Culture and heritage

Six things we love about Melbourne’s heritage buildings

18 July 2019

Want to makeover your heritage property? Before you paint your façade the latest trendy colour, find out what makes Melbourne’s historic buildings so special, and if you’re eligible for a grant.

Beautiful heritage buildings help make our city a great place to live, work and visit, so we have contributed $600,000 to a multi-year heritage funding program to help people keep them looking tip-top.

A little restoration work can go a long way to transform your building and keep it in great condition for years to come. But do you know your tuck-pointing from your parapets?

Here are six common heritage features to look out for on Melbourne streets.

When two colours of mortar are used to give the impression of very fine brickwork joints. As well as looking beautiful, tuck-pointing can extend the life of a wall.

Polychromatic brickwork
When bricks of different colours are arranged in a pattern to highlight architectural features. Paint may need to be removed to reveal the beauty of this stunning brickwork, which originated in the 1860s.

Decorative keystones
The wedge-shaped stone piece at the apex of a masonry arch, such as a door or window. For decoration, keystones (also known as capstones) are often made larger than what is structurally required.

An extension of a wall beyond the edge of a roof, such as a guardrail, terrace, balcony or walkway. A parapet was originally used to defend buildings from attack.

Decorative cornices
The decorative trim where a wall meets a roof or ceiling. Cornices originated in Greek and Roman architecture and can be found on the inside and outside of buildings.

A decorative gable, usually positioned above a doorway or window and triangular in shape.. Pediments are most often found in classical and neoclassical architecture.

If you own a heritage building in the City of Melbourne, located within a heritage overlay, you can apply for funding year round.

The works you have in mind must be visible from the public realm.

We’ve also launched a special funding stream for landmark properties, and those that belong to or are leased by not-for-profit, charity or community groups.

To find out more, visit Heritage grants.

Share this story

You may also like
Concrete proof of fame

Concrete proof of fame

Melbourne’s rarely-seen ‘footpath of fame’ has another shot at the spotlight in a new exhibition at City Gallery.  In the 1970s, as miniskirts and long sideburns appeared in the city streets, scores of stars left their hand- and footprints in wet cement at a...

Power up: how cultural awareness helps reconciliation

Power up: how cultural awareness helps reconciliation

Find out how a guided walk along the Birrarung can help us power up the city's cultural awareness, as we prepare our sixth Reconciliation Action Plan. When Wiradjuri woman Sharina Ladharam walks into a room, she’s looking for signs. More specifically, signs that show...

Eid at Queen Victoria Market promotes peace, love and compassion

Eid at Queen Victoria Market promotes peace, love and compassion

Your neighbours come from 160 cultural backgrounds, speak 150 languages and practise 80 faiths. In fact, 55 per cent of people living in the City of Melbourne were born overseas, making Melbourne one of the most multicultural cities in the world. Community leaders...

Subscribe to win

Sign up to our newsletter and go into the draw to win one of three $100 vouchers to spend at Queen Victoria Market or one of three memberships to Melbourne City Baths.

You have successfully subscribed!