When a quiet fault line roared to life near Darfield more than five years ago, it triggered a series of events that would fundamentally alter the South Island’s course. The first earthquake, on September 4, 2010, struck like a lightning bolt. In its wake have come at least 14,000 confirmed aftershocks – Geonet has recorded almost 18,000 seismic events – which have knocked the region further off its axis.

On February 22, 2011, with the 600 earthquakes recorded that day, the change was apparent – 185 dead, buildings destroyed and lives wrecked. What was less evident were the broader, structural changes, only just becoming apparent now. The 14,000 earthquakes introduced a Canterbury no one expected to ever see, far different from the one that was supposed to be. READ MORE