News | 4 November 2020

150 years to become a major page-turner

Wellington is known as one of the world’s most scenic and creative cities, with a history of interesting people, events and organisations – and to mark the Council’s 150th anniversary, Mayor Andy Foster is launching the ‘150 Short Story competition’.

Mayor Andy Foster reading a book near a canon

The Council met for the first time on 28 September 1870 after succeeding the Town Board. Since then, 36 Mayors and hundreds of Councillors have overseen our city grow from a town of 6,900 settlers to a city of more than two hundred thousand people. We have experienced earthquakes, reclamations, land wars, and been affected by World Wars. We are witnesses to world-leading legislation, social and political changes, including some scandals. Our city has hosted world-famous visitors, Academy Awards, Bledisloe Cups and World Cups, and much more.

 

The 150 Short Story competition is designed for young people to inspire us with their stories of the city, says Mayor Foster.

 

“A city with so many interesting stories, characters, and places is ripe for our creative young minds to reimagine our history. They can create a fiction or non-fiction story, based around a person, place, or event from the past 150 years of Wellington’s history.

 

“We are excited to help discover our next Katherine Mansfield, Patricia Grace, Chris Bourke, Taika Waititi or Elizabeth Knox, and continue to grow Wellington’s and New Zealand’s literary talent. This will become an annual event with changing themes – but all with a Wellington twist!

 

“Writers can share their story in either Te Reo Māori or English. Next year we plan to expand the formats to include graphic and video storytellers, and even a Haiku category for social media authors.

 

“The winners will have their creation published on the Mayor’s 150 Story Competition website. Plus, they’ll attend a writer’s clinic, enjoy lunch in the Mayor’s Chambers, and receive a certificate and a ‘Keys to the City’ prize pack,” adds the Mayor. 

 

The 150 Short Story is a collaboration with Wellington City Libraries and Wellington City Archives, aimed at aspiring writers aged between 9-12 years and 13-18 years, living in the Wellington region.

 

Details about how to enter are at on the website.