The Nelson Events Fund is allocated according to the NCC Events Strategy which aims to support a diverse event offering that provides both community wellbeing and economic benefits, strengthens the region and its identity, stimulates a prosperous, vibrant and engaged community and delivers value at the right time.

The Nelson Regional Development Agency is the first point of contact for event organisers as we manage the administration of this fund and can also support with marketing tools, promotion and partnership opportunities.

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The purpose of the Nelson Events Fund is to support events that offer community wellbeing and economic benefits, those that strengthen the region and its identity, stimulate a prosperous, vibrant and engaged community, and deliver value at the right time. 

The events fund is allocated according to the NCC Events Strategy which sets out several key objectives for events funding:

  • A rich events calendar which maximises opportunities throughout the year
  • Measurable economic outcomes for Nelson City
  • An events programme that attracts visitors to Nelson and gives the local community a sense of identity
  • The promotion of local community well-being and cohesion
  • A healthy partnership between the events sector, the community, and Nelson City Council

The Nelson Events Fund is a limited pool of funding which is made up of two streams: economic and community. 

The economic stream recognises that events are an increasingly important economic contributor that can grow the visitor market and help make Nelson an attractive destination. 

The community events stream recognises that events are important for community well-being, as they build feelings of belonging, identity, and a sense of pride amongst our diverse community.

While there are two separate funding streams, it is recognised that most events bring benefits in both areas. The application form clarifies where the majority of benefits fall, but the assessment process will take all benefits into account.  

Strategic alignment

Events should align with the Regional Identity Framework and, where aiming to deliver economic value, should have relevance for our identified target markets (see Appendix 1 in the Nelson City Events Strategy). Events should also align with relevant Nelson City Council policies such as those relating to Waste Minimisation and Sugar Sweetened Beverages.

Delivery against strategy objectives

Delivery of the strategy’s objectives needs to be clearly demonstrated in economic and/or community well-being terms.


To be eligible for Economic Event Funding it is preferable if the event will increase the number of visitors attracted to Nelson during the ‘off season' (1 March – 30 November). The aim of this is to stimulate repeat visitation over the shoulder seasons and to create awareness to support companies in the attraction of key talent to the region.

Community events can receive Community Event Funding during any period but preference will be given to those that add vitality and interest to the city during the 'off season'.

Capacity to deliver outcomes

An application to the Nelson City Events Fund will need to demonstrate evidence of relevant skills, capability to deliver, including financial viability and detail of other sources of secured funding. Applications will also need to include a multi-year strategy set against key performance indicators for each stage of the event development, demonstrate a pathway to sustainability, and an exit point at which events funding support may no longer be required. Economic events will be expected to provide a return on investment of 10:1.

Context for support

There is a limited pool of public funding to support events and the Events Development Committee must be mindful of the impact of funding decisions on other potentially significant event applications and the need to retain sufficient flexibility to respond to emerging events. Therefore, it may not always be possible to support event applications even if they are a good fit with the criteria.

The applicant must be a Legal Entity, e.g. an Incorporated Society; Trust or Association; or a Business recognised under the Companies Act 1993. Proof of this through a certificate or other documentation must be supplied. For applications that receive support through other means, evidence of the support will need to be supplied. An Environmental Management Plan which considers the event’s environmental impact and plans to reduce this will need to be submitted with the application.

The Nelson Regional Development Agency can help you to market the event, including listing the event on the It’sOn websiteIt'sOn Facebook page and for economic events, the Nelson Tasman Facebook page. Where relevant, there may be opportunities for us to use copy, images and video content of your event in our visitor marketing activity, as well as provide these materials to media as appropriate (e.g. Our Nelson publication). All support will be assessed on a case by case basis. 

The i-SITE visitor information centre also offers a range of advertising and promotional opportunities including poster, video and installation display space. If required, they can also assist organisers with group accommodation and activity bookings.

Much of this support is free of charge, however some of these services may incur a cost. Please contact Rebecca Leach, Events Liaison at or Emma Cracroft-Wilson, i-SITE Manager at to enquire. 

Event organisers will need to provide an estimate of the number of attendees they expect to attend their event. For Economic Events an estimated breakdown of the numbers of locals and visitors to the region and the number of nights the visitors will stay will also be required. Results MUST be measured and reported back. Economic Impact Assessment tools will then be used to determine the overall economic impact of the event and will have an impact on any future funding.

Yes, these include; conferences, symposiums, conventions, seminars, workshops, reunions and political events. Some events may be eligible for funding under the Te Tauihu Regional Events Fund instead, so we encourage you to read more about this fund if you are not eligible for the Nelson Events Fund. 

Events held within the Nelson City Council boundaries are eligible to apply for funding from the Nelson City Events Fund.

Events in the Tasman District are not eligible for funding from the Nelson City Events Fund, however the Nelson Regional Development Agency may still be able to assist with promotion of the event and the Te Tauihu Regional Events Fund may be applicable instead.

The current economic event funding for the 2020/21 year is set at $345,000.

The current community event funding for the 2020/21 year is set at $76,000.

A list of funding recipients from the 2018/19 financial year (1 July 2018-30 June 2019) can be found here.

Funding is allocated by the Nelson City Council (NCC) through its Annual and Long Term Plan processes.

To apply, complete this application form. Send the completed form to

Application DeadlineMeeting Date
Monday 26 June 2023 Wednesday 19 July 2023
Monday 18 September 2023 Wednesday 11 October 2023
Monday 5 February 2024 Wednesday 28 February 2024
Monday 29 April 2024 Wednesday 22 May 2024

Applications received by the deadline will be heard at the following meeting date.

For more information please contact:

Rebecca Leach, Events Lead
Ph: +64 27 5777 158










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If you feel your event meets the above criteria and would like to discuss the application process in more detail, please contact the Nelson Regional Development Agency’s Events Liaison, Rebecca Leach on 027 577 7158 or by email: