The funding information provided below relates to funding for various types of heritage projects available through other organisations. Please check the individual websites for up-to-date information.
While we hope to provide you with a whole list of available support and funding programs, funding programs are opening and closing year-round and this may not be a complete list. If you’re looking for something else and it’s not mentioned below, we’d be happy to try and point you in the right direction.
Where to search for funding
A major source of Australian Government funding for activities that benefit Australia's heritage can be found at the Australian Government, Department of the Environment and Energy / Heritage grants and funding website.
The Funding Centre provides information on grants and fundraising in Australia .
Community builders/development is a NSW Government website that lists all funding programs from federal, state and local government as well as institutions, philanthropic trusts and companies. All NSW Government grants are currently advertised through this website.
Projects on Aboriginal Land
The NSW Environmental Trust offers the Protecting our Places Program. This program supports projects that restore or rehabilitate Aboriginal land and land that is culturally significant to Aboriginal people, as well as educate Aboriginal and other communities about the environment.
Aboriginal Affairs NSW also provides a range of grants
National Heritage Places
Australian Heritage Grants is an Australian Government funded program to strengthen recognition, management, conservation and public engagement on/of Australia’s National Heritage List places. Further information can be found on the Department of the Environment and Energy's website.
Assistance from your Local Council
Your local council is your first source of information on heritage in your local area. Heritage NSW provides funding to local government agencies to support local heritage.
A number of councils have officers who are knowledgeable about heritage matters and who may be able to assist you. To make use of these services, phone the council concerned and ask for the officer who normally deals with heritage matters.
Many councils in NSW also have part-time heritage advisors whose duties normally include giving free advice to owners of heritage items. Contact your local council to enquire about discussing your project with the heritage advisor.
Local Heritage Grants
Many local councils in NSW provide small grants to assist heritage projects. Check with your council to see if it offers grants through its local heritage fund.
Other Incentives, Concessions and Deductions
The National Trust supports conservation works to properties of heritage significance through tax deductible appeals carried out under the National Trust’s tax deductibility status within conditions laid down by the Australian Taxation Office. Consider establishing a National Trust tax-deductible appeal for donations to make the project more attractive to potential donors.
Consider the following fund-raising suggestions: auction nights, heritage building open days, antique fairs, art sales, musical evenings or major raffles (preferably with a significant item or tickets to an event, to generate greater interest). Seek sponsorship in cash or in-kind from local businesses or service groups such as Apex, Rotary or Lions.
Check for opportunities with Philanthropy Australia
Check with your local council, Australian Government Department of Human Services or Corrective Services NSW about the possibility of employment support for your project - you may have to supply supervision, equipment and materials.
Ask your local council for cash or in-kind support for your project. If you have a rateable property, request that the rates are reimbursed for the purpose of maintaining your heritage building.
If your property earns income, you could claim a deduction against the assessed income for maintenance work - discuss this with your tax advisor. The value of any repair work will normally be allowable as a full deduction in the year incurred. Contact your tax agent or the Australian Taxation Office.
Heritage valuations for land tax and local rates under the NSW Heritage Act where a property is listed on the State Heritage Register. A heritage valuation is automatically provided to reflect its value without development potential. This valuation is then used in assessing local rates and land tax. If eligible, ensure that a heritage valuation is being used.
If your property is on a local, regional or state environmental plan list you could receive a heritage-restricted valuation for the purpose of land tax and local rates. In the first instance, check with the rates section of your local council to see if this heritage-restricted valuation discount has been deducted from your council rates.
If you require a heritage-restricted valuation and do not have one, direct requests to the NSW Land Registry Services.
Potential building and planning concessions for heritage building projects. If a property is listed in a local environmental plan by your local council, you may be entitled to parking, building site ratio and land use concessions to assist your project.
In the City of Sydney there are provisions which permit the transfer of potential floor space from heritage-listed sites. These transfers are potentially very valuable and can be used by the owner or sold to another.
If you have a fire rating or access problem, you can refer it to the Heritage Council's Fire, Access and Services Advisory Panel. Solutions may minimise alterations and reduce costs. For further information, email: email@example.com or phone 02 9873 8500.
The Transport Heritage Grants Program is a NSW Government funded program, administered by the Royal Australian Historical Society, with the support of Transport Heritage NSW. The Program is run on an annual basis and supports organisations and individuals to preserve, explore and promote the history of land based mass transport in NSW.
Nationally significant collections
- The National Library of Australia Community Heritage Grants program provides grants to assist with the preservation of locally owned, but nationally significant collections of materials that are publicly accessible.
- Museums and Galleries NSW offers a range of community grants programs.
- Create NSW provides a range of funding programs that can assist with collections management, exhibitions, display, education and training programs. Some funding is also available for capital work projects.
Local history projects
- The Royal Australian Historical Society offers support through two funding programs for local history projects.
- The Maritime Museums of Australia Project Support Scheme is a maritime heritage assistance program that provides grants for collection management, conservation and presentation. It is jointly funded by the Australian National Maritime Museum, who also offer grants and awards, and the Australian Government's Department of Communications and the Arts.
Incentives for donating to museums
- The Cultural Gifts Program offers tax incentives for culturally significant gifts to Australia's public collections. It encourages Australians to donate items of cultural significance from private collections to public art galleries, museums, libraries and archives.
Veterans and War Memorials
The Department of Veterans’ Affairs provide funding under the Saluting Their Service Commemorative Grants Program to conserve and upgrade existing memorials and improve safety and access to them or construct new memorials where none exist.
The NSW Office of Communities Veterans’ Affairs has established the Community War Memorials Fund to help protect and restore war memorials across NSW.