Draft for public consultation

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8.3. Skills

8.3.1. Issue 8: Expert advice

Policy 8: The GBRMPA and AMSA will ensure that appropriate knowledge, skills and advice are applied in the conservation of the lightstation

The Burra Charter, in article 4.1, calls for using all the knowledge, skills and disciplines which can contribute to the study and care of a place. Relevant technical knowledge and skills are held by practitioners in various conservation disciplines, such as archaeologists, historians, engineers, architects and landscape architects.

Article 26.3 deals with the contribution of people who have associations with the place — in this case, people who lived at the lightstation or were involved with its operation are important sources of knowledge and advice.
Implementation strategy

  1. Expertise will be sourced as appropriate.

8.3.2. Issue 9: Staff training

Policy 9: Develop and implement a staff and community awareness training program to improve the knowledge and respect for the heritage values of the place


Relevant staff will be trained in the legislative requirements that pertain to heritage matters and, where necessary, appropriate training and material on heritage matters will be provided to managers and administrators who have responsibility for heritage management (including relevant stakeholders).

Implementation strategy

  • Where necessary, and where resources and priorities permit, conduct appropriate training on heritage matters for managers and administrators who have responsibility for heritage management including relevant stakeholders.

8.4. Use of the lighthouse

8.4.1. Issue 10: Continuity of the aids to navigation

Policy 10: AMSA will continue to operate the Dent Island light for as long as it is required for safety of navigation by the commercial shipping industry that pays the Marine Navigation Levy

Dent Island Light is rated at Availability Category 2, an indication that it is an important part of the system.

Implementation strategy

  • Continue regular operation and servicing of the light.

8.4.2. Issue 11: Maintaining clear view of the light from the sea

Policy 11: Trees which intrude between Dent Island Light and vessels in the Whitsunday Passage will be removed

Although the vegetation growing in the lightstation and its setting contribute to the heritage value of the place, allowing trees to obstruct mariners’ sight of the light would conflict with the effective use of the site for its significant function. Because of the steep slopes only a few trees are potentially obstructive.

Implementation strategy

  1. AMSA to monitor the trees, and request the GBRMPA to arrange for removal of any that intrude.

8.4.3. Issue 12: Access to the lighthouse

Policy 12: The interior of the lighthouse is to be accessible only to people authorised by AMSA

The situation of the Dent Island lighthouse, and the nature of its fabric, make its interior unsuitable for access by the public. The lighthouse is likely to be visited several times each year, either by officers of AMSA or by maintenance contractors — these people are authorised by AMSA and trained in the appropriate safety procedures.

Implementation strategy

  • Continue present arrangements for access to the lighthouse by AMSA officers or people authorised by AMSA.

  • AMSA to manage access to its leased area including the lighthouse in accordance with AMSA’s workplace health and safety policies and procedures.

8.5. Use of the rest of the lightstation

8.5.1. Issue 13: Occupation of the cottages

Policy 13: Both of the cottages should continue in use as dwellings

Continuous occupation of the houses, by people who understand the heritage values of the lightstation, is an excellent conservation measure. Residents can constantly observe and monitor the condition of the structures, and facilitate timely maintenance. The lessee’s staff, chosen for their aptitude and interest, can be good custodians of the cottages, ancillary buildings and the grounds.

8.5.2. Issue 14: Access to the lightstation

Policy 14: Secure and protect the lightstation from unauthorised access


The relative remoteness of Dent Island makes access challenging and provides the lightstation with a natural security buffer. Most visitors to the island now arrive by ferry from Hamilton Island. Access to the island and precinct is limited by the Commonwealth Island zoning, lease and permit requirements.

The private lessee controls access to the buildings within the lightstation.
AMSA personnel and contractors periodically visit the AMSA lease to inspect and maintain the lighthouse. Previous access was via helicopter, now with improved access from Hamilton Island (by boat), AMSA will transport equipment and material to the island via boat thus when reaching the island, will require access through the golf course and the historic lightstation area to reach the AMSA lease.
Implementation strategy

  • Ensure that island visitors are aware of the heritage values of the lightstation by making available appropriate information, such as excerpts from this heritage management plan.

  • Ensure the heritage values of the lightstation are protected through controls on access to all buildings within the lightstation.

  • Protect access to the lightstation to comply with workplace health and safety measures.

8.5.3. Issue 15: Special interest visits

Policy 15: Allow occasional visits to the lightstation by small numbers of people with a particular interest, to the extent this is compatible with continued occupation of the cottages

There are groups of people, including formally incorporated bodies such as Lighthouses of Australia Inc., who are interested in the history and conservation of lightstations like Dent Island. Such groups make up a very knowledgeable and appreciative audience, who would value the opportunity of visiting the site.

AMSA has a practice of opening otherwise closed lighthouses for public access. This is primarily done to coincide with major events in the life of the lighthouse, such as 100th and 150th anniversaries. However AMSA reserves the right to decide whether such events occur, based on the findings of a risk analysis and the availability of personnel.
More generally, the decision to open the lightstation (but not the lighthouse) for occasional visits is a matter for the GBRMPA and its private lessee. Again, a decision to do so would need to be based on the findings of a risk analysis and the availability of personnel.
Implementation strategy

  1. The GBRMPA and AMSA develop and adopt, in consultation with the private lessee, a protocol for approving and conducting special interest visits to the lightstation.

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