Any place or object registered by the Heritage Council is of special cultural heritage significance to the State of Victoria and legally protected to help ensure it survives for future generations to appreciate.
Registration doesn’t mean it can’t be sold, prevent it being employed for a different use, or guarantee that it will never be altered:
Owner rights and obligations
If a place or object is recommended, we provide a report to the owners and seek their views before adding a place or object to the register. This includes:
- a statement of cultural heritage significance
- a proposed extent of registration
- proposed activities that may not require a permit.
Owners of a place or object subject to an Executive Director recommendation have obligations (DOCX, 460.9 KB) to ensure that the place/object is protected prior to the Heritage Council making a decision about whether it should be included in the Register.
Heritage Victoria has published a new brochure for owners (PDF, 1.0 MB) of Victorian Heritage Register listed places. It provides important information relevant to you as an owner or custodian of a heritage asset, including information regarding the Living Heritage Grants Program which provides conservation funding for Victorian Heritage Register listed places.
Anyone can nominate a place or object to the Victorian Heritage Register, but only a small percentage of them will meet the Heritage Council of Victoria's criteria.
Before you complete a nomination form ask yourself the questions below. If you answer yes to any of them you'll probably need to look at other protections for the place or object:
Is the place or object solely of local significance?
The Heritage Register is reserved for places and objects which are considered to be important to Victoria as a whole.
Places of purely local significance are more appropriately identified through heritage overlays to the local planning scheme. If you believe the place is mainly important in the context of its local area, you should contact the relevant local council.
Is the place or object solely of natural or environmental significance?
The Heritage Act applies only to places of cultural heritage significance.
Some places that are solely of natural or environmental significance will be protected by virtue of their land management status. For example, forests, coastlines or areas of remnant vegetation will often constitute public land that is managed as a National Park, State Park, Coastal Park, fauna reserve or similar.
Other places that are solely of natural or environmental significance may be more appropriately identified and managed through Environmental Significance Overlays, Significant Landscape Overlays or Vegetation Protection Overlays in local planning schemes If you believe the place is important solely for its natural or environmental values, you should contact the relevant local council.
Is the place or object solely of Aboriginal significance?
The Heritage Act doesn’t apply to places and objects which are important only in respect of their association with Aboriginal tradition or traditional use.
Such places are better protected through legislation administered by Aboriginal Victoria.
You must use the correct form:
The form includes a detailed guide to help you complete it accurately:
- read the guide carefully
- make sure you complete mandatory sections
- provide attachments where required.
We won’t consider your application if:
- it’s incomplete
- it has inadequate or insufficient information
- it's for a place or object that has already been considered and rejected, unless you provide substantial new information.
Victorian Heritage Register
For a place or object to be included in the Victorian Heritage Register it must meet at least one of the Heritage Council of Victoria's Criteria for Assessment.
Use the Criteria and Threshold Guidelines to help you apply the criteria to your application.
7 August 2008: Criteria adopted by the Heritage Council pursuant to Sections 8(1)(c) and 8(2) of the Heritage Act 1995:
Importance to the course, or pattern, of Victoria's cultural history.
Possession of uncommon, rare or endangered aspects of Victoria's cultural history.
Potential to yield information that will contribute to an understanding of Victoria's cultural history.
Importance in demonstrating the principal characteristics of a class of cultural places and objects.
Importance in exhibiting particular aesthetic characteristics.
Importance in demonstrating a high degree of creative or technical achievement at a particular period.
Strong or special association with a particular present-day community or cultural group for social, cultural or spiritual reasons.
Special association with the life or works of a person, or group of persons, of importance in Victoria's history.
The Guidelines (DOCX, 251.0 KB) for nomination to the Victorian heritage Register (VHR) provides valuable information to support you in developing a nomination for the VHR.
Social Significance - Criterion G
On 4 April 2019 the Heritage Council formally adopted an updated version of the Criterion G wording and threshold guidance. The Victorian Heritage Register Criteria and Threshold Guidelines 2019 (PDF, 811.3 KB) document applies for nominations to the Executive Director and recommendations made by the Executive Director AFTER this date.
Please refer to the following document for guidance if you are nominating a place for inclusion in the Register in accordance with Criterion G:
Landscapes of Cultural Heritage Significance
The Assessment Guidelines will help you understand, identify and assess the cultural values of landscapes in Victoria. These Landscape Guidelines were endorsed by Heritage Council of Victoria and Heritage Victoria in February 2015.
If a place is nominated to the Victorian Heritage Register, these Guidelines supplement The Victorian Heritage Register Criteria and Threshold Guidelines.
Amend or remove
Owners or other parties who want to amend or remove a registration need to complete the application form:
Registrations on the Victorian Heritage Register can be amended by:
- changing the extent of registration including adding or removing land
- changing the Statement of Significance or permit policy
- removing or amending permit exemptions
- removing a place or object from the Heritage Register.
Once a place or object has been added to the Victorian Heritage Register, owners can apply to have the extent of registration altered. Altering the extent might include increasing the amount of land that is included in the Register, or applying to have the amount of registered land reduced.
Owners can apply to have permit exemptions put in place identifying works which don’t need a permit under the Heritage Act 2017. Exemptions can save time and resources for both permit applicants and Heritage Victoria.
Applications to reduce the extent of registration or to remove a place or object from the Heritage Register are rarely approved.
You need to demonstrate that the place, or the extent of registration, doesn’t adequately satisfy the Heritage Council's criteria.
Forms and guidelines
Find out what registration by the Heritage Council means, what kinds of places are added to the Victorian Heritage Register and what the implications are for an owner.
Nominate to register
Application to nominate a place or object for inclusion in the Victorian Heritage Register:
Remove or alter
Change of ownership
Complete this form if you intend to sell or have sold, or purchased, a property included in the Victorian Heritage Register:
Page last updated: 17/12/19