Hundreds in Queenstown pause for earthquake victims

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Several hundred people have gathered in central Queenstown to pay their respect to victims in the devastating Christchurch earthquake.

Locals, tourists and refugee Cantabrians converged on the Village Green today mark two minutes’ silence at 12.51pm – exactly a week after the 6.3 magnitude quake.

Queenstown’s Anglican vicar David Coles, who spent six years at the now-badly damaged Christ Church Cathedral, led the reflection with a prayer.

“It’s a time of poignant remembering of those who were killed or injured during those violent 10 seconds – that’s all it took,” he said.

“It’s a time where our hearts reach out to those who are and will remain traumatised for some time to come by the violence and shock of that earthquake.

“We recognise our common humanity on this day to remember.”

Beginning with the National Anthem, songs are being sung by local musicians throughout the afternoon. The Salvation Army is also collecting donations.