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Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Assessment and Historic Heritage Assessment

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A1 No further assessment of the Aboriginal heritage within the Subject Area is required to inform the rezoning proposal. Also within the Subject Area are a number of Heritage items which are on Schedule 5 of the LEP.

Project background

Search the National Heritage List (NHL), Commonwealth Heritage List (CHL) and the Register of the National Estate (RNE) maintained by the Australian Heritage Council (AHC). Seven (7) previously unknown scattered Aboriginal artefacts were identified during the course of the study (see Table 9).

Table 1: Land Ownership
Table 1: Land Ownership

Subject Area

Land Ownership

Governors Hill (land including Wilton Aerodrome and land on both sides of Picton Road west of the Hume Highway). Lending lease (land north-west of Hume Highway-Picton Road junction; but excluded from survey requirements).

Vision for Wilton Junction

Delivering the Vision and Project Description

Integrated water, waste water and stormwater management systems and access to all other utilities including gas and NBN.

Figure 3: High Level Master Plan
Figure 3: High Level Master Plan

Study Aim and Objectives

Aboriginal Cultural Heritage

Review of available extant documents, including previous archaeological assessments carried out within the subject area and surrounding region. Consult with Aboriginal stakeholders known to have cultural knowledge related to the field.

Historic Heritage Assessment

This Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Assessment (ACHA) has been conducted to identify the limitations of Aboriginal cultural heritage within the subject area that may affect the proposal. Site survey to identify any additional sites within the subject area Assessment of the significance of all sites within the subject area.

Structure of Report

Development of recommendations for the management of local heritage sites in the subject area Preparation of an appropriate report for inclusion in the rezoning application.

Study Limitations

Personnel

Projects completed to date have been undertaken within a wide range of statutory contexts ranging from lead roles undertaken as part of the master planning process, conservation management planning (CMP), preparation of environmental impact studies (EIS), site specific reviews of environmental factors (REF), and the needs that develop as a result of ongoing development applications. The following section provides a brief overview of the laws relevant to the management of cultural heritage in NSW.

Commonwealth Legislation

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Heritage Protection Act 1984

Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal cultural heritage in Australia is protected and managed under a range of legislation. It is important to note that these acts are presented as a guide and are not legal interpretations of legislation by the consultant.

Environment Protection & Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act)

Under the new system, National Heritage will join six other major 'things of national environmental significance' (NES) already protected by the EPBC Act. The heritage provisions of the EPBC Act provide for a transitional period while the National and Commonwealth Heritage Lists are finalized.

Native Title Act 1993 (Amended)

Approval under the EPBC Act is required if you propose to take an action that will have, or is likely to have, a significant impact on the National Heritage Values ​​of a National Heritage Site and/or any other NES matter. The Minister will decide whether an action will have or is likely to have a significant impact on a matter of national environmental interest.

New South Wales Legislation

  • Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979
  • Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979
  • National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974
  • The Heritage Act 1977 (NSW) (Amended 1999)
  • Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan (LEP) (2011)

Heritage items are protected under the provisions of the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan (LEP) (2011) Section 5.10. If a proposed development does not have a negative impact on the significance of the heritage object, the permit does not.

Non Statutory Listings

OEH recognizes that Aboriginal people who have cultural knowledge should be given an opportunity to inform OEH of the cultural significance of objects or sites and have input into the management of their cultural heritage. Give Aboriginal people an opportunity to comment on the design of field methods for identifying Aboriginal objects or sites within the subject area;.

Community Requests and Outcomes

These two organizations are generally accepted as the primary organizations that have the right to speak about the location of the subject area. The assessment reported here included consultation with the Aboriginal community, background research, the completion of a pedestrian archaeological field survey and an assessment of the potential for the survey area to contain Aboriginal cultural objects and historic heritage relics.

Background Research

An overview of the various tasks undertaken to achieve the objectives of this assessment is set out below.

Archaeological Survey and Data Collection

Certain parts of the Subject Area were inspected which were subject to heavy, moderate or light disturbance which may assist in an assessment of archaeological potential of the Subject Area. There are parts of the Subject Area that have not had a detailed archaeological survey undertaken, mainly due to the multitude of land ownership arrangements.

Figure 4:  Areas Surveyed as Part of this Assessment
Figure 4: Areas Surveyed as Part of this Assessment

Soils

The first is located south of the ridge identified above and contains a series of relatively short unnamed ephemeral watercourses that drain directly into either the Cordeaux or Nepean Rivers. It is the largest of the 3 catchments and, in addition to a number of unnamed ephemeral creek lines, also includes Stringybark Creek.

Figure 6: Topography
Figure 6: Topography

Former Land Use and Disturbance

Interpretation of Aerial Photography

In particular, areas around streams appear to have been minimally affected in the past. Although not visible from the air, there are also several underground services such as the Sydney Water Pipeline and gas lines.

Figure 9: Previous Disturbance from 1961 Aerial Imagery
Figure 9: Previous Disturbance from 1961 Aerial Imagery

Ethnohistory

AHIMS Database Search

Regional Archaeological Context

Local Archaeology

Kayandel Archaeological Services (KAS) (2006) undertook an Aboriginal excavation at Wilton Park as part of the Wilton Parklands Estate Development, on behalf of Delfin Lend Lease Limited. The sites were covered as part of the management strategy to preserve the Aboriginal cultural heritage (KAS 2010:1).

Table 6: Cultural heritage investigations conducted in the Wilton region
Table 6: Cultural heritage investigations conducted in the Wilton region

Previous Assessment within the Subject Area

Overview

Of these, 47 (excluding the 5 locations mentioned in KAS (in preparation)) lie within the boundaries of the Subject Area. This group of sites, 26, occurs within the boundary of the Bingara Gorge area and the remaining 26 occur within the rest of the subject area.

Previous Predictive Models

In one case, a scattered object was located on top of the sandstone ridge. Most of the sites were within 100 m of the river, but not right on the banks of the river;.

Aboriginal Heritage Predictions for the Subject Area

As such, any archaeological material present within the subject area may provide additional insight into the selection of raw materials in the surrounding region (Woronora Plateaux). Rock shelters are likely the most prevalent site type encountered within the subject area.

Figure 15: Distribution of AHIMS sites Regional Scale
Figure 15: Distribution of AHIMS sites Regional Scale

Register Searches

In addition to the above searches, KAS also consulted a number of heritage assessments specific to the Subject Area which also sought to identify the historic (non-Aboriginal) heritage items and assign a significance value to these items. These reports include the Heritage Assessment for the Nepean Tunnel Amplification Project (Rosen 1995), the Aboriginal and Historical Archaeological and Cultural Heritage Assessment prepared for Walker Corporation by Heritage Concepts (2007) and the Cultural Heritage Assessment prepared for Navin Officer (2008) Wilton Substation 66kV Feeder Works.

Expansion and Exploration

Early Settlement

Early Landholdings

His original plans, which included a highway running directly through his land, also included the development of a private village, which in itself was not unusual at the time. While the highway eventually passed through his land (about 140 years later), an easier route to the west was initially established.

Park Hall

IBID) Mitchells plans for his estate are indicative of the speculative nature of such land holdings in this era. Ouseley Condell is also known for his other property of the same name in Bankstown.

The Village of Wilton

Agriculture and Pastoralism

By the 1820s grain farming was well established in the Campbelltown area and was second only to the Hawkesbury in terms of grain production. Blight reached the Appin region by 1856 and within twenty years grain production in the area had completely ceased.

Water Infrastructure

IBID: P29) While cattle, sheep and pigs generally replaced wheat production after the 1880s, there is evidence of twentieth-century pastoralism in the subject area in the form of agricultural technology, which has been recorded as part of this study. There were six guesthouses in the camp which provided meals and two soda shops (Whiteaker 2005:45).

Transport Networks

Roads

After the completion of the project the camp would be packed and the workers and their families would be transferred to the next job. The camps would be dismantled and reassembled in the next project, any structures not moved further were sold for demolition.

The Great Southern Rail Line

There is no evidence of camps or occupation at any of the sites listed here (Rosen 1995). The Picton Station Group and the Viaduct at Stonequarry Creek are parts of an early terminus system built within eight years of the first railway in NSW on the Great Southern Line (NSW Heritage Office in Heritage Concepts 2007:29).

Recent Assessment Reports

WFH1 is a scatter of 19th century European artefacts located within the Nepean Tunnel easement, approximately 125m east of Clements Creek and approximately 80m east of one of the sandstone piers (g). This site has been interpreted as the location of a possible camp/labourer's hut for the construction of the Nepean Tunnel and appears to date from this period.

Predictions for Historic Heritage

However, a description of the location of the site is outside the boundary of the subject area for this current assessment.

Figure 18: Baker’s Australian Country Atlas c1843-1846 W. Baker
Figure 18: Baker’s Australian Country Atlas c1843-1846 W. Baker

Identified sites

  • Artefact Scatters
  • Isolated Finds
  • Rock Shelters with either PAD, art or artefacts
  • Scarred Trees (Culturally Modified Trees)

The location of the site is approximately 80 meters south of a dam near the tree line at the edge of the gorge. The rock shelter is located northeast of Byrnes Creek with a southwest aspect.

Survey units

Survey Unit 7 was surveyed on 30 April 2013 by Tom Knight, Veronica Zaghloul, Glenda Chalker and Neale Sampson. Survey Unit 8 was surveyed on 30 April 2013 by Tom Knight, Veronica Zaghloul, Glenda Chalker and Neale Sampson.

Survey Coverage and Visibility Variables

Discussion

In section 7.8 it was identified that there was potential for unidentified historic heritage items and that there are still present within the subject area.

Figure 22: Distribution of sites within the north west of Subject Area
Figure 22: Distribution of sites within the north west of Subject Area

Identified Historic Heritage Items

Similar to the tool identified in WJ-HH-02, this tool may date from a slightly earlier period. The bottom of the bottle is visible and bears the maker's mark for the Australian Glass Manufacturing Company.

Views

Inside the rock shelter are two cast iron bed frames and a range of other tin and metal implements and containers such as a billy can. At the time of identification, Glenda Chalker identified that she was aware that large numbers of people lived in rock shelters in the woods during the Depression because they could not afford anywhere else.

Discussion

Aboriginal Heritage

  • Aboriginal Cultural Significance Assessment
  • Archaeological Significance Assessment
  • Archaeological Assessment of the Subject Area
  • Statement of Archaeological Potential and Significance

Based on the assessment, a large part of the subject area is assessed to be of low archaeological importance, however there are other locations within the subject area that have been assessed as possessing high archaeological importance. Therefore, any artefacts found to be present within the subject area are likely to be contemporaneous with other open artefact distributions found in the vicinity.

Table 13: Archaeological Significance Rankings of Aboriginal Sites identified in this study  10.1.4  Statement of Archaeological Potential and Significance
Table 13: Archaeological Significance Rankings of Aboriginal Sites identified in this study 10.1.4 Statement of Archaeological Potential and Significance

Historic Heritage

Assessment of Significance

Historic Heritage Assessment of the Subject Area

Statement of Significance for the Subject Area

Much of the area was used continuously for this purpose throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. These themes are used to aid in the assessment of an item's meaning.

Figure 28: Significance of Historic Heritage Items within Subject Area
Figure 28: Significance of Historic Heritage Items within Subject Area

Suggested mitigation of impact

The significance of Aboriginal and historical heritage within the subject area has been established. See below (Section 12.1.1) This assessment has identified a number of Aboriginal and historical heritage sites within the subject area.

Table 18: Significance ranking and preliminary management options
Table 18: Significance ranking and preliminary management options

Aboriginal Heritage

Legislative Obligations and Recommendations relation of Aboriginal Heritage

A2 An Aboriginal Heritage Impact Permit under Part 6 of the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974 for any impact on Aboriginal objects. A4 An Aboriginal Heritage Impact Permit under Part 6 of the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974 should be sought for the extent of each development application area.

Historic Heritage

Legislative Obligations and Recommendations – Historic Heritage

H1 No further assessment of the historical heritage within the Subject Area is required for the rezoning proposal; Report for the NSW Department of Commerce on behalf of the NSW Department of Education & Training.

AHIMS Results 21 st January 2013

Site Cards

Old Road Corridor looking east

Access track alongside runway looking northwest

View facing south of historic weir, located along the southern end of Allens Creek

View facing south of sandstone weir crossing Allens Creek. Note the sandstone hammer

Detail of post hole cutting in sandstone bedrock of Allens Creek

Survey unit 2, looking north

Survey unit 5, looking south

Survey unit 5, looking southeast

Survey unit 6, looking southwest

Historic Relics identified in WJ-HH-01

Heritage Item present at WJ-HH-02

Heritage Item present at WJ-HH-02

Implement present at WJ-HH-04

Figure

Table 1: Land Ownership
Figure 3: High Level Master Plan
Figure 4:  Areas Surveyed as Part of this Assessment
Figure 6: Topography
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References

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