Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 0087) and site

  • Number
    4575744
  • Other name
    (WS 0087)
  • Primary address

    128, Laycock Road Penshurst, 2222. NSW
    LGA: Kogarah
    LGA region: Sydney
    DUAP region: Sydney South

  • Alternate Address

    129, Penshurst Avenue Penshurst, 2222. NSW
    LGA: Kogarah
    LGA code: KOGA
    LGA region: Sydney
    DUAP region: Sydney South

  • Owner
    Sydney Water
  • Current use
    Reservoir.
  • Former use
    Reservoir.
  • Item type
    Built
  • Item group
    Utilities - Water
  • Item category
    Water Supply Reservoir/ Dam
  • Parcels

    Parcel code: LOT
    Lot number: 1
    Section number:
    Plan code: DP
    Plan number: 906312
    Updated: 17 February 2003

  • Curtilage/Boundary
    The curtilage is defined by Lot 1 in DP no.906312, as shown in the curtilage plan.
  • AMG easting
    323674085
  • AMG northing
    6239844351
  • Statement of significance
    Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 87) is one of a small group of four similar elevated reservoirs in the Sydney Water system, the others being Bellevue Hill Reservoir (WS 10) 1910, Drummoyne Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 38) 1910 and Ashfield Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 3) 1912. The group of reservoirs demonstrates a high level of engineering expertise and architectural detail, accommodating both structural requirements and aesthetic qualities. The Penshurst Reservoir site is significant for its important association with the development of the Metropolitan water supply system in Sydney, particularly in the early decades of the Upper Nepean Scheme. The site has been in continuous use for water supply since 1891. The initial and subsequent reservoirs evidence the progression of urban development and residential density in the local area. Penshurst reservoirs have provided water for the surrounding area since 1891 and are unique because since 1941 their water source been both Woronora and Nepean/Warragamba. The whole site demonstrates the growth of the water supply system and progressive development in reservoir construction technology during this period. It contains remnant structures and foundations from the two earliest reservoirs on site and a 1890s Turncock's Cottage. The combination of the two reservoirs, one steel and one concrete, and their opposing structural support devices, is an unusual facet in reservoir design.
  • Endorsed significance
    State
  • Circa
    No
  • Physical description
    Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 87) is one of a group of four similar elevated reservoirs, the others being Bellevue Hill Reservoir (WS 10) 1910, Drummoyne Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 38), 1910 and Ashfield Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 3) 1912. Each reservoir is an elevated cylindrical riveted steel tank, resting on a concrete apron and supported on a steel girder frame. The perimeter of the steel stand has a façade of concrete columns and arches, which forms a decorative, rather than a structural feature. The walkway around the rim of the reservoir has been removed. Standard features include: handrail in tubular steel, davit, access ladder, depth gauge board, inlet and outlet valve chambers. Full Service Level: 92 m. Capacity: 6.6 ML. Penshurst Site. The Penshurst Reservoir Site also includes the former Water Service Officer's Cottage, the concrete base of Penshurst Reservoir No.1, the brick stand for Penshurst Tank (1891), valves and pipework associated with the connection in 1942 of the Woronora supply with Upper Nepean System water - see listing for Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 88). Significant plantings around the site include: cypress, viburnum, jacaranda, camphor laurel, oleander and native species.
  • Modifications made
    The reservoir has been roofed to safeguard water quality (1977).
  • History
    In 1891 a cast iron elevated tank (0.09 ML) was constructed at Penshurst (only the brick stand still survives). It was supplied with Upper Nepean Scheme water by a pumping station at Carlton. To augment supply, Penshurst Reservoir No.1 (riveted steel surface reservoir) was constructed in 1895. By 1910 further growth in demand was met with the construction of Penshurst Reservoir No.2 (Elevated) (WS 87), a riveted steel elevated reservoir (Penshurst Tank was removed in 1914, first to Campbelltown and in 1942 to Warragamba township). The fourth reservoir, Penshurst Reservoir No.3 (Elevated) (WS 88), a large concrete elevated reservoir, was constructed in 1938. Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 87), built in 1910, is one of a group of four similar elevated reservoirs. In the meantime, Lakemba Pumping Station took over supply for Penshurst in 1924, but also supplied Wiley Park and East Hills from 1930. Carlton Pumping Station continued in emergency service until decommissioned in 1939. Penshurst Reservoir No.1 was removed in 1951 and re-erected at Newport. With plans to extend the Woronora Pipeline to the Metropolitan System, a main was commenced in 1958 from Penshurst to Allawah. However by 1961, it was realised that instead of Woronora supplying Sydney, the opposite would be the case, with Warragamba water supplementing areas supplied by Woronora. This situation required further amplification of the mains between the City Tunnel at Ashfield and the Penshurst Reservoirs, including a new main from the City Tunnel to Allawah, pumped by a new pumping station in Canterbury Park, together with a pumping station at Allawah to pump water to Penshurst. Completion of this scheme in 1969 allowed Warragamba water to be fed into the Woronora Pipeline in sufficient quantity to assist in the supply of Sutherland, Cronulla and beyond. To supply essential water to Sydney, a sequence of four reservoirs have been constructed, with the reservoirs currently in service, that is, Penshurst Reservoir WS 0087 or Penshurst Reservoir No.2, being the third reservoir built on the site and Penshurst Reservoir WS 0088 or Penshurst Reservoir No. 3, the fourth constructed.
  • National
    Settlement
  • State
    Utilities
  • Local
    Water Supply
  • Local description
    Relates to the planning, development, expansion and provision of water supply.
  • a) Historical
    The Penshurst Reservoir Site includes the Penshurst No.2 Reservoir that is one of a group of four (Ashfield , Bellevue Hill, Penshurst and Drummoyne) water supply service reservoirs , which together represent an important technological development in the use of reinforced concrete for reservoirs in NSW. The group of four elevated steel and reinforced concrete reservoirs is the first group of large (over 0.5 MI) water storage reservoirs built above ground level as part of the metropolitan water supply system. In essence, the importance of this system of construction is that it allows gravity reticulation to the highest land areas. This was a major improvement in water supply and an important developmental stage in the provision of water supply in Sydney. The creation of the Reservoir No.2, and the subsequent addition of the No.3, provide evidence of the extent of urban development in the serviced area at the times of construction of the two reservoirs. The two structures are illustrative of the growth of residential density of the local area and Sydney and the corresponding development of the water supply network over this period . Penshurst Reservoir and site, seen as a whole, demonstrates the rapid growth in demand for water in Sydney's southern suburbs as well as exhibiting a wide range of reservoir construction technology. It is the key site connecting Woronora and Warragamba water supply since 1942 and has been in continuous use for water supply since 1891. It is considered that Penshurst Reservoir and Site meets this criterion at the State level.
  • c) Aesthetic
    Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 87) and Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 88) form a dramatic landmark on the skyline for the surrounding area. The visually and aesthetically dominant features of the Penshurst Reservoir and site are the two reservoir structures (No.2 and No.3). The Penshurst Reservoir No.2 and No.3 are relatively simple and functional creations, albeit designed with deliberate architectural stylisation. The arched substructure of Reservoir No.2 is a fine example of Federation Free Classical architecture, widely popular at the time of its construction. The most important element of the site is the Reservoir No.2, whose architecture is closely linked to the architecture which characterises the vicinity, making the Reservoir a complementary form in the local townscape. The unique composition that includes the Reservoirs No.2 and No.3 allows a comparison of the architectural and structural design of the two reservoirs, and presents an interesting quality on its own merit. It is considered that Penshurst Reservoir and Site as a whole meets this criterion at the State level.
  • e) Research
    Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 87) is one of a small group of four similar elevated reservoirs, the others being Bellevue Hill Reservoir (WS 10) 1910, Drummoyne Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 38) 1910, and Ashfield Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 3) 1912. The group of reservoirs demonstrates a high level of engineering expertise and architectural detail, accommodating both structural requirements and aesthetic qualities. This reservoir site demonstrates the broad range and variety of construction techniques for water storage reservoirs.
  • f) Rarity
    Penshurst Reservoir No.2 is one of four riveted steel elevated reservoirs on a steel girder stand with concrete surround in the Sydney Water system, rarer still because of the high level of architectural detailing. The riveted steel tank was common technology for surface reservoirs, but was extremely rare when combined with an elevated steel frame with concrete apron. It is considered that Penshurst Reservoir No.2 meets this criterion on State level. It is considered that other elements on the site do not meet this criterion.
  • g) Representative
    The riveted steel tank was common technology for surface reservoirs, but was extremely rare when combined with an elevated steel frame with concrete apron. This reservoir site demonstrates the broad range and variety of construction techniques for water storage reservoirs, however, it is considered that this aspect of significance is largely encapsulated in the surviving architectural documentation. It is considered that Penshurst Reservoir No.2 meets this criterion on State level. It is considered that other elements on the site do not meet this criterion.
  • List name
    Local Environmental Plan
  • Name
    Kogarah LEP 1998
  • Reference number
    14B Laycock Rd, Reservoirs and Pumping Station.
  • Gazette number
    143
  • Date listing listed
    01 January 1998
  • List name
    Heritage Act - s.170 NSW State agency heritage register
  • Date listing listed
    01 January 2000
  • List name
    National Trust of Australia register
  • Date listing listed
    01 January 2000
  • List name
    Heritage Act - State Heritage Register
  • Date listing listed
    18 November 1999
  • Title
    Conservation Plan for WS 19 at Wiley Park and WS 87 & 88 at Penshurst
  • Author
    Edward Higginbotham & Associates Pty Ltd
  • Published
    1993
  • Item reference number in study
  • Title
    Penshurst Reservoir Site Conservation Management Plan
  • Author
    Sydney Water
  • Published
    2004
  • Item reference number in study
  • WS 87 & WS 88. Former Water Service Officer’s (WSO) Cottage.
    WS 87 & WS 88. Former Water Service Officer’s (WSO) Cottage.
    Created by: Edward Higginbotham
    Creation date: 01 July 2000
  • WS 87 & 88. Site of former reservoir, showing concrete apron.
    WS 87 & 88. Site of former reservoir, showing concrete apron.
    Created by: Edward Higginbotham
    Creation date: 01 July 2000
  • View of Valve House.
    View of Valve House.
    Created by: Edward Higginbotham
    Creation date: 01 July 2000
  • The physical curtilage plan for Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated)(WS 0087) and site.
    The physical curtilage plan for Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated)(WS 0087) and site.
    Created by: Sydney Water
    Creation date: 29 June 2006
  • Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 0087) during render repair.
    Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 0087) during render repair.
    Created by: Sydney Water
    Creation date: 01 February 2008
  • Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 0087) showing detail of base.
    Penshurst Reservoir (Elevated) (WS 0087) showing detail of base.
    Created by: Sydney Water
    Creation date: 23 January 2009
  • Data entry status
    Basic
  • Entered
    18 December 2000
  • Updated
    05 December 2014