Another brick in the wall

St Faith's Church
Heritage and Restoration Project Award

HRS Construction

Aurecon (Structural Engineers), HRS Construction (Construction Company), Tony Ussher (Heritage Architect)

About the build:

St. Faith’s Church, an 1886 heritage building, suffered damage during the Christchurch Earthquakes. In a dedicated effort to preserve its historical significance while ensuring structural safety, the
church underwent a comprehensive seismic strengthening and refurbishment project. The key to the project’s remarkable success was the significant collaboration between the design and construction teams.

This intricate project involved a meticulous and time-consuming process of carefully removing a layer of Oamaru stone from the top of the inner wall that was subsequently replaced with reinforced concrete. In various areas of the church, such as the chancel arch, the stone was replaced over a larger area with reinforced concrete.

This was skillfully plastered and painted to closely resemble Oamaru stone, the difference discernible only upon close inspection. Despite these extensive modifications, the outcome was truly commendable, with the project executed to an exceptional level of quality.



Judges comments:

This project involved the restoration of a heritage building, left unusable for over a decade following the Christchurch earthquakes. The seismic strengthening of the building presented challenges throughout the project, with the structural engineers having to focus on preserving the building’s heritage while also creating a safe space for the Church’s congregation. Excellent work by the project’s stonemasons helped in preserving this building’s heritage and aesthetic with some of the more serious strengthening work being painted to resemble the Oamaru stone used on the inner walls. Collaboration between all teams on this project was excellent and essential to the success of restoring St Faith’s Church to the highest of standards.