Launceston Heritage Wins

The winners in the 2017 Launceston Heritage Awards are exemplars in revitalizing and showcasing the city’s historic heritage places.

The winning design in the Small Projects category celebrates a well-considered contemporary garden room extension to the rear of a Bennell Regency Townhouse. Approved by the Tasmanian Heritage Council, the modestly-scaled addition incorporates the fireplace and chimney from the previously existing service wing.

Designed by Jack Birrell of Birrelli Architects, the response provides a sympathetic addition without impacting on the principal form and integrity of the building, or the ability to interpret the spatial form, character and function of the original service wing.

The townhouse was built by prominent northern Tasmanian builder James Bennell, who arrived in Tasmania in 1834 and became one of the colony’s earliest speculative builders.  A comprehensive history of his work published in 2006 attributes Bennell’s success to his creative mind and flair for business. The quality of craftsmanship employed in the buildings has stood the test of time, as has community appreciation of the heritage significance of Bennell buildings.

The redevelopment of the Launceston College Performing Arts Centre won the Major Projects category. The award is a celebration of the archaeology and deep history of a significant inner-city site. The success of the development, also approved by the Heritage Council, was covered in an early news item story.

The Tasmanian Heritage Council congratulates all the winners for contributing towards the protection of the state’s historic heritage, and revealing the stories of Launceston’s past.

The Launceston City Council is also congratulated for its ongoing commitment to supporting the owners and organisations that make a positive contribution to protecting the city’s well-loved heritage values.

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