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HomeNewsConcert space, environment centre flagged for North Head redevelopment

Concert space, environment centre flagged for North Head redevelopment

Major changes are planned for Manly’s North Head, with community feedback now sought.

The two initiatives proposed will be at the precinct’s known as North Fort and the Artillery Barracks.

The area under Harbour Trust management that is flagged for major changes.

What’s planned?

The Artillery Barracks Precinct will be conserved but with adaptive reuse of one of the main buildings and the parade ground through  “the creation of a public event asset”.

This is where the evening concert series has jumped the gun (at an artillery precinct no less) and been funded and organised ahead of plans being finalised. It will, perhaps, act as a good test for how the site works as an event space.

Image: An artist’s impression of the Barracks Precinct, which will also be home to the Night at the Barracks concert series flagged for Spring.

The second significant change will be in North Fort Precinct, which will focus on the military installations already present but also incorporate an environmental education centre, a First Nations welcoming space, and an accessible pathway through native gardens.

Image: An artist’s impression of a proposed accessible path network and native garden

You can view full details of the proposal here and there are also virtual workshops planned starting next week.

Register for a virtual workshop (18 May to 1 June)

Between 18 May and 1 June, Harbour Trust will be hosting a series of one-hour virtual workshops. These interactive sessions are an opportunity for attendees to share their thoughts and insights on the future of North Head Sanctuary and provide feedback on the Harbour Trust’s Draft Concept. Please register early to avoid disappointment. Virtual workshops are being run on the following dates:

  • Tuesday 18 May (12:30pm to 1:30pm)
  • Wednesday 19 May (6pm to 7pm)
  • Monday 24 May (12:30pm to 1:30pm)
  • Tuesday 1 June (5pm to 6pm)

For more information visit  Harbour Trust’s website. 

You can view the full press release from the Harbour Trust below


The Harbour Trust invites the community to have a say on the Draft Concept for the future of North Head / Car-rang-gel – one of Australia’s most spectacular landmarks, with significant ties to First Nations’ culture, our military history and host to some of the most precious natural ecosystems in the country.

Following the Federal Government’s broad support of the recommendations in the 2020 Independent Review of the Harbour Trust, the Harbour Trust is now releasing a Draft Concept for North Head Sanctuary, which provides an opportunity for members of the community to contribute their ideas to help shape the future vision and direction of the site.

The Chair of the Harbour Trust, Joseph Carrozzi, said initial feedback from the community in October 2020 on the vision for North Head Sanctuary included themes of preservation and conservation for the natural environment, Indigenous culture and military history, with more and enhanced opportunities for learning and discovery.

“The Draft Concept for North Head Sanctuary proposes a range of initiatives that aim to preserve, restore and interpret the Sanctuary as an invaluable community destination, rich with nature, history and opportunity. It is based on the collective community aspirations, and subject to negotiations with the NSW Government to extend the Deed of Agreement with the Commonwealth,” Mr Carrozzi said.

“Signature initiatives within the Draft Concept are centred around the North Fort and Artillery Barracks precincts, and the protection of the headland as an important bushland sanctuary.

“For the North Fort precinct, the Draft Concept brings to life the important military installations in the precinct, including a world-class interpretive centre featuring the defence of Australia told in contemporary ways, our unique tunnel experiences and native gardens to improve accessibility.

“This site can and should become a ‘must see’ destination for our community, educating us all on the special history of the site. We want to weave the First Nations’ history and bush management techniques into the site.

“At the Artillery Barracks precinct, we are looking to conserve, protect and reimagine the military history of the buildings and area, with an improved arrival experience, adaptive reuse of the Other Ranks’ Mess and the Parade Ground, reactivated for public and community events.”

As part of the conversation with the community about the future of North Head, the Harbour Trust will connect with First Nations communities to understand and recognise their significant connection with this land and their aspirations for this remarkable place.

“We want the community to give feedback on the concept, and let us know what we got right, what we can improve and the direction to continue in. The Draft Concept for North Head Sanctuary is just one step in an important ongoing dialogue and journey with our community, Sydneysiders, visitors and governments, on the future of North Head Sanctuary,” Mr Carrozzi said.

Community feedback received on the Draft Concept will be used to shape a more detailed masterplan with further Community consultation.

To be a part of the conversation and have your say visit harbourtrust.gov.au to view the Draft Concept and complete a survey or participate in a workshop. Consultation closes 11 June 2021.

– ENDS –


The Harbour Trust protects and manages some of the most historically significant foreshore sites on Sydney Harbour, including Cockatoo Island, North Head Sanctuary, Sub Base Platypus in North Sydney, and Headland Park in Mosman.


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Manly Observer is an experiment in providing non-sensationalist hyperlocal news on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. We cover the big news across the LGA, but with a hyper focus on the Manly electorate encompassing Balgowlah, Seaforth, Freshwater, Brookvale and Curl Curl up to Dee Why. It is run by those living in the community for the benefit of an informed community. We care about an informed and connected community. That’s it. Simple. Thank you for your support in keeping quality local news alive!

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