The eight harbourside sites managed by the Harbour Trust are valued by the community, not just for their beautiful locations but also because they contain historic remains dating back to the earliest days of European settlement, as well as significant evidence of Australia’s Aboriginal heritage . Sydney’s complex history, with its layers of past occupations, can still be seen in the landscape, buildings and remnants of these places. In particular, important evidence can be found on our lands of Sydney’s colonial, military and industrial heritage.
This heritage is of great importance to the people of Sydney. In caring for these places, we endeavour to protect significant fabric, conserve and interpret historic places and ensure that new uses fit with the special qualities of heritage sites. Some of the ways we do this are by:
- adopting the principles outlined in the Burra Charter of Australia ICOMOS (1993) and the Australian Natural Heritage Charter (2002;)
- preparing conservation management plans;
- respecting the existing fabric and setting of a heritage place, and making sure any work has minimal impact;
- assessing and recording archaeological sites;
- conserving movable heritage in situ, where possible;
- interpreting cultural heritage so that everyone can understand why our sites are important.
Many items on Harbour Trust lands are listed on heritage lists, including the National Heritage List and the Commonwealth Heritage List. Cockatoo Island is currently being considered for listing on the World Heritage List.
To view heritage listings and statements of significance, search the Australian Heritage Database and enter “Sydney Harbour Federation Trust” as a keyword.