New Ballarat treasure hunt to unveil city’s past

Heritage buildings

Ballarat residents are proud to live in a city rich with stories – and we now need your help to identify historic sites for potential listing on the Heritage Overlay, as part of a municipal-wide Heritage Gaps Review.

The review is an important step in implementing the City’s UNESCO Historic Urban Landscape program to embrace community values and enhance what we love most about Ballarat.

Currently there is a wide range of properties on Ballarat’s Heritage Overlay but there are many more important individual places all over the city that are yet to receive protection.

Community members will soon be able to contribute to the heritage search by pinning information and photographs of important sites they know of to an online map of Ballarat.

The review will focus on heritage buildings as Aboriginal and historical archaeology falls under the authority of Aboriginal Victoria and Heritage Victoria respectively.

Place types of interest for the review include but are not limited to:

· Contributory places within existing heritage precincts that may require individual protection (to check current Heritage Overlay listings visit the Ballarat Heritage Database)

· Places without protection, particularly in areas where there have been no previous heritage studies

· Places associated with industry, worship, agriculture, public health, education and important historical figures

The City of Ballarat’s Heritage and Cultural Landscapes team has already collated a list of more than 700 heritage places from community feedback on previous projects, or those that were flagged but not fully assessed in previous heritage studies.

Not every place on the list will necessarily be added to the Heritage Overlay, as there are standardised significance criteria and thresholds that must be met. Assessment will be prioritised for sites considered to be particularly vulnerable and/or of strong potential heritage significance.  

The City of Ballarat will shortlist the places that have been identified to determine which require full assessment. Property owners will be contacted directly if their property is going to be assessed for a Heritage Overlay.

 Visit mySay to access the map or to provide a written submission - https://mysay.ballarat.vic.gov.au/heritage-gaps-study  

“Ballarat is a unique heritage city and we all should celebrate that,” the Mayor, Cr Ben Taylor, said.

“The new list we are creating will add to the previous records of our most significant and vulnerable places.

“We hope to bring to light startling new historical sites that can add to Ballarat’s amazing story.” 

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