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Reference: RDC 1.0

Record type: Agency

Record: Rangitikei County Council


The Rangitikei County Council was one of 63 counties established in 1876 as a replacement for the Provinces.

The Rangitikei County Council, unlike most other counties in NZ, never fragmented. Instead the County’s boundaries were extended a number of times. In 1904 the boundaries were extended to take in part of the Erewhon Riding of the Hawkes Bay County Council. In 1918 the County’s boundaries were extended again to take in the former Upper Wangaehu Road District area from the Wanganui County Council. In 1920 the County took in the remaining portions of the Erewhon Riding from Hawkes Bay County Council.

After 1920 there were occasional minor changes between neighbouring counties and the Marton and Taihape Boroughs, with the last major change in 1952 when the Rangitikei County took over Waiouru township and surrounding area from Waimarino County.

In 1989 the County amalgamated with the Marton and Taihape Boroughs to form the Rangitikei District Council. Part of the northern area of the county around the town of Waiouru was split off and joined the new Ruapehu District Council.



In 1877 the county was established with seven ridings:

  • Clifton
  • Rangitoto
  • Porewa
  • Whangaehu
  • Makohau
  • Otakapu
  • Paraekaretu

In 1888 the new riding of Maungaraupi was established.

In 1893 Clifton riding was disestablished, and the new ridings of Ohingaiti, Otairi and Mangahoe were created. Makohau and Whangaehu combined to form a new Whangaehu riding.

In 1905 Paraekaretu and Maungaraupi were joined to form Rangatira. Ohingaiti and Mangahoe became Te Kapua. Erewhon Riding was created from part of the neighbouring Hawkes Bay County.

In 1918 the upper Whangaehu Road District of Wanganui County was added to the County and became Ruanui.

In 1920 the rest of the Hawkes Bay County Erewhon riding joined the Rangitikei County riding of the same name.

In 1957 the Bulls County Town was formed from the former Town Board.

In 1962 the Pukepapa Riding was created from parts of the Rangitoto and Otakapu Ridings.


Town Boards/Town Councils

When the County was formed in 1876, three Boards, the Lethbridge, Bulls and Marton Local Boards had already been operating since 1873. The Marton Local Board was reconstituted as the Marton Borough Council in 1879. In 1881 the Towns Board Act renamed the Lethbridge and Bulls Local Boards as Town Boards. In 1905 the Hunterville Town Board was formed. In 1906 the Taihape Borough Council was formed. In 1910 the Mangaweka Town Board was formed. No further town boards were formed after this.

In 1925, the Lethbridge Town Board amalgamated back into the County. In 1955 all Town Boards were renamed as Town Councils by the Municipal Corporations Act, 1954. In 1957 the Bulls Town Council amalgamated back into the County. This in turn was followed by Mangaweka in 1966 and finally Hunterville in 1975.


Community Committees/Councils

Following the amalgamation of the three town councils in 1957-1975, various other committees were set up to ensure that the County would continue to receive feedback from local communities. All administrative services were provided by the County and the powers these committees had varied.

County Town Committees

  • Bulls 1957-1971
  • Mangaweka 1965-1974
  • Ratana 1963-1974

Community Councils

  • Mangaweka 1975-1989
  • Hunterville 1975-1989
  • Ratana 1975-1989
  • Koitiata 1981-1989

County Boroughs

  • Bulls 1971-1974

District Community Councils

  • Bulls 1974-1989


Highway/Road Boards

Only the Rangitikei Highway Board, created in 1872, was within the Counties boundaries as established in 1877. This amalgamated with the County in 1883. The only other Road Board to be formed within the County was the short lived Hunterville Road Board, formed in 1897 and amalgamated back into the County in 1898.

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