Canterbury WEA

Welcome to the Canterbury Workers’ Educational Association, the CWEA. We were established in 1915 and are active members of the Federation of WEA’s in Aotearoa.

We believe in lifelong learning for all so offer courses in a wide range of interest areas with a special focus on Social Justice and Democracy. Recreation and relaxation are also catered for with courses on Tai Chi, DIY Play Reading, Italian Singing, Singing for Pleasure, Portrait Painting and many other topics  included in each term's programme. Most courses are offered in our rooms at 59 Gloucester Street but we include some at New Brighton and the North West Branch meet at St Margaret’s church hall in Bishopdale.

Latest News

The Canterbury WEA is 100 years old. In that 100 years it has had many success stories as it has helped ordinary New Zealanders learn more about a wide range of topics and make the most of that learning.  In its hundred and first year the CWEA is launching this new website and an easy Online  Enrolment option. We hope to make it easier for people to both find us and to become involved in the programmes we are offering. We will be adding pages to the website over time and plan to include some connections to online learning as well as in-class learning. There are so many  new ways to make the most of Lifelong Learning, the only problem is finding the time.

New Website


 We are incredibly frustrated and apologise to all customers who may be having trouble and hassles  paying by credit card online.

While payments by credit card are possible the CWEA now recommends payment by bank transfer. Given the number of payments we receive each month PayPal is the only economical means of receiving payment open to us. If you are willing to open a PayPal account this works well. You can use your credit card without a PayPal account but you will be required to specify your billing address, email address and a phone number. Even after specifying all this information PayPal sometimes rejects the payment. If the credit card payment is cancelled by you, or somehow fails, you won't be able to enrol for that course until we manually cancel the internal order. Please phone the office on 366 0285 or email and we will attend to this. We hope this all settles soon. 

Please do keep coming back to check on us. If you have any questions please email or call us on 03 3660285

The CWEA  has long been involved in Adult Learning.  

It's "Box and Books Schemes". - not e-books - but box-books or truck-books, were a predecessor of the Country Library service and of  the  WEA Book Discussion Scheme.

JAmes Shelleya dn Geoff Alley next to the first travelling Libarry vehicle in 1930.

VOLUNTEERS are a vital part of most community organisations. 

The CWEA  appreciate theirs but is always keen to involve more.   The   Volunteer newsletter  may give you some ideas of potential places for you. 



Term 3 programme now listed on the Programmes pages of this website.
Mathematics in the Modern World with Patrick Kearney -- For some background have a look at this video, A Mathematician's Lament, where Paul Lockhart outlines how we introduce math to students in the wrong way. 

Last Term the Technology programme explored Virtual Reality, This term Social Media and Protecting your families online.

Tess McClure's article in the Press is worth  reading again.    Why we left; refugees tell the stories of why they left their countries .