The Anglican Cathedral has been badly damaged and it seems the splendid baroque Catholic Cathedral too (see bottom photo), still closed from September's earthquake, has further collapsed and looks doomed as well.
The SMH reports that the death toll is 65 and rising.
****My New Zealand nephew reports via facebook on Tuesday evening that at the University college he is now living at, power is back on but no internet. Unlike the centre of town and some suburbs, the campus of the University of Canterbury has reported survived reasonably well - there are a few cracks in the wall in his building but it looks sound enough. Just as well, as the students had only just poured into town for the start of the Uni year. But the aftershocks are continuing, and many of the students plan on sleeping in the common room just in case...
Meanwhile the reports from the centre of town get worse and worse, with many hundreds facing a terrible night trapped in crumbling buildings.
Tuesday afternoon update: Hundreds of aftershocks of varying severity continue to rock the city, making the massive rescue efforts dangerous and in many cases, increasingly moot. For detailed updates, stuff.co has lots. But the best coverage for an overview seems to me to be the Sydney Morning Herald's.
I gather Fr Define FSSP, over there holding the fort for Fr Rizzo, is fine.
And my nephew is on his way home, driving North with a group of friends...