Council purchases 'House of horrors' site

The 'Horror House' property on the corner of Hampshire Street and Wainoni Road. File photo / APN
The 'Horror House' property on the corner of Hampshire Street and Wainoni Road. File photo / APN

Christchurch City Council is to buy the House of Horrors site where Jason Somerville murdered two women and buried their bodies beneath floorboards and plans to turn it into a children's playground.

Somerville murdered his neighbour Tisha Lowry and his wife Rebecca Chamberlain. Their bodies were buried beneath the unit that once stood on the property.

It was later burnt down by an arsonist.

The cross-lease site on the corner of Wainoni Rd and Hampshire St was owned by Gisborne man Jason Drain and Auckland-based Liberty Finance.

Mayor Bob Parker said the local community had expressed their support for the city council to purchase the property and the adjoining property at 169 Hampshire St and turn the two sites into a neighbourhood park.

"This is a good opportunity to establish a corner green space reserve that will aesthetically add to the neighbourhood in an area where there are no other public reserves. Wainoni Park is situated approximately 950 metres away from the properties, while Carisbrook playground is situated approximately 850 metres away,'' he says.

"I see this as a positive conclusion for this community and we will continue to consult with the local community as to how they would like to see the green space developed.''

Council staff will now proceed to finalise the purchase of the two properties.

Ideas for the use of the site if it is bought by the city council include turning it into a children's playground.

- Christchurch Star

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