New chapter for Fyffe House
Historic Fyffe House has reopened almost a year after being damaged in November’s earthquake.
Kaiko¯ura’s oldest surviving building, and the last remnant of a pioneer whaling station, opened its doors to the public earlier this month.
‘‘It’s a relief we have finally been able to get to the point of reopening Fyffe House as Heritage New Zealand is keen to play its part in the rejuvenation of tourism in Kaikoura,’’ said heritage assets manager south Paul McGahan.
‘‘Fyffe House staff are looking forward to being able to host visitors again and the popular Music on the Lawn event will run in late January.’’
The property sustained damage to its chimneys in the earthquake and the building was deemed unsafe and yellow-stickered.
Repairs to address safety issues had been completed and signed off an engineer, after an inspection by Kaiko¯ura District Council.
Fyffe House manager Ann McCaw said there were some superficial cracks in the interior and more work to be done but it was safe to open while remaining work was carried out.
The remaining exterior repair work is expected to be carried out over the coming months, and plastering over the cracks will be done in winter.
McCaw said it was good to be able to get the house open in time for the tourist season.
‘‘It’s come back to life,’’ she said.
‘‘It was a ghost of a house really and getting it set back up makes it alive again.’’
McCaw said they were incredibly lucky - the damage could have been much worse.
‘‘The issues haven’t been huge but it has been difficult to resolve them and now we can focus on getting the rest of the work done,’’ she said.