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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 5, Issue 5 (September 1, 1930)


Although the Provincial Council had already passed the Ordinance authorising the construction of the railway, and the Superintendent specially referred to this in his address, nevertheless, when the Ordinance was disallowed and a special session was called together on 27th March, 1860, to advise the Superintendent in regard to the matter, the Council proceeded to re-open the whole question and to hear in committee evidence for and against the proposal. The opposition came mainly from those having vested interests in the Heathcote River navigation. Wharves had been established at various points on the river, viz.: Ferry Wharf, Steam Wharf, Union Wharf, Aikman's Wharf, and Christchurch Quay. These wharves were approached from the Ferry Road, on which the goods were carted to and from Christchurch. A Customs Bond was authorised at Aikman's Wharf, and two steamship companies were in operation trading between the river and Lyttelton.

After hearing the evidence the Council passed the following resolution: “Whereas the Council has already, during its last session, recorded its decided opinion that a railway between Lyttelton and Christchurch is urgently required, and that such railway should be constructed direct, and by means of a tunnel under the hills, it is therefore resolved:

1. That under the present circumstances of the Province it is highly page 38 desirable that the whole of the money to be employed upon the construction of the said work should be raised by way of loan secured by a first charge on all the available revenues of the Province.

2. That the interest accruing upon the said loan after a rate not exceeding 6 per cent. per annum may be safely guaranteed by the Provincial Government and that a further
Christchurch-Lyttelton Railway Electrification. A rotary converter in the Woolston sub-station.

Christchurch-Lyttelton Railway Electrification.
A rotary converter in the Woolston sub-station.

standing appropriation of Provincial revenue, to the extent of 2 per cent. upon the sum borrowed, may be set apart as a sinking fund for repayment of the said loan.

3. That the Superintendent be respectfully requested to take such measures as may by him, with the advice of his Executive, be deemed necessary for promoting during the ensuing session of the General Assembly such legislative enactments as are indispensable to the construction of the said line of railway.

4. That it is highly expedient that a loan, not exceeding three hundred thousand pounds, be negotiated, to be expended solely in the purchase of the site and in defraying the cost of the construction of the railway and the necessary stations, engines, carriages, and rolling stock.

5. Provided that such loan shall not be raised in any greater amount or proportion than fifty thousand pounds, or one-sixth of the whole sum in any one year during the progress of the work.

Charles Bowen, Speaker.”