Wellington Scoop

Simon Marsh not standing again for WCC; “nine years is enough”


Media release from Simon Marsh
Simon “Swampy” Marsh is stepping down as a Wellington City Councillor after nine years representing the Eastern Ward. “I have always lived by the mantra that you move on from something while you are still on top of it” Marsh said. “Nine years is long enough, the role of Councillor should not be a job for life. This city deserves a continual refresh of ideas and faces from within council, it’s time for a change.”

Rongotai MP and past Deputy Mayor Paul Eagle said: “Swampy will be a great loss to the City Council; he is the most talented of councillors, capable of a pragmatic view of the big picture. He achieves as leader of the city’s economic development without stirring up dramatic headlines, mixing with business leaders at all levels, but he also has the ability to understand the personal stresses and issues faced by his constituents and will act on their behalf. ”

As holder of the Economic Development, Small Business and Events portfolios, Simon has led the policy development enabling five Wellington Business Improvement Districts (BIDS) from Miramar to Tawa, championed the growth of technology in the capital through Creative HQ and welcomed increasing visitor activity in Wellington.

“The big stuff always has so many working parts; so many people involved, you do not achieve results alone. The most satisfying part of being a Councillor is acting as a voice for individuals trying to be heard by a large organisation” Marsh commented.

“You make a difference at a personal level, not always with the desired outcome but at least that individual gets inside the beast for a fair hearing”.


Simon is confident the city is conscious of the risks facing the capital in the future and it remains strong despite the ongoing effects of the Kaikoura earthquake. “The biggest danger for this city is in small groups with a loud voice opposing change, Wellington has become one of the most liveable cities by embracing change”.

Marsh will contest a seat on the Capital Coast District Health Board and is considering other governance roles, he will also continue with his media advertising interests.

News from WCC
Wellington Mayor Justin Lester today thanked retiring City Councillor Simon Marsh for his long-standing civic service.

“I came on to Council with Swampy nine years ago and have always appreciated the way he put Wellington first,” the Mayor said. “What has stood out for me has been his calmness and common sense. He got on with everyone around the Council table, regardless of their personal point of view.”

The Mayor said Cr Marsh had done a good job looking after the Economic Development, Small Business and Events portfolios during the current triennium, and had represented the council well on the Wellington Regional Stadium Trust, helping Wellington lure such diverse attractions as rapper Eminem and the Warriors rugby league team to the capital.

“Swampy has been a diligent representative of the Eastern ward. He was responsible for the resilience improvements in Lyall Bay, making the waterfront safer in the event of storm surges, and also led the beautification of the area. He fostered the Business Improvement District concept, which has led to the establishment of BIDs in suburbs such as Tawa, Kilbirnie, Khandallah and Miramar. He has always been a strong supporter of local businesses.”


  1. Concerned Wellingtonian, 18. July 2019, 6:55

    I can’t remember him asking any of the hard questions. What has he been doing exactly?

  2. Keith Flinders, 18. July 2019, 9:05

    Let’s hope that other councillors who have already served 3 terms, or more, follow Simon’s action. Being a city councillor should not be looked at as being a job for life, as what is needed is churn so that we constantly get elected people with new and different ideas contributing to the democratic process. Three terms served and you are barred from standing again.

  3. Wellington Chamber, 18. July 2019, 10:21

    We want to thank Swampy Marsh and Ian McKinnon for their years of service on their respective councils and wish them well for the future. The Wellington business community loses two key advocates with both stepping down. Their experience and common sense will be hard to replace.