Talk:Ashburton, New Zealand

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Ashvegas nickname[edit]

Does anybody have a better idea of how to get this sentence a little more objective, and backed up?

Italic textA common nickname for Ashburton is 'Ashvegas', an ironic allusion to Las Vegas. This may be due to the perceived respectability, and conservatism of the residents, and the notable lack of nightlife within the town, coupled with it being the bright lights in the middle of the desert (Las Vegas) or plains (Ashburton).Italic text

It seems reasonably self-evident that it is alluding to Las Vegas, unless there's some other reasonable explanation I'm missing. The exact origin of slang terms is always hard to nail down. However, inasmuchas the "-vegas" town-naming phenomenon, tends to apply to smaller towns, it is presumably ironic, and referring to a lack of nightlife. It's the kind of thing that might turn up in the next Dictionary of New Zealand English, but I'm not sure they'll be much in the way of 'objective' evidence until then.Limegreen 09:39, 6 August 2005 (UTC)
The reason behind the AshVegas name, was a result of the Licencing Trust that had total control over what time bars could close, this was usually 10pm.
Ashburton got this name because of its distinct LACK of nightlife under the rule of the ALT. Trumpy (talk) 09:44, 2 January 2009 (UTC)]
The current relevant statement, "'Ashvegas', Ashburton's common nickname, is an ironic allusion to Las Vegas,"[1] might be fine, but neglects the 'lack of night-life' idea.
I think it's worth noting that irony is not universal, and that sometimes it's worth spelling something out in full, particularly if the writing can reveal something of the local culture. We may agree Kiwis get irony, and I know little towns in NZ can have limited night life (I grew up in Southland). However, many readers won't get irony, and/or have limited English; Wikipedia needs to serve international audiences.
Would you believe the tourist who wrote the following? "[It] turns out that there are a few bright nightlife spots that give the town a glow similar to the glow of the Vegas oasis in the desert."[2] Was he being ironic? wcrosbie (talk), Melbourne, Australia 12:05, 27 May 2012 (UTC)


  1. ^ Peters, Pam; Collins, Peter; Smith, Adam (2009). Comparative Studies in Australian and New Zealand English: Grammar and Beyond. John Benjamins. p. 57.
  2. ^

Mid Canterbury[edit]

I'm concerned about the use of 'main town of Mid Canterbury'. Ashburton is the third largest centre in Canterbury, as specified in the article. However, there is no official place as 'mid Canterbury'. Christchurch lies in 'mid' Canterbury in terms of geographical location. There is no district called mid-Canterbury. Ashburton is in the Ashburton district. The article is then saying that Ashburton is the main town of an area that doesn't exist in local body politics and named for a place where geographically it isn't situated. Like I say, Ashburton is the third largest centre in Canterbury - isn't that enough? As for Central Otago, that's the name of a district council, a politically defined local body.Enzedbrit 20:05, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

By "official", I assume you mean territorial authority? And that the "Ashburton District" sports teams/organisations (e.g., [1]); Red Cross branch, and most of the locals calling it Mid Canterbury is unofficial? Any Cantabrian knows that Christchurch is not in Mid Canterbury (and that Ashburton is). Mid Canterbury is good enough for Te Ara [2]. Government agencies know about Mid Canterbury as well [3]. --Limegreen 21:27, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
True that Cantabrians know that, but the article doesn't express that and Wikipedia is written for humanity and not just Cantabs. It's true too that people refer to the area as 'mid Canterbury' but it doesn't exist as an official area. I say official and I should be saying governmental/governable, legal, political, statistical. A colloquial name for a region might exist but now it's been identified further by the inclusion of Ashburton as the 'largest town' of this area. I think that a solution would be to say that the area around Ashburton is known locally as mid-Canterbury. As Ashburton is already listed as the third largest urban area in Canterbury, the fact that it is the largest in this area doesn't need to be mentioned as it stands to reason that this should be the case. The Ashburton district is a recognised local body which to me makes it an official term, but otherwise, mid-Canterbury should be identified that this is the name given to the area by locals. Those who don't know New Zealand should be given insight into why we call things what we call them, but at the same time, we don't need to over simplify. Enzedbrit 08:01, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Wikipedia is written for humanity and not just Cantabs.
I'd turn that logic on its head, and say that is precisely why it should be in there. The purpose of an encyclopaedia is to provide information (presumably beyond what you had previously). Point of fact, the New Zealand Oxford Dictionary describes Ashburton as serving Mid Canterbury. You're quite correct that the current wording is clumsy, and saying that the Ashburton District can be referred to as Mid Canterbury is clearer than the present. --Limegreen 10:09, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
I think that we've reached a good compromise! Enzedbrit 06:55, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Enzedbrit, have you heard of the terms North Canterbury (Rangiora and such places), Central Canterbury (Christchurch, et al), Mid Canterbury (Ashburton), South Canterbury (Timaru)? Trumpy (talk) 09:39, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Retsaot Island[edit]

"In January 2007, a small island in the lake at Ashburton Domain was claimed as part of micronation the Aerican Empire, and named Retsaot Island. Evidence of this can be found at the official Aerican Empire website." This is a well-documented and significant fact, but it has thrice been deleted from the Ashburton page without any discussion whatsoever. The Aerican Empire is one of the best-known and most well-established micronations on earth, and the fact that they have a 'colony' in Ashburton is of significance, as this is the case in only a very few places worldwide. If anyone disputes this significance, at least please discuss it, rather than just deleting with a short "rm nonsense" note.

The micronation is completely irrelevant to Ashburton. Wikipedia is not for such silliness. In particular, you appear to be attempting to use Wikipedia for self-promotion. Do not add such material again.-gadfium 18:40, 6 February 2007 (UTC)
Never heard of it and I've been here 15 years, what rubbish. Trumpy (talk) 09:42, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Should not have district page redirecting to it[edit]

The town is not the same as the district; they should have separate articles. Rakaia and Methven and Mount Hutt and Mount Somers are not in Ashburton. (Not the only town and district pair in NZ to have that unencyclopaedic error, of course.) Robin Patterson (talk) 04:22, 8 October 2013 (UTC)

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