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  • Jancis Robinson
Written by
  • Jancis Robinson
1 Mar 2011

There seem to be far too many terrible things happening at the moment. I tweeted only yesterday about a great wine auction being held in Australia for victims of the recent floods and cyclones there. With some wonderful prizes, it has been put together by Queensland wine writer Tyson Steltzer and is being operated by Find out more here. Then there are millions of needy people in Africa and the UK whom you can help via Wine Relief 2011.

But, setting the whole of Haiti, North Africa and the Middle East on one side for a moment, there are also the awful effects of last week's earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand, capital of one of our favourite sources of wine, the South Island.

One of the most prominent South Island wine producers Felton Road which has strong links to the UK, is responding magnificently by offering all their UK stock at less than retail prices to benefit the earthquake victims. Here is a message from Blair Walter of Felton Road:

Everybody has seen the horrific pictures of crushed buildings and buried people. As the initial shock dies down, what will remain is the wreckage of many thousands of lives. There are 3,000 homeless families in the city now, and with a huge percentage of the business premises destroyed, a great many people are simultaneously stripped of their possessions, their homes and their income.

New Zealand is a prosperous country, but a small one. With only four million people, it is not possible to simply absorb the shock within the larger community. We will have families displaced and struggling for years to come, just as it will take years to reconstruct our third largest city.

We have a plan to help. Right now, we are going to sell every case of wine we have in the UK sales stock and give all the money to the Earthquake Red Cross appeal. That comprises 85 mixed cases of wine, which we will sell through our website. The cases cost NZ$550 dollars including UK taxes and delivery to mainland UK (which takes 3-4 days) (£254 at today's exchange rates). That makes $46,750 we can give to the appeal. The cases include our Block 3 and Block 5 Pinot Noirs and the total price of the case is significantly less than the current UK retail prices. Every penny paid to us will go straight to the Red Cross appeal.

Please do your bit and let anyone you know in the UK about this offer so they can raise a glass to help those in Christchurch. We'll do our bit and pass the money through as soon as we get it.

Anyone in the UK can purchase one of these packs via our website at:

2009 sampler pack (NZ$550, approx £254) contains:
2 x 2009 Felton Road Pinot Noir Bannockburn
1 x 2009 Felton Road Pinot Noir Cornish Point
1 x 2009 Felton Road Pinot Noir Calvert
1 x 2009 Felton Road Pinot Noir Block 3
1 x 2008 Felton Road Pinot Noir Block 5
1 x 2009 Felton Road Dry Riesling
1 x 2009 Felton Road Riesling
1 x 2009 Felton Road Riesling Block 1
1 x 2009 Felton Road Chardonnay Elms
1 x 2009 Felton Road Chardonnay Bannockburn
1 x 2008 Felton Road Chardonnay Block 2

If you would like to send money as well go to:

Thank you from

Nigel, Blair, Tracy, Sarah, Gareth, Todd
& the Vineyard Team at Felton Road