Ashburton Chinese market garden hits national tourism headlines

A recent proposal to declare the Allens Road Chinese Settlement in Ashburton an archaeological site has helped launch the 97-year-old settlement into the national tourism spotlight.

The settlement was featured in the Tourism Ticker daily email bulletin on Tuesday (2 October) morning, through a video that was made of the site. Tourism Ticker is a daily digital news and insight service for New Zealand’s tourism industry.

Experience Mid Canterbury General Manager Bruce Moffat says the national media coverage is great news for the village and district, and the settlement itself will be a real asset for the local tourism industry.

“­The village is already getting national media coverage, and heritage sites such as this generally have a wide reach across the globe. The Chinese Village will be a real gem for the district’s tourism sector.

“Typically, the Chinese tour companies don’t stop in our region, however we are experiencing a greater number of Chinese free and independent travelling throughout our region now, so this would complement their visit.”

Ashburton District Councillors were joined by Senior Archaeologist with Heritage New Zealand Pourhere Taonga, Frank Van der Heijden on 27 September during a visit to the settlement.

Mr Van der Heijden expressed that Heritage New Zealand is proposing to declare the market garden settlement an archaeological site.

He reported that the settlement has high historical value, and that while there used to be hundreds, if not thousands of these kinds of market garden settlements all through New Zealand, to their knowledge, only the Allens Road one remains.

“This is the only one in the country where the buildings are actually still here,” he said.

The Council produced a short video of the visit, which was then shared on YouTube and Facebook. The video was picked up by Tourism Ticker and included in their daily bulletin.

The Ashburton District Council video (above) of the visit to the Chinese Settlement site was picked up by Tourism Ticker and included in their daily bulletin.​​

The proposal to declare the settlement as an archaeological site would give the features at the market garden the same protection as pre-1900 archaeological sites under Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga Act 2014.

Mr Moffat added that Experience Mid Canterbury will be giving the Chinese Settlement a high profile on their Chinese-based Weibo social media platform, which has over 500 million members.

You can learn more about the visit tothe Ashburton Chinese Settlement and the proposed declaration here.​

Page reviewed: 04 Oct 2018 10:53am