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Coordinates: 36°40′47″S 174°26′58″E / 36.67972°S 174.44944°E / -36.67972; 174.44944
Country New Zealand
Region Auckland Region
District Rodney District
 (June 2016)
 • Total 2,980

Helensville is a town in the North Island of New Zealand. It is sited 40 kilometres northwest of Auckland, close to the southern extremity of the Kaipara Harbour. State Highway 16 passes through the town, connecting it to Waimauku 16 km to the south, and Kaukapakapa about 12 km to the north-east. Parakai is 2 km to the north-west. The Kaipara River runs through the town and into the Kaipara Harbour to the north.

The population was 2,532 in the 2006 Census, an increase of 315 from 2001.

Helensville is also the name of an electorate seat in the Parliament of New Zealand. The current member for Helensville is John Key, leader of the National Party and Prime Minister.

Early history

Helensville ca.1890
Helensville shops ca 1890
Parakai, Helensville, NZ
Parakai, part of Helensvile

The area around Helensville was originally called Te Awaroa, meaning "The long path" or "The long river valley". The first European settlers in the district were Scottish timber millers named McLeod but who had actually come from Nova Scotia to New Zealand. John McLeod built a house which he named "Helen's Villa" in honour of his wife, and the name soon became that of the surrounding settlement.

Initial development of the town was around the kauri milling industry, but by the start of the 20th century dairying was becoming of increasing importance. It was also becoming somewhat of a tourist centre, owing to the presence of hot springs 3 km to the west of the town at Parakai.

A lot of the early history of Helensville is described in the book "Men Came Voyaging" written by Colleen Sheffield who lost her life in a bus accident before the book was completed.



See Helensville railway station.

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