Lewisham Railway viaducts over Long Cove Creek | NSW Environment & Heritage

Culture and heritage

Heritage

Lewisham Railway viaducts over Long Cove Creek

Item details

Name of item: Lewisham Railway viaducts over Long Cove Creek
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Transport - Rail
Category: Railway Bridge/ Viaduct
Location: Lat: -33.8922684168 Long: 151.1445915490
Primary address: Great Southern and Western Railway, Lewisham/Summer Hill, NSW 2049
Local govt. area: Marrickville
Local Aboriginal Land Council: Metropolitan
Property description
Lot/Volume CodeLot/Volume NumberSection NumberPlan/Folio CodePlan/Folio Number
PART PORTION1 DP1003675
PART LOT45 DP869476

Boundary:

North: Outside edge of the viaduct South: Outside edge of the viaduct (inclusive of Whipple Truss) East: 5 metres beyond the end of the viaduct section West: 5 metres beyond the end of the viaduct section
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
Great Southern and Western RailwayLewisham/Summer HillMarrickville  Primary Address
Grosvenor CrescentSummer HillAshfield  Alternate Address
Great Southern and Western RailwayLewisham/Summer HillAshfield  Alternate Address

Owner/s

Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
RailCorpState Government03 Nov 98

Statement of significance:

Lewisham viaduct over Long Cove Creek has state significance as the site of different railway underbridges which represent significant phases in the development of the NSW railways. At the time of its construction it was the largest bridge on the line; the subsequent use of the extant Whipple Trusses (on display on-site) was historically significant as it was one of only four bridges in NSW to employ such Trusses; the addition of the existing Warren Trusses to the north side of the viaduct dates from the 1926-27 sextuplication of the line. The viaduct with the Warren Trusses which has remained largely intact forms a significant landmark in the local area. The viaduct is also significant for its association with NSW Railways Engineer-in-Chief John Whitton and his successor George Cowdery.
Date significance updated: 01 Sep 10
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: STRUCTURES
Girders: plate web girders on local lines (1993)
Girders: plate web girders on suburban lines (1998)
Trusses: Warren trusses on main lines (1926)
Display Trusses: Whipple trusses displayed under viaduct (1886)

CONTEXT
The Lewisham viaducts trusses are located 0.25 km west of Lewisham Station. The structure which comprises of recently installed plate web girders and original Warren trusses carries local, suburban and main lines over Long Cove Creek. The original Whipple trusses which have been replaced by the plate web girders have been removed and displayed adjacent to the viaducts.

GIRDERS (On local lines)
There are three pairs of double track, welded plate web girders which carry two local lines over Long Cove Creek. Each span of steel girders is 27.13 m and are supported by brick piers and abutments.

GIRDERS (On suburban lines)
There are three pairs of double track, welded plate web girders which carry two suburban lines over Long Cove Creek. The girders are made of steel and are supported on brick piers and abutments.

TRUSSES (On main lines)
There are three pairs of single track deck Warren trusses which carry the main lines over Long Cove Creek. Each span is 27.13 m and supported by brick piers and abutments.

DISPLAY TRUSSES (Displayed under viaduct)
A pair of original Whipple trusses has been retained on site. These are wrought-iron, pin-jointed deck trusses which were developed in America.

ARCHAEOLOGICAL POTENTIAL
The Lewisham viaducts have moderate archaeological potential. Any evidence of the 1882 Lattice trusses on the suburban lines has been removed when replacement with plate web girders in 1998. However the pair of original 1886 Whipple trusses that have been retained on site and put on display under the viaduct, and provide evidence of the historic structures that were employed over the viaducts.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
GIRDERS (On local lines)
The girders are in good condition.

GIRDERS (On suburban lines)
The girders are in good condition.

TRUSSES (On main lines)
The Warren trusses are in good condition.

DISPLAY TRUSSES (Displayed under viaduct)
The Whipple trusses under the viaducts are in good condition.
Date condition updated:01 Sep 10
Modifications and dates: 1928: Local and Suburban lines electrified to Homebush.
1955: Main lines electrified to Homebush.
1993: Whipple truss spans replaced.
Current use: Railway Viaduct
Former use: Nil

History

Historical notes: The first section of railway built in New South Wales was opened as a single line from the Cleveland Paddocks (near Cleveland Street overbridge) to a site west of Granville on 26 September 1855. It was duplicated by June 1856.

The largest structure on the line was the 8-span stone arch viaduct over Long Cove Creek on the western side of Petersham. By the 1880s deterioration lead to its replacement by 3 pairs of 90-foot Whipple trusses, they were American type wrought iron, pin-jointed deck trusses. The bridge was only one of two bridges in NSW to employ the Whipple Truss (the other being a road bridge over the Shoalhaven River at Nowra). These were subsequently replaced by welded, deck plate web girders in 1993. A pair of the Whipple trusses are on display on the southern side of the Lewisham Viaduct.

Two more tracks (quadruplication) were added in 1892 using 3 double track deck trusses of the British lattice type. These were also replaced by welded, deck plate web girders in 1998. Two further tracks were added for the sextuplication during 1925/27, on the northern side of the viaduct, for which three pairs of riveted steel, deck Warren trusses were erected. They are still in use.

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]
Lewisham viaduct over Long Cove Creek has historical significance at a state level as the site of different railway underbridges which represent significant phases in the development of the NSW railways. The stone arch viaduct built during the first phase of NSW railway construction in the 1850s was the largest structure on line; its subsequent replacement with Whipple Trusses in the 1880s was historically significant as it was one of only four bridges in NSW to employ such trusses; the 1890s addition of British lattice deck trusses to accommodate extra tracks represented the 1892 quadruplication of the line and the 1920s addition of currently used Warren Trusses to the north side of the viaduct demonstrated the 1926-27 sextuplication of the line. The currently displayed Whipple Truss on site and the extant Warren Trusses are able to collectively demonstrate the growth of the railways during the late 19th and early 20th century.
SHR Criteria b)
[Associative significance]
Lewisham viaduct is significant for its association with NSW Railways Engineer-in-Chief John Whitton who was responsible for encouraging the use of Whipple Trusses at the underbridge in the 1880s. His successor George Powdery was influential in implementing the use of Warren Trusses for the 1920s sextuplication.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
Lewisham viaduct with the Warren Trusses which has remained largely intact has local aesthetic significance as it forms a significant landmark in the local area.

The viaduct has state technical significance as at the time of its construction in the 1850s, it was the largest structure on line and to date it is the largest underbridge on this section of the railway. The Whipple Truss displayed on site and the Warren Trusses which are still in use exemplify the technology employed for railway underbridges during the late 19th and early 20th century.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
Lewisham viaduct has moderate research potential as the pair of original 1886 Whipple trusses that have been retained and put on display adjacent to the viaduct have a high level of integrity and are able to provide evidence of late 19th century engineering technology that was employed on two sites within NSW. The historic engineering marker placed on site by the Institution of Engineers Australia demonstrates that the site is a benchmark in terms of the engineering technology that was used for the viaducts.
SHR Criteria f)
[Rarity]
Lewisham viaduct has rarity in terms of the Whipple trusses as the Lewisham viaduct was one of two such bridges in NSW which employed the Whipple Truss, the other being a road bridge over the Shoalhaven River at Nowra. Similarly the extant and operational Warren Trusses are rare on the New South Wales railway system.
SHR Criteria g)
[Representativeness]
Lewisham viaduct is representative of Warren trusses bridge construction.
Integrity/Intactness: The integrity of the Lewisham viaduct as a whole is considered to be moderate. The original 1926 Warren trusses carrying the main lines over the viaducts have been retained in their original condition and functioning. However the removal of the original Whipple and Lattice trusses and their replacement with modern plate web girders has reduced the integrity of the viaducts.

GIRDERS (On local lines)
These are recent constructions.

GIRDERS (On suburban lines)
These are recent constructions.

TRUSSES (On main lines)
The 1926 Warren trusses retain their original fabric.

DISPLAY TRUSSES (Displayed under viaduct)
The Whipple trusses retain their 1886 original fabric.
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
HERITAGE ACT 1977
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.

FRANK SARTOR
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

Listings

Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Heritage Act - State Heritage Register 0104302 Apr 99 271546
Heritage Act - s.170 NSW State agency heritage register     

References, internet links & images

None

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

rez
(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: 5012079


Every effort has been made to ensure that information contained in the State Heritage Inventory is correct. If you find any errors or omissions please send your comments to the Database Manager.

All information and pictures on this page are the copyright of the Heritage Division or respective copyright owners.