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Ministry Nightclub

NOTE: This post probably contains quite a few errors and an inaccurate timeline – there is very little info online about old Christchurch venues, so I welcome all corrections and additions!


Large 3-room warehouse-style nightclub on Lichfield Street – a big part of the local dance music scene until the Christchurch Earthquakes of 2010 and 2011. The building was acquired by the City council and incorporated into the new Bus Exchange.

Opened by Bruce Williamson and named after the UK’s Ministry of Sound, the Ministry Nightclub (plus the additional spaces – which seemed to have changed names several times of the years) were a HUGE part of both Christchurch Dance Music and Gay scenes for over 20 years, before falling victim to the Canterbury Earthquakes in 2011.

I saw just a handful of shows at Ministry so my memory is not particularly clear – I do however remember the cavernous industrial interior and the stifling heat on a busy night.

The most notable shows I witnessed would have to be British Sound-system group Rockers Hi-Fi in 1999 during their ‘Overproof‘ tour, plus turntablists like (member of the legendary X-Ecutioners) Rob Swift, and Canadian whiz-kid A-Trak.


Also known as: Propaganda, G.A.Y., Smile Bar, Cruz Nightclub (?)

Location: 88-90 Lichfield Street, Central Christchurch

Christchurch Central, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand

Current Status: Demolished post-earthquake, site now part of the Christchurch Bus Exchange.

Active as a live music venue: 1992 – 2011

Bar Manager: Bruce Williamson

Bookings: Old Bookings Email


Capacity: 800 / 180 / 100

All-Ages: No


  • 1875: Original Building built on Lichfield site
  • 1992: Ministry Nightclub opens at 88-90 Lichfield Street
  • 2011: Damaged and eventually demolished after the Canterbury Earthquakes

Contact Details


5 thoughts on “Ministry Nightclub”

  1. Hi,

    I took the photo of the outside you have on your website
    Photo credit Amanda White

  2. Hi I’m Dave Princeton, I was the head bouncer at the the Ministry Night Club the night it opened and for a while after until I moved back to Auckland. I also worked for Bruce at Limbos night club in St Asaph street for a number of years. Lastly at the Firehouse night club for 3.5 year. The bar manager at Limbos was Nicola who used to show us her girls when ever we asked. ( breasts). She had a great pair.

  3. On opening night I had the first glass of bubbles (Lindauer I think) of the table outside.

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