Tenterfield Post Office & Quarters | NSW Environment & Heritage

Culture and heritage


Tenterfield Post Office & Quarters

Item details

Name of item: Tenterfield Post Office & Quarters
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Postal and Telecommunications
Category: Post Office
Location: Lat: -29.0552421121 Long: 152.0191176320
Primary address: 225 Rouse Street, Tenterfield, NSW 2372
Parish: Tenterfield
County: Clive
Local govt. area: Tenterfield
Local Aboriginal Land Council: Moombahlene
Property description
Lot/Volume CodeLot/Volume NumberSection NumberPlan/Folio CodePlan/Folio Number
LOT1 DP776480
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
225 Rouse StreetTenterfieldTenterfieldTenterfieldClivePrimary Address


Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
Australia PostFederal Government 

Statement of significance:

The Tenterfield Post Office and Quarters is important at the State level as a substanital Italianate public building with corner tower, representative of the work of the Colonial Architect's Office under the direction of James Barnet. Its picturesque massing and French Second Empire influence are important elements the, design of the tower roof comparing with Forbes (1881). It is one of the grandest and most prominent buildings in Tenterfield and an intrinsic part of the towns social history. It forms part of a group which includes the School of Arts, a hotel and several shops (Australia Post Historic Properties Survey - NSW.)
Date significance updated: 10 Dec 99
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: NSW Colonial Architect's Office under James Barnet
Builder/Maker: T & J McGuaran, later TA Lewis.
Construction years: 1881-
Physical description: A two-storey stuccoed Italianate post office with single-storey parapeted colonnade and three-storey clock tower with French Second Empire mansard roof. The colonnade has arched openings with drip moulds and rendered keystones, and the parapet has a deep entablature with detil moulding. A front extension continues the theme of the colonnade, but in a more austere manner. The upper floor windows are segmentally arched, with a deep string course, and there are paired brackets to the eaves of the hipped corrugated iron roof. The clock tower has Tuscan corner pilasters to the third level and features clock faces to all sides. The steep mansard roof has a widow's walk with cast iron balustrade, and large ocular vents to each face. The Quarters are entered from the side street through a skillion-roofed timber verandah with paired posts. (Australia Post Historic Properties Survey - NSW.)
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Physical condition is good.
Date condition updated:01 Dec 99
Modifications and dates: Extensive repars were carried out in 1894-1895. The date of the addition to the Rouse Street facade is not known.
Current use: Post Office
Former use: Post Office


Historical notes: The first official postal in Tenterfield was established on 1 January 1849, and has been operated by numerous people in a variety of premises since that time. The significance of Tenterfield in the post and telegraph system was limited, however, until 1861 when it was established as the last repeating station between Sydney and Brisbane. In 1876 tenders were called for construction of a new building adjacent to the then Post and Telegraph Office. However, this appears to have been abandoned and the present site purchased instead, with fresh tenders called in 1878. The building was not opened until 1881 and the clock was completed in 1891-92. Extensive repairs were carried out in 1894-1895. (Tenterfield Main Street Heritage Study.)

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Communication-Activities relating to the creation and conveyance of information (none)-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
Significant as the last repeating station in the post and telegraph system between Sydney and Brisbane (established in 1861).

Representative of the work of James Barnet, Colonial Architect.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
The Tenterfield Post Office and Quarters is a substantial Victorian Italianate building with some Second Empire style elements.

It is one of the grandest buildings in Tenterfield. The picturesque massing and corner tower have landmark qualities. The Post Office forms part of a group, which includes the School of Arts, a hotel and several shops.
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
An intrinsic part of the town's social history, the Post Office is considered to be significant to the Tenterfield community's sense of place.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
The site has the potential to contain an archaeological resource, which may provide information relating to the previous use of the site, and to the use by the Post Office.
SHR Criteria f)
Not assessed as being rare.
SHR Criteria g)
The Tenterfield Post Office and Quarters is representative of the Victorian Italianate and Second Empire styles. It is also representative of the work of Colonial Architect James Barnet.

Representative of the group of NSW post offices.
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:

Preparation of a Conservation Management Plan.

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 0131517 Dec 99 14112048
Local Environmental Plan  03 May 96   
National Trust of Australia register      
Register of the National Estate  21 Mar 78   

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
Australia Post Historic Properties Survey - NSW1989 Andrew Ward & Associates and Clive Lucas Stapleton & Associates  No

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
WrittenSuters Architects1997Tenterfield Main Street Heritage Study

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: 5045102

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