Today we rang Sydney Town Hall's bells for the first time in 532 days to celebrate the restoration of the iconic building's 55-metre tall clocktower.
The City has a responsibility to protect our history and heritage, especially the 130-year-old Sydney Town Hall, which is owned by the people of Sydney and is one of the city's most important buildings.
The clocktower - Sydney's oldest, built in 1884 - has been carefully restored by some of Australia's best heritage experts.
The 17-month restoration completes the first stage of a detailed, $30 million project to conserve the facade of this landmark civic building. Expert stonemasons, tradespeople and City staff have worked tirelessly to restore the 140-year-old sandstone clocktower.
The work included seismic bracing and strengthening of the clocktower, safe removal of asbestos, and installation of energy-efficient LED lighting.
The tenor bell at the top in the belfry, which rings on the hour, was purchased in the late 1870s and weighs 1,500-kilograms. In the past it was used as a fire warning bell.
This follows a $40 million complete internal restoration of Sydney Town Hall, which included upgrading essential services and fire safety, energy efficient lighting, new stormwater infrastructure, solar panels on the roof and a climate control system that uses 30 per cent less power.
Sydney Town Hall has over 360,000 visitors each year and hosts corporate and charity functions, school speech days, university graduations, meetings and conferences, concerts, fashion parades and community events.
We will now begin Stage Two of the restoration which will include the south side of Sydney Town Hall facade.