Utzon v the Minister

After the election of a new Liberal government in 1965, control over payments for the Opera House project was transferred from the Opera House Committee to the Minster of Public Works William Davis Hughes. Conflict between the Minister and Mr Utzon escalated as Davis Hughes attempted to rein in the costs of the project. On 28 February 1966 Jørn Utzon resigned and left Sydney in April of that year.

Search the catalogue for records relating to Utzon’s resignation.

Examples of records relating to Utzon’s resignation

  • Department of Public Works; NRS-12723, Copies of correspondence between Mr Jørn Utzon and the Minister for Public Works, Hon. Davis Hughes, and notes of meetings, 1965-1966
  • Department of Public Works; NRS 12724, Papers, correspondence and briefs to Counsel relating to Mr Jørn Utzon, Architect v. the Minister for Public Works, Hon. Davis Hughes [Sydney Opera House], 1947-1970. See the catalogue for a list of the items in this series.
  • Department of Public Works; NRS-12725, Miscellaneous papers relating to the resignation of Mr Jørn Utzon as Architect, Sydney Opera House, 1964-1966
  • Department of Public Works; NRS-12729, Jørn Utzon vs. Minister for Public Works: Defendant's pleas and particulars of plaintiff's claim, 1968
  • Department of Public Works; NRS-12730, "Observations" on Jørn Utzon's claims against the Minister for Public Works, 1963-1969

Guide to the records


Sydney Opera House

Highlighting Sydney Opera House records in the State Archives Collection

Fort Macquarie, a man stand at boats moored in front of the building

Fort Macquarie, Bennelong Point

Fort Macquarie was constructed between 1817-1821 and demolished in 1901. The Tram Depot was opened in 1902 and pulled down in 1958 to make way for the building of the Sydney Opera House

Screenshot of typed minute paper dated 21 Dec 1954

Sydney Opera House - Minutes

We hold minutes from the Opera House Committee to the later Sydney Opera House Trust, covering planning, construction, administration and management of the House


The Sydney Opera House Books

Significant publications and reports on the Sydney Opera House project, including the rules for the design competition, plans, drawings and photographs at various stages of the construction

Government Printing Office 2 - 08376 - Opera House Committee at Public Works Building [Department of Local Government; interiors; architects; public servants] [GPO original locations or series - 47927] [11/1/1957]

Management of the Sydney Opera House

The Sydney Opera House Trust operates and maintains the Opera House on behalf of the NSW Government