The first Naval Dockyard of the Royal Australian Navy
Cockatoo Island is the largest Island in Sydney Harbour and is located at the junction of the Parramatta and Lane Cove Rivers, about 3.7 km west of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. It has a unique place in the history of Australia, starting with early European occupation as a penal settlement then operating as a shipbuilding, ship repair and general engineering establishment for 134 years. Today, Cockatoo Island is a UNESCO world-heritage listed site in the custody of the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust, a self-funding agency created by the Australian Government to protect and improve public access to former defence and Commonwealth sites around Sydney Harbour.
The following outline of the history of Cockatoo Island is based, with permission, on a report Cockatoo Island Sydney — A Thematic Presentation by James Semple Kerr and John Jeremy which was prepared for the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust in 2003.