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Interim Heritage Order needed to protect Tarwyn Park from KEPCO coal threat

Lock the Gate Alliance is calling for the State Heritage Council to recommend an Interim Heritage Order for Tarwyn Park in the Bylong Valley at its meeting today, due to the threat posed by the KEPCO Bylong coal mine proposal.

A recent independent report commissioned by the NSW Planning Assessment Commission at the request of the State Heritage Council indicates that Tarwyn Park satisfies four state significant heritage criteria which make it eligible for listing on the State Heritage Register.

The report also indicates that the property is under threat from the Bylong Coal project.

Tarwyn-Park.jpgNic Clyde from Lock the Gate Alliance said “This historic horse-breeding stud, with its Federation homestead and role as the cradle of the unique land restoration system of Natural Sequence Farming, needs to be protected as a state heritage icon, not destroyed by coal mining.

“We have written to the State Heritage Council and the Environment Minister calling for an urgent Interim Heritage Order to be placed over the property.

“The recent expert heritage report had identified 19 threats to Tarwyn Park heritage including that the Bylong Coal Project will “adversely impact physical evidence associated with Tarwyn Park’s historic association with the Melbourne Cup” and that it will have a “material impact on Natural Sequence Farming infrastructure”.

Tarwyn Park was the home of early thoroughbred and Melbourne Cup champions and the cradle of the revolutionary Natural Sequence Farming (NSF) method. Two famous horses ‘Rain Lover’ (two time Melbourne Cup winner) and ‘Eleazar’ are buried there.

 “We’re calling on State Heritage Council to properly recognise the unique heritage values of this amazing property, and to recommend an urgent Interim Heritage Order given it is clear those heritage values are under immediate threat.

 “This is definitely another case of the wrong mine in the wrong place. The NSW Government should not be sacrificing our living heritage for quick and dirty coal profits.”

 Independent heritage report provided to the Planning and Assessment Commission is available here:

Contact - Nic Clyde 0438 282 409


  • Tarwyn Park is a historic property within the proposed Bylong Coal Project area in the Bylong Valley, north-west of Sydney.
  • Tarwyn Park is the cradle of Natural Sequence Farming, a unique land restoration system that was developed by Peter Andrews and his son Stuart.
  • Tarwyn Park homestead (1926) and associated buildings are an excellent example of the Federation design work of architect Harold Hardwick.
  • The property is also an historic horse-breeding stud and two famous horses ‘Rain Lover’ and Eleazar’ are buried there.
  • The proponents of the mine (KEPCO) submitted an Environmental Impact Statement for the project in 2015.  The NSW Planning Assessment Commission is currently reviewing the proposal.
  • The Bylong Coal Project will involve open-cut and underground coal mining, some of which will encroach directly on to Tarwyn Park.

Heritage Values

Independent experts from GML Heritage found that Tarwyn Park satisfies four and potentially five of the heritage criteria at a state level.

In general, satisfying three or more of the seven criteria at a “state” level makes a recommendation for a State Heritage Listing likely. Heritage attributes of Tarwyn Park identified by GML Heritage include:

  • It was one of the most famous Australian studs … “renowned for producing champion horses” including Melbourne Cup winners
  • It’s important in the agricultural history of NSW as an example of where “land degraded by European farming practices was ‘restored’ through a land management technique known as ‘Natural Sequence Farming’”
  • It has a special and strong association with prominent NSW ‘pioneers’ including thoroughbred breeders and Peter Andrews
  • It is important in demonstrating a high degree of technical achievement and innovation in the development and application of Natural Sequence Farming
  • It once “boasted the world’s largest population of Shorthorn cattle”
  • Cattle breeding onsite included the importation of fine stock including ‘Napoleon,’ a bull bred by Queen Victoria at Windsor Stud Farm,
  • Natural Sequence Farming is no longer practised at Tarwyn Park, but the property retains “the potential to yield new information which could contribute to an understanding of NSF’s potential to contribute to the development of sustainable land management systems and economic development and agricultural productivity within NSW.”

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