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Christchurch Earthquake - New Zealand

Message by Geoff Diggs
Canterbury Society of Magicians
New Zealand

Firstly, thanks to everyone from elsewhere in NZ and around the world for your kind thoughts and offers of support to us in the Christchurch area. I certainly can’t speak for everyone, but at this time I can only reinforce what is being passed on from all official agencies and that is that the best thing to be donated is money. Like any tragic situation where aid is required there are already bogus websites set up trying to get money out of everyone with good intentions. If anyone does want to help with a monetary donation go to and follow the links there to the official organisations who are accepting donations – that way you can be assured your money is going to the correct cause.

I certainly haven’t been in contact with all magicians in the area, but to date I am unaware of any injury or loss to anyone or their families. However, due to the population of Christchurch, almost everyone will know of someone who is either injured or a fatality of this disaster – that is part of living in a city / area of this size. There are several magicians who live in the worst effected areas, so there will no doubt be severe damage to property and possessions to many of those.

On a personal level, I live approximately 30 kilometres (20 miles) to the north of Christchurch and, apart from a few minor cracks to our house, we are mainly unaffected so have been in the position to help with spare beds, food, water and laundry services for some of those without. However, both my wife and I work within Christchurch’s four avenues and my wife is right in the Central Business District (CBD).

Fortunately, we both escaped without injury (and all our work colleagues), although the sights and experience of going through all that, then actually trying to get out of the city centre past the devastation, is something neither of us would wish upon anyone but will remain with us forever. It is impossible to try to describe the force the quake hit with – it was like a bulldozer and there was no slight build up, it just struck full force. From the images that everyone has seen you can see the force that was exerted, but it is literally impossible to describe accurately what it was like being in it.

For those outside of New Zealand, Christchurch has been experiencing consistent earthquakes since September 4 last year, when a 7.1 magnitude quake hit 30 km (20 miles) to the south-west of the city. The next major one experienced was a 4.6 magnitude quake on December 26, then the 6.3 on February 22, which has caused the major destruction. As I am writing this (3:15pm on February 27) there have been a total of 5145 quakes/aftershocks since the 7.1 on September 4 (if you’re interested check out for full details on this) – a world record we don’t want to hold.

Again, thank you all for your concern and wishes.

Geoff Diggs
Canterbury Society of Magicians
New Zealand

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