Glen Eira Town Hall

Glen Eira Town Hall

Built in 1885, the Caulfield Shire Hall, as it was first known, was originally much smaller in size. The building was designed by Shire surveyor Sydney Smith although his original design was much more elaborate. Due to cost issues only part of Smith's design was implemented.

There is no known image of the first building but it had no clock tower and was single storey plain brick with a modest sized hall. It also housed a post office and courthouse accessible via an entrance off Hawthorn Road. The foundation stone was laid in December 1884 by Shire President J W Crosbie. A second storey (without the tower top) and a portico were added in 1891.

In 1931, Caulfield Town Hall was re-modelled to include a much larger main hall, new upper and lower foyers and a neo-Grecian portico with Corinthian order columns fronting Glen Eira Road. The clock tower and bronze Honour Roll were also erected at this time.

Decorated in the classical revival mode, the main hall was originally a vast space, featuring a grand stage surrounded by a continuous proscenium arch and a balcony at the rear of the hall.

The redeveloped building was officially reopened on 25 February and dedicated on 31 March. Local materials were used wherever possible. The project involved many local unemployed tradesmen and was a major part of Council’s local employment relief scheme during the Great Depression.

In 1987, a mezzanine floor was added to the main hall to create two separate spaces. A new staircase was installed in the middle of the lower portico foyer to better connect the two levels.

The ground floor was developed into an art gallery and the first floor area was a retained as a community hall. The Glen Eira Town Hall Auditorium, as the main hall is now known, has retained its original colonnades, ceilings and lead lighting, providing a link to its architectural heritage.

In 1991, the award winning Caulfield Municipal Offices extension opened. In 1993 Caulfield Library moved from its former location in Maple Street to its present site.