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Graphic: An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand 1966.


This information was published in 1966 in An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand, edited by A. H. McLintock. It has not been corrected and will not be updated.

Up-to-date information can be found elsewhere in Te Ara.




The New Zealand Alliance derives from the United Kingdom Alliance formed in Manchester in 1853. During the early 1860s several members of the latter emigrated to New Zealand where they formed “Auxiliary” branches of the United Kingdom Alliance, the most notable being at Drury and Port Albert. On 10 September 1869 some members of the Drury Auxiliary formed an auxiliary in Auckland. This soon acquired the status of a “Provincial Committee”, and, for some years, it maintained a careful scrutiny over the Auckland Provincial Government's licensing legislation. The Auckland Auxiliary continued to meet until 1873 when most of its members transferred to the Good Templars Lodge. In 1877 the Auckland Auxiliary was revived and remained in existence until its merger with the New Zealand Alliance.

Early in 1886 certain interested organisations arranged for T. W. Glover, a lecturer from the United Kingdom Alliance, to conduct prohibition missions in various New Zealand centres. On 1 March 1886, at the Rechabite Hall, Wellington, 30 delegates – representing Auckland, Nelson, Hawke's Bay, Woodville, Canterbury, New Plymouth, Dunedin, Wellington, Alexandra (Otago), Invercargill, Greymouth, Masterton, the Blue Ribbon Union, the Good Templars Lodge, the Rechabite Lodge, and the Wellington Alliance – met “to establish a union of the temperance alliances in the colony”. This conference formed and drafted a constitution for the New Zealand Alliance for the Suppression of the Liquor Traffic. Financial arrangements were made for the forthcoming crusade and the following officers were elected: president, Sir William Fox; sixteen vice-presidents, including D. Goldie, Hori Ropiha, Sir H. A. Atkinson, L. M. Isitt, and Sir Robert Stout; executive committee, F. G. Ewington, Edward Withy, George Winstone, H. J. Le Bailey, J. Elkin, Dr C. Knight, John Waymouth, and R. Neal. H. Field (Nelson) became the first general secretary and T. W. Glover the first paid organiser. The conference adopted the United Kingdom Alliance's (1853) declaration of principles and framed the following policy:

This Alliance has been instituted for the suppression and prohibition of the liquor traffic. It seeks to unite in this effort those who are not abstainers as well as those who are…. The immediate aim of the Alliance is to secure for the people the legal direct power to veto the liquor traffic. This Alliance believes that when the people possess this power, with a sufficient facility for its exercise, they will free the colony from the heaviest burden that is laid upon its financial resources, and from the principal cause of its disease, destitution and crime. To attain this result the members of the Alliance are expected to use all the influence they possess to secure the election to Parliament, and to all other positions of power, of such candidates as are favourable to the principles of the Alliance.


Bernard John Foster, M.A., Research Officer, Department of Internal Affairs, Wellington.