Bell Block
Bell Block is a town in Taranaki, New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand is an island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses and numerous smaller islands. The country is situated some east of Australia across the Tasman Sea, and roughly south of the Pacific island nations of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga...

. State Highway 3
New Zealand State Highway 3
State Highway 3 is one of New Zealand's eight national highways. It serves the west coast of the country's North Island and forms a link between State Highway 1 and State Highway 2...

 runs through it. It is 6 km north-east of the centre of New Plymouth
New Plymouth
New Plymouth is the major city of the Taranaki Region on the west coast of the North Island of New Zealand. It is named after Plymouth, Devon, England, from where the first English settlers migrated....

 and 1 km from the outer edge of New Plymouth at Waiwhakaiho. Waitara
Waitara, New Zealand
Waitara is the name of a town and a river in the northern part of the Taranaki Region of the North Island of New Zealand. Waitara is located just off State Highway 3, 15 km northeast of New Plymouth....

 is about 9 km to the north-east. New Plymouth Airport
New Plymouth Airport
New Plymouth Airport serves the city of New Plymouth, and the surrounding region of Taranaki. It is on the west coast of New Zealand's North Island, and geographically, is the closest airport in the country to Australia...

 is located immediately to the north-east of Bell Block.

The population was 4,065 in the 2006 Census
New Zealand Census of Population and Dwellings
The New Zealand government department Statistics New Zealand conducts a census of population and dwellings every five years. The census scheduled for 2011 was cancelled due to circumstances surrounding the February 2011 Christchurch earthquake, however, and legislation introduced to hold the next...

, an increase of 168 from 2001.

The land was purchased in November 1848 by Francis Dillon Bell from the Puketapu
Puketapu is a Māori language word meaning sacred hill. It is the name of several places, a hapū of the Te Āti Awa tribe and a number of people; including:- People :* Erenora Puketapu-Hetet weaver...

In New Zealand society, iwi form the largest everyday social units in Māori culture. The word iwi means "'peoples' or 'nations'. In "the work of European writers which treat iwi and hapū as parts of a hierarchical structure", it has been used to mean "tribe" , or confederation of tribes,...

. The initial purchase was 1500 acres (607 ha) but more land was added subsequently. Disagreements over the sale of the land contributed to the First Taranaki War
First Taranaki War
The First Taranaki War was an armed conflict over land ownership and sovereignty that took place between Māori and the New Zealand Government in the Taranaki district of New Zealand's North Island from March 1860 to March 1861....


A stockade was built to protect local settlers in 1860. Some of the earthworks continued until 1972 when a hotel was built on the site.

Bypass road

Much of New Plymouth's heavy and medium industry is situated around Bell Block, which has led to heavy traffic congestion. Construction of an arterial bypass of the town commenced in late 2006. A previously unknown Māori
The Māori are the native or indigenous Polynesian people of New Zealand . They arrived in New Zealand from eastern Polynesia in several waves at some time before 1300 CE. Over several centuries in isolation, the Māori developed a unique culture with their own language, a rich mythology,...

-Places:* Pâ, a town in Burkina Faso* Pâ Department, a department in Burkina Faso* PA postcode area, in Scotland* Province of Palermo, Italy* Palo Alto, California* Panama, ISO country code** .pa, the country code top level domain for Panama...

 site was discovered during site investigations and was excavated by archaeologists prior to construction.

Funding has also been approved for a cycleway linking Bell Block to the northern end of New Plymouth's coastal walkway.


Bell Block School and Puketapu School are coeducational full primary (years 1-8) schools with decile rating
Socio-Economic Decile
Decile, Socio-Economic Decile or Socio-Economic Decile Band is a widely used measure in education in New Zealand used to target funding and support to more needy schools....

of 5 and 4, and rolls of 297 and 246, respectively. Bell Block School celebrated the 150th anniversary of education in Bell Block in 2006. The present school dates from 1872. Puketapu School was built in 1980.

External links

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