Bishop Hobhouse: the Nelson episcopate (1859-1865) of the Rt. Rev Edmund Hobhouse D.D., first bishop of Nelson, New Zealand
In 1841 New Zealand became a diocese of the United Church of England and Ireland and the Rev. George Augustus Selwyn, a former student and tutor of Eton, was consecrated as its bishop. Throughout the colony's earliest years Selwyn laboured alone to create for it a comprehensive episcopal system of ecclesiastical organisation. In 1856 he was joined by an old friend, the Rev. Henry John Chitty Harper who accepted the new bishopric centred on J.R. Godley's Church of England settlement in Canterbury. Further division of Selwyn's over-large diocese in 1858 created new dioceses in what had been the New Zealand Company's settlements at Wellington and Nelson and the Ven. Charles Abraham and the Rev. Edmund Hobhouse were appointed as their bishops. At the same time the volcanic plateau and east coast of the North Island became the missionary diocese of Waiapu with the Ven. William Williams as its bishop.