Restored former church reimagined as a social purpose precinct for philanthropy.
About the building
Established by the Paul Ramsay Foundation and opened in 2022, Yirranma Place was created as a precinct for social purpose, bringing together like-minded organisations, social enterprises and people working for social change. It invites the wider philanthropic community to share space and ambition, becoming a place of promise and purpose. ‘Yirranma’ is translated from Gadigal to mean ‘many-create’, which indicates the purpose of the precinct – a place where people come together to create and connect in the neighbourhood.
Yirranma Place is the former First Church of Christ Scientist building, designed in the interwar Beaux Arts style by architect Samuel George Thorp and completed in 1927. SJB Architects and Cornerstone Group have restored and adapted the historical building to create contemporary and flexible work and event spaces, a rooftop terrace, and a cafe.
Original features of the building remain, such as signage, plaques, panels, and the almost century-old organ in the auditorium. The organ has been restored for use, including the cleaning of all 2,180 pipes.
Artworks from the Foundation’s core art collection are displayed in Blue Gum Hall, a welcoming arrival and meeting space. The collection focuses on contemporary First Nations women artists working in any medium.
At the south-eastern portico is a public art commission by artist, activist and Barkandji elder Uncle Badger Bates, who designed and created the iron gate entry and painted ceiling artwork.Built
Peddle, Thorp & WalkerAlterations
SJB Architects, 2021; Cornerstone Group, 2021Awards
INSIDE World Festival of Interiors Awards – Winner, Large Workplace, 2022
AGDA Design Awards – Distinction Award, Brand Identity and Signage, 2022; Merit Award, Environmental Graphics, 2022
MBA Excellence in Construction Awards – Best Heritage Adaptive Reuse Building, 2022
From pastures privately owned by the Burdekin family, to a circus, a church and now a precinct for social purpose, Yirranma Place’s impact comes from those who work within it: Brave Foundation, Burraga Foundation, Community Resources, Community Refugee Sponsorship Australia, The Foyer Foundation, Global Sisters, Foundation for Young Australians (FYA), For Purpose Investment Partners, Justice Form Initiative, New South Wales Council of social Services (NCOSS), Philanthropy Australia, Primer, Shelter NSW, Smart Recovery, Social Enterprises Finance Australia, Two Good Co.,Youth Action, SEFA.
Find out more about this building here