This image was taken for a story that ran in The Manawatu Evening Standard on Monday 27 November 1978 “Walding makes political history: Backslapping well-wishers congratulate Palmerston North’s new M.P Joe Walding”
The 1978 General election (on Saturday 25th November) returned Joseph Albert Walding as member of Parliament for Palmerston North, a seat he had held previously between 1967 and 1975. He beat incumbent John Lithgow of National with a majority of 2601. The Standard reported Walding’s reaction: “I thought I might get 500 to 1000 – but not that margin. It just shows that a lot of voters were side-tracked by other issues last time. It’s very nice to make history like this. A lot of credit has to go to the local organisation.” Walding was swamped by supporter’s at St Patrick’s Hall, who were keen to begin celebrations.
Other local results on election night included National’s Michael Cox retaining the Manawatu seat with a reduced majority and Bruce Beetham, Leader of Social Credit, winning the newly created Rangitikei seat from National’s Les Gander (previously Member of Parliament for Ruahine).