Waimate District council
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Waimate – nestled at the foot of the rolling Hunters Hills, comes close to being a perfect example of a New Zealand rural town. Ideally located in the centre of the south, it is halfway between Christchurch, Dunedin. Waimate is a convenient gateway to the Waitaki Lakes and to the spectacular MacKenzie Basin and provides one of the shortest routes to Queenstown. 

Originally known as 'Te Waimatemate' or slow moving water, Waimate was born from the meeting of Chief Te Huruhuru and Michael Studholme (first settler) in 1854. Waimate has not forgotten its earliest European residents, the historic thatched ‘cuddy’ built by Studholme in 1854 is still in existence.  On the hills behind the town is a unique tribute to the role played by the Clydesdale horse in the development of the rich farm lands that stretch away into the distance – the White Horse monument.

An Edwardian heritage

The town itself has wide spacious streets, a valued collection of Edwardian buildings, including several churches of historic importance.  The Waimate Historical Museum (housed in the old Waimate courthouse), has many wonderful displays including local history and Maori heritage telling the stories of Waimate and its growth. 

Waimate is known for a number of unique features including holding the rare distinction of being one of the few places in NZ where wallabies have taken up residence. Introduced from Australia in the late 1860’s and known as 'Bennett's Wallabies', numbers have increased dramatically. These nocturnal marsupials have adapted well to the Waimate environment and can be found in wildlife parks throughout the district. They have flourished here and are the largest found in New Zealand.You can see them in wildlife parks in the district or if hunting is your sport there is ample opportunity for this too.

Waimate is also famed for its famous strawberries and raspberries which have been grown in the district since late 1880’s. You can buy them in season from a number of road side stalls, or you can pick your own - can’t get fresher than that!  

An ideal midway stopping point

Ideally located midway between Christchurch, Dunedin and Queenstown, Waimate is the second South Island location to become Motorhome Friendly. Its wide streets are ideal for parking up as well as exploring on foot. Check out the Information Centre for self-guiding tours to discover the history of the town and its historic attractions. As a base for exploring the attractions of nearby districts, take your pick of coasts, alpine scenery and wonderful lake vistas.

For Local Activities see the above Directory Tab.

Waimate District council Telephone: 03 689 7771

Featured Event:

Gold N Notes Hoedown 2017

Cromwell's Gold'N'Notes Hoedown

November 17 - 19th - 2017 (Fri - Sun) - 31st Year! - Fun Country Music Weekend

Tickets only available on site at the Cromwell Racecourse - eftpos available.

Country music lovers should prepare for hoarse voices, sore feet and late nights with a three-day festival coming to Cromwell. Cromwell’s Gold ’n Notes Hoedown is one of the biggest events on the country music calendar, last year attracting a record crowd of more than 800, as well as about 70 artists from around New Zealand.

The Date this year is Friday 17th November 2017 to the Sunday 19th November 2017 with a full weekend of entertainment including a little bit of busking in the business area and in The Cromwell Mall itself on Friday and also Saturday Morning.

We start off Friday night with 4-5 hours of Blackboard artists; Saturday depending on artists probably a 10am start with a short break for lunch and tea. Around 4pm we plan to have a mini showcase consisting of Top artists followed by the big showcase on Saturday night for 4 -5 hours of top NZ talent then on the Sunday Morning we will crank up again around 10.00-11.00am and go until the crowd starts to leave. Who knows??? Could be another late night.

We always have the local Lions and sporting groups catering a variety of snacks and meals each day at a basic cost with the refreshment tent on site all weekend plus the other necessities i.e. Mr Whippy, Coffees and maybe a wine tasting booth promoting our local wines. It is an opportunity for local groups to raise funds for their organisations and since our move to Cromwell the local rowing club alone have raised a great return towards their new boating building along with other sporting groups raising funds for travel to represent our region at National Level.

We also encourage people to get up on stage and perform in front of crowds and our audiences vary from the young to the old. These people never see this type of entertainment in this area due to travel and expense to attend in the cities so it is a privilege to get to see Top Artists at their back door. i.e. Central Otago and bus loads are booked from other areas to come for a day which is great support.


Busking in the centre of town
1pm start - blackboard artists
7pm - Jam sessions


Busking in the centre of town in the morning
10am - 1:30pm - blackboard artists
Invited guests 2pm - 5:30pm
7pm to late - "Country Showcase" featuring top NZ artists plus surprises


10am - 6pm: blackboard artists followed by a free for all jam session


Tickets only available on site at the Cromwell Racecourse - eftpos available.

CSC Parking: Caravan & Motorhome charge of $10 per night per van, pay on arrival. 

No booking needed as we have plenty of room, can arrive from Thursday. (Note: dogs allowed on leads in the Motorhome area only).

Refreshments and meals available all day.

Additions: We have a dump station on site; also refuse skips and Toilets and plenty of room for parking so no need to book. Just arrive and parking wardens will park you accordingly.

Any enquiries please do not hesitate to contact organizers/sponsors of the Hoedown, Lynette or Mike Hedges on 03 445 4070 Home; or 027 243 8655

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Featured Story:

Remembering pioneering Kiwi Margaret Cruickshank

All I remember of Margaret Cruickshank was from Intermediate school, that she was the first female New Zealand doctor. When we visited Waimate and came upon her statue at Seddon Park, a local who was there also enjoying the afternoon sunshine with her grand-kids casually mentioned that the statue was one of only four statues of women in the country.

I couldn't decide whether to be shocked at the gender disparity or to be ashamed that I didn't know anything about this historical personage who must have done something remarkable to deserve this rare honour.

So I looked it up (ahh, the powers of accessible technology) and this is from nzhistory.net

Margaret accepted a position as assistant to Dr H. C. Barclay of Waimate, and on3 Ma

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