Aboriginal cultural heritage

Preserving and respecting past, present and future

Ensuring Aboriginal cultural heritage is recorded and managed is an important part of the development of the Western Sydney Airport.

Aboriginal Australians have one of the oldest continuous cultures in the world. Their rich history represents tens of thousands of years of traditions and connection to the land. The Australian Government recognises the cultural and social importance of preserving that heritage.

The Australian Government will continue to work closely with the Aboriginal community, in accordance with appropriate principles and protocols, including those set out by Ask First, A Guide to Respecting Indigenous Heritage Places and Values (Australian Heritage Commission 2002).

Over 70 heritage sites have been recorded at the airport site, all of which are considered to be culturally significant by the Aboriginal stakeholders consulted though the Environmental Impact Statement.

The Environmental Impact Statement identifies ways to preserve the Aboriginal heritage value of the site. Some sites, such as a grinding groove and a scar tree, will be preserved entirely within the environmental conservation zone in the southeast of the airport site. Where heritage cannot be preserved in place, recording and artefact salvaging will take place. Furthermore, the site's cultural heritage will be commemorated in various ways at the airport site.

For more detailed information, see the Aboriginal cultural heritage factsheet and the Environmental Impact Statement.

Consultation and participation with Aboriginal stakeholders

Aboriginal stakeholders are being consulted on the best way to manage cultural heritage through the development of a number of plans, including the Initial Survey and Salvage Plan PDF: 2524 KB . Aboriginal stakeholders have also been involved in early surveys and salvage of Aboriginal artefacts at the site.

The Airport Plan sets out the requirements for Aboriginal cultural heritage management and related plans that are being developed in consultation with Aboriginal stakeholders.

The eighth Aboriginal stakeholder Forum will be held on 29 August 2018 and focus on consultation on the early works program and documents required for cultural heritage management within the airport site PDF: 361 KB .

To find out more about the Aboriginal Stakeholder Forum, contact the Western Sydney Airport project team.