Gerringong Railway Dairy Siding Remains | NSW Environment & Heritage

Culture and heritage


Gerringong Railway Dairy Siding Remains

Item details

Name of item: Gerringong Railway Dairy Siding Remains
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Farming and Grazing
Category: Dairy
Primary address: 18 Belinda Street, Gerringong, NSW 2533
Local govt. area: Kiama
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
18 Belinda StreetGerringongKiama  Primary Address

Statement of significance:

The Gerringong Dairy is historically significant for its ability to illustrate the development of the dairy industry in the local area during the 1930s. It is associated with the industrialisation of dairy farming in the Illawarra region and linking by rail to the Sydney markets. The siding remains contribute to the evidence of the use of the complex.
Date significance updated: 16 Sep 13
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.


Construction years: 1907-1936
Physical description: SITE ELEMENTS
Section of rail siding remains

The site is located opposite Gerringong Station and directly in front of the dairy shed buildings. A road runs between the dairy and the station, leading to the station car park.

There is rail siding running along the dairy platform. It is bedded in a strip of concrete. It appears to continue for the length of the platform to the buffer stop, though it has been covered in grass, except for a small section in the middle of the platform.

There is a wooden buffer located at the end of the platform.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
The site is in moderate condition. The rails have been overgrown with grass.
Date condition updated:16 Sep 13
Current use: Disused
Former use: Dairy siding


Historical notes: The first European settlers in the area were red cedar cutters, who were first recorded as having visited and logged in the area in 1814. As in much of coastal New South Wales, the cleared land was used for dairy farming and cedar cutting died out, as the cedar trees disappeared. Dairy farming became the predominant primary industry.

In February 1888 the Gerringong Co-Operative Dairy Society was formed and until it closed c2000 it was the oldest continually-operating dairy co-operative in Australia. The Co-operative began operations in a timber building erected by J B Taylor on the site of the present Mayflower Retirement Village. Directors were Messrs. G J Hindmarsh, Miller, Lee, Bailey, Jordan, Maynes, Wilson, Rutledge and Sharpe. In June 1908 the Co-op was transferred to a brick building near the local railway station.

Gerringong station opened on 2 June 1893. With the extension of the line from Kiama to Bomaderry, it was now possible for the co-op to have its own rail siding and it was decided that cartage costs would be cheaper if the factory was sited closer to the rail line. A dead-end siding was opened for the factory on 7th September 1907. A produce store was added in 1935, and the rail siding was extended and completed in 1936. This allowed the direct transfer of milk to the South Coast Milk Train from its own sidingHardware, building supplies and other merchandising outlets appearing in the 1970’s, with a further extension in 1982. (

The siding consisted of a single lead trailing to Sydney bound trains. This meant that it was easy to shunt to pick up loaded wagons bound for Sydney, but not easy to leave empty wagons from Sydney.
A special method was therefore used to shunt the siding in the Nowra bound direction. The train would stop before the turnout to the siding and both ends of the milk wagon(s) were uncoupled. The train would rush forward, giving the milk wagons a momentary tug, and as soon as the front part of the train had cleared the turnout, the turnout would be changed into the siding and the milk wagons would coast into the siding where the guard would apply the brakes at the appropriate time. The locomotive would then reverse to pick up the remainder of the train. (Milk, Gerringong and Shunting Facing Turnouts Parker, Bruce Australian Railway Historical Society Bulletin, October 1996 pp291-294).

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Pastoralism-Activities associated with the breeding, raising, processing and distribution of livestock for human use Transporting livestock and their products-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
The siding is historically important as part of the Gerringong Dairy complex, illustrating the development of the dairy industry in Kiama and the advancement of milk industrialisation and transport via the South Coast Milk Train linking Kiama directly to Sydney.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
The site contributes to the understanding of industrail processes.
SHR Criteria f)
The dairy is one of two inter-war complexes in the Kiama area.
Integrity/Intactness: Siding has been cut off from main line, however demonstrates function and relationship to the dairy complex.
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 register     

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
Electronic History Articles
WrittenKiama Council Gerringong Dairy Co-op, State Heritage Inventory
WrittenParker, Bruce1996Milk, Gerringong and Shunting Facing Turnouts

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: 4807651

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