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Open for Open House
07 July 2016
Come along to the Supreme Court during Open House Melbourne, and take in the sights and sounds of one of Melbourne’s most historically significant buildings.
Established by an Act of Parliament in 1852, the Supreme Court has occupied its current home since 1884. The heritage-listed Trial Division building took 10 years to complete and was at once a landmark on the city’s western skyline. That it was built during the Colony’s prosperous gold rush period is reflected in the craftsmanship; the elaborately moulded plaster ceilings, intricately carved wood panelling and marvellously fitted joinery. Much of the original furniture and fixtures throughout the building remain today.
The building was designed by AL Smith and AE Johnson (the architect of the GPO) and is considered to be one of Melbourne's most finely designed and executed public buildings. It is both architecturally and historically significant.
The Court will be open from 10am to 4pm, with Banco Court (court 1), courtroom 4 (the original central criminal court), and the magnificent freestanding library all open to the public.
Join a Heritage and History tour or find out what lies beneath the Court on a tour of the historic cells (bookings for both tours are only available via Open House Melbourne (External link)). Or, get along to one of the public talks, hosted in Banco:
- 11.30am-12.30pm, Delivering essential community services: Sitting in courtrooms and administering justice from a number of iconic, heritage-listed buildings in Melbourne’s CBD adds a layer of complexity to the efficient and just hearing of cases. Hear from a Supreme Court judge and the Chief Executive Officer as they talk about the cases that come before the Supreme Court, and how the Court has responded to its built environment to ensure the delivery of modern, accessible justice for the community (limited seating).
- 2pm-3pm, A pile of buildings, built to last: Join Dr Sue Reynolds, academic and esteemed author, in discussion with Joanne Boyd, Supreme Court Archives and Records Manager, as they talk about the grandiose architectural design to the intricate and quirky aspects of the Supreme Court buildings (seating is limited).
There will also be special performances by BottledSnail Productions (External link) in the courtyard.
Supreme Court of Victoria
210 William Street, Melbourne
Open: 10am to 4pm Sunday 31 July