Pub could become a heritage item, stopping redevelopment plans

FRUSTRATED: Rolly Inn owner Russell Lilley doesn't want the hotel to be placed on the heritage items list like its proposed to be.

A bid to redevelop the Rolly Inn site in Rolleston could be stopped by plans to turn the hotel into a heritage building.

Owner Russell Lilley is planning, along with others, to pull down the hotel and build a bar, restaurant, new commercial buildings and a service station on the site.

But the district council may have different plans for the Rolly Inn.

Last Wednesday the district plan committee endorsed a preferred option report that included a bid to add the hotel, which was built in 1930, to the heritage items list.

Mr Lilley told Selwyn Times that he doesn’t want the hotel to become a heritage item. He said it was “typical of the way the world seems to be going today” where people make up your mind for you.

He has called the proposal to add the building to the heritage list “absolutely ridiculous.”

District councillor Craig Watson is backing Mr Lilley but his suggestion to keep the hotel off the heritage list did not receive enough support from fellow councillors.

He said it would be “unfair” and “almost embarrassing for Rolleston” if the hotel became a heritage item.

“It’s putting a lot of limitations on a hotel that I would argue most of Rolleston would not call a heritage building,” Cr Watson said.

His advice to Mr Lilley is to get it demolished in the next two years while there are no restrictions in place.

District councillor Jeff Bland said the building is a “great old pub” which has historical value. However, he said the owner would need to be on-board with the proposal for it to work.

“I think if you’re going to put a heritage order on something, it needs to come with agreement of the current land owner or owner of the building,” he said.

The report detailing the proposed changes is expected to go out for initial public consultation in the next month. The consultation will then be considered when creating the draft District Plan. The draft plan will then go out for formal consultation before being finalised.

The current Selwyn District Plan lists 156 protected items which are located across both rural and urban areas.

•HAVE YOUR SAY: Do you think the Rolly Inn should be listed as a heritage building? Email your views to


  1. Let the property owner make up his own mind for himself. His interest.

    I reckcon heritage buildings must cost a lot of money to up kept. Move onto the future.