We have detected that you are running an unsupported version of Microsoft Internet Explorer. Please upgrade to version 9 or above for the best experience of this website

Update on COVID-19- The safety of our communities, customers and staff is our top priority. We are continuing to monitor daily developments in response to COVID-19. Find out the latest.

Heritage Projects Fund

Each year Council provides small grants to assist heritage projects through the Local Heritage Assistance Fund. Council administers this fund with support from the Office of Environment and Heritage, NSW Heritage Branch.

The purpose of the fund is to provide financial support for the owners of heritage listed items and items in conservation areas identified in the Port Stephens Local Environmental Plan (LEP) 2013. This small grants program encourages conservation works to commercial, residential and other places of heritage value within the Local Government Area (LGA). The fund seeks to engender greater interest and awareness of conservation for local heritage items.

For more information visit the grants page.

Port Stephens Heritage Advisory Committee

Port Stephens Council established a formal Heritage Committee in 2002 as part of the requirement for undertaking a heritage study of the LGA.

Regular committee meetings are held in respect to the historic environment and through this forum the various heritage interest groups in the area have an opportunity, through Council, to actively participate in the conservation and management of the areas important heritage buildings, places and items.

The Heritage Committee undertakes some of the following tasks:

  • monitoring of the Port Stephens Council Heritage Policy;
  • act as a forum for knowledge of the built, natural and cultural environment within the LGA;
  • assist Council's Heritage Advisor in with local and historic knowledge;
  • assistance with identification of projects eligible for Local Heritage Assistance Funding and other funding;
  • make recommendations to Council on policies, guidelines and plans concerning the heritage implications and conservation of the built, natural and cultural environment;
  • promote the cause for heritage conservation, ongoing education, awareness and enhancement of the built, natural and cultural environment throughout the LGA; and
  • undertake research of the built, natural and cultural heritage of the LGA and to make recommendations for additions to the LEP schedule.

Heritage Advisory Service

Council appointed a Heritage Advisor in 2005 to assist both Council and residents in the conservation and management of heritage listed items. The Heritage Advisory Service can provide preliminary advice to applicants and property owners in the LGA on heritage matters and assist with heritage related development applications. This service is generally free. Council’s Heritage Advisor visits twice a month, generally once a fortnight.

Advice can include information on: renovation, redevelopment, colour schemes, extensions, verandahs, awnings and fences as well as more comprehensive advice on the integration of new development in older or conservation areas. The advice is of a general nature and should be considered as the starting point for more extensive work that may require an architect, builder or designer. It will assist your application if you can bring along sketches, photographs or examples of what you are considering.

Council's Heritage Advisor also includes (but not limited to) the following services:

  • work with Council to develop and deliver a heritage strategy in consultation with Council's Heritage Advisory Committee;
  • ensure effective statutory management of heritage and provide advice to Council on Development Applications, Part 5 Applications and Planning Proposals involving heritage items draft/potential heritage items and Heritage Conservation Areas;
  • provide professional advice to the community on heritage related issues and work with key stakeholder groups;
  • provide educational and promotional opportunities for heritage and promote sustainable management of heritage;
  • initiate research and studies for improved heritage management and produce heritage reports and other heritage documentation as required;
  • promote incentives, including grants and funding for heritage;
  • assist Council in managing its heritage assets; and
  • establish, in consultation with the local library and historical society, the collection of heritage resource material, including photographs, to assist heritage management and promotion in the area.

Find out more about Council’s Development Application process.

Local heritage groups

For more information and to make inquiries on research projects, you can find contact details for the following local historical organisations on our Arts and Heritage page:

  • Port Stephens Family Historical Society
  • Raymond Terrace Historical Society
  • Tomaree Family History Group Nelson Bay NSW Inc.
  • Port Stephens Historical Society Inc.
  • Karuah Working Together – Karuah Local History Group