12 May 2009

Govt may put money towards saving Sir Ed's house

6:59 am on 12 May 2009

The Government is considering paying to preserve Sir Edmund Hillary's house because of its cultural and heritage value.

Sir Edmund's Remuera home was bought by Sky Television co-founder Terry Jarvis at auction in March, after attempts to secure it as an historic site failed.

The Government said at the time it would not buy the house, which eventually sold for $1.9 million.

Prime Minister John Key said on Monday that Cabinet briefly discussed the issue and was not opposed to preserving the house, or parts of it.

He says said the Government would be prepared to spend a small amount, less than $100,000, to help preserve the home.

Mountaineer Graeme Dingle has been in negotiations with Mr Jarvis's agent and members of the Hillary family about the property's future.

Mr Dingle says it would be a shame for the house to be bulldozed, so he would move the house to his land in Kaipara.

He believes Sir Edmund Hillary would have enjoyed the challenge involved in moving it to another site.