Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Playhouse Theatre, Hobart

These premises were constructed by the Congregational Church in 1864 and were known at the time as the Union Chapel. The design was in the Romanesque style and the original design included the construction of a tower as part of the finished building but this ultimately was not proceeded with due to financial restraints.

By 1899 the Helping Hands Mission had acquired the property. This organization’s mission was to reach down to the lower sections of society and to lift them up. They provided the poor of Hobart with food, clothing and even job opportunities as well as the opportunity to include some religious instruction.

The Hobart Repertory Society took over the building in 1938 and following refurbishment of the building, it became the Playhouse Theatre and is still going strong providing quality productions and performances to this day.

Main Text & Information Source – 
“The Story of Central Hobart – Street By Street” – Donald Howatson 2015


  1. I understand why The Hobart Repertory Society wanted to refurbish and use the building as the Playhouse Theatre - it looks ideal. But why would the Congregational Church give a sacred space over to secular usage? Had their population moved away from the area?

    1. I'm not sure why they would give up this building but there are a few beautiful old buildings around greater Hobart that were originally used by the Congregational Church, are still in existence but are being used for other purposes by other organisations. Maybe as you say, their population dwindled and moved away leaving the centres unused.

      If anyone can help with any further info on this, please leave a comment. Muchly appreciated.