Events and News

Recent & Upcoming Events

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Labour Party Ethnic Caucus Visit on 9 July 2022

With the new school history curriculum including the heritage of the pioneer Chinese in NZ, Ministers of Parliament Ingrid Leary (MP for Taieri) and Naisi Chen (list MP in Botany), as well as Arena Williams (MP for Manurewa) and Mayor Bryan Cadogan visited the Camp on 9 July to learn about its provenance and the history and significance of the early Chinese in NZ from historians Dr James Ng and Dr James Beattie.


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Lawrence Chinese Camp
Chinese New Year Celebrations, Feb 2022

Unfortunately this event has had to be cancelled due to Covid alert restrictions. We look forward to a Chinese New Year event in February 2023!


Lawrence Heritage Weekend 2021: The Lawrence Chinese Camp will be open on Saturday 6 November from 10am-4pm

Explore the historic site of the largest Chinese Camp in New Zealand. Learn about the
fascinating history of the Chinese gold mining settlement  established during the 1860s gold rush.

Trustees will be on site, with the Joss House open, learn about the Trust’s restorations plans
for this important archeological site.



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Fundraiser, Sunday 22nd May starting at 7 pm
Lawrence Golf Club

Thank you to all those who participated in the Quiz Night and supported our fundraiser with donations for the prizes. Special thanks to the Lawrence Golf club who hosted us. We raised enough to cover our everyday running costs for the next few months:)


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Lawrence Chinese Camp Descendants Reunion visit: Sunday, 24 October 2021

Descendants of the Lawrence Chinese Camp visited as part of their 2-day reunion in Dunedin and Lawrence during Labour Weekend. 


Highlights included an unveiling of an ANZAC memorial for Chinese soldiers from Lawrence Camp, a talk on the history of the Camp by archeologist Professor Richard Walter and a visit to the Joss House where there was a historical photographic display of the Camp and display of plans for its development.        


News and Past Events

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Otago Daily Times Article, 16 July 2022

Denise Ng, the new chair of the Lawrence Chinese Camp Charitable Trust was interviewed by the Otago Daily Times about the Trust's plans for the Camp and her vision for its future.  Click here to go to the full ODT article.


Chinese New Year 'Year of the Rat' - Feb 2020

A fantastic day was held in February 2020 to celebrate  Chinese New Year, "Year of the Rat". 


A large crowd of approx 250 attended the festivities where they enjoyed a Chinese-style lunch with pork cooked in the pig oven.  Guests enjoyed dancing, Lion dancers, heritage displays, gold panning and lots of children's activities - kite, puppet and lantern making, mooncakes, children stories and window craft.



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Poon Fah Day, 9 March 2019

Members of the Chinese community and Friends of the Camp came from as far afield as China, Wellington and Dunedin to celebrate the historical relationship between the Lawrence Chinese Camp and the Poon Fah Association NZ.

Guests enjoyed a Chinese-style lunch served from a  dragon emblazoned marquee and were entertained with Chinese music performed live by skilled instrumentalists and a lion dance performed be the OSCA Lion Dancers.


Artefacts from the camp
Artefacts from the camp

Artefacts from the camp on display at Lawrence Museum at 17 Ross Place in Lawrence.  Click here for current opening times.

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Joss House repairs

Restoration work has been undertaken on the Joss House. It had been used as a holiday home for many years and was returned to the Lawrence Camp from another site in Lawrence. The deteriorated exterior timber was replaced and repainted and the interior repaired. 

Did you know our Joss House is the only one in New Zealand?

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Asia New Zealand Foundation visit, 8 May 2021

The Leadership Network of the Asia New Zealand Foundation visited the Camp on their Otago History Hui.

A group focused on understanding and connecting with Asia, the talented frontrunners in NZ arts, media, sport, IT, education, research and diplomacy were interested to learn about NZ's first Chinese settlement. 


Historian Dr James Ng (front right of the photo) spoke to them about the Lawrence Camp and its history. 


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Chinese New Year 'Year of the Pig' Feb 2019

A successful Chinese New Year celebration was held on February 19th, 2019 at the Camp, despite the challenging weather! 

There were Chinese dancers and Lion dancers, along with other activities for the children to enjoy.  Stu Edgcumbe   was on site to demonstrate how to gold pan.  Hot refreshments and a Chinese-style lunch with pork cooked in the pig oven were available and enjoyed by all. 

Watch this space for next Chinese New Year, 'Year of the Rat'.


Otago University archives
Otago University archives

Lawrence Chinese Camp trustees Professor Richard Walter, Malcolm Wong and Peter Cummings at University of Otago looking at some of the camp's artefacts stored there.


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Lawrence Heritage Day, 4 November 2018

The Lawrence Camp opened its doors for the Heritage Day celebrations in Lawrence.  Despite chilly weather, many families called in to take a look and learn more about what is planned for its future.  It was heart-warming to see our local children's enthusiasm for the Chinese Camp and for Lawrence history.