Nelson, birthplace of New Zealand rugby - Roadside Stories

A Manatū Taonga audio guide to Nelson rugby

Check out the Ministry for Culture and Heritage's audio guide to Nelson rugby in the Video tab.

New Zealand’s first rugby match was held in Nelson in 1870, at the suggestion of Charles Monro, who had played the game as a student in England. Rugby spread rapidly throughout the country, and Māori were quick to embrace the game. It was especially popular in small rural towns.

Related web links:
Charles Monro, father of New Zealand rugby
Tasman rugby
Nelson region: sport and recreation
Sports and race

Roadside Stories are a series of audio guides to places of interest on major road trips in New Zealand. Each guide tells the story of an attraction along the way – its people, its history, its cultural and natural significance. For more information about Roadside Stories visit 

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