The awards are the pinnacle celebration for the heritage community and an interesting place to see what is happening and the integrity involved.

The National Trust Heritage Awards are in their 22nd year of recognising heritage projects. It is the signature event for everyone in the heritage community and an annual celebration of excellence in restoration, conservation and regeneration of local Heritage, built, natural and cultural.

The Awards are a prestigious event and highly regarded in the Industry. In 2016 the Minister of Environment and Heritage,  Hon. Mark Speakman was our keynote speaker. The event is the signature event of the National Trust Heritage Festival and was attended by 400 guests, including heritage icons such as Jack Mundey.

Entrants for the awards vary from councils, community groups, corporations and individuals. The entries include everything from education and research, to restoration of objects, revitalisation, architectural reinvigoration, documentaries, regeneration of the environment and the hard working advocacy campaigners.

The 2016 Award ceremony luncheon was on Friday 6 May 2016 at Doltone House, Jones Bay Wharf, Pyrmont with Quentin Dempster AM as our Master of Ceremonies.



Individual Award Winners 2016

Lifetime Achievement Award 2016

Reece McDougall
Reece McDougall began his career as a forester after studying for a Bachelor of Science from ANU and a Masters of Environmental Science at Macquarie University. He worked as the Landscape Officer at the National Trust where he used his Forestry background to advantage. In addition to his career at Sydney Water where he strongly influenced conservation policy, particularly in the retention of moveable items, he rose to the position of Executive Director at the NSW Heritage Office where he lead a hugely effective team and his influence is still being felt today. A significant achievement was the implementation of the National Parks and Wildlife Amendment Bill 2009, which reviewed policies, procedures and regulations relating to Aboriginal cultural heritage, permits and offences in NSW. Reece was the first Chief Executive Officer of Godden Mackay Logan’s Heritage. Reece’s most outstanding quality is his ability to inspire and encourage others and to cut through the nonsense with a ready smile.

Cathy Donnelly Memorial Award 2016

Jean Rice
Jean Rice is a Sydney-based architect, although lately she has been in Fiji in the cultural heritage component of the Post Disaster Needs Assessment following Cyclone Winston. Jean’s experience in heritage conservation and adaptive reuse is prevalent in her project work including historic sites on Norfolk Island, Sydney College of the Arts at Rozelle, CarriageWorks at Eveleigh and she has provided detailed conservation advice in upgrading projects for Glebe, Sydney and Maitland Town Halls where traditional finishes such as polished plaster and decorative schemes were discovered. Her range of work includes conservation management planning for public buildings and national parks, conservation works to buildings which extend from vernacular farm buildings and seawalls to the Ministers office in the Lands Department. She was appointed by the Minister for the Environment to the New South Wales National Parks & Wildlife Services Advisory Council to address cultural heritage matters.

Trade Skill Award 2016

David McBeath
David McBeath is a conservator specialising in architectural, industrial and rural heritage. Through his experience at the Powerhouse Museum and in fitting and turning, working in the rail and shipyards at his trade, and as a conservator it is appropriate that he is being awarded the trades/ skills award today. Dave is a Volunteer Restorer at Cockatoo Island where he and a team of retired tradesmen, engineers and enthusiasts volunteer their spare time to help the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust restore the equipment once used on the island. Cockatoo Island shipyard has a special place in his heart as he was a fitter and turner on the island during the 1970s working on the Royal Australian Navy's submarine fleet.
Dave is the ‘go-to’ guy whenever there is a restoration issue that requires careful research into method and some innovative and lateral thinking. As well as his invaluable volunteer work he carries out surveys and advises government departments, architectural firms and community groups on the conservation of materials and is always willing to help.

The Panel’s Special Award

Talking to My Country
An award has been created because the judges found themselves confronted with a book that defied comparison with other entries in the ‘heritage publication category’. The Panel’s Special Award for promoting understanding and respect, and, in this instance “a contribution to raising awareness of the first Australians, ” is awarded to the wonderfully insightful and powerful book (which is on sale here today), Talking to My Country by Stan Grant.
This first-hand articulate and passionate insight into being a Wiradjurri/ Aboriginal/ Australian is a deeply personal yet universal story told in the ‘story-telling’ tradition that makes the reader question the realities of the ‘Australian Dream’. It examines the politics of being ‘black in white Australia’, the conscious and unconscious racism that exists and the ‘infernal paradox of a simultaneous invasion and settlement’.

Call to action section

See our full list of 2016 Heritage Awards

View the Winners and Highly Commended Awards. Plus read the Minister's speech, Lifetime Achievement Recipient's speech as well as Jacqui Goddard, the chair of the Judging panel's summary. View some photos from the ceremony and more.

Heritage Awards 2016

2016 Heritage Award Categories

This category is to recognise the extraordinary commitment of a community group and/or individuals who have pursued the protection and conservation of key heritage places.

This category is for the restoration and conservation of interiors and objects, and may include historic product promotion, and historic industrial processes. Movable objects are also included in this category.

This category is for publications, exhibitions, displays or site interpretations which emphasis and promotes education, interpretation and community engagement.

This category is for publications which emphasis and promotes education, interpretation and community engagement.

Projects for this category may include archaeology, conservation management plans or historical research.

Individual Awards

This Award is presented to an individual female professional (an architect, engineer, conservator etc) for her outstanding contribution to the conservation of our built heritage.

The National Trust Heritage Awards are made possible through the help of the Heritage Division and the Office of Environment & Heritage

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