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A Zimbabwean talks about home

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Immigrant Peter Baldwin, who arrived in New Zealand with his family in 2000, talks about Robert Mugabe’s government and the family’s reasons for leaving Zimbabwe.

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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‘Dad and Dave’

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Australian values and attitudes came to New Zealand not just with the immigrants, but also via print, radio and television. ‘Dad and Dave’, an Australian radio serial about a rural family in Snake Gully, ran from 1937 to 1953 and had a large following. ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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John van Leeuwen

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

In this interview for Echo Radio, John van Leeuwen describes his experiences on emigrating to New Zealand in 1953.

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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‘A new life in New Zealand’

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

From 1947 the New Zealand government once more provided assistance with fares for English migrants. Over the next 28 years more than 250,000 arrived, many paying their own way. This display in New Zealand House, London, shows the promises of a new life ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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Yorkshire immigrants talk of work in New Zealand and at ‘home’

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

In the 1920s there was an increase in immigrants from the more industrial areas of northern England, especially Yorkshire. One Yorkshire immigrant who arrived in 1927 was a man simply known as Mr Pearson. He had worked at a dockyard at South Bank-on-Tees. Here he and his wife discuss the ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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The Holy Trinity Cathedral choir, Auckland

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

The Church of England was the strongest denomination in New Zealand, and an important vehicle for the transmission of English values. The choir of the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Auckland, pictured here in 1980, can be heard singing ‘Evening hymn’, composed by the Englishman Henry Balfour ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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News of the 2000 Fiji coup

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Here Aucklanders Jioji Tikodei (left), an ethnic Fijian, and Krishna Lal, an Indo-Fijian, read about the 2000 coup in Fiji. The news of another coup in 2000 (there had been two in 1987) caused many Fijians living in New Zealand to react with dismay. The ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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Patricia Winton, American immigrant

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Pat Winton came to New Zealand in 1959 to work for the American embassy in Wellington. She later married a New Zealander, had two children, and in 1995 took out dual New Zealand–United States citizenship. Listen to Pat talk about the differences between ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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'Split Enz with a bang' tour, 1984

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Until recently, the New Zealand music-buying public would not buy Kiwi music until it had proved popular with overseas audiences. New Zealand’s small population means that many bands still take the flight overseas, chasing dreams of rock stardom. Like...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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A woollen-mill worker’s story

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Scottish mill workers played an important role in developing New Zealand’s wool industry over many years. Marie Jarvis, from Hawick, had experience in the mills of her hometown when she decided to move with her family to Otago, to work in a mill founded in the 19th century by two Scots, ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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The SS Earnslaw

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

The SS Earnslaw, built in Dunedin in the early 1900s, first plied Lake Wakatipu in 1912. For 50 years it carried freight and people to and from remote lakeside settlements. Since the 1970s the ship has been used for scenic cruises. British composer Ron Goodwin wrote the ‘Earnslaw Steam ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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Kauri felling

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Bushman Billy Mack takes a break while felling a giant kauri at Kauaeranga valley, Thames, in 1921. First, wedge-shaped ‘scarfs’ were cut into the trunk on the side the bushmen wanted the tree to fall. Then the trunk was sawn from the other side until ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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Poisonous garden plants

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Most plant poisonings in New Zealand occur when young children eat parts of poisonous plants growing in their local environment, such as the garden or the grounds of their kindergarten or school. Many commonly grown plants like kōwhai, rhododendron, ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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Whistling frog

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

A native of south-eastern Australia and Tasmania, the brown whistling frog is the smallest of the three introduced frogs. Eggs are laid under water and hatch into free-swimming tadpoles, unlike the native species. Its call is a familiar sound on the South ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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Green and golden bell frog

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

The green and golden bell frog was introduced to Auckland from Sydney in the 1860s. The brownish eardrum shows clearly, just behind the eye. The female grows to 9 centimetres, and the smaller male to 6 centimetres. It lays thousands of eggs on water, and ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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Southern bell frog

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

The southern bell frog is mainly green, with bronze markings and a warty back, and is native to south-eastern Australia and Tasmania. The most aquatic of the three introduced species, it has webbing on its hind toes. It catches insects near water by ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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Juvenile tuatara

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Researchers at Victoria University of Wellington keep tuatara in enclosures, in semi-natural conditions, for up to five years after they hatch. Safe from predators, these juveniles have a higher survival rate than hatchlings in the wild. They will eventually return to their home island, or will ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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Wing-clapping cicada

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

The largest cicadas in New Zealand, Amphipsalta, are descended from Australian ancestors. Males produce loud sounds by contracting and relaxing a pair of membranes on their abdomen. These cicadas also sing by clapping their wings against the ground or a branch. Listen to the song of one ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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Small alpine cicada

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Adult cicadas have a broad head and a tapered body with two pairs of wings. This specimen of a small alpine cicada, now named Kikihia subalpina, was collected in 1893 in Karori, Wellington, by entomologist George Hudson. Sound file from

Ministry for Culture and Heritage
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Chorus cicada

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

The largest New Zealand cicada is the chorus cicada (Amphipsalta zelandica). The length of its body with the wings folded is about 40 millimetres. Chorus cicadas gather in large numbers around the time they emerge from their nymph skins, from January. Common in the North Island and some ...

Ministry for Culture and Heritage