Summer Hill Railway Station Group | NSW Environment & Heritage

Culture and heritage


Summer Hill Railway Station Group

Item details

Name of item: Summer Hill Railway Station Group
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Transport - Rail
Category: Railway Platform/ Station
Primary address: Carlton Crescent, Summer Hill, NSW 2130
Local govt. area: Ashfield


North: Property boundary along Grosvenor Crescent; South: Property boundary along Carlton Crescent; East: 5 metres past the end of the platforms West: 5 metres past the end of the platforms. NOTE: The Summer Hill Conservation Area curtilage extends beyond this listing boundary - see LEP for details.
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
Carlton CrescentSummer HillAshfield  Primary Address


Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
RailCorpState Government 
RailCorpState Government 
RailCorpState Government 

Statement of significance:

Summer Hill Railway Station has local significance as the existing station arrangement dating from the 1891 quadruplication of the line has the ability to demonstrate the expansion of the railways in the late 19th century to accommodate increased suburban development, and for its collection of late 19th and early 20th century railway structures that collectively demonstrate a former era of travel. Designed under the direction of Commissioner Edward Eddy, the extant platform building although altered, demonstrates the first use of island platforms in NSW and is only one of four extant examples of 1891 platform buildings, known as the ‘Standard Eddy’ type. The 1913 booking office along Carlton Crescent, although altered, is a good example of a Federation style railway building that contributes to the streetscape of the local area.
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: NSW Government Railways
Builder/Maker: NSW Government Railways
Construction years: 1886-1990
Physical description: BUILDINGS
Platform building, Platform 1/2 (Type 10) (1892)
Booking Office, (1913)
Store in subway, (1926)
Movable items

Platforms: Platform 1/2, (1892), Platform 3, (1892)
Canopies, (modern)
Pedestrian Subway and entrances, (1892)

The entrance to Summer Hill Railway Station is from Grosvenor Crescent and from Carlton Crescent. The station has one island and one wayside platform, a building on Platform 1/2, a booking office along Carlton Crescent and a pedestrian subway which connects the station to the two roads on either side. There is commercial activity along Grosvenor Crescent and Carlton Crescent.

External: The ‘Standard Eddy’ building is a weatherboard building with toilets and a room that currently serves as a store. It has a Colorbond hipped roof behind a wide timber fascia. The windows have timber frames, flushed timber sills and single, fixed panes which are divided into six parts and are fitted with opaque glass. The door openings have timber frames, recently upgraded concrete slab thresholds, timber panel doors with six paned fanlights and aluminium kick plates.

Internal: The toilets have been refurbished and have new glazed ceramic wall tiles and patterned ceramic floor tiles.

External: The existing booking office and Station Manager’s office was originally the parcels and baggage office. The building form has been altered in various stages but it retains some of its original 1913 fabric. It is an oblong building with Flemish brick bond and a gabled hip roof made of Colorbond steel. While viewing from Carlton Crescent the building seems to be divided into two parts as the east end of the building steps back slightly. However a single roof covers both the parts. The west end of the building has an original sandstone cornice which has been removed at the east end of the building. The building has retained its original chimney. Window openings feature flat brick arches and carved sandstone brick sills with timber framed double hung windows, which have six paned top sashes and single pane bottom sashes. The windows are currently fitted with metal framed wire meshes. There are two ticket windows to the west face of the booking office which are small fixed clear glass windows fitted with aluminium roller shutters on the outside. One of the windows has an early timber frame and timber sill and is fitted the single glass and an inner metal roller shutter. The other window has an aluminium frame and sill. The doors to the east and west ends of the building are timber flushed panelled doors with timber frames. The door to the east end of the building also has a fly screen door attached to the outer side.

Internal: The building has two rooms with the room to the east end of the building subdivided into two parts by plasterboard partitions. The walls are rendered and painted but the brickwork is evident on the inside of the building. One of the rooms has a ceiling made of small corrugated iron sheeting and has vinyl flooring whereas the other room has asbestos cement panelled ceiling and carpeted floors. There is an original bricked in fireplace and chimney breast between the two rooms. Electrical and telecommunication wiring has been installed in a rather unsympathetic manner along the walls of the rooms.

The existing store in the subway was originally a booking office. It is a single room which has an original bricked up chimney breast and original lantern windows. The front half of this room (as it originally existed) currently accommodates a lift. The store also contains an air-conditioning unit which services the existing booking office along Carlton Crescent.

Platform 3 (Down) is a wayside platform with brick face. Platform 1 (Down) has an in-situ concrete face and Platform 2 (Up) has an original brick face and together they form an island platform arrangement. Platform 2 has been extended at city end with corrugated concrete panels. Platform 1 is not used by Summer Hill Railway Station although the tracks are used. All the platforms have asphalt surfaces.

The canopy on Platform1/2 spreads over the building on the platform and over part of the platform. It is a recent structure which comprises of a hipped roof with skylights and has integrated some of the original elements on the platform with newer ones. The roof is made of Colorbond steel and the skylights of clear glass and steel members. The canopy rests partly on original cast iron posts and early cast iron brackets, and partly on clear glass and steel mid height walls which also form an enclosure for seating on the platform. The canopy has a false plasterboard ceiling and a wide timber fascia.

The canopy on Platform 3 is a flat roof structure supported on original cast iron posts and early cast iron brackets. It has a wide timber fascia and a glazed gabled roof skylight in the centre. There are a series of smaller canopies at the west end of Platform 3 and these were constructed as part of the easy access upgrade of the station. These are hipped roof structures made of Colorbond steel and supported on metal columns and mid height brick walls. The canopies provide shelter for the lift on Platform 3. Two recent timber and glass structures with Colorbond skillion roofs form the entrance to the station from Carlton Crescent. Canopies with the same details mark the station entrance from Grosvenor Crescent and provide shelter for the lift that services this side of the station.

The subway is constructed of bricks walls the majority of which are original and it has recently added aluminium wall panels which accommodate electrical and CCTV equipment. It has a recently installed stainless steel finish ceiling. The stairs leading up from the subway onto the platforms have stainless steel handrails, and tiled risers and treads. There are two lifts in the subway which were installed as part of the easy access upgrade of the station. The exit from the subway to Platform 2 has a glass brick skylight incorporated as part of the ceiling.

Staff rooms: large number of objects in a tall timber and glass display cabinet: green and white first aid box No 26c, various bound station books and ledgers, cast iron ticket punch, two green cast iron date press stamps, leather mail bag, variety of small railway-related objects and memorabilia, steel oil can, collection of six Bakelite network telephone, brass oil lamp base, set of four hurricane lamps, timber box, tow orange hand lamps, cream telephone, two Ultimatic ticket stamp machines, an old lock, three railway coat-pins, and one medal. Objects on top of cabinet include: orange hand lamp, orange and white handheld horn marked “SRA of NSW No 28”, two canvas “Summer Hill” despatch bags. Large, metal wall-mounted electric clock. Red and white “Emergency Response” box with contents lists and contents including an orange hand lamp. First aid stretcher in yellow vinyl bag. In booking office: early cast iron safe with original drawers, two booking office coin (BOCs) trays in safe, SRA 1994 Staff Telephone Directory, hand-held horn marked “Station Manager Strathfield”, several grey plastic coin trays and another timber BOC. In storage in a filing cabinet: orange handheld lamp, four cast iron points clips, brass SRA SL padlock, collection of guard flags, set of ink stamps.

Near lift: brass plaque – “Summer Hill Easy Access Upgrade, 24 March 2014.

Store room behind lift: red cast iron safe, collection of stormwater grilles.

Store room on platform: tall, freestanding, two-door timber cupboard.

Based on the surviving documentation and the evidence on site it is unlikely there would be any potential archaeological remains at Summer Hill Railway Station.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
The building is a very good condition and no immediate maintenance is needed.

The Booking Office is in a good condition and needs no maintenance work in the near future.

The store is in a moderate condition. There is some peeling paint at ceiling level.

The platforms are in a good condition and are well maintained.

The canopies on Platforms 1, 2 and 3 are all in a good condition. In addition the canopies marking the entrance from Grosvenor Crescent and Carlton Crescent are also in a good condition.

The subway is in an overall good condition. However some of the original brickwork shows signs of wear and tear and deterioration of mortar between the joints of the brickwork.
Date condition updated:16 Apr 09
Modifications and dates: 1892: Station rebuilt in conjunction with quadruplication
1913: Parcels and baggage office (existing booking office) added
1918: Covering over stairways to platforms provided.
1926: Booking office (existing store) in subway added
1927: Up Fast Platform demolished for construction of new Main tracks; subway extended and bookstall erected in subway.
1928: Local and Suburban lines electrified to Homebush.
1946-1947: asphalting of platforms
1949: Parcels and baggage Office (existing booking office) altered
1994: Platform 3 extended
1955: Main lines electrified to Homebush.
1963: Kiosk built outside disused booking office.
1990s: Station upgraded.
2002-2004: Access works and upgrading.
2017: Bird Proofing, Landscaping improvements, Toilet refurbishments, Lighting LED replacements – All Vandalux and Pole top lights fittings replaced to LED fittings, KOP – Seats and Bins changed in accordance with KOP Catalogue.
Current use: Railway Station
Former use: Nil


Historical notes: The Main Western line to Parramatta Junction (Granville) was originally completed in 1855. The line opened on 26 September 1855 and was double track from Sydney to Newtown and then single track to Parramatta Junction (but duplicated in 1856). The line was built as a direct connection to Parramatta Junction and, subsequently, for the purpose of connecting Sydney with the major rural railways that were constructed across the Blue Mountains to Bathurst and across the Southern Highlands to Goulburn via Liverpool. There were few stops along the line between Sydney and Parramatta Junction and it was not the original intention of the line to serve suburban development. Changes to the line were more often related to the line’s long distance purpose than to the communities along it.

Traffic to the west and south (and later north) of the state brought the need to amplify the line, first in 1891 when it was quadrupled and later in 1927 when it was sextupled (to Homebush) and electrified. With both of these major changes the earlier stations were usually entirely demolished and replaced with a new station. The 1927 work completed this process with the complete replacement of Strathfield and much of Newtown Stations. During this time suburban development also extended west along the line and these new stations were thus specifically designed as full-scale suburban passenger stations rather than rural ‘halts’. The Engineer for Existing Lines, George Cowdery (appointed 1863), was a particularly strong influence on the architecture of this line, building particularly elegant stations in the late 1880s ahead of the 1891 quadruplication, in addition to replacing the original stone arch viaduct at Lewisham with iron truss bridges. Sextuplication in 1927 brought less change to most local stations (which were on the southern side), the new tracks being express ones on the northern side.

The original Summer Hill Station was opened on 15 September 1879. When opened, the station had two side platforms 15m long with a waiting shed on the Down platform (now the site of the island platform). A 1.8m wide subway was built in 1883 having steps at right angles to it at each end. This subway was 7.6m west of the present subway. New platforms and station buildings were erected in 1886. The Up building was of an unusual design and may have been designed by a church architect; there were no other station buildings of this design on the system.

In 1892, in conjunction with quadruplication, the station was rebuilt with standard timber buildings and awnings. In 1913 a parcels and baggage office was built on the Down side. In 1926 another booking office was built in the subway. In 1963 a kiosk was built outside the disused booking office.

The station buildings were extensively refurbished in the 1990s in a program that took account of heritage issues. While much of the original timber was damaged beyond salvage, the buildings were reconstructed and original materials reused where possible, including the cast iron vertical posts and awning brackets.

A large community protest in 2002 preserved the station by stopping the construction of a new overhead bridge with lifts there.

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
4. Settlement-Building settlements, towns and cities Towns, suburbs and villages-Activities associated with creating, planning and managing urban functions, landscapes and lifestyles in towns, suburbs and villages Impacts of railways on urban form-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
Summer Hill Railway Station has historical significance at a local level as the existing station arrangement dating from the 1891 quadruplication of the line has the ability to demonstrate the expansion of the railways in the late 19th century to accommodate increased suburban development. Although the station has been altered in various stages the existing 1890s platforms, platform building, pedestrian subway and the 1910s federation style booking office collectively demonstrate a former era of rail travel.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
Summer Hill Railway Station has local aesthetic significance as the booking office although altered considerably from its original configuration, is still an excellent example which showcases the use of Federation Style in early 20th century suburban railway station architecture. Located prominently along Carlton Crescent the building contributes to the streetscape of the local area. The 1890s ‘Standard Eddy’ platform building has been altered but it retains characteristic features of this type of station building, namely cantilevered awnings with wide fascia and most importantly the purpose-designed location on an island platform. The 1890s subway has been highly modified but it retains a few characteristic features, namely the former booking office which has been partly converted into a store and lift shaft and the stairs that connect the street level to the platforms and platform buildings.
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.
SHR Criteria f)
Summer Hill Railway Station is significant in terms of rarity as it is one of the four known stations including Homebush, Katoomba and Croydon which have extant ‘Standard Eddy’ platform buildings. The booking office along Carlton Crescent has aesthetic rarity as it is one of a few early 20th century railway station buildings which employed Federation Style architecture with Queen Anne influences.
SHR Criteria g)
As a whole Summer Hill Railway Station with its collection of structures including the brick subway and platforms collectively represents typical early 20th century suburban stations. The platform building at Summer Hill Railway Station has been modified externally and internally but as it retains characteristic features of this type of building and is representative of the ‘Standard Eddy’ platform building.
Integrity/Intactness: Overall Summer Hill Railway Station has a low level of integrity as most of the original fabric has been altered considerably. PLATFORM BUILDINGBased upon site inspections it would appear that the building has been altered externally in terms of its window and door openings, which seem to have been refitted with opaque glass to the windows and new panelled doors. It has also been altered significantly in terms of its internal finishes. BOOKING OFFICE The booking office has been highly modified but it retains some original brickwork, sandstone cornices, a few sandstone window sills and flat arched window openings. However the use of Colorbond for the roof and the missing sandstone cornice to the east end of the building has compromised the overall integrity of the building. Its interiors have also been substantially altered. STORE IN SUBWAY The store in the subway which was originally the booking office has been compromised to a great extent as its front half has been absorbed by the lift. However the existing bricked up chimney breast and the lantern windows are original fabric. CANOPIESThe canopies on Platforms 1, 2 and 3 are all recent constructions. PEDESTRIAN SUBWAY The subway has been altered significantly with the recent access upgrade project but it retains most of the original brickwork. However its integrity has been compromised with the removal of sections of stairs on the side of Grosvenor Crescent and Carlton Crescent.
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 Study1999SRA99State Rail Authority  No
Heritage and Conservation Register State Rail Authority of NSW1993305Paul Davies for SRA  No
S170 Heritage & Conservation Register Update2009 OCP Architects  Yes
Heritage Platforms Conservation Management Strategy2015 Australian Museum Consulting  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
WrittenJohn Forsyth2007New South Wales Railway Stations: an alphabetical arrangement of railway station and place names
WrittenRobert Lee1988The Greatest Public Work: the New South Wales railways 1848 to 1889
WrittenTony Prescott2009Historical Research for RailCorp's S170 Update Project

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: 4801099

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