The spelling of Wanganui District will be corrected to ‘Whanganui District’ – reflecting the views of the Wanganui District Council (WDC), local iwi and public submitters, Land Information Minister Louise Upston said today.
“Having reviewed the WDC’s proposal, all public submissions and other materials I’ve agreed that the spelling of the local authority district name should be corrected,” Ms Upston says.
“The Governor-General has now made an Order in Council to change the local authority name under the Local Government Act 2002 so that the change to the district name can occur.”
The move to amend the district name is supported by local and neighbouring iwi, and the Minister’s decision confirms the New Zealand Geographic Board Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa’s recommendation.
“This decision recognises that ‘Wanganui’ has no meaning in te reo Māori, and that ‘Whanganui’ has a number of traditions in Māori oral history. It will also ensure the district name is consistent with the official names of the river and town.
“We all have a role to play in helping to protect the culture and heritage of New Zealand’s communities. Ensuring place names are spelled correctly, so the stories behind them can be remembered and celebrated, is an important part of this.”