Mortuary Station Regent St, Chippendale NSW

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About the project
Key Details
  • About The Project

    In 1999, Heritage 21 was commissioned by State Rail to prepare a Conservation Management Plan for the long-term management of Mortuary Station. At the time, State Rail was in the process of selling of a large parcel of land immediately adjacent to Mortuary Station which had the effect of reducing the curtilage around the building. Consequently, it was necessary to prepare policies for new uses and the re-purposing of Mortuary Station into a usable asset for State Rail and the public. Unfortunately, these policies were not adopted and the building remains cut of from public access which is a great pity. Notwithstanding, there is new thinking about including the asset into a much larger urban re regeneration project which at the time of writing is afoot.

  • What was done

    The Conservation Management Plan was published in 2000. It traced the history of Mortuary Station to its earliest roots in Sydney’s burial history. The receiving station at Rookwood Cemetery was a twin building with Mortuary. Unfortunately, sometime in the 1970s, the Receiving Station was dismantled and re constructed as a church in Canberra. Thus, Mortuary Station remains a separated twin. The designer of both buildings was the Government Architect; James Barnet who was very influenced by the English historian John Ruskin who extolled the virtues of Venetian architecture. There are elements in Mortuary station which are virtually copies of John Ruskin’s sketches in his famous book called ‘Stones of Venice’ published in 1851. Mortuary Station was constructed in 1869. The building is replete with carved symbols relating to death and rebirth such as the ‘rising phoenix’ and ‘egg timers’ .

  • Time frame

    The CMP was commissioned in 1999 and was published in the year 2000.

Services provided
  • Heritage Design Advice
  • Conservation Methodology Advice
  • Sandstone Repair specification
  • Conservation Management Plan
Why was the work undertaken?

As a result of State Rail actively selling off parcels of land that it no longer needed, many State Listed Rail assets were affected. Mortuary Station is probably one of the most important heritage assets managed by Transport NSW. The main purpose for the production of the CMP was to analyse the necessary repairs required for the building mainly to the sandstone walls and the slate roof structure.

In addition, because the parcel of land to the south was sold off, the reduced curtilage had to be factored into the future management of the asset. In 2009, significant roof repairs were undertaken. However, the sandstone remains in relatively poor condition. The building remains fenced off and in accessible to the public. The asset remains in the ownership of Transport NSW.

Who was the work completed for?

State Rail now known as Transport NSW


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What our clients
& partners say:

“We would also like to take a quick moment to thank you all for your contribution to the project and we will update you on any developments as necessary”

Jose Serrao
Registered Architect

“Dear Heritage 21 team, I am please to advise that all the work prepared by your team has satisfied council’s contentions. We definitely know who to come to next time for heritage matters. ”

Andres Caceres
Level 33

“Thank you for all your work preparing this Statement of Heritage. I sat down yesterday and had a good read cover to cover, and felt very appreciative of your level of research and detailed consideration of our requirements.”

Varuna', Katoomba

“Just wanted to let you know, Council agreed with us in our application to reinstate the front facade! I am so excited. I wanted to thank you for all your help in getting this across the line. ”

Jane Frawley

“It has been a pleasure to work with you and your team as well!”

Holding Redlich

“Dear Heritage 21 team - This is an excellent result, thank you for all your work.”

Sevda Cemil

“Sites with heritage values present great opportunities, however often can be easily derailed if clear, concise and timely advice is not provide at the earliest stages of site planning. I have worked with Heritage 21 over numerous projects across Sydney and have found them to be valuable project partners in the development process. ”

Vince Hardy
Urban Planning Consultant, Cityscapeplanning+projects

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