The Douglas Lilburn Auditorium in the Christchurch Town Hall is a focal point for classical and other types of music - community, national and international.
I know the people of Christchurch city in the past have made significant financial investment in both the Rieger organ and the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra, and the Town Hall provides the perfect means of gaining maximum value from this investment, in that it enables these important artistic facilities to be presented to the public at their best.
It is a conveniently situated modern auditorium with superior acoustics.
Aucklanders have a fine Victorian town hall, but the Christchurch one is acoustically at least its equal and in addition it is a modern hall with superior comfort and sightlines.
I have made four CD recordings in the auditorium of Christchurch Town Hall. In my view it is New Zealand's premier hall for such a purpose. These discs have been broadcast and disseminated around the world.
None of this would have been possible without that hall.
Looking at New Zealand's interests as a whole it is essential for all of us that the Town Hall is returned to its previous state, and enabled to occupy in the future the leading role it had before your devastating earthquakes.
Wayne Laird, Producer, Atoll Records, Auckland
OF HIGHEST INTEGRITY
With regard to allegations levied against Grant Wormald I cannot remain silent. While a serving detective in the 90s, I worked with Mr Wormald on an extremely complex and sensitive homicide case. The circumstances of the case were unique and challenging. I found Detective Wormald to be a man of the highest integrity and an officer dedicated to the truth.
That he would resort to the type of behaviour alleged with regard to the Dotcom and Red Devils investigations is as likely to be true as Mr Mahmoud Ahmadinejad being elected the next Pope, inconceivable. Defence counsel in this country have descended of late into the realms of fantasy and imagination worthy of Disney, and are overindulged by a media preoccupied by sensation rather than fact.
Peter Newsome, Detective (retired), St Albans
Lianne Dalziel's comment (Oct 20) that ''Labour Leader David Shearer understands the issues . . . but is . . . respectful of the fact that people's suffering should not be politicised'' beggars belief. Is it not the job of any party in opposition to express criticism - hopefully constructive - of a governing party's actions when these fail to serve the best interests of the people? Surely the Opposition criticising well is crucial to the health of any democracy? A survey by Labour is not what is needed, but immediate action. Labour already knows what the situation is, through repeated but seemingly unheeded appeals made to them for support over the past two years.
These appeals have been broad- based, coming from leaders such as Mike Coleman in Dalziel's own eastern suburbs (where a recent survey shows there are still extreme levels of depression, anxiety and stress); small businesses; inner city property owners; schools ; or those appalled at the wanton destruction of our cultural heritage.
Lorraine North, Merivale
I CAME HOME
Last Saturday, I was sitting in Brisbane perspiring to 36 degrees. It was the eve of my last day of living in Queensland after 23 years. I left Christchurch in 1989 and the next day was returning to Christchurch.
In the last couple of years it was becoming evident to me that things are not necessarily greener on the other side.
I have observed that since the earthquakes here people have been particularly tough on themselves. One day I read an article that Christchurch is held in high regard from governments overseas, Lonely Planet, etc and the next day I read about the droves leaving.
My belief is that this is one of the most beautiful places in the world. I would like to encourage people to know that out of the ashes rises the phoenix.
There is so much opportunity and future here. We are very lucky. I also believe that the perception that Australia provides more opportunity is but an illusion.
I can honestly say that in the time that we had the earthquakes here, Australia has had its own shake-up which has had an impact on its people. One interesting fact - I left with petrol costing the highest it ever did in the 23 years I was in the country. People need to take heed of Fred Dagg's famous words (despite him living in Oz) which are ''You don't know how lucky you are''.
Christchurch is indeed a beautiful city and I am very grateful to have returned home.
John Noordanus, Redwood
I could not agree more with The Press editorial (Oct 22). The option of cricket returning to Lancaster Park is a sensible one. With the council committed to the demolition of the grandstands the way is open for cricket to return to Lancaster Park.
Canterbury Cricket have previously explored the possibility of a boutique cricket stadium at Lancaster Park. In light of the council's intention to demolish and not repair the stands now would be a good time to commit to a sensible long-term option and put an end to the Hagley Park saga.
The result, one first-class cricket stadium and Hagley Park saved again. What's not to like?
Martin Meehan, St Albans
The common sense in the editorial gave me great hope. As well, Brian Preddy's comments (Letters, Oct 22) and many others previously. To skim off the top layers of the stands is a practical and aesthetic solution and the nostalgia for cricket more than enough to swell the crowds.
When will the Hagley Park targeters realise, its not only the detail but the principle? Also, the parking, noise and one-day crowds. Plus all the other sporting groups who want their share of this city gem.
To remove all named stands and start again. ''Lancaster Park'' for cricket. Great!
Christina Smith, Spreydon
Linda Paul's comments ''Older drivers a danger'' (Oct 19) are asking for reply. Being 72 I feel that her observations are coloured. Modern cars are as easy to drive as a child's scooter. However, driving is not only about a skill. My driving instructor told me, more than 50 years ago, that the moment you step into a car it is no different than lowering yourself into a pilot's seat of a plane: this job needs 100 per cent of your effort.
You get behind the wheel and nothing is more important than the driving. You are not looking at your passenger when talking. Phone use in the car is as bad as driving with 10 stubbies in your tummy and road rules need rehearsing on a regular basis. We all have times that we say to ourselves, ''How could I do that?'', but making these situations an exception rather than a rule is the driver's task.
His Admiraal, Ohoka
Linda Paul's frustration with the new regulations for young drivers is understandable and deserving of sympathy. However, to suggest we older drivers need to re-sit our test will not change the appalling behaviour of the many young and middle-aged drivers who constantly tailgate, overtake on the inside and haven't yet learned the new turn-left rule.
It appears to be great sport to intimidate a grey-haired driver who is obeying all the rules, seemingly to delight in turning grey hair to white. We are not all shrinking violets and these scare tactics tend to create road rage which translate into swear words, but not into intimidating other motorists.
We know there are really bad older drivers on the road, and it's frustrating to see them as we know we will all be tarred with the same brush, but it must be just as frustrating for responsible younger drivers who are also judged and tainted by the bad behaviour of the minority. We simply have to do our best as it seems we're all in the same boat.
M Monaghan, Christchurch
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