Christchurch: a chronology

A timeline of Christchurch events in chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

Go to a year between 1700 & 1989

Begin at the beginning Start here

This week in history

November 21, 1865
Provincial Council buildings in Durham Street completed. The complex of buildings was architect B.W. Mountfort’s masterpiece. He had survived a professional disaster soon after arrival in New Zealand when his first building, a church in Lyttelton, had proved structurally unsound and had to be demolished.
November 21, 1957
4 killed in SAFE Air Bristol freighter crash at Russley golf course.
November 21, 1988
Visit by Chinese Premier Li Peng.
November 22, 1986
Visit by Pope John Paul II (the first head of the Catholic Church to visit New Zealand).
November 22, 1987
"Trans Alpine" express train designed specifically for the tourist trade, begins its daily run from Christchurch to Greymouth.
November 23, 1984
The first woman to head the Methodist Church is Rev Dr Phyllis Guthardt a Christchurch Minister from Riccarton Parish. See 1959
November 23, 1988
Human remains dating back to pre-European Maori settlement found while excavating for YMCA building on the corner of Hereford Street and Rolleston Avenue. Area declared tapu for 24 hours until remains removed.
November 24, 1881
St Albans Borough formed.
November 25, 1913
700 "specials" (special constables enlisted mainly from farming districts) occupy Lyttelton to allow "free“ labour to work the wharves. In spite of this provocative action, there was no serious violence in Christchurch or Lyttelton throughout the strike.
November 25, 1940
Holmwood, en route from the Chathams to Lyttelton, sunk by German raiders. Passengers and crew were taken aboard the German ships, and eventually made their way home 2 months later.
November 25, 1956
Richard Pearse’s convertiplane taken to Auckland. It is now on display in Auckland’s Museum of Transport and Technology.
November 25, 1980
Totem Pole placed in new location at Christchurch Airport.