David Ritchie, a member of the working party which
developed a new report on Central Otago heritage
management, outside the old Hartley Arms Hotel on
Sunderland St in Clyde. Photo by Sarah Marquet.
A final report on Central Otago heritage management has
It outlines community-inspired recommendations for managing
the future of Central Otago's heritage, including natural and
A working party led by Central Otago district councillor John
Lane was tasked with holding community meetings and
developing the report.
''We have had a lot of input from a lot of people with a lot
of passion. The people of Central Otago have articulated
their vision for our heritage, how it should be looked after
and celebrated,'' he said.
The Central Otago Heritage Trust has volunteered to make the
Trust chairman and working party member Graye Shattky said
the trust was pleased to take on that role because, ''while
responsibility for specific aspects of heritage has long been
undertaken by a wide range of organisations, community groups
and committed individuals, it is clear that effective
implementation of the report's recommendations requires a
degree of overarching co-ordination''.
Among the report's recommendations was to explore options for
a central database to record heritage items. Heritage would
need to be identified, which could include surveying,
evaluating and reviewing items, time-consuming activities
which could require input from experts and incur significant
Establishing a criteria for what could be included could also
pose problems, especially for items such as landscapes.
There are existing inventories, such as the New Zealand
Historic Places Trust, the Central Otago District Plan and
the New Zealand Archaeological Association Site Recording
Scheme, but not all items are on all three inventories and
each has its own associated criteria and legislation.
The district plan includes about 300 heritage buildings,
places, sites and objects and about 25 notable trees, about a
third of them registered with the Historic Places Trust.
Because heritage items were spread across three different
inventories, the associated legislation could also present
''While there are laws and processes for any alterations,
additions or the intentional demolition of heritage
structures, there is no legislation protecting against
demolition by neglect. With most heritage places on private
property, this can create tension in communities. It can
further be exacerbated by a lack of understanding about the
law on the one hand, and potential costs and a perceived lack
of respect for property owners' rights, on the other,'' the