Ateed asked to fund an Ellerslie-style garden show for Auckland.

Organisers of the flower show that cost Christchurch City Council $516,000 last year want public money from Auckland to start a new, multimillion-dollar garden event.

Last month it was announced the inaugural 2016 New Zealand Flower & Garden Show will be held at Auckland's Bastion Point in November.

The new event's director, Kate Hillier, ran the Ellerslie Flower Show after Christchurch City Council bought the rights for $3 million in 2007.

Senior Ellerslie organiser, Dave Mee, is also part of the new Auckland plans as general manager. Hillier said at least four staff involved with Ellerslie would transfer to the Bastion Point project.


Christchurch Council binned Ellerslie last year, after announcing 2009 was the only year it turned a profit. In 2014 it had record losses of $516,000 and more than $300,000 was lost in 2013. Christchurch politicians said they could not justify any more money on the show.

Hillier is confident the new Auckland show will succeed. A budget of $3.5m-$4m is being privately funded and she will seek major events funding from Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (Ateed).

Hillier declined to say how much she will seek. She said a meeting with Ateed had been "very positive".

"We will be looking to put in an application for funding in January."

Steve Armitage, Ateed external relations general manager, told the Herald on Sunday any application would be subject to close scrutiny.

"Ateed will meet the organisers to learn more about its business model," Armitage said.

Armitage said events were judged on merit. Criteria included return on regional investment, increase in domestic and international visitor nights, building awareness of Auckland internationally and making Auckland an "interesting and exciting place to live".

In last month's press release announcing the new show, Hillier said it would be huge for Auckland.


"New Zealand has a very strong pedigree in garden design and this will give our top talent an opportunity to demonstrate their skill in an event of international standard," Hillier said.

Wayne Pihema, speaking on behalf of Ngati Whatua Orakei, said the Iwi was excited to see their land used for the show. "The Ngati Whatua Orakei has a strong connection with the land," Pihema said.

"We are committed to the preservation and restoration of the flora and fauna on our whenua to a state where the mauri, or life force, of the land is thriving. It is fitting that Bastion Point should be a meeting place for designers who share our love of the visual and spiritual properties of plants."