Council is writing a series of articles about the Halls and performance spaces of the Upper Lachlan Shire. This article is about the Collector Memorial Hall.
Elements of the historic and the new all come together in the Collector Memorial Hall.
The Hall was built in 1952 to commemorate the loss of life, and the sacrifice of all veterans by locals in the world wars, while simultaneously providing a place for the community to come together.
But Collector Hall’s legacy dates well back before 1952. It was constructed on the site of the old Assembly Hall (opened in 1896) on land donated by Mr Timothy McInerney. When the replacement Collector Memorial Hall was envisaged, the plans were drawn up by local builder, Lee Sheridan. The hall was constructed over three years funded by locals and the proceeds of monthly dances.
The construction was entirely the fruits of the fund-raising and building of the township and the hall and adjoining Poidevin Park are still owned and maintained by volunteers.
Parts of the old Collector Courthouse demolished in 1951 were used in its construction and the Hall was officially opened and registered as a War Memorial in December, 1952.
Tales of the old Hall are fondly remembered and shared. From that opening night alone they tell how the supper room hosted three sittings of 100 people per sitting, how those present sang, danced and laughed the night away like there was no tomorrow, and how some didn’t leave until the morning sun was coming up the next day.
There have been improvements and modifications to the Hall over the years, the biggest being a major refurbishment in 2023, initiated by Collector Memorial Hall Committee. The bulk of the financing came in the form of $585,500 from the Bushfire Local Economic Recovery program jointly funded by the Australian and NSW governments, with the remaining funding and construction costs of the project delivered through in-kind support, community donations and grants from the Collector Wind Farm and Veolia Mulwaree Trust.
The refurbishments have substantially increased the scope and capabilities of the Hall and include new male, female and accessible toilets, public wi-fi, paths and ramps to improve access for all, emergency showers, designated disability parking, interior and exterior painting, air condition, sound, lighting and media projection equipment, a 20kW solar grid with battery storage, double glazing insulation and covered tiled veranda area.
Today Collector Hall serves a variety of purposes for the local community, mainly as a point for local gatherings, both public and private.
In addition to catering to the local community’s needs through events such as the Collector Pumpkin Festival, family celebrations, childcare services and town meetings, it also it has attracted people from Sydney, Canberra and Goulburn as an affordable community hall for hire for private events including country weddings and birthday parties.
It’s broad services now include a drop-in service provided by a community nurse via bookings with Gunning District Community and Health Care (and for which a room has been set aside for) and the Hall has been used as an evacuation centre for the Collector and surrounding NSW region to assist locals and visitors in times of crisis.
Collector Memorial Hall Committee president Denise Duck said she was very thankful for all of those who contributed to the hall across many decades.
“The village of Collector has a proud history of service and community spirit and we thank past Committees for their stewardship of this important community resource,” she said.
“The present Committee is delighted and proud of what has been achieved in the last 18 months. The Hall is once again ready to take its place as the social focal point of the village and surrounding region.”
Main Hall – 160 square metres, seats at least 20 tables with 8 people per table, or around 200 people theatre style.
- Rowed seating for presentations, performances and large meetings.
- Tables and chairs set up for larger catered functions, trivia nights, group work and workshops.
- Discos, dances and kids games.
Stage area – 20 square metres (around 4m wide x 3m deep).
- small drama productions;
- music ensembles;
- presenters, panellists or performers.
- The kitchen can be used in addition to the Main Hall for catering purposes by booking Whole Venue. Use of Main Hall Audio Visual equipment can be hired by booking Main Hall + AV.
Supper room – 55 square metres
- Rowed seating for presentations, performances and more intimate meetings.
- Tables and chairs set up for smaller catered functions, workshops and meetings.
- The kitchen can be used in addition to the Supper Room for catering purposes by booking Supper Room + Kitchen
The kitchen is equipped to handle large function catering, including large-scale public events and festivals. There is no charge for use of the kitchen for Tea and Coffee purposes. For catering purposes an additional fee applies.
- gas cook top, large oven, 2 refrigerators, microwave, urn, instant hot water heater, crockery, cutlery
Venue Hire Rates
As different sections can be hired independently and in various combinations, it’s best to check the Hall’s website at https://collectormemorialhall.org.au/ to verify current hire costs.