The Christchurch School of Music (CSM) is to return to its former site beside the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Barbadoes Street.
For 17 years the CSM’s home was in the former convent for the Sisters of Our Lady of the Missions, but the building had to be pulled down after the earthquakes. Since then the school’s office has been in temporary facilities in Waltham Road.
The Diocese will lease out 1000 sq m of land on the corner with Ferry Road and will provide four portable classrooms that will be used for teaching, meetings, office requirements and music and instrument storage.
Celia Stewart, Music Director, at the CSM, said that this was a wonderful opportunity to move back on to the old site and to maintain their links with the neighbouring Catholic Cathedral College and Marian College where most of the teaching takes place.
“As the largest inner city music school in Australasia, we have nearly 800 students and by working with the neighbouring secondary schools we have capacity for 45 teaching rooms after school and on Saturdays. The new facilities will ensure we have adequate office and storage space and will enable us to offer daytime teaching, workshops and professional development courses. Our classroom and meeting spaces will also be available to other community music groups to hire on a casual basis.
CSM is extremely grateful for the support from the Diocese and we are excited about the opportunities that will open up. This year is the 60th anniversary of the CSM so we have a lot to celebrate,” she said.
Keith Beal, Property and Development Manager for the Catholic Diocese, said that it was great to have the CSM back on its old site.
“Having the CSM return fits perfectly with the Diocese’s long-term plans for the Cathedral precinct. The CSM has had a long relationship with the neighbouring Catholic schools and provided an important vibrancy around the Cathedral which we are keen to see return.
“We see the Cathedral precinct as having strong religious, education, youth and musical ties. There is also CPIT across the road,” he said.
The four classrooms will be approximately 12m by 5.8m each and should be delivered on site in early October. It will then take a couple of weeks to put in the necessary services, plus decking around some of the buildings and carry out landscaping.
Photo: Keith Beal, Property and Development Manager for the Diocese, and Celia Stewart, Music Director, at the CSM, on site beside the ruins of the Cathedral.