Shepherds Hill Cottage


The Shepherds Hill cottage has stood watch over the city from atop King Edward Park since the 1890s. Shepherds Hill forms an important part of the story of Australia's coastal defences and is listed on the NSW State Heritage Register. The fact that the Shepherds Hill fortification was simultaneously manned by members of the Navy, Army and the Airforce for a variety of functions is rare, and possibly unique in Australia.

Conservation Management Plan

The Shepherds Hill Defence Group Military Installations Conservation Management Plan (CMP) provides guidance for the future management of the site. It considers adaptive re-use options for the cottage and the whole of the Defence Group.

A draft Conservation Management Plan (CMP) was prepared and exhibited in October 2018. Heritage consultants, City Plan Heritage (CPH) finalised the CMP where only minor changes were made to the exhibited CMP. The CMP was referred to the then Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) for endorsement as the site is State heritage listed. On 16 July 2019 advice was received from the delegate of the Heritage Council to advise that the CMP is now endorsed under Section 38A of the Heritage Act. View the endorsed copy of the  Conservation Management Plan (pdf).

Cottage restoration

The restoration of the 1890s-built Shepherds Hill Cottage was completed in early 2022 following an intensive 3-year process. The work was completed in stages under the supervision of a heritage architect and in accordance with approval from the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (formally Office of Environmental Heritage).

Work which has been completed at Shepherd's Hill includes:

  • Design in conjunction with the project’s Consultant Heritage Architect.
  • Applications lodged and approvals received approvals from the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment.
  • Removal of asbestos and lead paint contaminations.
  • Stabilisation of termite damaged elements.
  • Restoration of the Cottage interior
  • Restoration of the Cottage exterior
  • Reconstruction of the lean-to former laundry.
  • Demolition of the outdoor brick toilets.
  • Restoration of the site landscaping and perimeter fencing.
  • Constructed a new external brick amenities block using recycled bricks
  • Constructed a new driveway leading to the site
  • Constructed an ancilliary storeroom
  • Installation of accessible parking access
  • Installation of new gates