More church buildings closed in Christchurch Diocese

There have been more church buildings closed in the Christchurch diocese. Preliminary engineering assessments of Our Lady of Fatima Church (Mairehau) and St Mary and Francis de Sales Church (Rangiora) and the Catholic Social Services building has revealed that all three buildings are earthquake prone.

The 126-year-old St Mary and Francis de Sales Church is now having a safety barrier put up around it and services will be shifted into the neighbouring Chervier Centre from the end of this month.

The church in Mairehau will remain out of use while engineering solutions and the future of the building are considered. The Hall has also been assessed and requires remedial work in order to meet appropriate building standards and allow it to be re-occupied. A schedule of temporary strengthening works has been produced for consideration by structural engineers. It is envisaged that the strengthening works, once underway, will take a minimum of two weeks to complete.

The Catholic Social Services building located at 336 Cashel Street has been temporarily shut based on the advice of OPUS Structural Engineers due to being deemed earthquake prone. Further investigation into these matters is required with a view to developing repair solutions to raise it above the standard of an earthquake prone building.

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