Bowral Memorial Hall Refurbishment

  • Project typeAsset Refurbishment
  • Contractor nameBelmadar Pty Lt.
  • Completion Date31 December 2022
Bowral Memorial Hall Front of Building

Bowral Memorial Hall Project is being funded by Wingecarribee Shire Council as well as the Commonwealth, who are contributing $2.8 million . The approved budget for this project is $7,575,000 and the budget is proposed to be increased by $850,000 to fund the variations outlined in the August 2022 Council meeting. The total proposed budget of this project is $8,425,000.

The Bowral Memorial Hall building is part of a complex of buildings located at 20-24 Bendooley Street, Bowral. This complex consists of a number of community buildings including the Memorial Hall, Old Town Hall, Bowral Central Library, Highlands Community Centre and Bowral Community Health Centre. Most of these buildings are owned and managed by Wingecarribee Shire Council. The Bowral Community Health Centre is on council land but managed by NSW Health.

The subject site is located within the main civic precinct of Bowral, consisting of the buildings noted above and the Court House (now disused), Police Station and Uniting Church. The subject site is located south of Stafford Cottage (the Highlands Community Centre) and to the north of the Uniting Church on Bendooley Street and opposite the Coles supermarket site. 

Bowral Memorial Hall consists of a number of building elements constructed at various times over its long history. The Hall is fronted by the original School of Arts building - a two storey Queen Anne style public building constructed in 1884 with 1913 and 1920s alterations. In the mid 1920’s a hall was built behind and incorporated into the School of Arts building to form “Bowral Memorial Hall”. During the early 1960s a stage wing was incorporated into the eastern end of the hall with an annex along the southern side containing kitchen, amenities and a new building entry.  The whole building was extensively remodelled and refurbished at this time.

Since then there have been some minor alterations and additions including stabilisation works and façade changes. The main façade change being the construction of an extension to house an Access toilet and the replacement of the entry canopy. The building has also been used for a variety of public functions including library, community centre and more recently the YWCA.

Wingecarribee Shire Council has engaged Belmadar Pty Ltd to successfully deliver the Bowral Memorial Hall Refurbishment Project.

As outlined in the Background Information, the Bowral Memorial Hall is a building of significant importance to Council, Stakeholders/User Groups and the Public which utilise the facility as a fit for purpose multi-use asset. The refurbishment aims to support Council in meeting its obligations to the community by providing a contemporary environment to serve all.    

The proposed internal alterations include:

  • Converting the existing partitioned office spaces on the ground floor of the School of Arts wing into a more open main foyer with associated booking office, cloak room, bar and kitchen facilities.
  • Provision of a lift to provide universal access to the first floor of the School of Arts building.
  • Alterations to the toilet amenities to improve functionality.
  • The rebuilding of the floor of the hall to rectify the structural problems and provide compliance with current entertainment venue loading requirements.
  • The rebuilding of the roof framing of the hall to rectify its marginal structural adequacy and allow for the installation of air conditioning and the ability to support modern entrainment venue lighting. The ceiling level will also be raised to provide more volume to the auditorium and thus enhance the space’s acoustic qualities for unamplified music.
  • The provision of a bank of retractable seating to provide flexibility of seating options with enhanced sight (and sound) lines to the stage area.
  • Replacing the existing wall linings with new more fire-resistant materials that will also improve the room’s acoustics for non-amplified sound.
  • The Forestage Lift has been removed from the Project as a result of the exceptionally high water table level discovered on site during the excavation for the lift pit.  The cost and complexity of addressing the subsoil water issue was assessed and a determination was made by the Council in conjunction with the main Stakeholders for its deletion.”
  • Adjustments to the stage proscenium to improve unamplified sound reflectivity into the main auditorium.
  • The provision of an operable wall to close off the stage enhancing unamplified sound reflectivity back into the main body of the auditorium and closing off the back stage to act as an overflow Green Room.
  • Removal of high-level cat walks to the back of stage area as they are no longer required for drama productions.
  • Provision of a plant room to some of the current back stage ceiling void. This will house most of the plant for the new auditorium air conditioning system.
  • Minor reconfigurations and refurbishment to the basement change rooms to improve functionality and fire separation from the floor above.

Work has commenced on the refurbishment with the completion of site establishment and demolition of the portico located at the front of the building. 

The project has experienced a number of delays due to the discovery of adverse site conditions which has extended the current completion date until March 2023.



Contact details

Capital Projects Team
02 4868 0888


20-24 Bendooley Street, Bowral 2576  View Map

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