South Canterbury (New Zealand electorate)

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South Canterbury is a former parliamentary electorate, in South Canterbury, New Zealand. It existed for three parliamentary terms from 1969 to 1978.

Population centres

Through an amendment in the Electoral Act in 1965, the number of electorates in the South Island was fixed at 25, an increase of one since the 1962 electoral redistribution.[1] It was accepted that through the more rapid population growth in the North Island, the number of its electorates would continue to increase, and to keep proportionality, three new electorates were allowed for in the 1967 electoral redistribution for the next election.[2] In the North Island, five electorates were newly created and one electorate was reconstituted while three electorates were abolished.[3] In the South Island, three electorates were newly created (including South Canterbury) and one electorate was reconstituted while three electorates were abolished.[4] The overall effect of the required changes was highly disruptive to existing electorates, with all but three electorates having their boundaries altered.[5] These changes came into effect with the 1969 election.[2]

In the 1967 electoral redistribution, the Ashburton electorate move significantly north, and most of that electorates area came to the South Canterbury electorate. In the south, some area was gained from the Waitaki electorate. Rural land that was previously with the Timaru electorate was also absorbed.[6] The electorate was rural and settlements included Mount Somers, Mount Cook Village, Albury, Burkes Pass, Fairlie, Kimbell, Lake Tekapo, Twizel, Geraldine, Pleasant Point, Kurow, and Waimate.[7]

In the 1972 electoral redistribution, the southern boundary shifted slightly north, and Kurow and Waimate transferred to the Oamaru electorate.[8] In the 1977 electoral redistribution, South Canterbury was abolished. Its area was roughly evenly split between the Ashburton electorate, which moved south again, and the reconstituted Waitaki electorate.[9]


Rob Talbot had since the 1966 election been the representative of the Ashburton electorate for the National Party. When the South Canterbury electorate was formed in 1969, he transferred to there.[10] With the abolition of the South Canterbury electorate in 1978 after three parliamentary terms, Talbot transferred back to the Ashburton electorate.[11]

Members of Parliament

Key  National  

Election Winner
1969 election Rob Talbot
1972 election
1975 election
(Electorate abolished 1978; see Ashburton and Waitaki)

Election results

1975 election

1975 general election: South Canterbury[12]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
National Rob Talbot 11,217 56.4 +3.4
Labour N B Lambert 6,916 34.7
Social Credit F I Dow 1,142 5.7
Values T N Clarkson 629 3.2
Majority 4,301 21.7 +9.8
Turnout 22,797 87.5 -3.3

1972 election

1972 general election: South Canterbury[12]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
National Rob Talbot 9,056 53.0 +3.8
Labour David Braithwaite 7,021 41.1
Social Credit W J Julius 782 4.6
New Democratic Maurice John Hayes 220 1.3
Majority 2,035 11.9 +3.7
Turnout 18,900 90.8 -1.4

1969 election

1969 general election: South Canterbury[12]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
National Rob Talbot 7,362 49.2
Labour M A Cameron 6,147 41.0
Social Credit A W Barwood 1,469 9.8
Majority 1,215 8.2
Turnout 16,498 91.2


  1. ^ McRobie 1989, pp. 108, 111, 112.
  2. ^ a b McRobie 1989, p. 111.
  3. ^ McRobie 1989, pp. 107, 111.
  4. ^ McRobie 1989, pp. 108, 112.
  5. ^ McRobie 1989, pp. 111f.
  6. ^ McRobie 1989, pp. 109–113.
  7. ^ McRobie 1989, p. 113.
  8. ^ McRobie 1989, pp. 113–117.
  9. ^ McRobie 1989, pp. 117–121.
  10. ^ Wilson 1985, p. 238.
  11. ^ Wilson 1985, pp. 238, 272.
  12. ^ a b c Norton 1988, pp. 348.


  • McRobie, Alan (1989). Electoral Atlas of New Zealand. Wellington: GP Books. ISBN 0-477-01384-8.
  • Wilson, James Oakley (1985) [First published in 1913]. New Zealand Parliamentary Record, 1840–1984 (4th ed.). Wellington: V.R. Ward, Govt. Printer. OCLC 154283103.
  • Norton, Clifford (1988). New Zealand Parliamentary Election Results 1946–1987: Occasional Publications No 1, Department of Political Science. Wellington: Victoria University of Wellington. ISBN 0-475-11200-8.
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