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Five Interesting Facts About Wellington, New Zealand

Many people choose to move to New Zealand because it is a safe and friendly environment for families, offers great career opportunities and extraordinary possibilities for exploration and travel. The high quality of life New Zealand offers is what draws immigrants from all over the world to the country, and the capital of Wellington is no exception. As experts when it comes to international removals to Wellington, Hamiltons Removals have come up with five interesting facts about the country’s capital.

1. It’s Named After the English Duke

Although the area did have previous inhabitants, the Māori’s, as well as the Polynesian explorer Kupe, the modern city owes its name to the English Duke of Wellington.

English settlers from The New Zealand Company (who also colonised other parts of the region) suggested the name in 1840. The theory behind the founding of the modern city was that capitalists would provide the finance, and the local population the workforce.

2. It’s the Southernmost Capital of the World

The city lies at the south-western tip of the country’s North Island and, even though the country’s South Island contains the cities of Invercargill and Christchurch, Wellington can still lay claim to being the southernmost capital of the world.

Originally, Okiato (also known as Old Russell), then Auckland, was the country’s capital.  However, the NZ Parliament wanted a more central location for their headquarters; they couldn’t agree on where so three Australian commissioners were brought in to make the ruling. With coordinates of 41°17′20″S 174°46′38″E Wellington beats Canberra in Australia, and Cape Town in South Africa, to the accolade.

3. It’s Also the Windiest City

For all the talk of Chicago being The Windy City, Wellington is actually the windiest; known as ‘Windy Welly’ by the locals.

It has an average wind speed of more than 16 miles per hour and it owes that status to its position on the Cook Strait, between the north and south islands, which creates a sort of wind tunnel through which ocean breezes strengthen.

This isn’t necessarily bad news – it means the coast around the city is popular with surfers, windsurfers and sailors. Air pollution is non-existent as any industrial fumes are quickly blown away and the wind power can easily be harnessed for electricity, helping to contribute to sustainability and clean energy.

4. The Parliament Building was Designed on the Back of a Napkin

When Wellington became the country’s capital in 1865, most of the Parliament buildings were made of timber. However, the harsh climate of the city took its toll – and the wooden structures made the buildings a fire risk. There was a huge blaze in 1907, and it was originally intended that the buildings would be replaced by a new, classically Edwardian structure; however, for a variety of reasons the project was never completed.

It wasn’t until the 1960s that Scottish architect Sir Basil Spence convinced then Prime Minister Keith Holyoake to complete the project with the modern ‘beehive’ design – allegedly taken from the logo on a box of a Bryant & May Beehive Safety Matches. The shape is reminiscent of a traditional woven form of beehive known as a skep.

Sir Basil persuaded the then PM with a drawing on the back of a napkin while they were having a meal together. The work was completed in stages, and it was finally opened in 1981 – it includes function rooms, cabinet meeting rooms, debating chambers and catering facilities. It is one of the most distinctive parliament buildings in the world as can be seen from the picture.

5. There’s an Excellent Quality of Life

In recent years the city has scored consistently highly in Quality of Life reports, topping Deutsche Bank’s survey in 2017 and 2018.

The survey looked at factors such as purchasing power, safety, health care, cost of living, property price to income ratios, traffic commutes, pollution and climate. Aside from the surveys, there’s plenty to enjoy here including galleries, museums and theatres aplenty.

Wellington is also well known as a culinary capital and is famed for its tucked-away bars, quirky cafés and award-winning restaurants.

Moving House to New Zealand with Hamiltons Removals

If you are considering moving to New Zealand, then Hamiltons Removals can help you. We offer deep sea removals to both the two countries, so you can be assured that all your belongings will make it over safely and swiftly.

Whether you’re looking to move to Wellington, Aukland, Christchurch or anywhere else in the country – and this applies to domestic and commercial moves – we offer dedicated shipping containers, groupage (meaning your belongings are shared with others en-route) and air freight, giving you lots of options for your international move.

If you have any questions, call Hamiltons on 01379 855203.

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