Wellington Scoop

Who do you believe about Wellington? The PM, or the PM?

The Prime Minister has been contradicting himself. Or perhaps there are two John Keys, who don’t tell each other what they’re thinking.

“The reality is that even Wellington is dying and we don’t know how to turn it around.” – John Key speaking to Takapuna business leaders last week, as quoted by the DomPost this morning.

“All you have [in Wellington] is government, Victoria University, and Weta Workshop.” More analysis from the Prime Minister in Takapuna.

“Maybe if John Key was out of the Beehive more often he would see it’s all alive and well.” – Mayor Celia Wade-Brown.

“The film industry is booming and it is unfair to point only to Weta, as there are hundreds of other support companies.” – Mayor Celia Wade-Brown.

“I’m disturbed and dismayed that the Government seems to want to write off Wellington.” – PSA national secretary Brenda Pilott.

“It certainly doesn’t feel like a dying city to me. The city has a vibrancy that’s the envy of many other cities, with our events programme, compactness, cuisine and night scene leading the way.”- Wellington Employers Chamber of Commerce chief executive Raewyn Bleakley.

“I don’t think it’s dying.” – John Key speaking after yesterday’s Cabinet meeting, and quoted by the DomPost.

“I should have said under sustained pressure, which would have been a better terminology. The capital is very vibrant, actually.” – John Key having second (or third?) thoughts this morning, as quoted, again, by the DomPost.

“If I’ve offended then I unreservedly apologise…Actually Wellington’s an extremely vibrant place…I should have chosen my words better.” – John Key, quoted by the NZ Herald this morning.

PM offers “unreserved apology”
Govt should be working with Wellington – Andy Foster


  1. Lindsay Shelton, 7. May 2013, 8:33

    Seven Wellington companies that the PM has never heard of. Park Road Post Production. Weta Digital. Stone Street Studios.
    Infratil. Trade Me. Xero. NZX.

  2. Driver, 7. May 2013, 8:45

    The PM must have forgotten about Te Papa, the NZSO, the Royal NZ Ballet, the NZ School of Dance, the NZ School of Music, the NZ Drama School … He’s evidently forgotten about the Wellington-based state-owned enterprises, too,

  3. Alastair Thompson, 7. May 2013, 8:47

    Is weird that our PM chose to upstage pretty great fiscal numbers with an announcement on spying and an insult to the capital city.

  4. Pauline, 7. May 2013, 14:44

    I have just been to the first Sunday afternoon Chamber Music concert, and am looking forward to the season, almost full house; great to see so many students from the NZ Music School present. There are also concerts by Orchestra Wellington (used to be Vector), and lunch time concerts at Old St Pauls, St Andrews and the Cathedral not to mention Circa, Downstage, Bats etc….and of course the wonderful arthouse cinemas, Hot Club Sandwich and other local entertainers. I could go on but enough Wellington has more than enough to keep my family entertained. Of course if we were desperate for entertainment we could always go to Bellamy’s, but who wants to be depressed in our “creative” city.

  5. Stan, 7. May 2013, 17:38

    Is the PM grooming us to accept and justify the huge expenditure required to solve Auckland’s diabolical transport problem? Perhaps the Budget will reveal all.

  6. Whanake, 8. May 2013, 8:02

    I think his remarks were calculated to increase first-owner housing affordability in Te Whanaganui a Tara, referred to by anglophiles as Wellington.

    Local property investors were not impressed.

    We could always revert to the old name to distinguish ourselves from the Land of the Auks where Key lives.

  7. Claude, 8. May 2013, 14:30

    What Key means is that he is trying to kill Wellington by laying off thousands of public service workers who might otherwise have supported Wellington’s vibrant arts and foody scene.

  8. elmer, 8. May 2013, 19:27

    “The reality is that even Wellington is dying and we don’t know how to turn it around.” – John Key

    “I would love to kill off a few more bureaucrats.” – John Key

    courtesy of Google translation service

  9. Matt, 9. May 2013, 6:32

    The PM never heard of Skinshed either… Now that’s cultural illiteracy.

  10. sam india, 10. May 2013, 0:29

    New Zealand is a very good country in many ways, it is in fact one of the least corrupted countries. so we do not understand why the PM of this country is telling us that the capital of the country is “dying”.