1980s

Events In History

Articles

1981 Springbok tour

  • 1981 Springbok tour

    For 56 days in July, August and September 1981, New Zealanders were divided against each other in the largest civil disturbance seen since the 1951 waterfront dispute. The cause of this was the visit of the South African rugby team – the Springboks.

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  • Page 6 – Battle lines are drawn

    The tour supporters were determined that the first Springbok visit to New Zealand since 1965 would not be spoiled. The anti-tour movement was equally determined to show its

  • Page 7 – Tour diary

    Select itinerary of the 1981 tour by the Springbok rugby team.

  • Page 8 – Impact

    In Hamilton the protestors occupying the pitch had chanted 'The whole world is watching'. The same applied to New Zealand as a nation. Some believed the tour was an opportunity

Homosexual law reform

  • Homosexual law reform

    The homosexual law reform campaign moved beyond the gay community to wider issues of human rights and discrimination. Extreme viewpoints ensured a lengthy and passionate debate before the Homosexual Law Reform Act was passed 27 years ago, in July 1986.

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  • Page 1 - Homosexual law reform in New ZealandThe homosexual law reform campaign moved beyond the gay community to wider issues of human rights and discrimination. Extreme viewpoints ensured a lengthy and passionate debate

The 1980s

Nuclear-free New Zealand

  • Nuclear-free New Zealand

    The sinking of the Greenpeace protest ship Rainbow Warrior in Auckland in July 1985 shocked the nation. The incident galvanised an anti-nuclear movement that had emerged in opposition to both French nuclear tests at Mururoa and American warship visits to New Zealand. 

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  • Page 5 – Sinking the Rainbow Warrior

    In 1985 New Zealand was basking in its position as leader of the anti-nuclear movement. Then on 10 July, two explosions set by French Secret Service agents ripped through the

Waitangi Day

  • Waitangi Day

    Every year on 6 February, New Zealand marks the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840. For most people, Waitangi Day is a holiday; for many, and especially for Māori, it is a time for reflecting on the Treaty and its place in modern New Zealand.

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  • Page 6 - Waitangi Day 1980sThe 1980s brought changes in the way Waitangi Day was marked officially, as well as growing Māori