Lawyer joins water war

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Gibbston-based former All Black Grahame Thorne is under the pump in a water supply scrap with embattled developer Dave Henderson.

Thorne’s refusing to pay $1000 a week to Henderson company Gibbston Water Services for his family’s water supply, claiming the fee’s “exorbitant”.

A lawyer for GWS is now vowing to disconnect the water if Thorne doesn’t cough up for his “unlawful water take” going back to December 22.

Thorne accepts that when he rented the Stone House from the receiver of failed Henderson company, Anthem Holdings, he was to arrange a water supply with GWS.

“I thought being mates [of Henderson] it would be no problem,” says Thorne, who’d twice been lent the house by the Christchurch-based developer.

Thorne reiterates he was prepared to pay for water but not at $1000 a week – a rate Henderson set partly as a fee to draw water from the existing system, as a contribution to its upgrade and to pay resource consent fees.

Thorne says he’s in negotiation with the GWS lawyer: “I would hope that sanity will prevail and we can come to an agreement.”

However, Thorne has arranged two water tanks in case his supply is cut.

“But having to get a bucket of water to flush the dunny – my wife is not going to put up with this, so eventually, I’m afraid, [Henderson’s] going to win.”

Thorne is on notice from the Anthem receiver to quit the Stone House, which is up for mortgagee sale, by the end of next month.