Tuesday, July 26, 2011


The shop and our home are now gone.

We only had 5 hours in total to salvage items from the shop.

Everything in our apartment was destroyed in the demolition.

I would like thank those people who made it all happen, and hope it never happens to you.

The person from civil defence who told be that my warehouse was destroyed when it was not even damaged.

The people from ERNI who never contacted me regarding salvage.

The policeman who accused me of being a looter while salvageing my posessions and who detained me under the civil defence regulations.

The USAR team and the policeman from NSW who took the Santa Claus from my shop and took each others photos with it posed beside wrecked cars.

The engineer from Wellington who insisted in being paid in $250 an hour in cash to facilitate access.

The civil defence employee who acted as safety officer and also insisted in being paid $100 an hour in cash.

The Army person who prevented me from salvaging items but told me I was welcome to pick through the rubble after demolition.

The person from CERA who removed the approval for salvage from my file.

The person from CERA who put the building on the urgent list and denied salvage during demolition.

All the people who never kept me informed of what was happening regards demolition and and salvage and all those people who promised to get back to me who never did.

You all made the most unpleasant episode in our lives just that little bit more unpleasant.

Our thoughts will always be with you.

If you are a resident or a business owner in the Red Zone who is having problems with access or has had problems similar to mine please email me as I may be able to help.


Guru said...

Your ability to withhold expletives and the obvious emotion within is noted and highly commended. I urge you to turn to the media outlets ASAP, not that it will save your situation, but because it will help to spread the word. We all support the rebuild of Chch and understand that in order to build you must in some cases first destroy however this appears to be blatant disregard of circumstance and the demonstration of utmost disrespect from those thrust into power. I hope for all of our sakes that you have some names to go with the roles mentioned in your post. Kia Kaha :(

al said...

lost.. for.. words :(

Vicki said...

I am so sorry for what you have been through. This is shocking! Sending support from Auckland.

Ben said...

wow... at least you got to salvage your stuff. I got nothing, no word, nothing. Hundreds of thousands of dollars of music gear and many many sentimental items gone.. completely gone.

Be glad you got a chance to go through what you did.

ps you're right what's happening sucks.

Still Angry said...

Sadly, I am all too familiar with your plight as I too lived and worked out of a central CBD building. One that was recently demolised with fairly much everything I owned, both personally and professionally, still inside and without the abilty to salvage anything.

Of course, I had done as I was told - to wait. Supposedly arrangements were in place to retrieve possessions, but at the last minute (after having had enough of waiting and having heard that demolition had already begun) to be first told 'yes', then told 'no'.

Yep, my own fault for having no personal insurance and also being woefully underinsured for business. I can live with that.

But what really gets me was the absolute lack of communication and information, and the lengths I had to go through (the lies I told and the amount of misrepresentation I undertook) to get me into the Red Zone to try first-hand to get anything out of the building at all.

To discover I had also been looted.

julee said...

This is appalling!You must contact the media-Campbell Live perhaps?
This story has to be told to stop these vultures from feeding off your loss.

Rosie said...

Also lost for words. And, from the other comments on here, that this is not an unusual story in Chch.. Spreading the word through social media networks.. The rest of NZ needs to keep hearing these stories.. Grr!

Anonymous said...

I'm very, very sorry.

Layton Duncan said...

Hi Deric,

I own a business just around the corner in Poplar Lane, just above Macs Brew Bar.

I'd pass your shop daily on the way to work, and it had some awesome stuff I was hoping to get for the office.

Unfortunately this is not the first story along these lines i've heard. I only hope that at some point, people will be held to account for their actions and inactions.

We're having all sorts of problems getting access to recover items, and sort insurance payouts which are totally stalled due to authorities uselessness. It frustrates me no end.

Like you said, they're making a difficult situation even more difficult.


Anonymous said...

I really don't have any words for this. So what follows is a poor attempt.

After all you've been through, after all the loss and fear, the confusion and uncertainty you get treated with such disdain, disrespect, and .... I just can't say.

All I can do is send my love, give virtual hugs, and express my outrage at how you have been treated.

Rebecca Ogle said...

Deric, you are simply brilliant in your words however I now want to cry. Portobello (upstairs and downstairs) will always hold great memories and a special place in my heart. Lots of love to you and Tracy.

Graham R said...

What you have chronicled here appears to be blatant corrupt practices by a number of agencies. Have you recorded the names of the various people who have made life so difficult for you?
Confront Mr Gerry Brownlie with this information... he has the power to sort this out and make life uncomfortable for the oppportunists concerned

Anonymous said...

I don't for one second want to imply that you're being untruthful or one sided in telling your story.

It would however, be very interesting to hear an official response to the story you've published here.

so you tell me said...

happy to put you up at our house if you feel like coming to parliament and making your feelings felt, totally unacceptable, time to get angry and focused

JonL said...

"It would however, be very interesting to hear an official response to the story you've published here."

...and you'd expect to get a truthful answer?

rob mayes said...

Very sad to read this went badly for you Deric. I really tried hard to bash a channel of reliable communication through for you for this, as best I could from where I was. Special mention of shame should go to City Councilor Sue Wells who assured me she was onto it on behalf of central city people who were hitting these well documented problems. Next to bloody useless and performing in such a way as to be complicity in diversion, like most in the chain of communication. I also don't buy into Ben's "you should feel lucky you got anything" angle. That buys into the whole accepting pathetic as a valid effort shtick. Shameful.

kaybar007 said...

Just wanted to add my outrage at the way you've been treated. Appalling. I hope you have the energy to pursue this to some kind of resolution, surely you must be entitled to compensation?

Steve said...

Derek, extremely sorry for your loss, I loved your shop, I know it wont bring stuff back but you are not alone in this, I know several smaller business owners that have been treated the same and lost everything they owned, one of them was refused payout for their machinery (all perfectly good and working) in their business, and had to stump up $150,000 to buy new equipment to reopen along with two shop moves due to loss of buildings. I never ever thought kiwis would ever treat kiwis this way but sadly it would seem exploitation of this disaster is rife. Shame on them all!

Tui said...

Really sorry to hear this. May peace be with you in your journey forward, Lisa

monsta271 said...

I am so so sorry this has happened for you, I don't know what to say, but know you are in my thoughts and I am sickened by the abuse you have received by people and processes it grieves me. I too have suffered some of this but nothing to what you have and I am truly sickened. You are in my thoughts.

Zumarrad said...

I am so sorry to hear about this, and fear yours is not the only story like it.

Ellen said...

Only reading this now, as I had your blog saved as reference for Tapa Cloth, having inherited two and not sure of what I had.
I just came onto your blog this eve, to look again and am shocked and so saddened by what you have all gone through....words arn't enough.
Ellen in England UK

Kia Plantation said...

Thanks for sharing, I will bookmark and be back again...