Mid Canterbury has versatile soils, a favourable climate, a good water supply, an unprecedented service industry and a farming community familiar with intergenerational investments. The future prosperity of the district is undoubtedly reliant on a dependable supply of water for irrigation, and the BCI scheme shares the district’s vision of being fully irrigated and self sufficient in electricity generation in the future.

The BCI scheme is a joint venture between Barrhill Chertsey Irrigation Limited, a co-operative company with around 150 transacting farmer shareholders from within the Mid Canterbury district, and Electricity Ashburton Limited, the local cooperative lines Company. In 2001 resource consents were granted to take 17 cumecs of water from the Rakaia River and use it for electricity generation and irrigation in the area.

Commercial arrangements with Rangitata Diversion Race Management Limited and TrustPower Limited allowed the BCI scheme to facilitate 7,000ha of new irrigation in 2010, delivering pressurised water to 47 shareholders through a 67km pipe network.  Subsequently the network has grown to 200km and is delivering water to around 19,000ha in Mid Canterbury.  Recent developments have included a new river intake at Barrhill and a small hydro generator.

Learn More About Our Company


Barrhill Chertsey Irrigation Limited
18 Kermode Street, Ashburton
Ph: 03 9288 321

General Manager: John Wright
Ph: 03 9288 321
Mobile: 0274 362 358

Planning & Compliance Manager: Helen Stanger
Ph: 03 9288 323
Mobile: 0274 224 258

We welcome your comments and feedback on the BCI scheme.

Please email us with any questions you have and we will respond as quickly as possible.