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Heritage Festival 2017- Harbour City Events Programme

Friday 13 to Monday 23 October 2017

Dunedin owes much to its situation at the head of a magnificent harbour. This is a festival with a difference, celebrating the unique character that the harbour gives our city. Come and enjoy ten days of varied activities on both sides of the harbour as well as in the central city. Whatever your taste, young or old, you will find plenty to fascinate and intrigue you. This brochure lists events day by day, followed by a list of activities and exhibitions which continue throughout the Festival.

Look out for these special events which have been created for the Festival:
• Festival launch and Bluestone Award
• Historic films from around Otago Harbour
• Lawson Lecture on early Dunedin architecture
• Panel discussion on Otago Harbour’s future
• Harbour Heritage Symposium
• Performance derived from Shipboard Diaries
• Port Chalmers and Quarantine Island Labour Weekend

The Southern Heritage Trust, organising the Festival on behalf of the city, expresses its thanks to sponsors and partners and the many people and organisations that are supporting the Festival.
 Ann Barsby Southern Heritage Trust
Ann Barsby - Southern Heritage Trust

Come and enjoy the events and activities of the Harbour City Festival.

Port Chalmers Weekend Events

Saturday 21 + Sunday 22 October 

Plenty to see and do! Choose from a wide range of activities in and around Port Chalmers. Dress up! Come as a Victorian aristocrat, a steampunk adventurer, a wicked pirate or whatever takes your fancy. Prizes for best dressed at 12.30pm at the Lady Thorn Rhododendron Dell Garden Fete.

Download our updated programme of events.

Forum on Harbour Future

Media Release, 5 Oct 2017

Otago Harbour’s future will be the focus for a public forum on 16 October involving a high-level panel. Reimagining Otago Harbour: Today’s Values, Tomorrow’s Uses is one of the events in the Harbour City Festival programme.

The forum will be held at the Dunningham Suite, Dunedin Public Library, Monday 16 October, from 6 pm to 7.30 pm.  Anyone interested in attending is advised to RSVP by phoning the Library at 474 3690; or emailing or going through the Dunedin Libraries website.



Further Information:
Neville Peat
Landline 03 478 0803
Mobile 027 685 4411

Festival Symposium

Friday 20 October 10am-4pm

  • Jonathan Howard: ‘The Active Edge’
  • Shar Briden: ‘Papanui Waka Site, Otago Peninsula’
  • Seán Brosnahan: ‘Before us... lay the way to Dunedin’
  • Maurice Davis: ‘Otago Harbour: Engineering Development’
  • Dr Peter Petchey: ‘First Footsteps in a New World City’
  • Dr Matthew Schmidt: ‘Birth of a City: the Victorian expansion of
    Dunedin’s shoreline’
  • Dr Andrea Farminer: ‘Friend or Foe? Defending the harbour from the
    unseen enemy’
  • Peter Read: ‘Back to the Future’

For further information on the topics each speaker is covering click here

Toitū Otago Settlers Museum Auditorium
Full Day $60, Concession $40, Half Day $40, Concession $20, Individual talks $10.

Bookings essential (03) 477 5052 or

The Lawson Lecture

Wednesday 18 October 7pm
Mason & Wales: The P.Y. Wales Years 1892-1938

David Murray, Hocken archivist, on an early Dunedin architect Patrick Young Wales, who was the first New Zealand-born partner of Mason & Wales, New Zealand’s oldest architectural firm. He explores his career and the work of the firm under his direction in the period 1892 to 1938.

For further information click here

Toitū Otago Settlers Museum Auditorium.


Share your Festival Photos

13th - 23rd October
Explore Dunedin’s harbour heritage and capture Dunedin’s magic moments. Take photos through the Festival to share them with the world!
Enter the contest to win prizes!

Historical Film: On the Rocks, In the Drink, On the Wing

The Film Heritage Trust, in partnership with Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga, brings you a special one-hour selection of historical movie extracts from around Otago Harbour. Screenings in four venues:

  • Sunday 15 – 2pm and 7pm:
    Macandrew Bay Community Hall, 1 Greenacres St, Macandrew Bay

  • Saturday 21 – 2.30pm and 4pm:
    Pioneer Hall, 45 George St, Port Chalmers

  • Sunday 22 – 11am and 2pm:
    The Married Quarters, Quarantine Island

  • Monday 23 – 2pm and 7pm:
    Otago Royal New Zealand Navy Volunteer Reserve Hall (HMNZS Toroa),
    211 St Andrew St, Dunedin

Reservations optional. Book online or visit Heritage NZ, Queens Building, 109 Princes St. Full schedule here.

Entry by donation.

Dunedin Heritage Festival 2017: Harbour City

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