Mudgee Railway Precinct | NSW Environment & Heritage

Culture and heritage

Heritage

Mudgee Railway Precinct

Item details

Name of item: Mudgee Railway Precinct
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Transport - Rail
Category: Railway Platform/ Station
Primary address: Inglis Street, Mudgee, NSW 2850
Parish: Mudgee
County: Wellington
Local govt. area: Mid-Western Regional
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
Inglis StreetMudgeeMid-Western RegionalMudgeeWellingtonPrimary Address

Owner/s

Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
Country Regional Network (CRN)Private 

Statement of significance:

Mudgee railway station is significant as one of a relatively small group of large and imposing country railway stations erected in NSW during the late Victorian period. The station building has retained much of its original fabric and character and remains a fine example of a first-class country terminal railway station. The scale and grandeur of the station building reflects the importance of Mudgee as a one-time rail terminus, and the importance of the railway station within the town and region it served. Despite the cessation of regular rail services to Mudgee in the late 20th century, the station building remains a significant landmark in Mudgee and is now used as a restaurant, bar and a stop-off point for bus services. Extant items on or near the station platform include one of the best remaining examples of a foot warming furnace with coals bins; station lights; and signal levers, all of which have good potential for interpretation and public access. The railway yard at Mudgee has retained much of its original 1883 arrangement. It includes a range of locomotive servicing structures and other items typical of a 19th or early 20th century railway yard, most of which help to reinforce the 19th century character of the railway precinct. Extant items within the yard include a goods shed, dock, crane, weighbridge, per way shed, turntable, and loading bank. The goods shed has a high level of intactness and remains a good example of a standard 19th century goods shed. There is also a circular brick structure, likely remnants of a water tower, and a rare Type 5 Water Column. (This statement of cultural significance has been adapted from the statement of significance prepared by David Sheedy Pty. Ltd. for the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station. It has been reworded, abridged, and otherwise altered, and reflects more recent changes to the place.) (SHI database no. 4280337, SHR listing no. 1204, Mid-Western Regional LEP 2012 listing no. I83 and I84, located within heritage conservation area C1)
Date significance updated: 08 Nov 16
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.

Description

Designer/Maker: John Whitton
Construction years: 1883-1884
Physical description: The 1988 Conservation Management Plan describes the exterior of the first-class station building at Mudgee as ‘an imposing structure arranged symmetrically about a central ‘break fronted’ wing which also rises vertically above the general roof line to form a dominant central roof feature decorated with cast iron finials and crestings. Projecting end wings stop the run of the cast iron verandah structure on the road front while on the platform front a continuous cast iron post and wrought elaborate awning frame screen the main façade. The original detached end pavilions are now linked by later rooms and there is an addition to the east ... Materials used are English Bond red face brick walls with sandstone foundation, quoins, surrounds to doors, windows and window sills ... The hipped roof forms are of corrugated iron with lead flashings ... A central moulded pediment with date plaque underneath completes an exotic Victorian architectural composition incorporating a ‘French Empire’ roof, Venetian windows, Palladian planning and Italianate fenestration and detail’ (Sheedy, 1988).The 1988 CMP describes the interior of the station building as follows: ‘A sense of place is give to all rooms by the use of high ceilings and this is best illustrated in the central General Waiting Room ... Rooms are arranged along the platform in the usual configuration with extra space taken by enclosing the ends of the verandahs with timber horizontal weatherboards’ (Sheedy, 1988). A large section of the interior of the building was refurbished and converted for use as a restaurant, bar, and café in 2005 and early 2006. This primarily involved changes to the General Waiting Room, Entrance/lobby, and Booking Office. Other changes included the installation of kitchen facilities and temporary fencing on the station platform.Mudgee Station Building: Complex and partially modified form. Unpainted asymmetrical brick building with corrugated iron clad hipped roof, break-fronted central wing and transverse hipped wings with tripartite windows and apex finials at each end of main building. Quoin detailing, dentils, cast iron cresting, pediment, apex finial, six painted brick chimneys, concrete detailing (lintels, sills and plinth) Victorian architectural composition with 'French Empire' roof, venetian windows, Palladian planning and Italianate fenestration. Matching brick pavilions attached either side to main structure via brick structures with hipped roofs. East pavilion with ventilation lantern. Brick extension connected to east pavilion with flat roof and parapet. Stripe-painted ogee verandah roof to roadside with cast iron decorative lacework valance and brackets supported by cast iron posts with Corinthian detailing. Corrugated iron projecting awning (to platform) with stripe painted timber valance supported by cast iron decorative lacework brackets, trim and posts with Corinthian detailing, and large wall mounted decorative metal brackets. Hipped corrugated iron roof. Brick platform face with asphalt surface. (GML, 2016)The Mudgee railway precinct includes many extant structures adjacent to the station building and in the former goods yard. This includes a foot warmer furnace, coal bins, station sign and platform lights, rail dock, and signal levers (all located on or next to the platform), the concrete overbridge (recent addition), goods shed, crane, weighbridge, Per Way shed, former gatehouse, turntable, and loading bank.Foot warming furnace and coal bins (1912):Remains of a structure with brick furnace/chimney and thick concrete slab base with cast iron doors. Fenced off with timber frame and corrugated iron roofed shelter. Remains of coal bins to west of furnace comprising concrete slab half walls with two aisles. Remains of potentially a water tower down from hthe goods shed, Type 5 water column (elements missing).
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Station Building:Condition: Good. Major repairs were completed in 2005, including re-painting, treatment of rising damp, treatment of termite damage, and replacement fencing installed on platform.Integrity: Medium. Most of structure and key features intact, visible and well maintained including signage, seating and signal levers. Modifications and extension to original form undertaken sympathetically.Water Tower and Column:Condition of these elements is poor, they are not intact and somewhat disconnected from the interpretation of the railway precinct. The brick masonry of the tower structure appears to be very poor, with cracks in the mortar and losses in brick fabric. There is no tank in place. The column is also incomplete, missing certain jib/spout and gear elements.
Date condition updated:08 Nov 16
Modifications and dates: Major alterations or modifications to the exterior of the building (as identified in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan) include: original detached wings joined to main central wing, removal of signs, enclosure of varandah ends, removal of original ogee pattern gutters and rainwater heads, changes to several doors (bricked up or glazing added), and removal of some timber finials (Sheedy, 1988).Modifications have also been made to the interior of the building, including (but not limited to): new shower and toilet, concrete flooring installed in several rooms, some windows converted to doors, painting and other changes (Sheedy, 1988). A large section of the interior of the building was refurbished and converted for use as a restaurant, bar, and café in 2005 and early 2006. This primarily involved changes to the General Waiting Room, Entrance/lobby, and Booking Office. Other changes included the installation of kitchen facilities and temporary fencing on the station platform.
Further information: An adaptive re-use proposal to convert the station into a restaurant, bar and café was approved by the NSW Heritage Office in 2005 and modifications made to some interior rooms in late 2005. The restaruant opened in early 2006.Significance Assessment:SHR Criteria a)[Historical significance] The railway yard retains much of its original 1883 arrangement, including locomotive servicing structures and other items which reinforce the 19th century character of the railway station precinct, a precinct that dates from a period of rapid expansion of railway services in NSW in the late 19th century. (This is an abridged and altered statement based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station). SHR Criteria c)[Aesthetic significance] The building is an excellent example of a first class rural railway station constructed in the late Victorian period. (This is an abridged and altered statement based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station). SHR Criteria d)[Social significance] The station building remains a significant landmark in Mudgee and reflects the importance of the railway to the development of Mudgee and surrounding districts. Although no longer used for regular passenger services, the station building is still used as a drop off point for coach passengers and for ocassional heritage trains, and is now a prominent restaurant, café and bar. (This is an abridged and altered statement based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station). SHR Criteria e)[Research potential] The station building provides research potential as an intact example of a large and significant terminus building, revealing the typical arrangement of a first class railway station but also unique or rare features. Examples of significant features of research interest include the foot warmer and the arrangement of the Ladies Waiting Room. (This statement is based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station). SHR Criteria f)[Rarity] Mudgee station is significant as one of a small number of large Late Victorian railway stations in country NSW. (This statement is based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station). The Type 5 water column is the only extant example of its type in the CRN.SHR Criteria g)[Representativeness] The station building is an excellent example of a large 19th century terminus station is country NSW. The associated yard retains most of its original locomotive servicing structures. (This statement is based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station). Integrity/Intactness: The station building remains relatively intact with the retention of most external features. Most changes have been to internal rooms, however some external intrusions or changes include the enclosure of verandah for some rooms and additon of rooms on eastern side. (This statement is based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station).
Current use: The station is currently used as a bus drop-off point, and has been converted into a restaurant. It is also tenanted by an arts and craft studio.
Former use: Since the cessation of passenger trains the station accommodated Freightcorp and Pacific National.

History

Historical notes: The official opening of the Mudgee line in September 1884 was the culmination of over twenty years effort on the part of the Mudgee community to secure a rail line to Mudgee and surrounding districts. Agitation for a railway service to Mudgee was led by a committee of local residents which was formed in 1870 and later became the Mudgee Railway League (Sheedy, 1988).A line from Bathurst to Mudgee and Walgett was proposed in 1873 but never constructed, with a later survey (in 1876) confirming the eventual route via Wallerawang and Capertee. By 1879 the NSW Government confirmed that the line to Mudgee would be built and on 15 May 1881 the line opened as far as Capertee. In the same year a contract was awarded for construction of the remaining section of the line (from Capertee to Mudgee) and in 1883 a contract let for construction of the passenger station, Station Master’s house, two gatekeepers’ cottages, accommodation for guards, engine drivers and porters, a goods shed, engine house, coal stage, water tank and a 50 foot turntable (Sheedy, 1988).The arrival of the mail train on 10 September 1884 marked the opening of the line and the beginning of two days of festivities, including a large picnic at Market Square (now Robertson Park) which was attended by most of the population of Mudgee. Six trains arrived from Sydney with dignitaries including the Premier, Edmund Barton, the Railway Commissioner, and local members of Parliament. On the next day, 11 September, despite heavy rain there was a procession, outdoor feast, banquet and ball to celebrate the opening of the railway line (Sheedy, 1988; Cottee, 2004).The station building was, at the time of its opening, regarded as one of a select group of significant railway structures in NSW, surpassed only by regional stations in Newcastle, Albury and Hay and categorised as one of approximately twenty 'first class' stations built between 1870 and 1890 (Sheedy, 1988).Between 1884 and 1987, various buildings and other structures were erected and numerous changes made to the original station and yard. These included the addition of a loco store and engine shed in 1891, installation of a 60 foot turntable and picket fence in 1903, a truck weighbridge in 1909, railway refreshment rooms and a parcels office in 1911, a foot warming furnace in 1912, railway refreshment room in 1917, conversion of the ‘Out of’ room into a bar and provision of a new ‘Out of’ room and lamp room in 1917, and the construction of a Railway Institute building and telegraph office in 1920. Electric power and lighting were switched on in 1924 (Sheedy, 1988; Cottee, 2004). The line was extended to Gulgong and Dunedoo in 1910 and to Coonabarabran in 1917. By the late 20th century several structures were demolished, including the Station Master’s residence in 1973, but as late as 1987 a new barracks building was erected. Mudgee Station was classified by the National Trust (NSW) in 1977 and listed on the Register of the National Estate in 1978. Passenger train services ceased in 1985 but in subsequent years the station building has been used as accommodation for Freightcorp and Pacific National and has been leased by community groups. In 2005, much of the station building was repaired and the main part of the station building converted into a restaurant, café, and bar which opened in February 2006.References:David Sheedy Pty. Ltd, Mudgee Station: Conservation and management plan, (David Sheedy Pty. Ltd., 1988).Cottee, J.M., Stations on the track: selected New South Wales country railway stations: an historical overview, (Charnwood, ACT: Ginninderra Press, 2004).

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
The railway yard retains much of its original 1883 arrangement, including locomotive servicing structures and other items which reinforce the 19th century character of the railway station precinct, a precinct that dates from a period of rapid expansion of railway services in NSW in the late 19th century. (This is an abridged and altered statement based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station).
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
The building is an excellent example of a first class rural railway station constructed in the late Victorian period. (This is an abridged and altered statement based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station).
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
The station building remains a significant landmark in Mudgee and reflects the importance of the railway to the development of Mudgee and surrounding districts. Although no longer used for regular passenger services, the station building is still used as a drop off point for coach passengers and for ocassional heritage trains, and is now a prominent restaurant, café and bar. (This is an abridged and altered statement based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station).
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
The station building provides research potential as an intact example of a large and significant terminus building, revealing the typical arrangement of a first class railway station but also unique or rare features. Examples of significant features of research interest include the foot warmer and the arrangement of the Ladies Waiting Room. (This statement is based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station).
SHR Criteria f)
[Rarity]
Mudgee station is significant as one of a small number of large Late Victorian railway stations in country NSW. (This statement is based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station).
SHR Criteria g)
[Representativeness]
The station building is an excellent example of a large 19th century terminus station is country NSW. The associated yard retains most of its original locomotive servicing structures. (This statement is based on information in the 1988 Conservation Management Plan for Mudgee station).
Integrity/Intactness: The station building remains relatively intact with the retention of most external features. Most changes have been to internal rooms, however some external intrusions or changes include the enclosure of verandah for some rooms and additon of rooms on eas
Assessment criteria: Items are assessed against the PDF State Heritage Register (SHR) Criteria to determine the level of significance. Refer to the Listings below for the level of statutory protection.

Listings

Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Heritage Act - s.170 NSW State agency heritage register     

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
WrittenDavid Sheedy Pty Ltd Architects1988Mudgee Station Conservation & Management Plan
WrittenJ.M. Cottee2004Stations on the track: selected New South Wales country railway stations: an historical overview

Note: internet links may be to web pages, documents or images.

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Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: State Government
Database number: 3150064


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