Rita Angus country preserved
A central Canterbury area associated with a famous painting by Rita Angus will retain its wilderness outlook.
In 1936 she depicted Cass railway station in Arthurs Pass, inland from Christchurch, where the sole figure in the painting is dwarfed by the brown hills and nor’west clouds, highlighting the isolation and remoteness of the areas.
Peter Morrison, owner of several dairy farms in Canterbury, recently applied for irrigation water from the Cass River. The son of Central Plains Water irrigation scheme’s Pat Morrison, he owns Grasmere Station near Cass in the Waimakariri River Basin.
But resource consent commissioner Richard Nixon has declined the application because of the risk to water quality in Lake Grasmere and the affect on landscape values as depicted by Rita Angus.
Mr Morrison had applied for resource consents under the name of P & E Ltd to irrigate 554ha with centre pivots on both sides of the highway near Grasmere Station, adjacent to pristine Lake Grasmere.
The application states the irrigation is for grazing sheep and beef cattle, excluding milking dairy cows.
Meanwhile, the resource consent hearing for Hurunui Water Project near Hanmer has begun in Christchurch.
The application seeks consent to build three dams on the Waitohi River and install more intakes and take more water from the Hurunui River than in its original request.