|Local authority||Wellington City|
Churton Park is a suburb located 1.5 km north of Johnsonville in the Northern Suburbs district of Wellington, the capital city of New Zealand. It was established in the 1970s, and as of 2009[update] has a population of 6,260 residents.
The suburb includes over 1500 households, 'Churton Park' (a recreational sports field), two primary schools and a kindergarten. A local community center with shops is planned and construction began in February 2011.
The suburb has an active community residents association who meet monthly at the Churton Park School. Along with general community advocacy they organise the annual free community Christmas party and also a car boot fair in March of each year.
The geography of the land is quite hilly and has dense bush in some areas that have not been excavated for housing sub-divisions. Steep hills eventually extend over to the Ohariu Valley nearby. Many people may use unofficial trails to climb the surrounding hills as a pastime and they are popular among thrill-seeking motorcyclists.
The micro-climate that is experienced by residents of Churton Park is only slightly different than that of surrounding Johnsonville, but is warmer and less windy than Wellington due to its sheltering from the Cook Strait. It rarely snows in Churton Park, however during the winter of 2011, snowfalls briefly shut down busses and closed roads, causing some students and workers to stay home for a few days.
The Churton Park store dairy is located near Churton Drive on Middleton Road.
The area of vacant land on the corner of Westchester Drive and Lakewood Avenue has been developed into a commercial shopping centre.The Village has incorporate a mix of uses including a New World supermarket, Café, Pharmacy, Medical Centre, Hairdresser, Vet, Real Estate Agency, Fish and Chip Shop and other food outlets. It is estimated that the shopping centre could employ up to 150 people, either full or part-time when at maximum capacity.
A garden shop and a cafe is located on Middelton Road in Glenside.
Churton Park has two state primary schools that cater for pupils up to Year 6. Churton Park School on Churton Drive is an established school. The school's roll has rapidly increased over the years. To accommodate these increases, there have been many renovations to the school's buildings between 1997 and 2007. In 2006, to help manage roll growth, the School Board proposed an amendment to the existing zoning policy/area. This was heatedly debated in the community as the proposal would have removed several long-standing Churton Park streets from the Zone. The associated community concern, protest action and lobbying by the Campaign for Local Schooling and parent feedback resulted in the announcement by the Ministry of Education in 2007 that a new (larger) school site would be developed in the local area. On 17 March 2009, Minister of Education Anne Tolley announced that a second primary school would be built in the area instead.
Amesbury School on Amesbury Drive opened at the start of 2012 and now hosts over 80 pupils and it is growing. The school's hall was opened in May by Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown.
Churton Park also has a little school located on Melksham Drive off Westchester Drive and a kindergarten located next to Churton Park School.
There are no intermediate schools or colleges within the area, so many students attend Raroa Normal Intermediate, Newlands Intermediate Onslow College and Newlands College; all within the local Johnsonville and Newlands area.
A number of historic gold mining shafts are present within this area. The Tawa Flats All Luck Gold Mining Company of 1881 had shafts in the area including one which is now buried beneath Erlestoke Crescent in Churton Park.
Churton Park is serviced by scheduled bus services mainly provided by Mana Coach Services. Route 54 is the primary service that provides direct connection from Churton Park to Johnsonville Hub, Wellington Railway Station and Courtenay Place. There is also a regular bus service north to Tawa and Porirua.
- "Churton Park introduction and key statistics". Wellington City Council.
- Burgess, Dave (9 June 2009). "New school for 'forgotten suburb'". The Dominion Post. Retrieved 10 December 2009.
- "New School for Churton Park".
- "Media Statement from Minister of Education".
- "Glenside community".
- "Wellington’s Outer Green Belt Management Plan – April 2004, Wellington City Council".