Leightonfield Railway Station Group | NSW Environment & Heritage

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Heritage

Leightonfield Railway Station Group

Item details

Name of item: Leightonfield Railway Station Group
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Transport - Rail
Category: Railway Platform/ Station
Primary address: Christina Road, Leightonfield, NSW 2163
Local govt. area: Bankstown

Boundary:

North: Property boundary parallel to Christina RoadSouth: Property boundary (including the footbridge)East: 5 metres from end of platformWest: 5 metres from end of platform
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
Christina RoadLeightonfieldBankstown  Primary Address

Owner/s

Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
RailCorpState Government 
RailCorpState Government 
RailCorpState Government 

Statement of significance:

Leightonfield Railway Station has local significance as a station which represents the expansion of railway services during World War II. The station is historically associated with the former Commonwealth Munitions Factory, the simple and utilitarian design of the station and its 1940s platform buildings demonstrating the urgency with which the station was established in 1942 to cater to passenger traffic to the factory. The 1940s platform buildings are examples of interwar railway structures which are able to demonstrate a shift away from the more ornate architectural style of earlier 1920s platform buildings. The 1940s ramped footbridge has been altered considerably but it is one of the earliest examples of the use of ramps instead of stairs.
Date significance updated: 11 Sep 09
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: NSW Government Railways
Builder/Maker: NSW Government Railways
Physical description: BUILDINGS
Platform Building, Platform 1 (Type 13) (1942)
Platform Building, Platform 2 (Type 13) (1942)

STRUCTURES
Platforms 1-2, (1942)
Ramped Footbridge and stairs, (1942, 1994)

CONTEXT
Leightonfield Railway Station is entered from Christina Road via a ramp leading up to the booking office and Platform 1. Access is also from Monier Square to the south, via the footbridge. To the north of the station is an industrial area and to the south is the adjacent railway sidings and further south, there is an industrial area.

PLATFORM BUILDING- Platform 1 (1942)
External: The building is supported on exposed concrete piers, an economical way of raising the platform level to the height required for the trains. The building is a timber framed building with rusticated weatherboard cladding. The relatively complicated hipped roof form has a series of different ridge heights and valley sections. The roof is clad with corrugated steel which has replaced original corrugated asbestos cement sheets. The overhanging eaves have fibre cement sheet lining to the soffits. An air-conditioning unit has been installed on the north elevation. The external wall to the men’s toilets at the eastern end of the building, according to original drawing, is constructed in concrete to mid height, and detailed to form the urinals to the inside, with the external face cement rendered to match the weatherboards. There are original timber box framed windows which are a combination of double hung, fixed sash and louvres (to the toilet and kitchenette windows). Original glazing bars and some original glazing remain and some glass has been replaced using diamond pattern vandal proof fibreglass sheeting. Original architraves and timber sills remain. Original external doors have been replaced. The doors to the general waiting room have been replaced with security grilles.

The original barriers to the booking area, at the western end of the building have been removed, and a brick wall now closes off a section of the opening onto the platform. It appears that at some stage this wall may have returned to the north as well to form a kiosk (c.1967). A modern steel fence has been constructed on either side of the ramp to the footbridge and continues down the ramped access path to Christina Road.

The cantilevered awning is supported by steel brackets, made up of standard steel sections, and is not attached to the timber building. The vertical steel section sits on a concrete footing, at ground level, and provides support to the rear of the platform. The soffit of the awning is the underside of the corrugated steel roofing, which is fixed to purlins running over the top of the brackets. There is a timber screen to the east of the platform building, constructed with vertical timber framing and weatherboard cladding (on the north face only). The awning runs the entire length of the building and the screens at either end. Modern signage and equipment has been fixed to the building.

Internal: The building comprises of a booking office, ladies waiting room & toilet, general waiting room, store room and men’s toilet. The booking office has original timber floors, painted fibre cement and Masonite sheeting to walls (original vents at high level) and ceiling with ovolo cornice moulding. The original ticket window to the western elevation remains, with original timber architraves around windows and door opening. The original storage unit to north-east corner remains. Horizontal security bars fitted to windows on north elevation.

The ladies waiting room & toilet has original timber floors to waiting area with cover moulding as a skirting, and concrete floor to the toilet area. There is painted fibre cement sheeting and Masonite to walls and ceiling with ovolo cornice moulding. The original timber architraves around windows and door openings remain as does the original timber bench seating. The original toilet cubicle partitions and flush panel doors remain.

The general waiting room has original timber floors, painted fibre cement and Masonite sheeting to walls (original vents at high level) and ceiling with ovolo cornice moulding. The original timber architraves around the windows and door opening and the original timber bench seating remains.
The store room has original timber floors and shelving and original timber architraves around windows. The walls have exposed timber framing, there are no linings to the store room (except for the ceiling), and all the surfaces are unpainted. Additional shelving has been installed on the east elevation.

The men’s toilet comprises of a reinforced concrete floor, painted fibre cement and Masonite sheeting to ceilings and internal walls, weatherboards on some external walls and cement rendered finish on northern elevation (half height). The original toilet cubicle partitions and flush panel doors remain.

PLATFORM BUILDING- Platform 2 (1942)
External: Supported on exposed concrete piers, the building is a timber framed building with rusticated weatherboard cladding. The original hipped roof form has been replaced with a reversed skillion roof with trough profiled steel roof sheeting. The rainwater goods were also reconfigured to suit the new roof form. Timber box framed window shown on original plans does not exist. The ticket window on the east elevation has also been removed. The original external door has been replaced. The doors to the general waiting room have been replaced with security grilles.

The original barriers to the booking area, at the western end of the building have been removed, and a new steel railing fence has been installed to the south and east of the booking area. This fence runs the length of the rear of the platform on both sides of the platform building.

The cantilevered awning is supported by original hardwood beams which continue through the building to bear on the southern wall, and are supported by posts to the western end. The soffit of the awning is the underside of the profiled steel roofing, which is fixed to purlins running over the top of the beams. The fascia detail is in keeping with original detail as shown on drawings. Modern signage and equipment has been fixed to the building.

Internal: the building contains a waiting room and a store room which was formerly the booking office. The waiting room has original timber floors and painted fibre cement and Masonite sheeting to walls with the original timber architraves around the door opening. The ceiling is unlined and the underside of the steel roof sheeting is exposed, with a quadrant moulding at the junction with the wall. Based on the original plans, it appears that the internal wall to the booking office (now store room) has been moved to the east. The original timber bench seating remains.

PLATFORMS (1942)
Platform 1 (Up) and Platform 2 (Down) are both wayside platforms. Both the platforms are elevated above the ground with the help of original exposed steel frames on concrete footings. The deck of each platform is supported by a horizontal member connecting three vertical steel posts (the post at the rear of the platform also becomes the support for the awning over, where it corresponds with the steel awning brackets). Precast concrete slabs have replaced the original timber platform surfaces.

RAMPED FOOTBRIDGE & STAIRS (1942, 1994)
The steel footbridge is supported on the original trestles. The original ramps to north and south (with original concrete deck and wire mesh balustrade) still remain. There is a new steel balustrade to the top of the footbridge and a new steel and concrete stair down on to Platform 2. All existing steel was refurbished when the new stair was constructed in c.1994.

LANDSCAPE/NATURAL FEATURES
Ramped access to Christina Road.

MOVEABLE ITEMS
Original drinking fountain at the eastern end of Platform 1
Desk and safe in station manager’s office

ARCHAEOLOGICAL POTENTIAL
Based on the surviving documentation and the evidence on site it is unlikely there would be any potential archaeological remains at Leightonfield Railway Station.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
PLATFORM BUILDINGS
Good condition - some modifications have occurred to doors and windows, however a considerable amount of original fabric remains internally and externally.

PLATFORMS
Good condition

AWNINGS & TIMBER SCREEN
Good condition. Some damage to end grain of vertical timber framing to screen.

RAMPED FOOTBRIDGE & STAIRS
Good condition
Date condition updated:08 Jul 09
Modifications and dates: c.1967: Kiosk built in Booking Area on Platform 1
Post 1980: Asbestos Roofing to Platform 1 and timber to platform surfaces replaced.
c.1994: Footbridge is refurbished
Current use: Railway Station
Former use: Nil

History

Historical notes: By the 1920s a decision had been made to extend the Lidcombe-Regents Park railway to Cabramatta as a relief to the Main West and Main South via Granville and this was completed in 1924. The work also involved major reconstruction of the original Lidcombe-Regents Park section of the line. Goods trains were operating on the line from 15 May 1924 and passenger trains operated from 19 October.

Leightonfield station was opened on 21 August 1942 as an urgent measure to provide passenger facilities to the nearby Commonwealth Munitions Factory that opened in 1941. The platform buildings, footbridge and Commonwealth sidings were transferred from the Commonwealth Government to the State Government on 1 February 1962.

The station’s construction is extremely simple and utilitarian and was an early example of the use of ramps instead of stairs. Leightonfield is rare for a suburban station in having had a timber platform, a reflection of the economy of its wartime construction (timber now replaced). The footbridge was constructed in 1941.

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 Making Railway Journeys-
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 Transport of Goods-
7. Governing-Governing Defence-Activities associated with defending places from hostile takeover and occupation Manufacturing defence equipment and munitions-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
Leightonfield Railway Station is historically significant at a local level as a station which represents the expansion of railway services during World War II. The station is historically associated with the former Commonwealth Munitions Factory, the simple and utilitarian design of the station and its 1940s platform buildings demonstrating the urgency with which the station was established in 1942 to cater to passenger traffic to the factory.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
Leightonfield Railway Station has local aesthetic significance with its 1940s ‘Railway Domestic’ buildings located on Platform 1 and 2. While the building on Platform 1 has some characteristic features of this type of station building in the Sydney Metropolitan region namely a hipped roof and domestic proportions, the building on Platform 2 has domestic proportions but its significance has been affected by the replacement of its original hipped roof with a skillion roof. However despite alterations both the buildings have simple and utilitarian designs and are examples of interwar railway structures which are able to demonstrate a shift in the style from the earlier more ornate ‘initial island’ platform buildings. The use of weatherboard for these buildings also reflects the economy of wartime construction.
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 past.
SHR Criteria f)
[Rarity]
The buildings and structures are common types of standard designs.
SHR Criteria g)
[Representativeness]
The building on Platform 1 retains considerable amount of original fabric and is therefore a good representation of this type of station building. However the building on Platform 2 has been altered to a great extent, and it no longer retains basic characteristics of its style, and is therefore not representative of this type.
Although the footbridge has been altered it retains the characteristic superstructure of footbridges and is representative of standard footbridge design. The footbridge was identified as an item of moderate heritage significance in the comparative analysis from the 2016 ‘Railway Footbridges Heritage Conservation Strategy’.
Integrity/Intactness: Leightonfield Railway Station has a high level of integrity as the building on Platform 1 is in a relatively intact condition, as is the footbridge. The modifications to the building on Platform 2 has impacted the significance somewhat, but as the station is such a unique example of platform buildings, ramped footbridge, and platform construction the overall integrity is considered to be maintained.PLATFORM BUILDING (Platform 1)The 1942 building retains considerable amount of original fabric, internally and externally. Any modifications made do not distract from the integrity of the building.PLATFORM BUILDING (Platform 2)The 1942 building is in good condition but has been modified significantly. The new roof form changes the appearance of this building, and therefore reduces the integrity of the structure. Still a large quantity of original fabric remains.PLATFORMSThe original 1942 timber platforms have been replaced with concrete slabs; the removal of this unique feature reduces the integrity of the platforms, however the general form of the platforms which are supported on steel posts remains intact.RAMPED FOOTBRIDGE & STAIRSThese structures were refurbished c. 1994, and despite changes to the balustrade and stair, the works have not affected the integrity of this structure.
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.

Listings

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

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
State Rail Authority Heritage Register Study1999SRA113State Rail Authority  No
S170 Heritage & Conservation Register Update2009 OCP Architects  Yes
Heritage Platforms Conservation Management Strategy2015 Australian Museum Consulting  Yes
Railway Footbridges Heritage Conservation Strategy 2016 NSW Government Architect’s Office Heritage Group  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
WrittenJohn Forsyth2007New South Wales Railway Stations: an alphabetical arrangement of railway station and place names
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: 4801113


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