Minutes ago, the Prime Minister of New Zealand announced a couple of staggering figures
100,000 houses in Christchurch were damaged in the Earthquake and around 10,000 will be demolished.
I sat there for a few minutes taking that last figure in. That is almost the size of my entire home town of Greymouth being abolished. It will mean thousands of families living in tent cities for months.
Staggering and heartbreaking.
And the Prime Minister also announced the date of the National Memorial Service: It will be held March 18th.
"The service will give people the chance to reflect on the terrible loss of life suffered as a result of the earthquake, and the huge impact it has had on our second largest city.
This is an opportunity for Christchurch to mourn together. It will also be a chance to celebrate the lives of those who have been lost."
It will begin at 12.45pm and a 2 minute silence at 12.51pm will be held, the exact time the 6.3 quake struck.
John Key announced that it will be a provincial holiday so the people of Canterbury can get the day off.
"While we will never forget those who have been lost, we must now focus that indomitable Canterbury spirit on the future.
He also said that some parts of Christchurch have been so badly damaged that they will have to be abandoned.
Updated by GlowNZ at Sun Mar 6, 2011, 11:36:56 PM
Updated by GlowNZ at Mon Mar 7, 2011, 10:33:35 AM
Check out this link from the bbc:
Shows imagery of the quake mapped from space.