This page looks at the important council events that took place between 1921 and 1940.

Year Date/Month Event
1921 1 April Spreydon Borough joins Christchurch City Council.
1921 1 November Woolston Borough joins Christchurch City Council.
1922 10 July Hagley Park and Botanic Gardens included in City.
1923 1 April

Bromley and Papanui join Christchurch City Council.

James Arthur Flesher (1923-1925) is elected as 33rd Mayor of Christchurch.

1924 1 September New Christchurch City Council offices in Manchester Street(external link) open.  Christchurch City Council bought and refurbished the building in 1920, retaining the Oamaru and Mount Somers stone and brick frontage and creating an interior space of more than 3000 sq m over two floors and a basement.
1925   Rev John K Archer (1925-1931) is elected as 34th Mayor of Christchurch. He was New Zealand’s first Labour Mayor. For more information about politics in Canterbury(external link), please visit the Te Ara Encyclopedia of New Zealand website.
1929 14 February The Christchurch to Lyttelton railway line electrification is completed.
1929 11 December Edmonds Band Rotunda officially opens.
1930   Majestic Theatre opens.
This building is the City’s first steel frame building.
1931 26 February Bowker Fountain in Victoria Square in operation. Daniel G Sullivan (1931-1936 is elected as 35th Mayor of Christchurch. Daniel Sullivan was a City Councillor 1915-1931. According to Rice (1999:97) he topped the polls four times. He was MP for Avon from 1919 until his death. He resigned from Mayor of Christchurch in 936 after becoming Minister of Industries and Commerce (1935-1947) and Minister of Railways (1935-1941).
1932 4 May Christchurch Tramway Strike takes place, one of the bitterest in the City’s history. It lasted 16 days and there were many injuries and arrests among the strikers. The tram sheds were barricaded with barbed wire and the trams were fitted with wire mesh screens over their windows to ward off attacks.
1932 16 June

Robert Ewing McDougall(external link) Art Gallery opens. The gallery was a gift of Robert E McDougall, who in 1928, gifted £25,000 to the Christchurch City Council for its eventual building.

Archives Reference: CCC Archives – Correspondence Files Town Clerk’s Office, Box 54 Series 7, Item 7/3

1932 10 August Statue of Captain James Cook unveiled in Victoria Square.
1934 25 June Death of Henry George (Harry) Ell. The uncompleted Summit Road and the Sign of the Takahe were taken over by his Harry Ell’s son. However, in 1942 the Christchurch City Council took over the construction and it was completed in 1949.
1935 17 December City Council decides to buy 230 hectares of land at Harewood for the city airport which was strongly criticised as excessive.
1936 November Tramway Board introduces diesel buses. John W Beanland (1936-1938) is elected as 36th Mayor of Christchurch.
1937   Widening of McCormacks Bay causeway for motor traffic completed.
1938 26 February Summit Road opens.
1938 May Honourable Robert Mafeking MacFarlane (1938-1941) is elected as 37th Mayor of Christchurch and was later knighted in 1975.  He served as Mayor of Christchurch twice (1938-1941 and later 1950-1958). During that time he was also MP for Christchurch South 1939-1946 and after war service during the Second World War, he became MP for Christchurch Central.
1939 17 February New Millers Department Store building (eventually became the fourth Civic Offices) opens.  Designed by G. A. J. Hart, the building contained the South Island’s first escalator.
1939 3 March Statue of James Edward Fitzgerald in Rolleston Avenue is unofficially unveiled.  The statue was a gift from R E Green and had been offered to the Christchurch City Council in 1934 and to the Beautifying Association in 1936 but had been declined by both because of legal disputes between Mr Green and his family.  The statue was finally accepted by the Domains Board in 1938 but was never officially unveiled.
1939 6 May New Municipal Electricity Department building opens.
1939 26 August Official opening of Christchurch City Council pensioner housing project in Barnett Avenue, Sydenham.  This was the first local body pensioner housing in New Zealand.
1940 April Herbert Stanley Feast begins 21 years as Town Clerk with the Christchurch City Council.
1940 18 May Harewood Airport officially opens and was shortly taken over by the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) for the duration of the war.