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Heritage buildingThe Crown land (the Department) are the custodians of many natural areas and man-made items of heritage value. Reserve trusts manage many of these areas and items, in accordance with their reservation or dedication for 'heritage purposes', 'environmental protection' or 'coastal environmental protection'.

Conservation of items on Crown land may also be subject to local environmental plans, as well as other state policies and guidelines. Most items identified in local environmental plans are of local or state significance.

The Department establishes a register of heritage items owned or managed on Crown reserves, in accordance with Section 170 of the Heritage Act 1970, and applies to the Heritage Council to also list items identified as having State significance on the State Heritage Register.

Crown reserve plans of management can provide regulatory power for conservation of heritage items on reserves. This is useful where other legislative means are not available to conserve items of heritage value as the plans provide for ongoing management of significant items.