Topic: Summit Road - Christchurch Road

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The Summit Road runs along the Port Hills from Godley Head eventually linking Christchurch to Akaroa.

The Christchurch part of the Summit Road was formally opened in a ceremony held on 28 November 1908. 

 H. G. Ell MP had been largely responsible for procuring the funding for this road from the government.  Ell envisaged a road linked by a series of rest houses two of which, the Sign of the Kiwi and the Sign of the Takahe have been in use ever since.  Both were damaged in the 2010/2011 earthquakes but are expected to be repaired.  Other rest houses built were the Sign of the Packhorse, managed by the Department of Conservation and the Sign of the Bellbird, which has long been a ruin with only partial walls and foundations remaining.

The road and its ammenities are protected under Summit Road (Canterbury) Protection Act (2001)

 For a time there was a toll-gate at Dyers Pass.

From Evans Pass to Godley Head was once known as Lighthouse Road.

 A  1914 booklet describes the road thus:

The [Summit Road] Association was formed with the purpose of making a road along the Summit of the Port Hills from Godley Head Lighthouse to Gebbie's Pass, from whihc point it is intended to cary the road by way of the Port Track saddle, round the head of Kaituna Valley, until the road junctions with the Kaituna Valley Road and so link up the Peninsula Summit Road with the Port Hills Snmmit road. When this work is done Christchurch and Akaroa will be connected by a hill road that will not be surpassed by any road in New Zealand.    Baughan, B. E., Speight, Robert and Cockayne, Leonard. The summit road: its scenery, botany and geology.   Christchurch, Smith and Anthony Ltd, 1914.

The Summit Road Society is an incorporate society  formed in 1948 to continue to promote Harry Ell's vision. 

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