lead restoration of the cathedral and the Square.

It is noted huge pro bono contributions from the Guild’s members are being offered, and Blakely Pacific NZ Ltd, a US based forestry company has offered to provide the timbers at no cost from giant 125-year-old Port Orford Cedar from its Pioneer Forest in South Canterbury.

The Restore Christchurch Cathedral Group is strongly supportive of the People’s Steeple.

We hope this inspiring project will help engage and enthuse Christchurch people with recovery of the cathedral, and help get the cathedral restoration programme underway.

Warm regards

Mark Belton
Co-Chair, Restore Christchurch Cathedral

Mark Belton
Managing Director
Permanent Forests NZ Limited
PO Box 34, Lyttelton 8841, New Zealand

See attached reports by Marcus Brandt, Andy Buchanan, and the TFG.
TFG People’s Steeple Project approach notes-10-2-16
Steeple 16-8-12
M Belton report on Timber Framers Guild conf and People’s Steeple 23-9-16
Engineering the People’s Steeple v9

The People’s Steeple | Whare Films Published on Feb 23, 2017

christchurch-cathedral-tonyhphotography-co-nz-bw-render1-1

The People’s Steeple
Rebuilding the Bell Tower at Christchurch Cathedral

Marcus Brandt: An Introduction

For the last thirty years or so, I’ve been restoring historic stone and timber buildings, mostly in Southeastern Pennsylvania. I’m a working master carpenter and stone mason. Most of the historic buildings I am called to work on are 150 to 300 years old. Solid and well crafted, these old buildings tend to age well, but neglect and damage can take a toll. Much of my effort is spent in repairing and strengthening the timber frames of barns, bridges, houses, gristmills and churches. I’ve had several commissions to build new structures in the old style. I have organized and led many barn raisings, in which hundreds of volunteers gather to raise a barn’s frame in a day. A good crew will have the sides and roof on too.
Straightening, plumbing and repairing damaged stone walls is often called for. It is not uncommon to straighten a wall 10 meters high that is out of plumb by 400 or 500 mm. Having studied and worked with several Scots masons, I’m a strong believer in lime based mortars and good masonry practice. The interface between stone and timber is of particular interest to me.
Since 1989, I’ve been a professional member of the Timber Framers Guild (TFG) and a member of the Traditional Timberframe Research and Advisory Group (TTRAG). That part of the Guild focuses on understanding the past practice of the craft with a view that the past might help inform future practice. I have advised many historical and preservation societies and sat on many review boards.
As a result of my participation in Guild efforts and projects, I was invited to go to both Scotland and China to investigate “lost” technologies for the Public Broadcast Service series NOVA. We built working siege weapons in Scotland and in China we built a bridge design that hadn’t been built since the Mongol invasion.
I teach Traditional building skills at Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA. I’m particularly interested in ways that the pre-industrial past practice can inform building in the greener, sustainable post-industrial world of the future.
I serve as a sailor, boson and ship’s carpenter aboard the tall ship Gazela (www.Gazela.org). That experience has taught me much about rigging and raising heavy loads in confined spaces. It’s taught me about erecting tall, secure, flexible, stable structures that get tossed about and shaken mercilessly. A sea captain in her own right, my wife serves as First Mate aboard Gazela. She out-ranks me, and helps keep me humble.
Since 22 February, I have been working as much as possible to develop a method to rebuild the Bell tower at Christchurch. With the help of friends and students, and the forbearance of my wife, I developed a plan that is beautiful, solid, strong, flexible, earthquake resistant, buildable, durable, and familiar. But more than anything, I want to use the rebuilding of the steeple as a vehicle for rebuilding and strengthening the community. And, once built, serve as an outward witness to the inward love we have for each other as fellow humans.
I look forward to doing this project with the able help of my best friends in the world…many of whom I haven’t yet met.

█ More information about the People’s Steeple Project and participants at http://thepeoplessteeple.org/

christchurch-cathedral-detail-mygola-com-tweaked

Related Posts and Comments:
23.12.15 Christ Church Cathedral: practical news from govt mediator…
14.7.12 Rival newspaper on historic heritage #cathedral
2.3.12 Christ Church, Cathedral Square

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

christchurch-cathedral-detail-with-chalice-sisson-photography-photoshelter-com

christchurch-cathedral-mudbirdceramics-blogspot-co-nz

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*Images: Christchurch Cathedral – (from top) colour render by whatifdunedin [photo source: Country Farm Garden Photos at cfgphoto.com]; black white render by whatifdunedin [photo source: Tony H Photography at tonyhphotography.co.nz]; colour photo of steeple detail [mygola.com]; cathedral with chalice by Sisson Photography [via photoshelter.com]; black white photo by Mudbird Ceramics [mudbirdceramics.blogspot.co.nz]; colour photo by Cindy taken on 5 Aug 2003 [via staticflickr.com]

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Christ Church Cathedral: practical news from govt mediator Miriam Dean QC

Updated post
Sat, 26 Dec 2015 at 3:25 a.m.

### beehive.govt.nz 23 December, 2015
Gerry Brownlee Media Release
Report confirms ChristChurch Cathedral can be reinstated

Minister for Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Gerry Brownlee says the decision by the Anglican Church to progress investigations into reinstating the ChristChurch Cathedral will be greatly appreciated by the wider community.
The Church Property Trust, which owns the Anglican Cathedral in Cathedral Square, has received an independent report from a Government-appointed consultant, who has reviewed the engineering options for the iconic city building.
“All of the parties’ engineers agree that the reinstatement of the Cathedral would require a combination of repair, restoration and reconstruction,” Mr Brownlee says. “The issue then comes back to cost and that is something the Church Property Trust will need absolute certainty of before it can commit to any work going ahead.”
Mr Brownlee says CPT is keen to enter further discussions with the Government in regard to progressing towards a reinstatement plan for the ChristChurch Cathedral, and that will happen in the New Year.
“And that is why we need to gain certainty about the affordability of this project and be able to work through the options. The positive outcome here is that there are now options to work through and that CPT is willing to do so.”
Link

███ Report on facilitated discussions with engineers on engineering options for repair, restoration or replacement of ChristChurch Cathedral. (PDF, 11.22 MB)

220211 News:Don Scott/The Press Christchurch earthquake. The Cathedral with its spire missing.Christchurch Cathedral 1 [Stuff.co.nz]Photos: Don Scott – The Press

Most of the building is intact – the scaremongering re the safety and cost of a rebuild is just that.

The Anglican Church has agreed to consider “reinstating” the Christ Church Cathedral at a press conference today.

### Stuff.co.nz Last updated 18:14, December 23 2015
The Press
Anglican Church to consider reinstating Christ Church Cathedral video
By Michael Wright
[…] A report by Government-appointed mediator Miriam Dean QC found the cathedral could be either reconstructed to be “indistinguishable” from its pre-quake self or replaced.
[…] Restoration campaigner Philip Burdon, co-chair of the Great Christchurch Buildings Trust, said he was “delighted and relieved” to learn the cathedral could be repaired, and was certain the necessary funds could be raised. “It had been the argument of the church that the building was unrepairable. The question of whether restoration was possible or not has been answered – I think that will be a considerable relief to the community.”
Read more

Yes, the Bishop is dragging her heels but MONEY might change her mind. Watch the Press video for her public statement and body language.

Earlier documents commissioned by Great Christchurch Building Trust (GCBT), documents received 10 July 2012 via Mark Belton at Restore Christchurch Cathedral:

Christchurch Cathedral Structural engineering Review Final 27June2012
(PDF, 94.8 KB)

Christchurch Cathedral MRO prelim sketches (F)
(PDF, 3.9 MB)

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14.7.12 Rival newspaper on historic heritage #cathedral
2.3.12 Christ Church, Cathedral Square

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

37 Comments

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DScene, staying power . . .

DScene 8-5-13 (screenshot detail) 1[screenshot]

THE CONUNDRUM
DScene could fall victim to the disease rabidly attacking the Fairfax Media conglomerate. How to deal with the local monopoly, should the war have been fought online, not on paper.

### ODT Online Fri, 10 May 2013
D-Scene newspaper may close
Dunedin community newspaper D-Scene may be ceasing publication after five years. The Fairfax Media-owned The Press reported yesterday a proposal to close the weekly publication, a subsidiary of The Southland Times.
Read more

****

### 3news.co.nz Fri, 10 May 2013 11:03a.m.
Dunedin’s D-Scene paper tipped to close
By Thomas Mead, Online Reporter
Fairfax Media is considering ending the popular Dunedin community newspaper D-Scene, putting eight jobs at risk. The media conglomerate has put a proposal to staff and is now deciding the fate of the weekly publication in a two-week consultation period with those affected. Southland Times general manager Sue Gregory is declining to comment until the consultation period is over, but confirmed the initiative was underway. D-Scene was purchased by Fairfax Media in September 2008, but is in a competitive environment, up against the well-read Otago Daily Times and weekly The Star.
3news Link

[This too, gives pause . . .]

### NZ Herald Online 5:30 AM Friday May 3, 2013
John Drinnan: Local history shipped out
History has a price and New Zealand’s photographic history is being shipped to Little Rock, Arkansas. Veteran sports photographer Peter Bush is shocked by Fairfax Media’s decision to sell its newspaper photo archive to an American firm. Fairfax has told Auckland staff it will be shipping photo archives for most of its Australian and New Zealand newspapers to the Rogers Photo Archive, a company based in Little Rock. The company will send back digital versions of the photos, but will keep the original prints, including photos of Sir Edmund Hillary.
Read more

[2008, remember the Smiths back then . . .]

### stuff.co.nz Last updated 13:59 09/09/2008
Fairfax buying Dunedin community paper D-Scene
Dunedin community newspaper D-Scene looks set to join the Fairfax stable with the media giant announcing it is in the final stages of buying it. A spin-off from Queenstown’s Mountain Scene, the paper was set up earlier this year in a market dominated by long-time incumbent, the Otago Daily Times.
Read more

****

### nbr.co.nz Tuesday September 09, 2008
Fairfax buys a lemon
By Mitchell Hall
Fairfax media’s decision to buy Dunedin’s struggling free weekly newspaper D Scene has one competitor sniffing that there’s no business case for the purchase – given how much money it is said to have been losing. The Otago Daily Times is the oldest newspaper in the country – and one of the last independent newspapers not owned by APN or Fairfax. The ODT’s business manager (and Allied Press director), Nick Smith, says a large editorial team designed D Scene with the Otago Daily Times in their sights. “The Otago Daily Times was seen (by them) to be an old and staid paper circulating in a one horse town. “They decided that the ODT was something that – according to their sales people – was a relic from the past, and they were smart boys who’d done all this research and they can take the town over.”
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Rival newspaper on historic heritage #cathedral

The Press editorial, today. Balanced.

### stuff.co.nz Last updated 08:31 14/07/2012
Editorial: Anglican diocese should give account
The pause in the demolition of Christ Church Cathedral is a positive sign that the building’s fate is not sealed. Its destruction, which had seemed the inevitable outcome of the Anglican Church’s stand, is now less certain as the Government and the diocese consider the Greater Christchurch Building Trust’s report that sets out a plan for the cathedral’s conservation. The result is the sense that, for the first time, the contending parties are in dialogue.

As The Press wrote about the consecration of the cathedral, in 1881, the building is “a symbol to our children and their descendants of the spirit which animated those who projected the settlement of Canterbury, a spirit which we who have come after have, however imperfectly, endeavoured to give form and shape to”.

The previous lack of serious dialogue had raised the temperature of the debate, causing unnecessary division in a city in need of unity. Positions had become entrenched, personal accusations were too common and the tone was embittered. The pause to consider eases that tension, at least temporarily. Even if the Anglican hierarchy remains committed to demolition, the advocates of retention will at least have the consolation of knowing that they were listened to.
They certainly have given their cause the best chance of success by producing the Building Trust report. It is a considered document from prestigious engineers that gives a detailed account of how the cathedral can be saved with most of its features intact. The somewhat vague assertions that salvage was possible have now been hardened into a clear plan of action.
Read more

Commissioned by Great Christchurch Building Trust (GCBT), documents received 10 July via Mark Belton at Restore Christchurch Cathedral:

Christchurch Cathedral Structural engineering Review Final 27June2012
(PDF, 94.8 KB)

Christchurch Cathedral MRO prelim sketches (F)
(PDF, 3.9 MB)

Related Post:
2.3.12 Christ Church, Cathedral Square

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

6 Comments

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