Red Hands Cave | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

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Red Hands Cave

Item details

Name of item: Red Hands Cave
Type of item: Complex / Group
Group/Collection: Aboriginal
Category: Ceremonial site
Location: Lat: -33.768847 Long: 150.590838
Primary address: , Blue Labyrinth, NSW 2782
Local govt. area: Blue Mountains
Local Aboriginal Land Council: Deerubbin
Hectares (approx): 3.976


Is completely found within Blue Mountains National Park
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
 Blue LabyrinthBlue Mountains   Primary Address

Statement of significance:

Why is it an Aboriginal Place?
Red Hands Cave is significant to the Darug Aboriginal groups and to other local Aboriginal people as being the cave is a ceremonial cave for initiations for young warriors. Red Hands Cave is situated within the Blue Mountains National Park and was named because of Red, Orange and white Aboriginal people's hand stencils located within the cave.

Why is it important to Aboriginal People?
According to Aboriginal stories the cave was the abode of Aboriginal ghosts that represented the children left there by the Great Spirit. There are 45 hand markings both left and right and some of these are children. There is also documented evidence that there was a Bora Ring on the top of the cave. Over the years there has been significant vandalism to the cave. The gazettal of Red Hands Cave as an Aboriginal Place would ensure that the site is looked after under the Blue Mountains National Parks Plan of management and further degradation of the site would be lessened.
Date significance updated: 27 Nov 15
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.


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
NPW Act - Aboriginal Place  26 Jun 15 521801-1802

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
ElectronicNSW Government2015Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales View detail

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: Heritage NSW
Database number: 5063171
File number: FIL 14/172207 & DOC 15/91775

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.

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