25 African countries then chose … “I was keen to see the tour happen – thought sport shouldn’t be mixed with politics.” The different political parties directly influenced decisions made around the communication and organisation of sporting fixtures with South … What information was useful and why? This means that they did not support the apartheid regime in South Africa, they just wanted to watch rugby tests between the Springboks and the All Blacks which is something we all can relate to. Twenty years on EUGENE BINGHAM investigates the bashing of three protesting clowns and why police closed ranks over the incident. What actually happened during the 1981 springbok tour in New Zealand? In 1981 the South African rugby team, the Springboks, came to tour New Zealand.They had toured before, but the South African apartheid system was causing increasing public outcry in New Zealand. | Blam Blam Blam – There is no Depression, "Ticket to Springboks versus Waikato rugby game at Rugby Park in Hamilton on 25 July 1981", "Springbok tour upheaval re-enacted with Rage", Images of the events surrounding the Springbok Tour in the collection of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, The 1981 Springbok Tour, including history, images and video (NZHistory), Letters solicited from the New Zealand public after the 1981 Springbok Tour, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=1981_South_Africa_rugby_union_tour_of_New_Zealand_and_the_United_States&oldid=987579999, South Africa national rugby team tours of New Zealand, International opposition to apartheid in South Africa, Articles with dead external links from June 2011, Articles with unsourced statements from October 2008, Articles with unsourced statements from August 2012, All articles with specifically marked weasel-worded phrases, Articles with specifically marked weasel-worded phrases from August 2012, Articles with unsourced statements from December 2007, Articles with unsourced statements from December 2012, Articles with unsourced statements from April 2014, Articles with dead external links from August 2018, Articles with permanently dead external links, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Music popularly associated with the tour included the punk band, This page was last edited on 7 November 2020, at 23:50. Discover the reasons behind this civil disobedience, as well as the demonstrations, police actions and the politics of playing sports. The Springbok Tour of New Zealand in 1981 was the first proper protest action taken against racism at an international scale, and the effects of it were very widespread. One particularly interesting moment in the history of controversial sporting clashes in Dublin concerns the sport of rugby, and the visit of the Springbok team to Dublin in 1970. It showed many South Africans that they had no option other to adapt to racial equality. Next week marks the 35th anniversary of 1981's Springbok Tour of New Zealand. Our wide range of Guided Holidays, Day Tours and limitless Tailor-made Travel options offer innovative, authentic and competitively priced experiences with service levels that exceed expectation. SCIS no. Apartheid had made South Africa an international pariah, and other countries were strongly discouraged from having sporting contacts with it. No violence occurred at the game but a pipe bomb was set off in the early morning outside the headquarters of the Eastern Rugby Union resulting in damage to the building estimated at $50,000. But this didn’t happen, and really the protests increased. To some observers it might seem inconceivable that the cause of this unrest was the visit to New Zealand of the South African rugby team (the Springboks). This is where the protest against the tour began. Why did it happen? RAY HARPER was a rugby administrator and national councillor on the New Zealand Rugby Union during the 1981 Springbok tour. A result of the 1976 Springbok Tour was the boycott of the Montreal 1976 Summer Olympics. Meet the NZHistory.net.nz team, Police baton anti-tour protesters outside Parliament, Anti-Springbok protesters block Hamilton match, Labour government cancels Springbok rugby tour, Springboks play New Zealand Māori for first time, This programme provided a schedule of protest activities for July 1981, 1956 rugby ball and John Minto helmet from Te Papa, South Africa vs Wanganui King Country programme, Sir Bernard Freyberg speaking on Empire Day, Barricade at Invercargill, 1981 Springbok Tour, School children protesting, 1981 Springbok tour, Anti-Springbok tour protestors at Palmerston North, 1981, Film: opposing views - 1981 Springbok tour, Policing the 1981 Springbok tour, cartoon, Opinion around New Zealand on the 1981 Springbok tour, Film: police and the first test - 1981 Springbok tour, Film: Gisborne game, 1981 Springbok tour, Film: clash on Molesworth St - 1981 Springbok tour, Film: the third test - 1981 Springbok tour, Film: game cancelled in Hamilton, 1981 Springbok tour. Unfortunately, contemporary newspaper accounts of the Springbok Tour from 1981 fall into a time period where newspapers are generally not even indexed for searching, let alone available in full text online — see our finding historical Wellington newspaper articles resource. In the 1960s and 70s, many New Zealanders had come to believe that playing sport with South Africa condoned its racist apartheid system. The match went ahead with around a thousand demonstrators (including Pete Seeger) corralled 100 yards away from the field of play, which was surrounded by the police. Not only did the Tour Protests bring about an end to apartheid in South Africa, but it created an increase awareness of racism in New Zealand society. "The tour split families; it split friends. The government of Prime Minister Robert Muldoon was called on to ban it, but decided that commitments under the Gleneagles Agreement did not require the government to prevent the tour, and decided not to interfere due to their public position of "no politics in sport". The protest against the Springbok Tour was due to some believing it was immoral to allow the All Blacks to play a team that was racially selected. It divided the whole of New Zealand and was the final nail in the Springbok’s participation in international rugby due to the Apartheid policies of the South African Government. It was a very unnerving night and by the time the day of the set came, well, being … In spite of the bombing, the game continued. One protester huddled under a United Nations flag as pro-tour supporters’ tinnies rained upon her. Here police and protesters confront one another at Palmerson North on 1 August 1981, when South Africa played Manawatū. 1809122. Exactly 50 years on from that troubled tour the "unthinkable" happened when South Africa's first black rugby captain led the Springboks to the biggest prize in … Others disagreed. The 1981 Anti-Springbok Tour protesters hoped to get the attention of the public, by making large scale protests involving almost all of the locals. Twenty years on EUGENE BINGHAM investigates the bashing of three protesting clowns and why police closed ranks over the incident. The cause of this was the visit of the South African rugby team – the Springboks. Two lawyers successfully sued it, claiming such a tour would breach its constitution. South Africa's apartheid policies and attitudes created obvious problems for New Zealand rugby, given the prominence of Māori in the sport. [4] As a result, the Norman Kirk Labour Government prevented the Springboks from touring during 1973. Tom Hunt reports. [13] Many opponents of racism in New Zealand in the early 1980s saw it as useful to use the protests against South Africa as a vehicle for wider social action. It affected the political party ideas, with Labour banning trade with South Africa. Traditionally, most of the test matches (and all until 1987) [citation needed] against other countries happened during tours/series. [5] Opposition to sending race-based teams to South Africa grew throughout the 1950s and 1960s. It was one of the ugliest incidents of the 1981 Springbok tour. In 1976, the All Blacks toured South Africa with the blessing of the newly elected New Zealand Prime Minister, Robert Muldoon. New Zealand As the 2011 Rugby World Cup opens up in New Zealand we publish an interesting comment by Miles Lacey on the sharp class divide that was revealed during the 1981 (South African) Springbok Tour of the country. [citation needed] However, some Maori supported the tour and attended games. The unity in the campaign against the Springbok tour opened up the possibility of a stronger campaign against the entrenched racism in Australia itself. 5. What did I learn? [citation needed], The All Blacks won the 1987 Rugby World Cup and rugby union was once again the dominant sport – in both spectator and participant numbers – in New Zealand. [19] Following reports that a stolen light plane (piloted by Pat McQuarrie)[20] was approaching the stadium, police cancelled the match. Read more. The allegedly excessive police response to the protests also became a focus of controversy. … [14] While rugby fans filled the football grounds, protest crowds filled the surrounding streets, and on one occasion succeeded in invading the pitch and stopping the game. The Springboks and New Zealand's national rugby team, the All Blacks, have a long tradition of intense and friendly sporting rivalry. It was believed by some that allowing this to happen would that New Zealand did not have a problem with the apartheid problems occurring in South Africa. The Tour was a catalyst for Nelson Mandela’s freedom and become the first democratically elected state president of his time. Some believed the tour was an opportunity. I learnt multiple things about the tour such as the lead up to the tour and the different things that happened at different matches in NZ. The final match of the tour, against the United States national team, took place in secret at Glenville in upstate New York. Major protests ensued, aiming to make clear many New Zealanders' opposition to apartheid and, if possible, to stop the matches taking place. Despite this, Muldoon argued that New Zealand was a free and democratic country, and that "politics should stay out of sport. [citation needed], At Gisborne on 22 July,[18] protesters managed to break through a fence, but quick action by spectators and ground security prevented the game being disrupted. Page 2 – All Blacks versus Springboks [citation needed] After early disruptions, police began to require that all spectators assemble in sports grounds at least an hour before kick-off. [6] In response, the NZRFU protested about the involvement of "politics in sport". Particularly the book Storm our of Africa! Rugby union was (and is) an extremely popular sport in New Zealand, and the South African team known as the Springboks were considered to be New Zealand's most formidable opponents. Friendships and family relationships were harmed due to different perspectives on the tour. The Springbok Tour supporters were usually dedicated rugby fans or sports fans in general. Read the full article. The protests gave political prisoners and South African political parties hope that the policy of Apartheid could be challenged and changed. In 1980, New Zealand again attempted to bring the Springboks to New … The All Blacks accepted an invitation to tour South Africa in 1976, when world attention was fixed on the republic because of the Soweto riots. Footage[according to whom?] [26] Spectators were kept in the ground until the protesters dispersed. Gangs of rugby supporters waited outside Hamilton police station for arrested protesters to be processed and released, and assaulted some protesters making their way into Victoria Street. Apartheid is an Afrikaans word meaning apartness or separation, during the 1920s and 1930s the white South African government passed many laws to segregate their society.The sole purpose of this was to keep white people in control of politics and the … Keeping sport and politics separate was becoming increasingly difficult. Some protesters were injured by police batons. [34][35] The All Blacks did not tour South Africa until after the fall of the apartheid régime (1990–1994), although after the 1985 tour was cancelled an unofficial tour took place in 1986 by a team that included 28 out of the 30 All Blacks selected for the 1985 tour, known as the New Zealand Cavaliers but often advertised in South Africa as the All Blacks or depicted with the Silver Fern. Something similar was happening exactly thirty years ago this month, when South Africa’s Springboks accepted an invitation from the New Zealand Rugby Football Union (NZRFU) to tour this country. A High Court injunction by Justice Casey stopped the tour. [14], The ensuing public protests polarised New Zealand. The 1981 Springbok tour affected South Africa immensely. It was one of the ugliest incidents of the 1981 Springbok tour. Next week marks the 35th anniversary of 1981’s Springbok Tour of New Zealand. [citation needed] They were quickly removed and forcibly ejected from the stadium by security staff and spectators. The Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Fraser, refused permission for the Springboks' aircraft to refuel in Australia,[10] so the Springboks' flights to and from New Zealand went via Los Angeles and Hawaii.[11]. Others disagreed. Read more... For 56 days in July, August and September 1981, New Zealanders were divided against each other in the largest civil disturbance seen since the 1951 waterfront dispute. [16][17] These police were, controversially, the first in New Zealand to be issued with visored riot helmets and long batons (more commonly the side-handle baton). They held the belief that 'sport and politics should not mix.' For two months during the Springbok tour of 1981, Kiwis took their corners in the battle over apartheid in a groundswell of public emotion that helped redefine a nation. And what was their view on the Springbok tour. The veterans of the 1981 Springbok tour protests are still proud of having stood up for something they believed in, despite their scars. The first test was on 15 August in Christchurch. I was a part of the South AfricanSpringbok rugby team that was selected to tour New Zealand in 1981 with the Springboks. Although the protests were among the most intense in New Zealand's recent history, no deaths or serious injuries resulted. 1971 South Africa rugby union tour of Australia, History of South Africa in the apartheid era, "Rugby in the national spotlight: The 1981 USA tour of the Springboks", "All eyes were on Albany and Apartheid in 1981", "When talk of racism is just not cricket", "Politics and sport – 1981 Springbok tour", "Battle lines are drawn – 1981 Springbok tour | NZHistory.net.nz, New Zealand history online", "Protest! The whole of New Zealand was divided over the tour, this division of the country lasted over fifty days. Despite the controversy, the New Zealand Rugby Union decided to proceed with the tour. RAY HARPER was a rugby administrator and national councillor on the New Zealand Rugby Union during the 1981 Springbok tour. Because of this, many protesters began to wear motorcycle or bicycle helmets to protect themselves from batons and head injury. Prime Minister Bill English admits he was “probably for it”. Springbok Tour 1981 Protests against the South African rugby team touring New Zealand divided the country in 1981. [3] Therefore, there was a major split in opinion in New Zealand as to whether politics should influence sport in this way and whether the Springboks should be allowed to tour. [30] The clandestine strategy seemingly worked as around 500 spectators gathered to watch the match. The South African Springboks and the All Blackrugby teams had toured New Zealand and South Africa before 1981. This was at a time … The NZRU constitution contained much high-minded wording about promoting the image of rugby and New Zealand, and generally being a benefit to society. I think it was the bravest thing I did throughout the tour. [24] Army engineers were deployed,[citation needed] and the remaining grounds were surrounded with razor wire and shipping container barricades to decrease the chances of another pitch invasion. What action did the United Nations take against South Africa in 1968 during the Springbok tour? Overview, links to related topics and suggested classroom activities for this potential NCEA topic. Read more... Up to 2000 anti-Springbok tour protesters were confronted by police who used batons to stop them marching up Molesworth St to the home of South Africa's Consul to New Zealand Read more... Anti-tour demonstrators invaded Hamilton’s Rugby Park, forcing the abandonment of the Springboks–Waikato match. Newshub: Bill English was pro-1981 Springbok Tour. Commercial re-use may be allowed on request. The springbok tour of the 1980’s was the largest civil disturbance New Zealand had seen in thirty years. During the Springbok Tour of 1981 there was a lot of protest and unrest about letting the Springboks play in New Zealand. Learn about the trauma of the tour, when feelings ran high, and pro- and anti-tour factions often clashed violently. [8] In their view the All Black tour gave tacit support to the apartheid regime in South Africa. The 1981 South African rugby tour (known in New Zealand as the Springbok Tour, and in South Africa as the Rebel Tour) polarised opinions and inspired widespread protests across New Zealand. Te Ara: The Encyclopedia of New Zealand Te Ara is an excellent starting point for all questions about New Zealand Aotearoa. Without New Zealand's support, without the Springbok tours, change would happen more quickly in South Africa. If we scroll down to the bottom of the page we can see that the website belongs to the Ministry for Culture & Heritage, so the information is well-researched and reliable… The 1981 Springbok (South African) rugby tour was among the most divisive events in New Zealand’s history. [31] No one was injured. The controversy also extended to the United States, where the South African rugby team continued their tour after departing New Zealand. [15], To begin with the anti-tour movement was committed to non-violent civil disobedience, demonstrations and direct action. All all-white team from South Africa, the team were seen by some to be the embodiment of Apartheid South Africa, and their tour of Britain and Ireland in 1969/1970 attracted huge protest. Select itinerary of the 1981 tour by the Springbok rugby team. [citation needed] A large demonstration managed to occupy the street adjacent to the ground and confront the riot police. Late in game, however, a small number of protestors arrived to disrupt proceedings and two were arrested after a brief altercation broke out on the field. [30], The cancelled New York City match against the Eastern All Stars was moved upstate to Albany. Following the anti-apartheid protests, it was secretly rescheduled to the mid morning of Saturday 19 September at Roosevelt Park in Racine, Wisconsin. [citation needed] Muldoon's critics felt that he allowed the tour in order for his National Party to secure the votes of rural and provincial conservatives in the general election later in the year, which Muldoon won. The 1981 Springbok Tour of New Zealand was helpful, due to the large detail the text went into. Just to be selected to tour, that was a dream come true. [36], Controversial rugby tour of New Zealand and the US by the South African rugby team. The 1981 Springbok Tour started on 19 July, as the Springbok rugby team arrived in the country and had their first tour game against Poverty Bay on the 22nd. - 1981 Anti-Springbok Tour Protest Common sign found in South Africa. Despite pressure for the Muldoon government to cancel the tour, permission was granted, and the Springboks arrived in New Zealand on 19 July 1981. This site is produced by the History Group of the New Zealand Ministry for Culture and Heritage. [5] The tour still happened, and in 1969 Halt All Racist Tours (HART) was formed.[6]. Discover the reasons behind this civil disobedience, as well as the demonstrations, police actions and the politics of playing sports. On the streets in Auckland outside Eden Park, on the day of the final test match, there were riots. The 1976 tour contributed to the creation of the Gleneagles Agreement adopted by the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in 1977. One of the main reasons which lead to the 1981 Springbok Tour was the Apartheid in South Africa. [2] Threats of riots caused city officials in Los Angeles, Chicago, New York City and Rochester to withdraw their previous authorisation for the Springboks to play in their cities. The first team to visit South Africa were the British Lions in 1891. Prior to the boycott of the Olympics, African Nations had demanded the International Olympic Committee (IOC) exclude New Zealand from the games, however the IOC found no justification in banning the country and therefore New Zealand athletes went ahead to compete as planned. Some of the protesters, particularly young Māori, felt frustrated by the image of New Zealand as a paradise for racial unity. Since rugby went professional in 1995 countries like Australia, England and France have challenged New Zealand and South Africa's claims to be the two powerhouses of world. A leaflet issued at an anti-apartheid rally in December 1971 argued, “The demonstrations against the Springboks this year won a … Apartheid One of the main reasons which lead to the 1981 Springbok Tour was the Apartheid in South Africa. The magnitude of the protests against the 1981 Springbok tour of New Zealand had various causes, which stemmed back to apartheid in South Africa. New Zealand Protests-Springbok Tour 1981: Primary Sources in New Zealand (Taken from "56 DAYS, A History of the Anti-Tour Movement In Wellington) Primary Source One 'My family are very rugby orientated; my growing up was weekends with rugby.' This video shows how the flour bombing test started and what happened during it. A further appeal to Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall was also overruled on the grounds of free speech.[31]. Here police and protesters confront one another at Palmerson North on 1 August 1981, when South Africa played Manawatū. In 2011, Springbok Nude Girls supported U2 on their 360 degrees tour of South Africa. [9], By the early 1980s the pressure from other countries and from protest groups in New Zealand such as HART reached a head when the NZRU proposed a Springbok tour for 1981. The 1981 Springbok Tour started on 19 July, as the Springbok rugby team arrived in the country and had their first tour game against Poverty Bay on the 22nd. A short term effect was that it caused a divide between the country with immense disturbances to daily life. "The tour split families; it split friends. One of the most significant causes of the events during the 1981 Springbok tour was the influence of the government during this time. Springbok fullback Warrick Gelant has been ruled out of competing against the British and Irish Lions next year in South Africa. Protests against the South African rugby team touring New Zealand divided the country in 1981. [32] The thirty spectators recorded at the match is the lowest ever attendance for an international rugby match.[1]. Despite the tour concluding and the Springboks leaving our shores our shores New Zealand continue to be effected by the 1981 tour long after it finished. [citation needed], With the American leg of the tour following directly after the events of New Zealand, further protests and clashes with police were expected. The whole of New Zealand was divided over the tour, this division of the country lasted over fifty days. However New Zealand's opposition to Springbok rugby encounters did have an impact on the South African policy of Apartheid. Tour supporters were determined that the first Springbok visit to New Zealand since 1965 would not be spoiled. In 1990, apartheid ceased in South Africa. In 1985 the NZRU proposed an All Black tour of South Africa. [19] The protesters were ushered from the ground and were advised by protest marshals to remove any anti-tour insignia from their attire, with enraged rugby spectators lashing out at them. "Lecturer admits 1981 tour sabotage", The Press, 14 July 2001. Prior to the All Blacks' tour of South Africa in 1960, 150,000 New Zealanders signed a petition supporting a policy of "No Maoris, No Tour". SCIS no. Nelson Mandela recalled that when he was in his prison cell on Robin Island and heard that the game in Hamilton had been cancelled; it was as ‘if the sun had come out’. The role of the police also became more controversial as a result of the tour. The anti-tour movement was equally determined to show its. Since 1977 Muldoon's government had been a party to the Gleneagles Agreement, in which the countries of the Commonwealth accepted that it was: the urgent duty of each of their Governments vigorously to combat the evil of apartheid by withholding any form of support for, and by taking every practical step to discourage contact or competition by their nationals with sporting organisations, teams or sportsmen from South Africa or from any other country where sports are organised on the basis of race, colour or ethnic origin. The 1981 Springbok Tour was a momentous time in New Zealand’s history and has been the subject of … After the tour many New Zealanders became aware of the problem of racism and have tried (somewhat successfully) to improve things. In the 1960s and 70s, many New Zealanders had come to believe that playing sport with South Africa condoned its racist apartheid system. [citation needed] As protection for the Springboks, the police created two special riot squads, the Red and Blue Squads. The controversy also extended to the United States, where the South African rugby team continued their tour after departing New Zealand.[1][2]. All all-white team from South Africa, the team were seen by some to be the embodiment of Apartheid South Africa, and their tour of Britain and Ireland in 1969/1970 attracted huge protest. Although not a major sport on a global scale, rugby had established itself not only as New Zealand’s number one sport but as a vital component in this country’s national identity. All non-text content is subject to specific conditions. People who had opposing views wouldn’t talk to each other; people stopped watching rugby and felt ashamed of what the country was doing. On September 12th 1980, the Chairman of the New Zealand Rugby Football Union (N.Z.R.F.U) Ron Don, formally invited the South African rugby team to come tour in New Zealand. 1981 Springbok tour. [citation needed], At Rugby Park, Hamilton (the site of today's Waikato Stadium), on 25 July,[18] about 350 protesters invaded the pitch after pulling down a fence. A wide range of social, political and economic consequences have come about as a result of the 1981 Springbok Tour of New Zealand. Springbok Tour 1981. [7] Twenty-five African nations protested against this by boycotting the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal. Political causes that affected our small nation 1976, the Norman Kirk Labour government prevented the Springboks protect!: background ; Effects on New Zealand promoting the image of New Zealand national... The riot police tour after departing New Zealand was divided over the incident on the Springbok tour New. 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