Free the Animation VR / AR
Play to reveal 3D images and 3D models!
Demonstration A-Frame / Multiplayer
vlrPhone / vlrFilter
Project of very low consumption, radiation and bitrate softphones, with the support of the spatial audio, of the frequency shifts and of the ultrasonic communications / Multifunction Audio Filter with Remote Control!
Portland Cement Works PrecinctPortland Cement Works in 1950.LocationWilliwa Street, Portland, City of Lithgow, New South Wales, AustraliaCoordinates33°21′10″S 149°58′57″E / 33.3527°S 149.9825°E / -33.3527; 149.9825Coordinates: 33°21′10″S 149°58′57″E / 33.3527°S 149.9825°E / -33.3527; 149.9825Built1890–2003ArchitectVariousOwnerBoral Limited New South Wales Heritage RegisterOfficial name: Portland Cement Works Precinct; Portland Cement Group; Commonwealth Portland Cement Company LtdTypeState heritage (complex / group)Designated3 August 2012Reference no.1739TypeHistoric LandscapeCategoryLandscape - CulturalBuildersVarious Location of Portland Cement Works Precinct in New South Wales
Portland Cement Works Precinct is an heritage-listed former cement works and limestone quarries and now disused industrial site at Williwa Street, Portland, City of Lithgow, New South Wales, Australia. It was designed and built in various stages from 1890 to 2003. It is also known as Portland Cement Group and Commonwealth Portland Cement Company Ltd. The property is owned by Boral Limited. It was added to the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 3 August 2012.Contents
Aboriginal occupation of the Blue Mountains area dates back at least 12,000 years and appears to have intensified some 3000-4000 years ago. In pre-colonial times the region around Portland was inhabited by Aboriginal people of the Wiradjuri linguistic group. European settlement in this region after the first documented white expedition west of the Blue Mountains in 1813 was tentative, largely because of concerns about resistance from Aboriginal people.There was contact, evidenced by sporadic hostility and by the quantity of surviving artefacts manufactured by the Aborigines from European glass. By 1840 there was widespread dislocation of Aboriginal culture, aggravated after 1850 by the goldrush to the region.
Jack Reed, a long-time resident of Portland, recalls how, as a child in the 1930s, he used to go hunting with two Aboriginal men named Jack and Jimmy. He estimated their birthdates as c. 1890 and their visits to Portland as quite frequest. As part of the day these men would visit rock engravings (since removed) but never allow Jack to go near them. Neither spoke much English and both hunted with spears and boomerangs. Whilte staying at Portland they camped close to the dam near the Portland Golf Course. Jack also remembers occasional groups of Aboriginal people coming to Portland to hold corroborees for the town's people.
The National Parks & wildlife Service register lists 19 Aboriginal sites in the immediate area of Portland, typically rock shelters or expanses of rock with archaeological deposits and sometimes with art and / or axe-grinding grooves, open sites with scatters of stone artefacts and carved trees. In 1982 two sites containing scatterings of stone artefacts were discovered in East Portland during an archaeological survey of the Ivanhoe Colliery for Blue Circle Southern Cement Ltd but these sites were not conserved for various reasons. There have been no Aboriginal sites associated with the Portland Cement Works and Quarries Site.Portland and cement manufacture in Australia (draft)
Until the early 19th century, lime was the major ingredient used in mortar, which was central to western construction techniques for holding bricks and other building materials in place. In 1824 "Portland Cement" was developed in England by Joseph Aspdin, who named it after a pale grey coloured rock associated with Portland, England. Portland Cement is made by mixing limestone or chalk with either clay or shale in the right proportions and burning the mixture at 1,400-1,500 degrees Celsius, a point where the mix begins to fuse. The resulting clinker is then ground fine to produce cement. The first large cement works were built in Britain in 1843. Portland Cement was a far superior building product and it caught on quickly in Europe and especially Germany but was infrequently used in Australia before the end of the 19th century.
The first recorded manufacture of Portland Cement in Australia was at Tasmania's Maria Island Company, which showed cement samples at the Melbourne Centennial Exhibition in 1888. In Victoria David Mitchell was making cement from before 1890 until his death 1916 in Melbourne, although in fairly small quantities. The Portland Cement Co Ltd began production in Fyansford in Victoria in 1890. There is a reference in Australia that locates the earliest experiments with Portland Cement at the Portland site in NSW in 1884 by the Cullen Bullen Lime & Cement Company. However this company was not actually in existence until 1889, although one of its owners, George Raffan, had bought the site in 1882 and the reference may be to his preliminary activities in developing cement manufacture. His Cullen Bullen Lime & Cement Company was the first firm in NSW to successfully manufacture Portland Cement - under the brand name "Kangaroo" - but the firm was unable to make it at a sufficiently high and even standard to be commercially viable, and its production ceased in 1895. George Raffan reopened the business with his brother John in 1896 as the Ivanhoe Lime and Cement Works & Colliery but this too had failed by 1898. These first cement plants on the Portland site used eight static charge (bottle-shaped) kilns with millstone grinding, powered by a small steam plant. Two of these early bottle kilns - built of brick with iron ties and turnbuckles- and the milling plant in the north west corner of Portion 52 stand as historical monuments to the beginning of the cement industry in NSW.
In 1899 the British-owned New Zealand Mines Trust paid A₤38,000 for the Portland leases and plant at the instigation of Dr August Scheidel, then Consul-General for the Austro-Hungarian Empire in Sydney (the 40-hectare (100-acre) site at Portland was purchased soon afterwards, in 1902). Scheidel, who "is considered the father of the modern cement industry in Australia", was born in Heidelberg and had received his PhD from Freiberg University in 1880. The Commonwealth Portland Cement Company (CPCC) was established to run the business in December 1900 - just days before Federation - and was possibly the first company in Australia to use the word "Commonwealth" in its name. 'The cost of initial plant machinery and buildings came to over 150,000 pounds and during the next ten years a further A₤100,000 would be spent on the plant's expansion'. Under the guidance of Scheidel as Managing Director, and with this large injection of capital spending and foreign expertise, the Portland Cement Works Site became one of Australia's largest and longest-running cement manufacturing plants.
The only other early cement manufacturer in NSW was Goodlett & Smith, established c. 1891 and located in Granville Sydney from 1901. The CPCC had an "agreement" with Goodlett & Smith, but this "friendly" relationship was transformed into one of intense competition after Goodlett & Smith sold out to the NSW Cement Lime & Coal Co in 1918 (first registered in 1913 and in production from 1916) which was re-organised and renamed in 1920 as Kandos Cement Ltd, based in Kandos, near Portland. In addition, three new cement companies were established in NSW during the twenties: the Sulphide Corporation near Newcastle in 1925; Standard at Charbon, also near Portland in 1926; and Southern at Berrima in 1929. In addition, the Victorian based Portland Cement Co Ltd changed name to Australian Portland Cement in 1905 and had become an aggressive competitor in the cement market by the 1920s. For the first time supply outstripped demand and when the Great Depression hit in the late 1920s, demand for cement plummeted. The impact on the CPCC was at first ameliorated by government works projects to pave roads in cement and to stabilise rivers with cement canals but soon these projects also became scarce. CPCC sales of cement fell from a high of 130,456 tonnes (143,803 short tons) in 1927 out of a total of 395,358 tonnes (435,808 short tons) sold in NSW that year, to a low of 137,892 tonnes (152,000 short tons) in sales for the entire State in 1931...The role of the cement works in the history of Portland
The development of the township of Portland and its cement works have been closely entwined. The Portland region was earlier known as "Limestone Flat" but was gazetted as the village of Portland in 1894, just five years after Portland Cement was first manufactured in NSW on this site. Thus the town was undoubtedly named after the product, rather than the other way round (indeed, it was one of about ten towns worldwide that received their name from the manufacture of Portland Cement).
'The town of Portland and the Works were almost synonymous. As the Works grew and prospered the town grew and prospered with the CPCC assisting in the establishment of much of the town's infrastructure. Scheidel was a pioneer in public relations and is quoted in the 1909 Annual Report as saying "it is to the advantage of the Company to make life in Portland more and more enjoyable".
'The Works were almost totally self-sufficient. Water for the site was piped from company built dams on the site, the Colliery supplied all the fuel requirements of the kilns and power house, electricity was generated, sufficient to supply both the Works and the town, limestone and shale quarries were almost adjacent to the plant and the company built a railway line to connect the Works to the main railway and operated its own locomotives'.
'For most employees, staying in Portland meant working at the cement factory. Two and even three generations of the same family worked there'. Some commentators noted a close and warm association between the company and the township, while others were less optimistic: "When some long-time employees were asked about the company as an employer, the initial reaction was silence, and then the reply, that there was little choice".
The closure of the works in 1991 had an impact on the town of Portland and the economy of the region but alternative employment opportunities had begun to arise, principally at the Wallerawang and Mount Piper Power Stations, and the town seems to have survived. It is, no doubt, a cleaner and quieter place without the operation of a cement work almost in its centre.Comparative analysis of Portland with other single-industry towns in NSW
Portland is unusual in NSW for its homogeneity as a one-industry, indeed one-company town (even if that company did change hands several times over the century). Other examples of single industry towns in NSW are: Port Kembla, which is closely identified with the steel industry and BHP but is more diverse than Portland because of its closeness to the city of Wollongong; Cobar, associated with copper, but with a variety of companies involved; Burraga, south west of Oberon, another copper region but with looser ties than Portland between the industry and the township...Description
The Portland Cement Works & Quarries Site is a large historical industrial site set in the centre of the town of Portland, some 27 km north west of Lithgow, just west of the Blue Mountains. The cement works closed down in 1991 and the last lime quarry was decommissioned in 1998. About 30 titles of land can be found within the area examined by the 1993 industrial archaeological study of the site by Fenwick & Holmes - of this about half the site is now owned by Boral and the other half is Crown land leased by Boral, however Boral has a closure plan in place.
The cement works originally occupied a large area of Lots 52 and 53 Volume 5461 Folio 163. However, the removal of much of the physical fabric of the cement works following its closure, and the rehabilitation and inundation of the quarry sites has reduced the curtilage of the works to only include the main Processing and Administrative Precinct that was decommissioned in 1995. Evidence of the ineteenth century phase of the use of the site is separately listed as Raffans Mill and Brick Bottle Kilns.
The key elements of the twentieth century phase are:
Four former lime quarries, which are sited nearby within the Fenwick & Holmes study area, now have stepped back walls and filled with water, and surrounded by rehabilitation plantings to minimise their danger. Quarries 1, 2 and 4 are all about 70 metres deep while Quarry 3 is about 15 metres (49 ft) deep and was used to retain drainage for the town.
The cement plant buildings including the Powerhouse were constructed largely of materials obtained on the site including clay for bricks. The Powerhouse's iron girders were imported from England from the same manufacturer as supplied the Eveleigh Street Railway Yards.Buildings considered to have structural problems
Fenwick & Holmes (1993, 63) have recommended that "every effort should be made to retain" the rectangular Cement Storage Silo (a brick building with gable ends and a galvanised tin roof, some 50m x 13m in dimension, and that forms part of the row of plant buildings to the east of the Powerhouse). However this building is argued by Noel Bell Ridley Smith to have major structural problems along with the Railway Loading Shed and the Locomotive (or Engine or Loco) Shed. Godden Mackay Logan agrees with NBRS that the rectangular cement silo is structurally unsound. However heritage engineer Peter Benkendorff is of the opinion that the building is or great heritage interest and is fundamentally sound and should be retained.
NBRS identified the workers cottages at Nos 3 and 4 Williwa Street to have severe structural damage requiring their demolition.Moveable heritage - museum collection
There is a further important element that is currently off-site and not included in this listing but may constitute an important issue associated with the conservation of the site: the many items of moveable heritage discarded from the site over the years that have been amassed in a substantial collection stored off-site by former employee Charlie Pinch, and that have been dedicated to the people of Portland. The SHR listing will support future applications for funding to conserve, catalogue and exhibit this collection.Condition
As at 5 May 2005, the Portland Cement Plant Processing and Administrative Precinct buildings, works and infrastructure range from being in good condition to poor, even dangerous, conditions. The main series of buildings, including the Powerhouse, Chimney, Administration Building and Locker/Shower Room, are all in good condition. The site has some archaeological potential to show locations, footings and remains of the earlier stages of the cement-making process on the site.
The Processing and Administrative Precinct of the Portland Cement Works has been significantly dismantled but retains many significant elements. Although the site has ceased to operate as a cement works, the spatial aspect of the remaining buildings, including their frontage to Williwa Street, the T-shaped layout of the works and the remnant rail tracks all combine to provide information on the operation of the site and the scale of the original works. The proximity of the works to the town of Portland and the location of the municipal pool across the road from the main entrance serve to act as links between the works and the town itself. The remaining chimney also acts as a landmark feature for the town and district.Modifications and dates
The Portland Cement Works has undergone a series of modifications and updates during its operational history. A number of the buildings remaining within the Processing and Administrative Precinct date from the 1902 phase of development, when Scheidel built his new plant. Buildings from this phase include the Powerhouse, Locomotive Shed, Administration Building, blacksmith's workshops and ambulance station. The Powerhouse was originally built as two separate buildings, but joined by 1910. The southern end of the building was also extended around the same time. Also at this time, the overhead gantry crane was extended through the entire Powerhouse. A number of changes were made internally over the operation period of the Powerhouse to support new machinery. The other buildings within this precinct underwent little change during their operation. The last major change was after 1991, when the plant was gradually closed down. Much of the operating machinery was removed to other sites. The main mill buildings were removed before 2003.Heritage listing
As at 17 May 2005, the Portland Cement Works Site is of State significance as the remnants of a cultural landscape that evidences the history of one of Australia's most successful lime quarrying and cement manufacture enterprises - an enterprise which generated a product crucial to the construction of many important structures in NSW throughout the twentieth century. Between 1900 and 1995 the site provided both raw materials from its own quarries and a place for the long-term, large-scale production of world-quality cement, using a succession of both local and imported machinery and labour. This industrial site led to the establishment and naming of the town of Portland and has contributed to its civic and social development since the late nineteenth century. This relationship between industry and local population is of State significance because of its rarity within NSW as a long-term, single-industry, one-company town, and because the relationship is evident in the layout of the town and in many of its civic amenities (from workers cottages and concrete roads to the municipal swimming pool). While the (former) Portland Cement Works Site is of local significance as "the heart of Portland", it is of State significance for begetting "the town that built NSW". See also Raffan's Mill and Brick Bottle Kiln - related listing.
Portland Cement Works Precinct was listed on the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 3 August 2012 having satisfied the following criteria.
The place is important in demonstrating the course, or pattern, of cultural or natural history in New South Wales.
The Portland Cement Works Site is of State significance as the site of one of Australia's most successful, long-term lime quarrying and cement manufacture enterprises, which generated a product crucial to the construction of many important structures in NSW throughout the twentieth century. Between 1900 and 1995 the site provided both raw materials from its own quarries and a place for the long-term large-scale production of world-quality cement, using a succession of both local and imported machinery and labour. The cement manufacturing plant developed by Dr Scheidel on the site at the turn of the twentieth century is of historical significance for having incorporated international technology such as the coal-fired rotary kilns, which were just being developed in Germany. When installed in 1902 Portland was then at the leading edge of cement manufacturing technology in the world. This industrial site led to the establishment and naming of the town of Portland and has contributed to its civic and social development since the late nineteenth century. This relationship between industry and local population is of State significance because of its rarity within NSW as a long-term, single-industry, one-company town. The company's significant role in the development of the town is evident in a number of civic projects and amenities in Portland including the workers' cottages included in the curtilage, the Municipal Pool, the Anglican Church site and concreted roads. The (former) Portland Cement Works and Quarries Site may be of local significance as "the heart of Portland", but is of State significance for begetting "the town that built NSW".
The place has a strong or special association with a person, or group of persons, of importance of cultural or natural history of New South Wales's history.
The Portland Cement Works Site is of State significance for its association with Dr August Scheidel, a metallurgist PhD, who has been described as the father of the modern cement industry in Australia. Scheidel obtained the capital to rebuild the cement works at Portland and, under his direction, make it one of Australia's most successful cement producing plants prior to WW II. As Managing Director he combined the expertise of building, mining and engineering professionals with the then recently developed German tunnel kilns to establish an efficient manufacturing plant for Portland. The site also has associations with local pioneers in the cement manufacturing industry, such as John Symonds and John Saville, as well as with the NSW Governor Lord Chelmsford, who visited Portland in 1913, apparently in honour of the site's contribution to NSW's building industry.
The place is important in demonstrating aesthetic characteristics and/or a high degree of creative or technical achievement in New South Wales.
The remnant industrial buildings on the Portland Cement Works Site are of State significance as a complex of industrial buildings from throughout the twentieth century. The group includes representative examples of Federation and Inter War period industrial buildings and buildings constructed in brickwork with fine steel trusses and which demonstrate the quality of workmanship and functional design applied to large-scale industrial engineering projects. The smaller scale Victorian / Federation period buildings have aesthetic significance as vernacular company buildings of several types and scales demonstrating the symbiotic relationship of a large industrial company to its host town. The Williwa Street cottages are of State significance as representative Federation era cottages that help demonstrate the social stratification of the company town. The site contains many industrial remnants from its long and varied history of cement manufacture that add to the technical significance of its heritage. The Powerhouse chimney is a local landmark within the town of Portland.
The place has a strong or special association with a particular community or cultural group in New South Wales for social, cultural or spiritual reasons.
The Portland Cement Works Site is of State significance for the social significance of the unusually close relationship it represents between the company and the township. It is also of local social significance to the people of Portland for whom the works were central to their everyday lives in financial, environmental, social and civic interrelationships. The site remains of significance to those whose family members and friends were killed and injured in the often dangerous operations of quarrying and cement manufacture. The dimensions of this social significance would be well examined in a substantial program of oral history research.
The place has potential to yield information that will contribute to an understanding of the cultural or natural history of New South Wales.
The Portland Cement Works Site is of State significance for its research potential associated with its rare industrial archaeological features and for its surviving documentation relating to the production of cement in a highly successful, large-scale and continually evolving enterprise which lasted over a century.
The place possesses uncommon, rare or endangered aspects of the cultural or natural history of New South Wales.
The relationship between industry and local population in the Portland Cement Works Site is of State significance because of its rarity within NSW as a long-term, single-industry, one-company town. The site is an outstanding example of a industrial enterprise interrelated with the genesis and development of a rural town, to the extent that the town itself was named after the company's most successful product, and many of its civic amenities were provided by the company (from church site and electricity to cement roads and municipal pool) while the town of course supplied the labour crucial to the company's long-term successful operation.
The place is important in demonstrating the principal characteristics of a class of cultural or natural places/environments in New South Wales.
Even in its partially dismantled state, the Portland Cement Works Site is of State significance as a fine example of its type displaying many of the principal characteristics of a cement manufacturing plant. The Williwa Street cottages are of significance as representative Federation period cottages that demonstrate the social stratification of this company town in the early twentieth century.See also
This Wikipedia article was originally based on Portland Cement Works Precinct, entry number 01739 in the New South Wales State Heritage Register published by the State of New South Wales and Office of Environment and Heritage 2018 under CC-BY 4.0 licence, accessed on 2 June 2018.External links
Media related to Portland Cement Works Precinct at Wikimedia Commons