David Welch – Port to Plains; Over and Under the Port Hills, the Story of the Lyttelton Railway Tunnel

The Lyttelton rail tunnel officially opened on 9 December 1867. The trip through the hill secion took less than seven minutes. This was New Zealand’s first rail tunnel, and for many years it was also the country’s longest. The Lyttelton rail tunnel was the first in the world that was driven through the side of an extinct volcano.

I recently attended David Welch’s Heritage Week talk about his upcoming book: Port to Plains; Over and Under the Port Hills, the Story of the Lyttelton Railway Tunnel.

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Entrance to a tunnel on the Christchurch railway [ca. 1868] CCL PhotoCD 18, IMG0029
No dry reading here! David loves a good social history so has concentrated on the real characters in the saga of constructing a tunnel through a volcanic caldera. In his talk he brought to life well-known early pioneer names such as Fitzgerald, Moorhouse, and Dobson in snippets of stories included in the book.

I for one am really looking forward to its publication. Place a hold on Port to Plains; Over and Under the Port Hills, the Story of the Lyttelton Railway Tunnel and we will let you know when a copy arrives for you to read.

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Podcast – The New Zealand Wars

Speak Up Kōrerotia logoChristchurch City Libraries blog hosts a series of regular podcasts from specialist human rights radio show Speak up – Kōrerotia. This show is created by Sally Carlton.

28 October 2017 marks the inaugural national commemoration of the New Zealand Wars. Pita Tipene, an iwi representative on the commemoration Advisory Panel (Te Pūtake o te Riri | Wars and Conflicts in New Zealand Fund), and historians Lloyd Carpenter and Edmund Bohan, discuss the Wars, their significance for the country in terms of national identity and Te Tiriti of Waitangi, and the importance of remembering.

Part I: What were the NZ Wars?; Does it matter how we label them (NZ Wars vs Land Wars vs Māori Wars vs Sovereignty Wars?; NZ Wars and national identity
Part II: How have the Wars previously been acknowledged?
Part III: 2017 commemoration – Why now? What will occur?
Part IV: Looking forward to possible outcomes of commemoration

Transcript – NZ Wars

Find out more in our collection

Cover of Fortifications of the New Zealand Wars Cover of The New Zealand Wars: A brief history Cover of Landscapes of conflict Cover of Sleeps standing - Moetū Cover of The great War for New Zealand Cover of The origins of the Māori wars Cover of Wars without end Cover of The New Zealand Wars Cover of The New Zealand Wars Cover of Sacred soil Cover of Two peoples, one land Cover of Tribal guns and tribal gunners

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