Waverton Railway Station Building | NSW Environment & Heritage

Culture and heritage


Waverton Railway Station Building

Item details

Name of item: Waverton Railway Station Building
Other name/s: Bay Road
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Transport - Rail
Category: Railway Platform/ Station
Primary address: Bay Road, Waverton, NSW 2060
Local govt. area: North Sydney


The curtilage for the road-level station building is 1m from the building in all directions. Note: The LEP listing extends beyond the station building.
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
Bay RoadWavertonNorth Sydney  Primary Address


Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
RailCorpState Government 
RailCorpState Government 
RailCorpState Government 

Statement of significance:

Waverton Railway Station Building has significance for its aesthetic contribution to the historic character of the North Shore Line as a whole. The current overhead booking office was rebuilt in 1993, substantially in the form and detail of the original 1893 structure and makes an important contribution to the streetscape and surrounding setting.
Date significance updated: 12 Mar 10
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.


Designer/Maker: New South Wales Department of Railways
Builder/Maker: New South Wales Department of Railways
Physical description: BUILDINGS
Overhead Booking Office - 1993 replica of 1893 building

Waverton Railway Station consists of two platforms, platform shelters, new stairs and lifts, and an overhead booking office.

The present building was rebuilt in 1993 substantially in the form and design of the original 1893 structure. The building fronts Bay Rd and spans across both railway tracks and is a single storey weatherboard building with corrugated-iron gabled roof with timber finials and gablets. The streetside veandah is supported on timber posts with decorative cast iron valance.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Station Building - Good
Date condition updated:10 Sep 08
Modifications and dates: Waverton Booking Office remains on the bridge much as it was built in 1893. Apart from a number of shelters on the platforms, there are no other railway buildings at Waverton station. Lifts have been added to the station arrangements in recent years.
Further information: The LEP listing curtilage extends beyond the SHR/S170 curtilage. Significance is yet to be established for this extended curtilage. See LEP Map: HER_002.


Historical notes: Present day Waverton Railway Station is located on the North Shore line, between Wollstonecraft and North Sydney railway stations. The ‘North Shore’ of Sydney can be defined as a relatively narrow strip of land extending from Milson’s Point to Waitara, a distance of approximately 20km.

In 1887, tenders were called for construction of a branch line extending south from Hornsby to the North Shore. The 16.8km section between Hornsby and St. Leonard’s was opened on 1 January 1890. Stations provided at the opening of the line included Chatswood and St. Leonard’s. A single line was constructed at the time. The line between St. Leonard’s and Milson’s Point (the terminus at the edge of the harbour) was completed 1 May 1893.

Waverton Railway Station was opened on 1 May 1895. At the time the station was named ‘Bay Road’ but on 20 May 1929, ‘Bay Road’ was re-named ‘Waverton’ - the name it carries today.

The area was scarcely settled in 1893, but a committee of inquiry found that the route for the line recommended was the best to give a good grade for the railway to the harbourside, hence the route opening up new areas for settlement. The line between St. Leonard’s and Milson’s Point (the terminus) was built as double track and both Wollstonecraft and Waverton stations were built to suit the duplicated track from the outset.

At the time of opening, Waverton railway station comprised two side platforms (for Up and Down North Shore lines), with a small timber station building on each of the platforms. Bay Road tunnel (and Lavender Bay tunnel) were both built during construction of the line between St. Leonard’s and Milsons Point and opened for service as double track tunnels in 1893. After leaving the previous station (Wollstonecraft), the North Shore line passes through a series of curves before passing through the relatively short Bay Road tunnel (‘S’ curve within the tunnel), then a rock cutting before entering Waverton station. The rock cutting is spanned by a bridge carrying a local road (Bay Road). The Booking Office for Waverton Railway Station was built on the overhead bridge with steps leading down to each of the platforms at the time of opening.

Electrification of the North Shore line was opened in 1927, with full electric services in 1928. Automatic signalling followed and most signal boxes on the line were closed. The signalling in the vicinity of Waverton was then controlled by North Sydney signal box.

With the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge in 1932 and construction of new stations at North Sydney and Milson’s Point on a much higher level (to suit the bridge arrangements), the trackwork at Waverton was substantially altered. The original line which was laid down the grade, through the Lavender Bay tunnel to the original Milson’s Point station at Lavender Bay became a branch line. The original terminus sidings at Milson’s Point was then re-used as off peak storage sidings for the suburban electric cars, and is still in use today. To suit this new arrangement and allow electric car sets to either re-enter service after storage at the sidings, or for car sets to proceed to the sidings, a new dead-end siding was laid in behind the existing Down main platform at Waverton, but at a slightly higher level. Trains from the storage sidings would proceed into the dead-end, reverse and proceed through points toward North Sydney, whereas trains coming out of service would enter the dead-end siding from North Sydney, reverse and proceed down to Lavender Bay. This arrangement is still in use today.

The 1895-built overhead Booking Office was replaced in 1993, with the design of the original structure and original features such as steps being repeated in the new building.

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Transport-Activities associated with the moving of people and goods from one place to another, and systems for the provision of such movements Building the railway network-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
The place has historical significance for its associations with the opening of the Short North Line (connecting the North Shore to the harbour) and the resulting phase of increased development in the surrounding area in the late 19th Century.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
Waverton Railway Station has significance for its aesthetic contribution to the historic character of the North Shore Line as a whole. The current overhead booking office was rebuilt in 1993, substantially in the form and detail of the original 1893 structure and makes an important contribution to the streetscape and surrounding setting.
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
The place has the potential to contribute to the local community's sense of place and can provide a connection to the local community's history.
Integrity/Intactness: Low integrity, as the street-level OHBO is largely a reconstruction of the original building. As such the fabric is not considered to be of significance. Other changes to the site including the demolition of platform buildings and new lifts have further altered overall significance.
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.

Recommended management:

1. Conservation principles: Conserve cultural heritage significance and minimise impacts on heritage values and fabric in accordance with the ‘Australia ICOMOS Charter for Places of Cultural Significance’. 2. Specialist advice: Seek advice from a qualified heritage specialist during all phases of a proposed project from feasibility, concept and option planning stage; detailed design; heritage approval and assessment; through to construction and finalisation. 3. Documentation: Prepare a Statement of Heritage Impact (SOHI) to assess, minimise and prevent heritage impacts as part of the assessment and approval phase of a project. Prepare a Conservation Management Plan (CMP) prior to proposing major works (such as new additions, change of use or proposed demolition) at all places of State significance and all complex sites of Local significance. 4. Maintenance and repair: Undertake annual inspections and proactive routine maintenance works to conserve heritage fabric in accordance with the ‘Minimum Standards of Maintenance & Repair’. 5. Movable heritage: Retain in situ and care for historic contents, fixtures, fittings, equipment and objects which contribute to cultural heritage significance. Return or reinstate missing features or relocated items where opportunities arise. 6. Aboriginal, archaeology and natural heritage: Consider all aspects of potential heritage significance as part of assessing and minimising potential impacts, including Aboriginal, archaeology and natural heritage. 7. Unidentified heritage items: Heritage inventory sheets do not describe or capture all contributory heritage items within an identified curtilage (such as minor buildings, structures, archaeology, landscape elements, movable heritage and significant interiors and finishes). Ensure heritage advice is sought on all proposed changes within a curtilage to conserve heritage significance. 8. Recording and register update: Record changes at heritage places through adequate project records and archival photography. Notify all changes to the Section 170 Heritage & Conservation Register administrator upon project completion.


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

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
State Rail Authority Heritage Register Study1999SRA38State Rail Authority  No
Heritage and Conservation Register State Rail Authority of NSW1993335Paul Davies for SRA  No
S170 Heritage & Conservation Register Update2009 NSW Department of Commerce  Yes
Heritage Platforms Conservation Management Strategy2015 Australian Museum Consulting  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
WrittenJohn Forsyth Line Histories
WrittenRay Love2009Historical Research for RailCorp s170 Update
WrittenSingleton, CC,1965The Short North - The Sydney-Newcastle Link Railway, New South Wales Railways
WrittenState Rail Authority of New South Wales1995How and Why of Station Names. Fourth Edition

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: 4801038

Every effort has been made to ensure that information contained in the State Heritage Inventory is correct. If you find any errors or omissions please send your comments to the Database Manager.

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