Heritage Buildings & Places

When the Heritage of Western Australia Act 1990 was introduced, all Local Governments were required to compile an inventory of places considered to capture and reflect its historic heritage as a mechanism to recognise and hopefully protect these places, as well as lead to the foundations of sound local heritage planning. 

Traditionally these inventories have been referred to as Municipal Heritage Inventories, but now the term Heritage Survey has been more broadly adopted. It is also a requirement under the Heritage Act to periodically review these Surveys to ensure they are as up-to-date and relevant as possible.

The City of Albany’s Heritage Survey

The first inventory or survey for the City of Albany dates back to 1994, before the Town of Albany and Shire of Albany were amalgamated when the Town and the Shire both prepared their own inventories.  

On 1 July 1998, the Shire of Albany and Town of Albany was amalgamated to form the City of Albany. In anticipation of this, the Town and Shire of Albany commissioned Heritage TODAY to review their individual inventories so as to integrate the information into one document to facilitate the effective management of Albany’s heritage place. The final Municipal Heritage Inventory (MHI) was completed and adopted in 2000 and included approximately 270 heritage places.

Municipal Heritage Inventory: Inner Albany Areas A-M

Municipal Heritage Inventory: Inner Albany Areas P-Z

Municipal Heritage Inventory: Outer Albany Areas

The City recently completed an extensive review of its Municipal Heritage Inventory 2000 and updated it into what is now referred to as the City of Albany Heritage Survey in line with current standards. The review process has been an opportunity to not only update the information on places in the original MHI but also for new places to be nominated and assessed and, where relevant, included. The draft Heritage Survey now contains 319 places; being a mix of individual places as well as groups of related heritage places and heritage precincts. Consultation with affected land owners will commence in due course.

Listing in the Heritage Survey does not have statutory implications nor impose statutory protection. The only exception to this are places that have already been entered into the State Register of Heritage Places by the Heritage Council WA which are therefore protected under the Heritage Act.  These State registered places are identified in the Heritage Survey as “Exceptional – Registered”. 

The main purpose of compiling a Heritage Survey is to provide the base information for all the City’s staff – not just planning staff - to understand the history and development of their local government area, to identify the key themes and storylines that have shaped it and the places that reflect or encapsulate this. In turn, more informed and consistent decision-making can be achieved and implemented on matters relating to heritage and planning controls and guidelines, local heritage planning responses and referrals, place activation and repurposing, major projects and initiatives, asset management, as well as for community and social development. 

The Survey is also a useful historical resource for the broader community as it documents many of the important stories, places and people of Albany. It can be utilised as a basis for historical research, to identify special groups and precincts of related heritage places, in identifying key milestones and phases in the history of the area (pre and post 1827), as well as useful in the development of heritage trials, interpretation, public art, tourism products and community based activities, and can link the community with its past through the consultation and exploration process.  

The Heritage List

A Heritage List is not the same as a Heritage Survey. A Heritage List is the list of heritage places that are included in a Local Government’s Local Planning Schemes.

The City of Albany Heritage Survey is not the City’s Heritage List. Under the deemed provisions in the Planning and Development (Local Planning Scheme) Regulations 2015, each Local Government’s Local Planning Scheme must have an associated Heritage List (sometimes called a Schedule of Heritage Places). This list describes those places included and the reasons for their entry. Inclusion on the Heritage List will result in certain levels of protection and planning control being applied for these places as outlined in individual Council’s local planning scheme. For example, if a place is included in the City’s Heritage List, then different/additional requirements for planning approval will be applied than for places not on the List. 

Being included in the Heritage List under the Local Planning Scheme does not mean that a place is automatically subject to referrals to the State Heritage Office unless their place is already on the State Register of Heritage Places.

The City Heritage List is currently being reviewed and consultation with affected landowners will commence in due course. The Heritage Survey will provide the base information for identifying those places that may be recommended for inclusion in the City’s Heritage List, and only places that are already in the Survey can be included in the List.

Conservation, Care & Development Of Heritage Places

Conservation of properties categorised as having heritage importance require routine maintenance and repairs to ensure they retain their heritage value. Properties built prior to the 1940’s were generally constructed with traditional materials, for example, lime-based mortar products. Modern methods of maintenance and repair are therefore not suitable for heritage listed properties. For information on maintenance and repair click on this link and for a Guide to Conservation and Maintenance, click here.

The State Heritage Office has produced the following information brochures with regards to development of heritage properties:

Guide to Developing Heritage Places

Heritage in Action - Adaptive Reuse

Heritage in Action - Residential