Yass Valley Heritage

The Yass Valley is rich in both European and Aboriginal cultural heritage.

Residents of Hollywood on the occasion of Bishop Young's visit in 1952

The Yass Valley has traditionally been inhabited by the Aboriginal Ngunnawal and Wiradjuri Tribes. The Ngunnawal tribe covered the area which is present day Canberra, and also extends into the majority of the Yass Valley area. Wiradjuri covered a large portion of NSW, but only a small part within the western edge of the present day Yass Valley LGA. Yass Valley Council therefore acknowledges the traditional owners of the land - the Ngunnawal and Wiradjuri.

The NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) is responsible for managing places of Aboriginal significance in NSW. Further information on matters of Aboriginal heritage can be sourced from their website.

European settlement of the Yass Valley began as early as the 1820's, following expeditions by Hume and Hovell, and Throsby and Wild. Land throughout the Yass Valley was settled relatively early due to its location on the road to Port Phillip (Melbourne), as well as the agricultural quality of the land, proximity to - and being on route to the NSW and Victorian Gold Rushes.

Items of State Heritage Significance within the Yass Valley are listed under the NSW Heritage Act. Details of these items can be accessed on the NSW Heritage Branch website.

Heritage Items and Conservation Areas

A Heritage Schedule of Local individual items and Conservation Areas for Binalong, Bowning, Gundaroo and Yass is included within the Yass Valley LEP 2013.



Yass Valley Council offers a free heritage advisory service (jointly funded by the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage). Pip Giovanelli is the Yass Valley Council Heritage Advisor. He is available for appointments on the following dates

  • 14th August 2018
  • 25th September 2018
  • 16th October 2018
  • 20th November 2018
  • 11th December 2018

For more information regarding this service and any heritage inquiries please contact Council's Strategic Planning Division.

Local Heritage Grants Fund
In association with the Heritage Branch of the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH), Yass Valley Council offers an annual Local Heritage Grants Program to assist owners, property managers and community groups to undertake projects within the Yass Valley.  
The maximum level of funding for each project will be limited to $2,000, up to a maximum of 50% of the proposed costs of works. The applicant is required to match the remaining 50% of the cost of works.  
Funding is available for conservation works on heritage properties and places in the Yass Valley local government area by individual landholders and community groups who own or manage heritage items that are either:
  • Listed as a Heritage Item in Schedule 5 of the Yass Valley Local Environmental Plan (LEP) 2013;
  • Included in a Heritage Conservation Area in the Yass Valley LEP 2013; or
  • Supported by Council’s Heritage Advisor as being of heritage significance.
Funding is also available for non-works projects, such as the preparations of histories etc. Applicants for non-works projects will need to demonstrate how the project will promote a positive community attitude towards local heritage within the Yass Valley. All projects will be assessed on their merits.
The grants program usually opens at the beginning on June each year, and once grants are offered, applicants have until the end of April to complete the works.
You can make a time to discuss your proposed project with Council’s Heritage Advisor at anytime throughout the year.  


  • The NSW Heritage Branch has a Conservation Products & Services Directory which contains firms and specialist trades providing a range of heritage supplies and services across NSW 
  • Yass Valley Council Heritage Trades Directory lists local tradespeople and companies who provide heritage products and services within the Yass Valley.
  • Ian Evans' Website - Caring for and Restoring your Old House
  • The Australian Garden History Society website promotes knowledge of historic gardens and research into their history
  • The Yass and District Historical Society is not affiliated in any way with Yass Valley Council. However, both organisations work closely in order to ensure that the heritage assets of the LGA are protected and enhanced. They may be able to provide assistance in researching the history of your property.
  • The National Library of Australia has a free online search service for Australian Newspapers, Photos and Maps
  • The NSW Heritage Branch has a range of technical information sheets covering topics including rising damp, plaster finishes and timber repairs. 
  • NSW Heritage Council's Fire, Access and Services Advisory Panel (FASAP) is an expert technical panel which provides advice on upgrading heritage buildings to satisfy legal standards for fire safety, access for people with disabilities and services in ways that will not diminish their heritage significance. FASAP meets quarterly and provides free services to help government agencies, local councils and property owners to achieve acceptable compliance with modern building standards while retaining the heritage significance of places. See the Information about the Panel and Brochure for further information.