We asked you about arts, culture and heritage in Christchurch. Around 2900 of you gave feedback; here's a summary of what your told us.


Life in Christchurch 2021

Arts and Creativity

Arts and creativity remains an important reason why over half of respondents enjoy living in Christchurch. Street art in particular is highly valued by 80% of respondents, who think that it helps to improve the appearance of public spaces. The most common ways respondents had interacted with the arts in the past 12 months were:

  • Visual arts (50%)
  • Music (48%)
  • Performing arts (43%)

The Arts Centre, the Canterbury Museum and the Art Gallery were the most popular arts facilities respondents had visited in the past 12 months.

The main barrier preventing respondents from attending art exhibitions and performances is the cost to attend them and difficulties accessing them.

"I love the public art - the murals and sculptures that everyone can experience and enjoy. More of this please!"

"I would say Chch hasn't traditionally had a reputation for being a creative city but I feel that's been changing post earthquakes."

The Christchurch Art Gallery

The Christchurch Art Gallery remains popular with respondents, with half having visited in the previous 12 months, although this is a slight decrease from 2018 at 58%. 

Respondents typically find out about what's going on at the Art Gallery through word-of-mouth (46%) and social media channels (41%).

The main reason respondents do not visit the Art Gallery is due to not often visiting the central city for leisure (29%).

"It's just a question of priorities. I've been in the past, and probably will in the future, I just haven't prioritised it this year, I've done other things instead."

"... I had no idea there was so much going on [at the Art Gallery]. Such a lot of activities and exhibitions. Very cool."

Culture and diversity

Overall, respondents believe cultural diversity makes our city a better or much better place to live (80%). The main reason for this was said to be because:

  • People from other countries and cultures make the city more vibrant and interesting (78%)
  • People from other countries and cultures add to the multi-cultural and diverse feel of the city (76%)

Respondents were asked whether they thought Christchurch is a city where all communities feel safe and welcome. 45% of respondents did not agree with this statement, a large increase from 2018, where 30% disagreed. 

When it comes to whether the Christchurch City Council is doing enough to foster and develop cultural diversity throughout the city, 43% of respondents agree or strongly agree. This is a similar result to 2018, at 45%.

"Mixing people from different cultures creates important understanding of humanity. How different people are but also how we are the same."

"Unfortunately there seems to be constant media articles revealing that people of other cultures are still victimized and bullied and feel unsafe. I am not sure this is entirely Christchurch City Council's responsibility to fix though."

Heritage and Taonga

Mixed feedback was received from respondents about the preservation and celebration of our heritage and taonga.

  • 47% think our heritage and taonga is accessible for all, while 27% neither agree nor disagree
  • 42% think our heritage and taonga is shared and celebrated, while 32% neither agree nor disagree

40% think that the Christchurch City Council is doing enough to protect our heritage and taonga for future generations, while 24% think the Council could be doing more.

"The visibility of Māori heritage has improved greatly through the rebuild. This is awesome to see."

"I think Christchurch City Council does a lot on the multicultural front but more can be done to integrate multicultural events into the mainstream cultural life."

Our Identity

The arts are an important part of our city's story and identity (72%) and contributes to making Christchurch a liveable city (76%).

Hagley Park (91%), heritage gardens and parks (87%), and street trees and gardens (80%) are the leading contributors to our 'garden city image'.

Opinions were divided about whether there are enough opportunities to engage with Māori art forms in Christchurch; 39% agree or strongly agree, 31% neither agree nor disagree and 30% disagree or strongly disagree. 

"To be honest I think Christchurch needs a rebrand - gateway to adventure would be much better"

"Loving that there is more focus of culture in recent times, so hope this continues and expands."



The majority of respondents (80%) had attended at least one event in the previous 2 years, the most popular were:

  • Bread and Circus (40%)
  • Lazy Sundays (27%)
  • Matariki Events (24%)

Respondents would like to see more music, food, family friendly, arts and Māori events.

"Love to see more events / workshops and celebrations on diversity and unity. Looking forward to it!"

"I love the arts here in ChCh but I have to go looking for events to see what is on in the city. Is there an easier way to get that information?"

Find out about upcoming events in Christchurch at What's On.

The full set of results from the survey can be found in the 2021 Arts Culture and Heritage Summary Report. [PDF, 780 KB]

We asked you about arts, culture and heritage in Christchurch. Around 2100 of you gave feedback; here's a summary of what your told us.

Overall, results are positive, with arts and culture being recognised as a very important part of life in Christchurch. Street art in particular is highly valued, helping to improve the appearance of public spaces. Events are also highly valued by respondents and are well attended in the city, with 80 percent of respondents having been to at least one of the events listed in the survey in the last two years.

Some respondents indicated that they are concerned that not all communities feel safe and welcome in Christchurch. Helping to address these concerns is the Council’s Multicultural Strategy and the Ōtautahi Christchurch Community Strategy 2021-31.

Survey feedback will help inform decision making. More information about the results can be found in the full report [PDF, 1.2 MB].