A heritage rail line is transformed into a great new use

The former New Redhead colliery railway - finally completed as the Fernleigh track. A heritage asset is re-purposed and re-used once again

From the City of Newcastle website we are thrilled to report on the following community event –

Dust off you bike or get your walking shoes on – the Fernleigh Track is finished! Celebrate the completion of the 15km shared pathway from Adamstown to Belmont by walking or riding the track. The join in the family fun at Liles Oval, Redhead where there will be loads of free activities. •face painting •temporary tattoos •amusement rides •displays •giveaways •great local entertainment

You can grab a sausage sandwich BBQ, take in a historical photo display. We will be rocked by Anna’s School of music, pepped up by Cardiff Northlakes Brass Band, serenaded by the Redhead Infants singing group, and you will be jigging along with the Clan McEwan Pipe Band and dancers. There will be plenty of interactive activities to take part in – there is the bike chase game, soccer clinic, cricket clinic, and jungle sports obstacle course.

When: Saturday 2 April Time: 10am – 2pm Where: Liles Oval, Cowlishaw Street, Redhead

Ed’s note – The City of Newcastle and Lake Macquarie Council have finally completed the re-generation of the New Redhead colliery railway. At 15kms in length the outcome is proof that a strategic and integrated approach to comnuity assets across council borders is really essential. The history of the track is obvious and retained into the experience. Well done eveyone who was involved in this adaptive re-use project.

Before - the disused rail line at the Fernleigh Loop. Semaphore signals in the background
After - the way is paved for walkers and cyclists to enjoy this wonderful community asset

Annual Seminar Friday 30 September 2011

This year our annual seminar is being hosted by the University of Newcastle’s Cultural Collections and is being held at the Auchmuty Library on Friday 30 September 2011.

Put this in your diaries so you don’t miss it. This will be a full day and will include a site visit to the historic mining township of Minmi, currently the subject of a Coal & Allied Part 3A Application for 3000 house lots. We are also considering a trip to Catherine Hill Bay to take in the view of the historic village before it changes forever. This is still to be worked out so anyone who has a burning desire to visit the place with the Network, please provide your feedback as soon as possible so we can organise it.

The Board is very excited about the program this year, given the big focus on conservation projects in the Hunter at the current time.
Stay tuned for a final agenda but at this stage we are focussing on ourselves! What we do, what we are going to do (including an update from each of us on the projects funded under the $2mill Hunter heritage program), and the ongoing debate about heavy industry in the region – coal mining and its impact. Sue Jackson-Stepowski will be making a special presentation about industrial heritage in Germany, and other matters. We will also look at case studies on the recently expanded housing Codes SEPP.
For those who can’t be physically present, the venue offers Video Conference Facilities. Please contact me personally to make arrangements if you wish to use these. Sessions may also be blogged to the Hunter Heritage Network weblog.
The Hunter Heritage Network is a professional forum for heritage issues in the Hunter Region. Our mission is to support professional development in the conservation sector throughout the Hunter region by offering a meaningful program of seminars and training; and to provide essential networking opportunities so that we can be increasingly effective in our work.

Should you wish to discuss with me my number is 0413 736 223.

All the best
Sarah Cameron
President and Public Officer
Hunter Heritage Network Inc.

We at the Network love this colour scheme

Hunter Heritage Network’s position on the proposed removal of Wambo from SHR

The HHN is opposed to the removal of Wambo Homestead from the State Heritage Register. The owner of the item, Peabody Coal, has made an application to the NSW Heritage Council pursuant to Section 38 of the Heritage Act that the complex be removed. Peabody Coal’s central argument is that long-term conservation is unecessary, and that the Company, which  happens to be a large publicly listed mining company, faces financial hardship if it is not removed.

We hold that removing the 1830s Wambo complex from the SHR on the basis of finanical hardship threatens the integrity of the State Heritage Register and the Heritage Act. The Network is concerned that it sets a worrying precedent as all owners of heritage items would be entitled to claim finanical hardship in the form of foregone development opportunities.

To read our  Submission on Wambo Homestead 091110, please click here.

You can also read the exhibition documents and other reports relating to the proposal at the Heritage Branch website. 

Sarah Cameron

NEW 2011-13 NSW Heritage Grants program launched on Saturday 23 October 2010

Announcement from the Department of Planning Heritage Branch –

2011-13 NSW Heritage Grants program launch, Saturday 23 October 2010

Following the NSW Heritage Council review of the NSW Heritage Grants program earlier this year, the NEW 2011-13 NSW Heritage Grants program will be launched on Saturday 23 October 2010. Look out for the block advertisement in the Saturday SMH Spectrum and in 26 regional newspapers next week as well as next Wednesday’s Government notices in the SMH and Daily Telegraph. For information and application forms go to 2011-2013 NSW Heritage Grants program. Applications close on Friday 3 December 2010.

 NSW Heritage Grants and Hunter Region Heritage Grants assist owners and managers of state significant heritage items, Aboriginal heritage, local government and communities in NSW to care for their heritage NSW Heritage Grants aims to improve the physical condition of NSW heritage items, assist communities to care for their heritage and supports local government in its role as manager of the majority of heritage items in NSW 2011-2013 NSW Heritage Grants program

  • Works projects for conservation, maintenance and adaptive reuse of State Heritage Register and state significant heritage items. Minimum projects $25,000, maximum funding $75,000. Closing date 3 December 2010
  • Works projects for residential and commercial properties for conservation, maintenance and adaptive reuse of State Heritage Register and state significant heritage items. Minimum projects $25,000, maximum funding $75,000. Closing date 3 December 2010
  • On-ground interpretation projects up to $20,000 for state significant heritage tourism projects for signage etc. Closing date 3 December 2010
  • Community strategic products and services up to $60,000 for the delivery of state significant or state-wide heritage products and services. Closing date 3 December 2010
  • Conservation management documents up to $5,000 for the preparation of a range of documents and reports to assist the management of State Heritage Register and state significant heritage items. Closing date 3 December 2010
  • Local government heritage management funding for heritage advisors; local heritage funds; heritage planning studies; and local government heritage projects for councils across NSW. Closing date 10 February 2011

Applications are also invited throughout the year for

  • Aboriginal heritage projects funding up to $75,000 for a range of cultural heritage projects ü Historical research and local archive projects up to $5,000 per project
  • Special program funding up to $10,000 for special, urgent or emergency projects for State Heritage Register and state significant heritage items

2011-2013 Hunter Region Heritage Grants program Applications are now invited for the following programs 

  • Hunter Region Works projects for conservation, maintenance and adaptive reuse of State Heritage Register and state significant heritage items. Minimum projects $50,000, maximum funding $200,000. Closing date 3 December 2010
  • Hunter Region Works projects for local government heritage assets for conservation, maintenance and adaptive reuse of State Heritage Register, state significant and locally significant heritage items. Minimum projects $50,000, maximum funding $200,000. Closing date 3 December 2010

Full details and project applications at www.heritage.nsw.gov.au/funding Enquires to Victoria Throp on 9873 8577, or email victoria.throp@planning.nsw.gov.au

or Heritage Branch, Locked Bag 5020, Parramatta 2124 NSW Heritage Grants & Hunter Region Heritage Grants – caring for our heritage

Initiatives of the New South Wales Government

Regards Miriam Stacy Project Manager ~ Project Delivery Unit (Monday, Tuesday) phone 02 9873 8576 ~ fax 02 9873 8599 (Wednesday, Thursday, Friday) phone 02 9228 6174 ~ fax 02 9228 6155 email miriam.stacy@planning.nsw.gov.au

Department of Planning

Next seminar

The Network is currently initving feedback on the content of the next seminar. The next meeting will be in February 2011 and there are currently several options available.

If any members have any feedback or ideas they wish the Board to consider please email scameron@ncc.nsw.gov.au so that we can initiate a forward planning exercise.


Heritage Council announces extension to submissions on the removal of Wambo from the SHR

Great news. The Heritage Council has extended the deadline for submissions on this matter until November 9.

As we are all aware, the Heritage Council is considering whether to recommend removal of the Wambo Homestead Complex from the State Heritage Register, following a request from Peabody Coal Pty Ltd.

Wambo Coal Pty Ltd has made a formal application under the Heritage Act to remove the item under section 38 of the Act.

The Heritage Council considered this application, together with a report prepared by the Heritage Branch, at its 16 September 2010 meeting. The Heritage Council did not made a decision on the removal at this stage, but decided to seek public comment on the proposal.

Please see www.heritage.nsw.gov.au for the reports and information on this matter.

Written submissions on this issue are invited from any interested person to:
Heritage Council of NSW
Locked Bag 5020
Parramatta NSW 2124

Please direct any enquiries to Cameron White on (02) 9873 8570.

Congratulations to the Newcastle Time Team

Today Minister for the Hunter Jodi McKay announced the launch of the Newcastle Time team and an archaeological test dig for the foundation stone laid of the Breakwater laid by Governor Macquarie during his visit to Newcastle.

It was announced that the James Fletcher Hospital site, which was the site of the Miklitary barracks and hospital and parade ground, will finally be listed on the State Heritage Register of New South Wales. A very long overdue addition to the State register.

Congratulations to the Hunter Region committee of the National Trust and those involved in getting these wonderful heritage initiatives off the ground.

Hunter Bonas 2010

The Hunter Heritage Network is thrilled to announce the winners of the inaugural Hunter Bonafide Awards! The Awards also inspire people to use the Hunter’s rich heritage as a catalyst for innovative design and scholarship.

The patron of the Hunter Bonas is Ms Margaret Henry. Ms Henry has been a long champion of heritage values in the Newcastle and Hunter area and a champion of local history. Ms Henry is a leader and advocate of conservation of the important cultural places that enrich the Hunter and Ms Henry’s support and encouragement forms the inspiration of the Hunter Bonafide Awards today.

The jury wishes to say it is humbled by the people of the Hunter who continue to champion history and heritage. Congratulations to all who participated in these awards!

The jury wished to acknowledge many more entrants and nominees and hopes that these people will be inspired  to consider the awards next year – and encourages all of our kindred spirits to keep going.

These awards are in honour of all the fabulous and inspiring people in the Hunter region – doing Bonafide things.

Congratulations to everyone.

And the winners are:

Perpetual Bona – for Outstanding achievement in the service of history and heritage in the Hunter region

We were thrilled that all three recipients attended the ceremony. Our three winners take out TOP HONOURS in the Inaugural Bonafide awards for their unflinching committment to heritage conservation, service to research, and selflessness to local history and heritage in our region over a thirty year period. We wish to honour Carl, Margret and Ed for their invaluable contribution over many, many years.

The Perpetual Bona is hereby bestowed upon:

  • Mr Carl and Ms Margret Doring
  • Mr Ed Tonks


Golden Bona –  Best Adaptive Reuse of a Heritage building or historic place for:

  • Bacchus Restaurant, 141 King Street Newcastle

The jury made special mention of

  • Sprocket Roasters cafe, adapted by Ross and Chelsea D’Aoust at 68 Hunter Street Newcastle; and
  • Maitland Gaol interpetative centre by Maitland City Council and Special Mention of Mr Gordon Sauber

Academic Bona – Best academic history based upon a local historical theme

  • Mr Les Reedman – for his exemplary work on the architects of the Hunter valley

The jury made special mention of

  • Fr Brian Roach
  • Dr Cameron Archer, Principal of Tocal Agricultural College

Deadly Bona – Best Indigenous History Monograph, article or digital work

  • Professor John Maynard

The jury made special mention of

  • Professor John Ramsland

Commemorative Bona – Best Commemorative History, event or site interpretation of a local historical theme

  • Dr Troy Duncan,  Ann Dunn and Rosemary Melville – for their excellent publication on the history of the Newcastle Grammar School, released in 2010

The jury made special mention of

  • Ms Cynthia Hunter
  • The Moyle Family Group of Hotels for their valuable and insightful displays in their Hunter region hotels including the Stag & Hunter Hotel, Mayfield

Family Bona – Best Family History Monograph

  • Newcastle Family History Society

Studious Bona – Best Student Paper,  design project, or article – including architecture projects, interior design, drafting or colour projects featuring local heritage or history

  • Ms Ann Hardy – dissertation on the Government House Newcastle

The jury made special mention of

  • Hunter River High School Life Services students who undertook an outstanding history project with the Raymond Terrace and District historical Society

Amateur Bona – Best history by an amateur historian

  • Mr Jack Delaney – publications and history of the ming heritage of the Hunter region

Performing Bona – Best fictional tale or dramatic production based on a local historical theme

  • Mr Colin Spiers – A Slender Strand of Memories (2009)

The jury made special mention of

  • Mr Brian Joyce – Sightsoundminded (2010)
  • James Witchard, Erika Gelzinnis and Students – Where the Coal meets the Sea (2008)

Virtual Bona – Most popular and/or thought provoking social networking site, blog or wesbite on local heritage and history

  • Creator Facebook “Save the Bogey Hole” – Sam Urquhart
The symbol of the Bonas – The Obelisk, is portrayed on the winner’s certificates and as the trophy itself

Media Bona – Best media piece or article featuring local history or heritage

  • Mr Mike Scanlon, for his wonderful history pieces over a long period of time writing for the Herald

The jury made special mention of

  • ABC 1233 Treasure Hunter – creator and producers – this is an award to acknowledge the new on the scene talent and broad appeal of this wonderfully original radio show

Back Bona – in recognition of the volunteering services of groups and individuals who volunteer their time to the promotion and conservation of local heritage and history

  • Volunteers of the Newcastle Region Maritime Centre (the Newcastle Region Maritime Society)  – what the Society does on a shoestring is very worthy of this Bona

No Bona – For the most inappropriate development upon a heritage place

  • The jury refrained from naming individuals in this category – but awarded the No Bona to the inappropriate actions, decisions and deeds done to the Newcastle Post Office (former) over the last 10 years.

Award ceremony  – gallery

Professor John Maynard warmly welcoming us to country
After she was crowned as the Patron of the Bona Awards, Margaret Henry gave a lovely speech
And then we crowned Marg Henry as the Patron Saint of the Inaugural Hunter Bonas Awards
Her Excellency Mrs Macquarie with Chair of the Hunter Regional Committee National Trust and MC Gionni diGravio
Hunter Writers’ Centre Brian Joyce receiving his commendation for Best performing Bona from Mrs Macquarie
Mrs Macquarie congratulates Jack Delaney on his Award of Amateur Bona
Jenny Bates receiving a Media Bona Commendation for ABC 1233 Treasure Hunter program
The Deadly Bona was awarded to Professor John Maynard
Mike Scanlon was the fabulous recipient of the Media Bona




Cameron Archer receiving his commendation in the Academic Bona Category



Erika Gelzinnis, James Witchard and the Students on Newcastle Uni’s Drama 101 take out a highly commendation in the Performing Bona category
Winner of the Family Bona - Newcastle Family History Society
The Family Bona was awarded to the tremendous Newcastle Family History Society
Her Excellency Mrs Macquarie (Anne Creevy)
Our 3 inaugural and very deserving winners of the Perpetual Bona – Ed Tonks, Carl & Margret Doring
Winner of the Perpetual Bona was very humble and makes a speech
Chair of the National Trust addresses the audience
The audience enjoying High tea and the glamour of the Award ceremony
Ed Tonks, Perpetual Bona winner
Board Members Stephen Booker and Sarah Cameron
Studioius Bona Winner – Ann Hardy receiving her award. Nice frock!

Memberships are now open

The Hunter Heritage Network is calling for new members to join the Network for the 2010 /2011 and the 2011/2012 financial years. All of our members enjoy the benefits of being part of a significant network and are exposed to learning opportunties, meet new friends and can market themselves in the process.  Join up, get active and participate in the most professional forum for heritage issues in the Hunter Region.

Please send an email to hunterheritagenetwork@gmail.com if you want to become a member or renew your membership.

Or simply fill out this Membership Application 2010-2011 (2yr) and email it to hunterheritagenetwork@gmail.com.