Hawke’s Bay earthquake 3 February 1931

At 10.47am on 3 February 1931, a violent shock, followed closely by a second, rocked Hawke’s Bay for almost three minutes. New Zealand’s deadliest earthquake devastated the cities of Napier and Hastings, Hawke’s Bay. At least 256 people died in the magnitude 7.8 earthquake 161 in Napier, 93 in Hastings, and two in Wairoa. Many thousands more required medical treatment.

Our page on the disaster lists facts and information on the earthquake.

Many 0f us have connections with this disaster – my Grandad was at school in Napier when the building collapsed. And Christchurch people know comprehend of what a major earthquake is like. The people of the Hawke’s Bay had to cope with fire, devastation and loss of life as well as demolition of buildings, loss of chimneys and damaged water supplies.

Those who lost their life are commemorated at The Earthquake Memorial in Park Island Cemetery, Napier.

Hastings Street after the Napier earthquake [Feb. 1931]
Hastings Street after the Napier earthquake [Feb. 1931]
Hastings Street after the Napier earthquake [Feb. 1931]
Emerson Street after the Napier earthquake [Feb. 1931]

CoverFind out more about the Hawke’s Bay earthquake

Movie ticket giveaways for 12 Years a slave

Roadshow Films and Christchurch City Libraries are giving you the chance to WIN one of 20 double passes to the movie 12 Years a slave.

12 Years a slave tells the incredible true story of one man’s fight for survival and freedom. In the pre-Civil War United States, Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery.  Facing cruelty (personified by a malevolent slave owner, portrayed by Michael Fassbender), as well as unexpected kindnesses, Solomon struggles not only to stay alive, but to retain his dignity. In the twelfth year of his unforgettable odyssey, Solomon’s chance meeting with a Canadian abolitionist (Brad Pitt) will forever alter his life.
12 Years a slave in cinemas, February 6, 2014.

You can also read or listen to the book from our libraries.

View the movie trailer here
Rated:R16 – Contains graphic violence and sexual violence

How can you win? Just email and tell us the name of the slave whose story this is –  email us at competition@christchurchcitylibraries.com including your name, phone number, library card number and address. We’ll get in touch with the winners and hook you up with the tickets.

  • The competition is open to Christchurch City Libraries members.
  • Staff of Christchurch City Libraries and their immediate families are not able to enter.
  • Competition closes on Sunday 9 February.
  • Winners contacted on 10 February.

Please note: Tickets valid from 20 February at Event, Reading, Hoyts, Berkeley, Rialto or any participating independent cinema. Not valid on Saturdays after 5pm, on public holidays or at any “La Premier”, Cinema Delux, Gold Class, D-Box, Gold Lounge, Imax or Circle Lounge screeings. This voucher must be taken as offered and is not exchangeable, transferable or redeemable for cash and does not constitute a reserved seat. Cinemas reserve the right to refuse vouchers deemed invalid or tampered with. This ticket cannot be re-sold.

We introduce a new eBook platform: Wheelers!

With the huge popularity of OverDrive we are now offering  another way for library members to access eBooks. Let me introduce the New Zealand based eBook platform Wheelers.

Why another platform you ask? Well, Wheelers point of difference is that its collection will focus more on New Zealand content from New Zealand writers and publishers. This growing collection contains both fiction and non fiction titles for adults, young adults and children.

Wheelers allows you to:

  • Download up to ten fiction and non-fiction titles from home at any time;
  • Checkout eBooks for 14 days;
  • Transfer eBook titles to your computer or portable devices such eBook readers and smart phones;
  • Avoid late fees — the items self expire. Some eBooks can be checked in early.

Wheelers is a separate platform so it does not  does not affect the amount of eBooks you can get from OverDrive. It is our aim at Christchurch City Libraries to present you with a smorgasbord of eBook opportunities. Have a look at the titles and check out a new eBook out today!

Christchurch – this week in history (3 February – 9 February)

February 3, 1915
Canterbury Battalion sustains New Zealand’s first casualties of W.W.I at Suez Canal.

February 3, 1962
Peter Snell sets new world records for the half mile and 800 metres at Lancaster Park.

February 4-5, 1868
Severe storm and gales. Several ships wrecked, floods throughout Canterbury. Waimakariri River overflows into the Avon causing serious flooding. Water flows a metre deep in Market Square (now Victoria Square).

February 6, 1908
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 9, 1917
Scott statue, sculpted by his widow, unveiled opposite the (then) Municipal Offices in Oxford Terrace.

Photo of Strange's Hotel
Colombo St, Christchurch – January 1974
Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More January and February events in our Christchurch chronology.