Aboriginal Heritage Study for the Woollahra Municipality

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Aboriginal Heritage Study for the Woollahra Municipality
    Local history

Published 12 November 2020

Upcoming Woollahra Aboriginal Heritage Talks

We are running a series of online talks on the Woollahra Aboriginal Heritage Study, which is being undertaken by Coast History & Heritage and the La Perouse Local Aboriginal Land Council.

The next talk is being held on Tuesday 26 October 2021 from 12.00 – 1.00pm. Hear from Ray Ingrey of the Gujaga Foundation at La Perouse, along with Dr Paul Irish as they discuss why the Aboriginal past remains alive to Aboriginal people and is part of the shared history of Woollahra. The recently completed Woollahra Aboriginal Heritage Study has provided Council with tools to better understand and protect the Aboriginal heritage of the area. This talk will explain how that will work, what you can do, and why it is important to keep this part of Woollahra’s past present.

This is the third and final talk in the Woollahra Aboriginal Heritage talk series run in association with Woollahra Municipal Council's Aboriginal heritage study, undertaken by Coast History & Heritage in conjunction with La Perouse Local Aboriginal Land Council.

Find out more about this free online event and register to secure your place.

Previous Talks

The first talk, held on Tuesday 13 October, included presentations by historian and archaeologist, Dr Paul Irish of Coast History & Heritage, and Council’s Strategic Heritage Officer, Flavia Scardamaglia. This talk explored Dr Irish’s research on both ancient and continuing Aboriginal connections in the Woollahra area. Ms Scardamaglia also provided an overview of the Woollahra Aboriginal Heritage Study and Council’s ongoing collaboration with the La Perouse Local Aboriginal Land Council and Coast History & Heritage.

The second talk, held on 3 December 2020 by the Gujaga Foundation at La Perouse Local Aboriginal Land Council and Dr Paul Irish, explored the ways that Aboriginal people identified with Country across coastal Sydney and how these connections were maintained in colonial Sydney.

Thank you to everyone who attended.

Woollahra Aboriginal Heritage Study

Woollahra has a long and rich Aboriginal heritage which continues to be valued by Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people today. Traces of that heritage can be found throughout Woollahra but are often unrecognised and unacknowledged. Our Community Strategic Plan Woollahra – 2030. Our community, our place, our plan presents a long-term vision for Woollahra. Reconciliation through acknowledging, researching and sharing the area’s Aboriginal history and heritage of Woollahra is a significant component of Council’s goals to have a ‘creative and vibrant community’ and to ‘have a connected, harmonious and engaged community.’

Woollahra Council has engaged Aboriginal Heritage Consultants Coast History & Heritage to work closely with the La Perouse Local Aboriginal Land Council in undertaking an Aboriginal Heritage Study for the Woollahra Municipality.

The study provided Council with a much better understanding of the Aboriginal history and heritage of Woollahra; where traces of that history are known, and where others are likely to be. It also provided Council with a recommended strategy for managing known and undocumented Aboriginal heritage. This will influence management of future development in the LGA and promote greater awareness of local Aboriginal heritage in the community and across Council in a culturally appropriate manner.

Records of some of these sites are on official registers as well as local historical records. Others may only be known to local residents. The consultant team includes historian and archaeologist Dr Paul Irish who has researched the Aboriginal history of the eastern suburbs for his 2017 book Hidden In Plain View: The Aboriginal People of Coastal Sydney. Dr Irish is interested to hear from any local residents who have information about the area’s Aboriginal history and heritage.

The Woollahra Aboriginal Heritage Study was endorsed by Council on 26 July 2021.

You can contact Strategic Heritage Officer Flavia Scardamaglia via email for further information.

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