The National Trust (NSW) Heritage Awards is an annual celebration of outstanding practice in the field of heritage.

Projects are entered by organisations, individuals and community groups that demonstrate excellence in conservation, advocacy, education, interpretation and communication – including a specific category for projects that promote greater conservation, understanding and appreciation of Aboriginal heritage. In its 27th year, the National Trust Heritage Awards is a signature event of the Australian Heritage Festival and proudly supported by the NSW Government through the Heritage Council of NSW.


Where the winners will be announced

COVID-19 regulations pending, the National Trust Heritage Awards will be presented on Thursday 13 May 2021 at the heritage-listed Doltone House in Pyrmont. The luncheon is a highly anticipated event and a great opportunity to reconnect with heritage specialists across all sectors. The National Trust is committed to ensuring the awards ceremony is a COVIDSafe event and will manage attendee numbers and safety practices on site accordingly. In the event that plans change in the interests of public health and safety, a virtual ceremony will be organised.

What you can enter?

Projects and initiatives of large and small scale have won National Trust Heritage Awards. Community projects involving three people, and multimillion dollar adaptive reuse projects have got the gong in years gone by.
The National Trust’s independent Judging Committee, chaired this year by Matthew Devine, will consider all projects on merit.
Some entries in previous years have included:
  • Advocacy campaigns to save theatres and parks.
  • Extensive transformations or restorations of historic buildings.
  • Events and exhibitions at major galleries and in libraries.
  • Public art installations that tell the story of heritage in place.

Projects or campaigns must have been completed between 1 March 2020 to 30 March 2021. Considering the adaptation of the heritage, culture, arts and community sector in a virtual world over the past year, we encourage any online programs, exhibitions, experiences and community activations and events to be submitted.


What are the categories?

There are ten categories and two individual awards for 2021. They are as follows:
  • Aboriginal Heritage
  • Adaptive Re-use
  • Advocacy
  • Conservation: Built Heritage
  • Conservation: Interiors & Objects
  • Conservation: Landscape
  • Continuing Tradition
  • Education & Interpretation
  • Heritage Events, Exhibitions & Tours
  • Heritage Resources & Publications
  • Individual: Heritage Skills Award
  • Individual: Lifetime Achievement Award
  • The Judges’ Choice Award
The Judges’ Choice Award is considered across the ten category winners at the discretion of the Judging Committee.

Individual categories

The National Trust also calls for nominations for individuals who have dedicated their life’s work to heritage, have outstanding heritage skill and who are women leading the way in heritage.

The nomination form for the individual categories can be accessed by clicking on the titles below. There is no fee involved in nominating for individual categories.
  • Lifetime Achievement: For an individual who has given special service to heritage conservation.
  • Heritage Skills: For a volunteer, teacher, professional individual or apprentice who has demonstrated the application of craft skills that have been key in repairing or adapting a heritage site.

Click here to view the 2020 award winners or to watch the virtual ceremony.

Who can you contact with questions?

If you have any questions about a potential project submission please contact the National Trust (NSW)’s Marketing & Events Coordinator, Jilly Clark.
To see a copy of the questions before starting the submission form below, click here.


Key Dates

Due to the high volume of entries for the National Trust Heritage Awards, and to ensure fairness for all, we cannot be flexible about the deadline dates. They are as follows:
  • Entries open: Friday 5 February 2021
  • Entries Close: Monday 29 March 2021
  • Judging Day: Thursday 8 April 2021
  • Shortlist Announced: Tuesday 13 April 2021
  • National Trust Heritage Awards Ceremony: 13 May 2021


Thank you to our supporters

The National Trust Heritage Awards are proudly supported by the NSW Government through the Heritage Council of NSW.

Click here to enter your project

Entry submission form