A small historical reference
Geography: Whanganui, also spelled Wanganui, is a city on the west coast of the North Island of New Zealand. The Whanganui River, New Zealand's longest navigable waterway, runs from Mount Tongariro to the sea. Whanganui is part of the Manawatū-Whanganui region.
Whanganui is the ancestral home of Te Āti Haunui-a-Pāpārangi and other Whanganui Māori tribes. The New Zealand Company began to settle the area in 1840, establishing its second settlement after Wellington. In the early years most European settlers came via Wellington. Whanganui greatly expanded in the 1870s, and freezing works, woollen mills, phosphate works and wool stores were established in the town. Today, much of Whanganui's economy relates directly to the fertile and prosperous farming hinterland.
Like several New Zealand urban areas, it was officially designated a city until an administrative reorganisation in 1989, and is now run by a District Council. Although the city was called Wanganui from 1854, in February 2009, the New Zealand Geographic Board recommended the spelling be changed to "Whanganui". In December 2009, the government decided that while either spelling was acceptable, Crown agencies would use the Whanganui spelling.
On 17 November 2015, Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) announced that Wanganui District would be renamed to Whanganui District. This changed the official name of the District Council, and, because Whanganui is not a city but a district, the official name of the urban area as well.
Date of foundation: 1840
Population: 40 900