Valentia Street Wharf and Waiting Shed | NSW Environment & Heritage

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Heritage

Valentia Street Wharf and Waiting Shed

Item details

Name of item: Valentia Street Wharf and Waiting Shed
Other name/s: Woolwich Wharf
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Transport - Water
Category: Wharf
Location: Lat: -33.83873333333334 Long: 151.17603333333332
Primary address: Valentia Street, Woolwich, NSW 2110
Local govt. area: Hunters Hill
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
Valentia StreetWoolwichHunters Hill  Primary Address

Statement of significance:

The Valentia Street Wharf is of historical significance for its association with the patterns of commuting and maritime use of Port Jackson throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. It is associated with the development of Hunters Hill as a residential and industrial suburb and with the history of ferry services on the Parramatta River for over a century and a half. The Valentia Street Wharf is a picturesque member of the group of public wharves throughout Port Jackson which are part of the historic passenger ferry trade on Port Jackson and their consistency in form and scale records their common origins, ownership and management.
Date significance updated: 10 Apr 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.

Description

Construction years: 1856-
Physical description: The Valentia Street Wharf is comprised of a floating pontoon of steel with a concrete deck, retained by steel piles and connected to the shore by a hinged metal-framed ramp with timber decking. The pontoon contains a rectangular waiting-shelter pavilion, framed in steel with a corrugated metal hipped gable roof and open sides. Steel-framed free-standing glazed panels provide wind-protection within the shelter.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Poor
Modifications and dates: Replaced 1993

History

Historical notes: The first wharf on the Valentia Street site was constructed in c1856 as part of a ferry service established by Hunters Hill residents, including Didier Joubert, to allow for the transport of carts and drays across the river to markets at regular times. At the time a single ferry service run by Edye manning was serving the community, but at inconvenient times, meaning farmers needed to overnight in Sydney in order to get to early markets.
A meeting of residents in July 1856 agreed to the idea of a new company and the building of a road from Ryde to Onions Point which could then connect with a steamer to Sydney, as well as encouraging the development of Onions Point. By 1861 a wharf was in place at Valentia Street, at the time called the Government Road in reference to the government installed electric telegraph line that terminated at the wharf. The wharf is shown on early subdivision plans as being a small, flat fronted wharf likely with a stone face. In a plan of 1861 the wharf is called Onions Wharf.
A plan of the wharf in 1916 shows it as being a jetty on timber piles extending from a reclaimed section of the foreshore, which is fronted in stone. Two land ties extend from the shore to stabilise the structure, with two dolphins (placed either side) to protect the approaches. A subdivision plan from c1925 for the Monte Cristo estate at Onions Point shows the extended wharf with a waiting room on the eastern side and a rubble wall fronted reclaimed area and wharf extension. During the 1950s a bus turning circle was created at the wharf. The old wharf was demolished in 1993 and replaced by the current structure, being a floating ferry wharf with waiting room, accessed from the shore via a suspended walkway. The stone steps and sea wall from the earlier wharf remain on the site.

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
Valentia Street Wharf and Waiting Shed is of significance for its role in the history of ferry commuting and maritime use of Port Jackson throughout the 19th and 20th centuries.
Valentia Street Wharf and Waiting Shed is associated with the development of Hunters Hill as a residential and industrial suburb and with the history of ferry services on the Parramatta River for over a century and a half.
SHR Criteria b)
[Associative significance]
Valentia Street Wharf and Waiting Shed is associated with the ferry operators Jules Joubert and Charles Jeanneret.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
Valentia Street Wharf and Waiting Shed is one of group of public wharves throughout Port Jackson whereby their consistency in form and scale records their common origins, ownership and management.
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
Not assessed.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
Valentia Street Wharf and Waiting Shed, with other wharves in Sydney, has the potential to provide a range of research opportunities associated with marine ecosystems and the durability of various materials in maritime environments.
SHR Criteria f)
[Rarity]
None
SHR Criteria g)
[Representativeness]
Valentia Street Wharf and Waiting Shed is a representative example of a public commuter ferry wharf typically found in Port Jackson.
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:

• The wharf should be retained and conserved as a ferry wharf. • Any alterations and additions should be in accordance with the significance of the wharf site and its relative tolerance for change. Specific Recommendations: • The form and fabric of the wharf are not key attributes of its significance and can be changed, as required, to maintain its current function: the passenger ferry activity. • The wharf waiting shelter provides opportunities for interpretation of the history and significance of the wharf, the ferry system and other heritage elements within their visual catchment which should be explored and developed.

Listings

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

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
NSW Maritime Heritage and Conservation Register201016Godden Mackay Logan  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
Map  NSW Maritime Plans and Surveys
WrittenMartin, M1994The Ferry Wharves of Hunter’s Hill, in The Hunter’s Hill Trust Journal Volume XXIII Nos 2-3, September 1994
WrittenMaunsell2007NSW Maritime Wharf Upgrade Study: Wharf Upgrade Strategy Plan, 31 October 2007

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

Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: State Government
Database number: 4920086


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