Culture and heritage


NSW Coat of Arms, Rural Bank of NSW Head Office, 1936

NSW Coat of Arms, on the façade of the Rural Bank of NSW head office, Martin Place, Sydney, 1936


The Bank was established in 1921 and in 1933 was reconstituted as the Rural Bank of NSW. This head office building was built in the mid-1930s and opened in 1936. The lower levels of the 12 storey building were clad in green terracotta tiles, with the upper levels in pink composite stone panelling manufactured by Melocco Brothers of Annandale.

The NSW Coat of Arms was displayed here, rather than used to convey official authority, although the government ownership of the bank was clearly meant to be represented. The coat of arms shown here may have been sculpted in marble or fashioned in terracotta, scagliola, composite stone or terrazzo by Melocco Brothers of Annandale although more research is needed. The building was demolished in 1983, and it is not know whether the Arms survived or were destroyed.

Some questions for research:

  1. Did the development of new materials such as composite stone allow for greater artistic expression in representations of the NSW Coat of Arms?
  2. What effects did the development of skyscraper architecture have on the representation of coats of arms and other symbols and emblems on buildings?


Image source: Sam Hood Collection, Home and Away 23251, State Library of NSW, Picman


Page last updated: 01 September 2012