Wellington in History

Historical Events

  • 1840-01-22 New Zealand Company settlers arrive aboard the Aurora at Te Whanganui a Tara, which becomes Port Nicholson, Wellington
  • 1865-07-26 The capital of New Zealand moves from Auckland to Wellington
  • 1908-08-07 The first train to travel the length of New Zealand's North Island 'main trunk line', leaves Wellington
  • 1930-01-24 J E Mills scores 117 on Test Cricket debut, NZ v England, Wellington
  • 1953-03-07 South African cricket opening batsman Jackie McGlew scores an unbeaten 255 in 1st Test win against New Zealand in Wellington
  • 1953-12-24 Wellington-Auckland (NZ) express train swept away in flood kills 166
  • 1968-04-10 Ferry Wahine sinks in Wellington harbour, New Zealand on route from Lyttelton (51 killed)

Sports History

1973-02-02 Test debut of champion New Zealand cricket all-rounder Sir Richard Hadlee; drawn 1st Test v Pakistan, Wellington

  • 1974-03-01 Australian cricketing brothers Ian (145) and Greg Chappell (162no) record 264 partnership in 1st Test draw vs New Zealand at Wellington; Ian (121) and Greg (133) double up with centuries in 2nd innings
  • 1974-03-02 Australian cricket batsman Greg Chappell makes 247no in drawn 1st Test vs NZ in Wellington; also hits 133 in 2nd innings; brother Ian 145 and 121 also scores twin centuries
  • 1974-03-06 Australian cricketing brothers Ian (145 & 121) and Greg Chappell (247no and 133) score unique twin centuries in drawn 1st Test vs New Zealand in Wellington

Sports History

1982-02-26 Test Cricket debut of batsman Martin Crowe, playing for New Zealand v Australia in Wellington, run out for 9

  • 1991-02-02 Aravinda De Silva scores 267 v NZ at Wellington
  • 1991-02-04 NZ cricketers Martin Crowe and Andrew Jones make a world record 467 run stand, against Sri Lanka at the Basin Reserve in Wellington
  • 1995-02-14 Wellington 2-498d & 4-475 beat Canterbury 496 & 2-476d
  • 1996-03-03 Auckland beat Wellington by 9 wickets to win Shell Trophy Final

Film Premiere

2003-12-01 "The Return of the King", 3rd and final film in the Lord of the Rings series, directed by Peter Jackson and starring Elijah Wood and Ian McKellen premieres in Wellington, New Zealand

  • 2004-11-11 New Zealand Tomb of the Unknown Warrior dedicated at the National War Memorial, Wellington.
  • 2006-05-27 Super Rugby Final, Christchurch: Canterbury Crusaders retain title with a 19-12 win over the Wellington Hurricanes; Dan Carter kicks 4 penalties & a conversion for the winners
  • 2012-11-28 "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" 1st of the Hobbit film series, directed by Peter Jackson, starring Martin Freeman and Ian McKellen, premieres in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 2015-07-04 Super Rugby Final, Westpac Stadium, Wellington: Otago Highlanders beat Wellington Hurricanes 21-14 for their first title
  • 2016-08-06 Super Rugby Final, Westpac Stadium Wellington: Wellington Hurricanes win their first SR title with a 20-3 win over the Lions from Johannesburg
  • 2017-01-13 Cricket all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan scores Bangladesh's top Test score ever (217) during the 1st Test v New Zealand in Wellington

Famous Birthdays

Katherine Mansfield

1888-10-14 Katherine Mansfield (Katherine Mansfield Beauchamp Murry), New Zealand short story writer (The Garden Party), born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 1923)

  • 1891-11-05 Herb McGirr, New Zealand cricket all-rounder (played in NZ's 1st Test series; 2 Tests, 1 x 50; Wellington), born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 1964)
  • 1910-04-15 Ralph Grey, Baron Grey of Naunton, Governor of Northern Ireland (1968-73), born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 1999)
  • 1910-12-24 William "Bill" Pickering, NASA scientist (JPL), born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 2004)
  • 1912-08-30 Nancy Wake, New Zealand-born World War II secret agent (Special Operations Executive), born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 2011)
  • 1916-07-09 Dean Goffin, New Zealand composer, born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 1984)
  • 1921-02-06 Bob Scott, New Zealand rugby union fullback (17 Tests; Auckland RU), born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 2012)
  • 1921-05-26 Frank Mooney, New Zealand cricket wicketkeeper (13 Tests, 30 dismissals; Wellington), born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 2004)
  • 1924-06-08 Ian Colquhoun, New Zealand cricket wicket-keeper (2 Tests, 4 dismissals), born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 2005)
  • 1925-01-25 Eric Dempster, New Zealand cricket spin bowler (5 Tests, TS 47, 2 wickets; Wellington CA), born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 2011)
  • 1925-09-11 Ashley Heenan, New Zealand composer, born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 2004)
  • 1929-11-08 Trevor McMahon, New Zealand cricket wicket-keeper (v India & Pak 1955-56), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1930-04-18 Clive Revill, New Zealand singer and actor (Legend of Hell House), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1934-08-01 John Beck, New Zealand cricket batsman (8 Tests; 3 x 50; top score 99; Wellington), born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 2000)
  • 1935-10-09 Paul Barton, New Zealand cricket batsman (7 Tests, 1 x 100; Wellington), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1937-06-01 Colleen McCullough, Australian author (Tim, Indecent Obsession, The Thorn Birds), born in Wellington, NSW, Australia (d. 2015)
  • 1937-07-24 Barry Lloyd Vercoe, New Zealand composer and computer scientist (MIT Media Lab), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1937-08-02 Ronald Brierley, New Zealand investor and company director, born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1941-05-07 Grahame Bilby, New Zealand cricketer (two Tests NZ v England 1966), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1941-12-13 Anouska Hempel, British actress (Tiffany Jones), born in Wellington, New Zealand

Michael King

1945-12-15 Michael King, New Zealand historian and author (Penguin History of New Zealand), born in Wellington, New Zealand (d. 2004)

  • 1946-04-02 Richard Collinge, New Zealand cricket fast bowler (35 Tests, 116 wickets; Central Districts CA, Wellington CA, Northern Districts CA), born in Wellington, New Zealand

Jane Campion

1954-04-30 Jane Campion, New Zealand film director (The Piano, The Power of the Dog), born in Wellington, New Zealand

  • 1954-06-21 Jeremy Coney, New Zealand cricketer (NZ captain turned them into world-beaters), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1955-03-31 Robert Vance, New Zealand cricket wicket-keeper (4 Tests @ 29.57), born in Wellington, NZ
  • 1956-11-08 Richard Curtis, British screenwriter (Blackadder, Four Wedding and a Funeral), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1959-01-10 Fran Walsh, New Zealand screenwriter, born in Wellington, New Zealand

Peter Jackson

1961-10-31 Peter Jackson, New Zealand film director (Lord of the Rings - Academy Award, Best Director, 2003), born in Wellington, New Zealand

Russell Coutts

1962-03-01 Russell Coutts, New Zealand yachtsman (Olympic gold Finn Class 1984, America's Cup 5 x winner), born in Wellington, New Zealand

Russell Crowe

1964-04-07 Russell Crowe, Australian-New Zealand actor (A Beautiful Mind, Gladiator), born in Wellington, New Zealand

  • 1964-06-07 Caroline Anne Hare, 5k/10k (Olympics 1996), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1965-05-26 Jacqueline Mary Nelson, New Zealand points race cyclist (Olympics 1996), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1970-11-09 Chantal Brunner, long jumper (Olympics 1996), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1971-08-18 Jonathan David Winter, New Zealand 100m backstroker (Olympics 1996), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1972-12-20 Jonathan Wyatt, New Zealand 5000m runner (Olympics 1996), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1975-05-02 Murray William Burdan, swimmer (Olympics 1996), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1975-08-09 Mathew James Coad, New Zealand 100m/200m runner (Olympics 1996), born in Wellington, New Zealand

Taika Waititi

1975-08-16 Taika Waititi, New Zealand film director (Boy, Thor: Ragnarok), born in Raukokore, New Zealand

  • 1976-06-29 Bret McKenzie, New Zealand musician and comedian (Flight of the Conchords - "Feel Inside (And Stuff Like That)"), born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1980-11-07 James Franklin, New Zealand cricket all-rounder (31 Tests, 1 x 100, 82 wickets; 110 ODIs; Wellington CA, Gloucestershire CCC, born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1982-05-21 Ma'a Nonu, New Zealand rugby union player and All Black, born in Wellington, New Zealand
  • 1989-01-03 Ben Matulino, New Zealand rugby league forward (23 caps; NZ Warriors, Wests Tigers), born in Wellington, New Zealand

Famous Deaths

  • 1869-11-16 Hamiora Pere is hanged for treason at the Terrace Gaol, Wellington - only New Zealander ever to be executed for treason