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Record type: Notional

Record: WW1: COUNCILS DO THEIR BIT - The Home Front



The Home Front

Councils were often the first port of call if the Government wanted something organised or distributed at a local level. But it wasn’t all one-sided. Councils pushed for a variety of initiatives and often tried to rally support from their colleagues at other councils. Citizens and lobby groups also approached councils for support on many war related matters. As the war progressed, resources and labour became harder to obtain. As a result councils delayed major infrastructure works, and reduced their undertakings to a minimum.



Councils kept informed of the latest war news. The Horowhenua County Council at their meeting on the 10th of June 1916 recorded their regret at the death of Earl Kitchener. Kitchener had appeared on many of the army recuiting posters and was a familar face throughout the Empire.

Reference: HDC 00023 : 8 Page 207








The Government formed a National Efficiency Board in 1917 which wrote to councils asking about the works they had planned and the labour those works required. This is the Feilding Borough response.

Reference: MDC 00002 : 19 : 4




Councils throughout NZ tried to rally support from others on a variety of initiatives. This one from the Raglan County Council encouraged other local authorities to dismiss staff who were eligable for Military Service to encourage them to join up.

Reference: TDC 00008 : 2 : 8 










Councils were asked for their support for a number of initiatives. This particular one relating to “enemy aliens” by the Anti-German League. Councils also had usual business to attend to. The letter below was filed with the Anti-German League letter and provides an interesting comparison as subject matter goes.

Reference: TDC 00008 : 2 : 9




Not all council business halted during the war. The Marton Carnegie Library, seen here in 1921, was opened in 1916.

Reference: RDC Album 1, Page 101





Reference: TDC 00008 : 2 : 9






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