12 – 20 April 2014 is Heritage Week.  To celebrate, we’ll be posting about interesting Tasmanian heritage places throughout the week – see our archive for details.

Western Tasmania Aboriginal Cultural LandscapeWestern Tasmania Aboriginal Cultural Landscape

The Western Tasmania Aboriginal Cultural Landscape in North West Tasmania was added to the National Heritage List in February 2013. The area, approximately 21,000 ha of remote, windswept coastline, contains numerous hut depressions, middens and other evidence of the seasonal movement of Aboriginal groups in the region and their various hunting practices.  The inclusion of the area on the National Heritage List recognised both its important history and the continuing cultural heritage significance of the area to the Tasmanian Aboriginal community.

The listing was somewhat controversial as the relatively narrow strip of the Western Tasmania Aboriginal Cultural Landscape formed part of the much larger Tarkine area which the Australian Heritage Council recommended be included on the National Heritage List for its natural and cultural heritage values (refer Map 1).  Former Environment Minister, Hon Tony Burke MP, decided against listing the entire area on economic grounds, but listed the coastal strip (refer Map 2) for its Aboriginal cultural values. Read the Australia Heritage Council’s final assessment report and the Final assessment brief to Minister.

Tarkine National Heritage Listing  - recommended by AHCTarkine National Heritage Listing  - listed by Minister