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Premiers

Events In History

10 June 1906
Known as 'King Dick', Seddon had dominated New Zealand politics since the early 1890s. His Liberal government established the tradition of state-supported welfare in this country.
1 May 1893

Richard John Seddon became premier following the death of John Ballance. Immortalised as ‘King Dick’, Seddon was to dominate the New Zealand political landscape for the next 13 years. He remains this country’s longest-serving premier or prime minister.

27 April 1893

Ballance was the first Liberal premier. He laid the foundation for a government that was widely seen as making New Zealand ‘the social laboratory of the world’.

15 October 1877

Grey played a central role in 19th-century New Zealand politics, serving two terms as governor before entering Parliament to fight Julius Vogel's plans to abolish the provinces. He was the first of just two men who have held both positions.

8 April 1873

Julius Vogel was the dominant political figure of the 1870s, serving as colonial treasurer and premier on several occasions, and launching massive programmes of immigration and public works.

7 May 1856

Sewell held the position for just 14 days before being replaced by his provincialist rival William Fox, whose ministry lasted just over a week.

Articles

Premiers and Prime Ministers

From Henry Sewell in 1856 to Chris Hipkins in 2023, New Zealand has had 41 prime ministers and premiers. Read biographies of the men and women who have held the top job, discover more about the role's political origins, and explore fascinating prime ministerial facts and trivia. Read the full article

Page 1 - Premiers and Prime Ministers

From Henry Sewell in 1856 to Chris Hipkins in 2023, New Zealand has had 41 prime ministers and premiers. Read biographies of the men and women who have held the top job, discover

Page 2 - Political origins

Overview of the influence of the British political system in New Zealand and our move toward self-government in the 19th

Page 3 - Biographies

A list of New Zealand Premiers and Prime Ministers from 1856 to the

Page 4 - Prime ministerial trivia

Trivia about New Zealand's premiers and prime

Page 5 - Further information

Housing the Prime Minister

Almost 150 years after the government purchased the first official premier's residence on Tinakori Road, Wellington, the address of Premier House remains the same. But in the intervening years the building has been extended, renamed, abandoned and refurbished. Read the full article

Page 1 - Housing NZ's prime ministers

Almost 150 years after the government purchased the first official premier's residence on Tinakori Road, Wellington, the address of Premier House remains the same. But in the

Page 2 - The first premier house

Our first premiers had to find their own digs. That changed in 1865, when the government bought the premier a simple 22-year-old wooden cottage in Thorndon’s Tinakori