Heritage

Christchurch - a chronology

1908

January 1
Shackleton expedition sails for Antarctica in "Nimrod". A crowd estimated as high as 50,000 watched the departure - probably the largest in Lyttelton’s history.
February 6
Stranges fire destroys buildings in High, Cashel and Lichfield Streets. Stranges Department Store was New Zealand’s biggest in the early days of this century. The early morning blaze spread to the DIC, Ashby Berghs and the White Hart Hotel. Damage was over 300,000, New Zealand’s worst to that date.
February 17
30-metre whale stranded at Okarito. The skeleton is now on display at the Canterbury Museum.
February 25
Theatre Royal opens. This is the building which exists today, the third to bear the name.
May 11
Colosseum becomes the city’s first picture theatre. The building was claimed to have the largest wooden span in New Zealand. It had previously been a skating rink, a boot factory and a cab stand. See also 1932.
May 14
Municipal tepid baths in Manchester Street open. It was described as "the finest indoor swimming pool in Australasia".
July 7
Widespread flooding in city and province.
September
Christchurch Canal League formed to agitate for the building of a canal and port in the Avon-Heathcote Estuary.
November 28
Work begins on the Summit Road, the first part of Harry Ell’s obsessional dream.
(no date)
New Zealand’s first boy scout patrol organised at Kaiapoi.

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Notes