Local history alive in community space names

Posted .

New community spaces at the former South Sydney Hospital site will take on names that commemorate the area’s unique history.

After consulting extensively with the local community, the former hospital’s heritage-listed buildings will be named the Joynton Avenue Creative Centre, Waranara Early Education Centre and Banga Community Shed.

The revitalised hospital site, that will house creative facilities for the 61,000 people soon to live in Green Square, will be named the Green Square Community and Cultural Precinct.

City of Sydney CEO Monica Barone said the new names highlight the centre’s new creative uses and its history as a hospital, as well as recognising the area’s traditional owners, the Gadigal people.

“These names will help preserve the rich history of this culturally and historically significant site, and play an important role in honouring and raising awareness of Aboriginal cultures and languages,” Ms Barone said.

“Joynton Smith was a founder, benefactor and director of the hospital from 1910 until his death in 1943, so it’s fitting that we honour him in this way.

“Names for the Waranara Early Education Centre and Banga Community Shed were specially chosen in consultation with the City’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Advisory Panel and the Metropolitan Local Aboriginal Land Council.

“This is a great way to reflect the heritage of Green Square and continue to raise awareness of the world’s oldest living culture in a way that becomes part of our everyday life.”

The selected Aboriginal names were sourced from The Sydney Language by Jakelin Troy, the most comprehensive word list of the Gadigal language published and accepted by Sydney’s Aboriginal community.

Named after the Gadigal word ‘to seek’, the Waranara Early Education Centre will transform a former casualty building into a long-day childcare centre.

The hospital’s former pathology building will take on the new name of Banga Community Shed after the local Gadigal word ‘to make’ or ‘do’, and will house a community shed, complete with workshops and public amenities.

The Joynton Avenue Creative Centre was previously named the Esme Cahill Building after the wife of former NSW Premier Joe Cahill. Once home to nurses during and after WWII, the three-story dormitory will be refurbished as artist studios, gallery spaces, creative workshops, classrooms and spaces available for community hire.

Suggested names were publicly exhibited from 28 March to 19 April in local newspapers, on the City’s website and the SydneyYourSay webpage.

South Sydney Hospital was built in stages between 1913 and the 1930s, and served the local community until its closure in 1993. Its history will be acknowledged at the new facilities through heritage interpretation panels at the creative centre entrance and adjacent park.

The Green Square Community and Cultural Precinct sits within the 278-hectare Green Square development area, one of the fastest-growing precincts in NSW. It includes the suburbs of Beaconsfield and Zetland, and parts of Rosebery, Alexandria and Waterloo.

Work on the $18 million precinct began in late April and is expected to be complete in mid-2017.

For media inquiries or images, contact City of Sydney Senior Media Adviser Keeley Irvin.

Phone 0448 005 718 or email kirvin@cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au

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