Ailing Jim Anderton 'delighted' Christ Church Cathedral to be restored
An ailing Jim Anderton is "delighted" the Christ Church Cathedral will once again take its place as a central city icon.
Anderton, in his role as co-chair of the Great Christchurch Buildings Trust (GCBT), was an ardent campaigner for the restoration of the earthquake-damaged Christchurch building.
His wife Carole Anderton said her husband was unavailable for comment on Tuesday due to illness, but he had been very pleased with the decision to reinstate the cathedral, which was voted on by the Anglican synod on Saturday.
"He is delighted with the result," she said.
"The phone has been ringing off the hook with calls of support following the decision."
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The result ends years of legal stoushes and indecision, often blamed for stalling central Christchurch's regeneration.
The former deputy prime minister, under Prime Minister Helen Clark, and Sydenham (now Wigram) electorate MP from 1984 to 2011, has been ill for some months.
On Tuesday, GCBT co-chair Philip Burdon said Anderton was "very frail".
In a ceremony held at Nazareth House, the rest home where Anderton lives, he was awarded the insignia for services to Parliament by Governor-General Dame Patsy Reddy on September 3.
He was named a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit on the Queen's Birthday Honours list in June.
Clark and Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel attended the ceremony.
"A lot of people think of Jim and Philip [Burdon] when they think of the fight to restore the cathedral, but really there was a whole team behind them that deserve the credit," Carole Anderton said.
"It's just so great to see an icon of the city restored and the exciting thing is we can now all watch it be rebuilt."
Following the synod vote, Burdon said he was "delighted, relieved and surprised".
He expected businesses and members of the public to get behind the project now there was certainty the derelict cathedral would be restored.
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