South Library – Where to now?

South Library ExteriorIt’s hard to believe that South Library has been closed for three weeks now. It’s been such a pivotal part of life on the south side of town, it still seems strange not to be heading in through the glass doors, searching for books and ordering a coffee from the Red Cafe.

I love the South Library building. It’s funky, innovative, light, bright and welcoming. The building served as an inclusive place where everyone’s welcome. It’s been a source of reliable information, a safe haven in a time of catastrophe, a repository of wonderful books, and an inclusive public space where people come to talk, connect with others, share stories and feel part of the community.

And the future of South? The building has teams of engineers swarming all over it. While there has never been any likelihood of it falling down, the ground it sits on is near the river and needs checking thoroughly. It’s a case of wait and see.

If you’re at a loss to know where to go for your library books now, pop into Spreydon Library, the little library beside the entrance to Barrington Mall.  The librarians will make you welcome and you might find some books you haven’t come across before.  If you’d like to meet with friends or have a cup of coffee while you’re browsing, Upper Riccarton Library has a coffee shop. Central Library Tuam is the newest branch of the library and holds some of the heritage collection that have been retrieved from the damaged Central Library building, as does Central Library Peterborough.  The closest place to pay your rates is at the Riccarton Service Centre, 199 Riccarton Road.

Win double passes to the movie Hope Springs

We’ve got a great movie ticket competition courtesy of Roadshow Film Distribut0rs – 10 double passes to the movie Hope Springs (Rated:M – Contains sexual references). The movie is released in New Zealand on August 23, 2012.

Starring Meryl Streep, Tommy Lee Jones and Steve Carell, it tells the story of Kay and Arnold. Decades of marriage have left Kay wanting to spice things up and reconnect with her husband. When she hears of a renowned couple’s specialist in the small town of Great Hope Springs, she attempts to persuade her sceptical husband, a steadfast man of routine, to get on a plane for a week of marriage therapy. Just convincing the stubborn Arnold to go on the retreat is hard enough – the real challenge for both of them comes as they shed their bedroom hang-ups and try to re-ignite the spark that caused them to fall for each other in the first place.

If you are a Meryl Streep fan we have a good collection of DVDs that show the amazing range of her acting. Tommy Lee Jones and Steve Carell also make it into our DVD collection.

So how can you win? Just email and tell us your favourite Meryl Streep movie  –  email us at including your name, phone number, library card number and address. We’ll get in touch with the winners and hook you up with the tickets.

  • The competition is open to Christchurch City Libraries members.
  • Staff of Christchurch City Libraries and their immediate families are not able to enter.
  • Competition closes on Monday 20 August. Winners announced on 21 August.

Christchurch – this week in history (13 – 20 August)

15 August 1945
V.J. (Victory over Japan) day celebrations.

15 August 1981
Massive demonstrations in Christchurch against rugby test between All Blacks and Springboks.

16 August 1866
Cook Strait cable service links North and South Islands.

16 August 1868
Tsunami (“tidal wave”) in Lyttelton Harbour. Part of the harbour bottom was laid bare, then a wave swept in, damaging the “Novelty”.
Read Dr Hector on the recent earthquakes and tidal phenomena, Wellington Independent, 29 August 1868 (Papers Past).

16 August 1890
First inter-provincial soccer match held in Christchurch. Canterbury beat Wellington 2-0.

19 August 1840
French settlers land at Akaroa.
Read The Mission of the “Britomart” at Akaroa, in August 1840 by Johannes C. Andersen.

More August events in our Christchurch chronology.