What is heritage?

What do the experts say?

Australian Government: “Heritage includes places, values, traditions, events and experiences that capture where we’ve come from, where we are now and gives context to where we are headed as a community.
  Our heritage gives us understanding and conveys the stories of our development as a nation, our spirit and ingenuity, and our unique, living landscapes. Heritage is an inheritance that helps define our future.”

National Trust: “Heritage covers all that we, as a society, value today and wish to pass on to future generations.This is a very broad definition of ‘heritage’, and deliberately so. Its scope is much broader than ‘place’. It includes intangible as well as tangible heritage—language and customs, as well as places and moveable collections.
  ‘Heritage places’ … covers places that have historic, Indigenous and natural values, their associated collections (including documentary collections), and the settings in which places are located.

Heritage is the story of a community. It includes places, objects and people’s stories. One writer says heritage is the combination of all those things that make us who we are as individuals and as a community.

Age is no barrier: a place can have heritage value whether it is only decades or centuries old. Official definitions of heritage are longer, but say much the same thing (see right).

In the ACT, heritage is defined by the ten criteria in section 10 of the ACT Heritage Act 2004.

The heritage value of the Flynn school buildings and grounds doesn’t come from their age: the school was commissioned in 1971 and opened in 1974. Flynn’s value comes from its other features, as listed in the heritage summary on this site. In terms of the ACT Heritage Act, the main features that give the place heritage value are:

    (a) it demonstrates a high degree of technical or creative achievement (or both), by showing qualities of innovation, discovery, invention or an exceptionally fine level of application of existing techniques or approaches;

    (b) it exhibits outstanding design or aesthetic qualities valued by the community or a cultural group;

    (d) it is highly valued by the community or a cultural group for reasons of strong or special religious, spiritual, cultural, educational or social associations;

    (h) it has strong or special associations with a person, group, event, development or cultural phase in local or national history;

The heritage summary tells you more about how Flynn meets these criteria.

Images from Flynn

Angles on the textured concrete walls


Flynn grounds

Landscape setting & grounds

Enrico Taglietti visting the school he designed

History and design

Memorial to John Flynn

Memorial to John Flynn