Maintaining 'character' costs money but those with older homes in Tenterfield can get a bit of assistance from Tenterfield Shire Council for small conservation and maintenance jobs if their property meets the criteria.
Council is now calling for applications to its Local Heritage Places Fund, although the grants are generally limited to $2000 per project and must be matched dollar-for-dollar.
Council's Planning & Development Services manager Tamai Davidson said greater funding may be made if circumstances warrant it, and in previous years extra money has been granted when eligible applications haven't exhausted the fund.
"Each year the full amount of the fund is expended on small heritage projects across the shire," Mrs Davidson said.
"Whilst many of the projects are small scale, every positive conservation action has a cumulative impact in the enhancement of heritage conservation in Tenterfield Shire and raises awareness about conservation best practice."
It's anticipated that the types of projects involved would be repainting homes in their original colour, maintenance or reparation works or meeting building codes relating to fire, services and access. It can include fences, verandahs, roof cladding and decorative detail, from structural work through to final painting.
The aim of the $25,500 fund (of which $5500 comes from NSW Environment and Heritage) is to encourage as much positive work on heritage items in the area as possible.
The property has to be listed as a heritage item on the Tenterfield Local Environmental Plan or be in a Heritage Conservation Zone (pretty much the CBD bordered by Miles, Logan, Molesworth and Scott Streets, plus the showground and railway precincts) or on the radar of council's Heritage Advisor.
Applicants are encouraged to do some research on their property and to discuss their project with council staff or the Heritage Advisor before submission, and 'quality' applications are more likely to get the go-ahead. Two quotes for the work are also required (or just one if it can be demonstrated that a second quote is difficult to obtain).
Applications will be ranked on the heritage significance of the property and its setting, its visibility to the public, the urgency of the works and whether other council funding has been received in the past five years.
Submissions by email or post close September 11 and successful applicants will be advised by November. Projects must then be completed by April 9 next year.
Application forms and guidelines can be found at www.tenterfield.nsw.gov.au or by visiting council's customer service staff at the Visitor Information Centre. Contact Mrs Davidson on (02) 6736 6002 for more information.