Battered CBD still offers family fun

23:25, Jun 18 2014
Catherine and Charlotte Woods
CITY LOVERS: Catherine Woods and daughter Charlotte, 5.

Finding the positive in a post-quake city can be a tough ask, so The Press has asked readers to share their Perfect Christchurch Sunday. CATHERINE WOODS finds fun in a battered CBD.

City life is far from over for Catherine Woods and Andrew Hancock.

They take their daughters, Charlotte and Rebecca, into the city most Sundays, with a hit list of stops to make for a well-rounded family day out.

First up is breakfast at home - fuel for scootering and walking into town from their home near Carlton Corner.

"We are so close to the city that we don't have to take the car to do a lot of things," Woods says. "We're very lucky."

A popular first stop for the girls is the Nature Playground on the corner of Latimer Sq and Hereford St, created by Greening the Rubble and the Department of Conservation.


This corner of the city is like stepping into another world, where underground tunnels and bark are the focus.

"Charlotte can spend two hours in there and it doesn't cost us a cent," Woods says.

Re:Start is nearby for a spot of morning tea, before catching the tram to the Canterbury Museum or Hagley Park.

Tree-climbing is important and, when the girls are worn out, it's back on the tram to get a Rollickin' Gelato or Mrs Higgins Cookie in New Regent St. It's also the perfect coffee pitstop for the adults.

"We love sitting on the tram and seeing what's happening in the city," Woods says. "We meet a lot of different people. The girls love it."

With full tummies, it's time to scooter home and curl up in front of the heatpump with a good board game while dinner is in the oven.

"It's tough finding a board game two adults, a 9-year-old and a 5-year-old can play," Woods says. "At the moment, it's very, very slow Scrabble."

For Woods and Hancock, the city still has a lot to offer, especially for families who know where to look.

"This place is going to be incredible, it always has been great. You just have to find it."

The Press