The Selwyn District is a predominantly rural area in central Canterbury, on the east coast of New Zealand's South Island. It is named after the Selwyn River, which is in turn named after Bishop George Selwyn, the first Anglican bishop of New Zealand who, in 1843 and 1844, travelled the length of the country by horse, foot, boat and canoe, leaving in his wake a sprinkling of locations that now bear his name.
Most of Selwyn's new residents have moved from Christchurch to settle on small "lifestyle" farms and in Selwyn's small towns which are within easy commuting distance of the city (e.g. Rolleston, Prebbleton, Lincoln, West Melton, Kirwee). Rolleston is the largest town in Selwyn.
Selwyn, Waimakiriri and Queenstown-Lakes were the three fastest-growing districts in the country in the seven years since the last census.
The first comprehensive snapshot of population change in Canterbury since the earthquakes has been revealed by Statistics New Zealand, showing the dramatic population shifts in the region.
Of the 10 areas with the fastest population growth since 2006, half were in the Canterbury region.
The Selwyn District was the fastest-growing territorial authority area, increasing by a third to 44,595 people, the 2013 census shows