Sydney’s World Heritage listed Hyde Park Barracks and Cockatoo Island will share in $160,000 for conservation work and the creation of an online historical database.
The grants are part of the Australian Government’s Protecting National Historic Sites Programme.
A third grant of $9,500 will go to Parramatta’s Old Government House – Australia’s earliest surviving public building – to help promote the extraordinary stories associated with this World Heritage Listed site.
The grant will go to the National Trust of Australia (NSW) under the Australian Government’s Community Heritage and Icons Grants programme.
Environment Minister Greg Hunt announced the funding today at Old Government House in Parramatta, joined by Liberal candidate for Parramatta, Michael Beckwith.
“Both the Barracks and Cockatoo Island are inscribed on the World Heritage List as part of the Australian Convict Sites, which includes Tasmania’s Port Arthur and Fremantle Prison,” Minister Hunt said.
“In preparation for the bicentenary of the Hyde Park Barracks in 2019, a grant of $80,000 will allow its internationally significant archaeological collection to be recorded and placed online, including video, photography and interactive maps.”
“The Sharing the Convict Experience project will allow the site’s extensive historical resources to be made available online for the first time and will help highlight the role convicts played in the colonisation of Australia.”
“A further $80,000 will be provided to the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust for conservation works to the former Free Overseer's Quarters at Cockatoo Island.”
The cottage was constructed in around 1851 to house the free overseers employed in the prison and is the only one of three overseers cottages to remain in use as a residence through much of the Dockyard era.
Incredibly, its nineteenth century form is relatively intact and the Australian Government grant will be used to preserve its significant external fabric.
The grant for Old Government House will fund a project entitled ‘experiment and survival – how Government Farm saved colonial Sydney’, which will tell the story of how Parramatta saved the fledgling colony from starvation.
“Parramatta Park was the location of the colony’s first successful farm at a time when supplies from England were running low and the colony was facing the real prospect of starvation. Its importance to the colony was reinforced with the building of Old Government House, the country residence of the first ten Governors of New South Wales,” Mr Beckwith said.
“This fascinating story will be told through a range of mediums, including educational material suitable for both primary and secondary students.”
“Parramatta played a pivotal role in our colonial history, being founded just 10 months after Sydney.”
That is why in July last year the Coalition announced that the Parramatta Female Factory Precinct would be assessed for possible inclusion on the National Heritage List.
“Parramatta Female Factory Precinct is Australia’s earliest and longest surviving female convict site and its inclusion on the Australian Heritage Council's work plan is an important first step towards possible national heritage recognition of this remarkable place,” Minister Hunt said.
“The Turnbull Government understands the importance of Australia' extraordinary heritage and recognises the sector’s contribution to jobs and the economy.”
“We want to ensure that future generations have the opportunity to visit and enjoy these places.”