World Heritage

In response to a petition submitted by

World Heritage Areas

Dear Chair

Thank you for your email of 31 August 2020 concerning petition number PN0482, regarding the World Heritage status of the Parramatta Female Factory.

Under the Australian World Heritage Intergovernmental Agreement (2009), state and territory governments are responsible for submitting proposals for Australia’s World Heritage Tentative List to the Australian Government as a first step towards World Heritage listing. State and territory governments are also responsible for undertaking the necessary research and consultation to support the case for tentative World Heritage listing.

If the New South Wales Government can demonstrate the Parramatta Female Factory Precinct has potential outstanding universal value, the site would be considered for Australia’s World Heritage Tentative List, along with recommendations made by other states and territories.

In relation to the request that the site becomes a living museum and national resource centre, decisions regarding the ongoing use of the site are a matter for its owners. I am advised that on 1 July 2020, ownership of the ‘Heritage Core’, and parts of the broader Cumberland East site, were transferred from Infrastructure NSW to Property NSW.

The ‘Parramatta Female Factory and Institutions Precinct’ is included in the National Heritage List. As such, the heritage values of this Precinct are protected as a Matter of National Environmental Significance under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Protection Act 1999 (Cth). As such, anyone taking an action which is likely to have a significant impact on the values of a National Heritage place must refer that action for assessment and approval under the EPBC Act.

I note the request that a joint Federal and state government trust be created to conserve and interpret the site. The day to day management of National Heritage places is the responsibility of their owners. The Australian Government supports heritage places by providing funding through the Australian Heritage Grants program to improve conservation, preservation and access to the heritage values of National Heritage listed places.

Thank you for raising this matter with me.

Yours sincerely

from the Minister for the Environment, Ms Ley