Gundagai Railway Station and yard group | NSW Environment & Heritage

Culture and heritage


Gundagai Railway Station and yard group

Item details

Name of item: Gundagai Railway Station and yard group
Type of item: Complex / Group
Group/Collection: Transport - Rail
Category: Railway Platform/ Station
Location: Lat: -35.0652925262 Long: 148.1143469370
Primary address: Cootamundra-Tumut railway, Gundagai, NSW 2722
Local govt. area: Gundagai
Local Aboriginal Land Council: Brungle/Tumut
Property description
Lot/Volume CodeLot/Volume NumberSection NumberPlan/Folio CodePlan/Folio Number
LOT304 DP1179804


The listing boundary is the property boundary of the railway yard from the small timber bridge at the eastern extremity of the yard, following both the northern and southern property boundaries to the cutting at the western end of the yard.
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
Cootamundra-Tumut railwayGundagaiGundagai  Primary Address
Rusconi PlaceGundagaiGundagai  Alternate Address


Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
RailCorpState Government30 Oct 98

Statement of significance:

Gundagai is a highly significant site being the first crossing of the Murrumbidgee River by the Hume highway. There is an excellent group of railway buildings and items here from the late 1880's. In particular the relationship of the station, yard and timber road and rail viaducts makes the site of particular significance. The quality of the buildings also reflects the importance of the location at the time of the railway opening. The completeness of the site and its picturesque setting overlooking the valley add to the quality of the site and display how the railway was integrated into the existing environment and townscape. The railway station although removed from the centre of the town is an important civic element in the townscape.
Date significance updated: 27 Nov 00
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: John Whitton
Physical description: BUILDINGS
station building - type 4, timber standard roadside station,1886
signal box - skillion roof on platform
goods shed - 72'x22' side shed, sub type 3 corrugated iron
crane - T151, 5 tonne jib crane

Main passenger building - large timber framed and weatherboard clad single storey structure with verandahs to each main elevation and brick chimneys.

The signal box - small timber framed and weatherboard clad building with a skillion roof constructed to house the track signalling control equipment includign an interlocking machine. The goods shed - standard side platform type timber framed goods shed with iron bracketed roof eaves. Its gabled roof is slated (not iron ) and is very unusual in New South Wales. It stands on a brick base with timber platforms and extended line platforms leading to the pillar crane. (Butcher 1998)
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
All buildings in good condition except for part of goods shed in fair to poor condition. (Butcher 1998)
Date condition updated:27 Nov 00
Modifications and dates: In 1926 the western linked part was rebuilt to provide facilities for the Refreshment Room. In 1927 alterations to provide ladies waiting room. (Butcher 1998)
Current use: Under Restoration
Former use: Railway Station


Historical notes: Following 20 years of community and political representation the station was officially opened on 21 July 1886. It was designed by John Whitton the Engineer in Chief, S.R.A. In 1903 the branch line was extended to Tumut, following the completion of the railway bridge across the Murrumbidgee River flood plain.

The precinct environment is probably unique in railway terms in that it is sited on the side of a hill formation above a flood plain and the rail track access and the goods yard have been built by rock excavation into the hillside. This has resulted in a somewhat restricted site compared to the normal railway yard, particularly in view of the original intention for this station to be the terminus for the line.

For 98 years it was the hub of Gundagai's existence carrying freight, passengers and mail to and from the cities of Sydney and Melbourne.

Following damaging floods in 1984 the branch line was closed and in 1989 the State Rail Authroity abandoned the building. In 1994 Gundagai Historic Bridges Inc. was granted a 25 year lease of the disused and vandalized station and precincts. (Butcher 1998)

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 (none)-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
The station building and goods shed are unique in New South Wales. Reflects the extent of political involvement in railway management by the erection of elaborate facilities on a branch line. It became the hub of social life in Gundagai and and has strong links with town development. (Butcher 1998)
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
The railway precinct environment is uniquely sited on the side of a hill formation above a flood plain. The railway track and goods yard have been built by rock excavation into the hillside. The station overlooks the Murrumbidgee Valley and is itself overlooked by the town. (Butcher 1998)
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
It is significant to the people and trade that travelled to and from Gundagai using the rail system. When it is restored it will once again have social impact through community. (Butcher 1998)
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
It is the longest timber platform building in the state. The Signal Box has one of the oldest mechanical interlocking frames in the state. (Butcher 1998)
SHR Criteria f)
This item is assessed as historically rare. This item is assessed as scientifically rare. This item is assessed as arch. rare. This item is assessed as socially rare.
SHR Criteria g)
For its social significance. (Butcher 1998)
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.

Procedures /Exemptions

Section of actDescriptionTitleCommentsAction date
57(2)Exemption to allow workStandard Exemptions SCHEDULE OF STANDARD EXEMPTIONS
Notice of Order Under Section 57 (2) of the Heritage Act 1977

I, the Minister for Planning, pursuant to subsection 57(2) of the Heritage Act 1977, on the recommendation of the Heritage Council of New South Wales, do by this Order:

1. revoke the Schedule of Exemptions to subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act made under subsection 57(2) and published in the Government Gazette on 22 February 2008; and

2. grant standard exemptions from subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act 1977, described in the Schedule attached.

Minister for Planning
Sydney, 11 July 2008

To view the schedule click on the Standard Exemptions for Works Requiring Heritage Council Approval link below.
Sep 5 2008

PDF Standard exemptions for works requiring Heritage Council approval


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Heritage Act - State Heritage Register 0115902 Apr 99 271546
Heritage Act - s.170 NSW State agency heritage register     

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
WrittenDavid Sheedy Heritage Architect1996Gundagai Railway Precint Conservation Management Plan
WrittenJessica Butcher, Sam Asimus, Stuart Sharp1996Road to Gundagai Railway Vision Statement
WrittenManidis Roberts Consultants1990Gundagai Railway Station & Environs Tourism Plan
WrittenR. Scrymoeour1991The Rise & Fall of the Cootamundra-Tumut Branch Line
WrittenRobert Butcher1998NSW State Heritage Inventory Form

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

(Click on thumbnail for full size image and image details)

Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: Heritage Office
Database number: 5012045

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