198 Vincent Street, Cessnock, Hunter Valley
The Cessnock Community Performing Arts Centre (CPAC) is the result of the adaptive re-use of two existing buildings on the corner of Aberdare Road and Vincent Street Cessnock. Although neither is heritage listed, both hold local and social significance.
Originally built by Morris Light, these buildings were constructed as open plan modern furniture display showrooms. Morris Light was at one time the Lord Mayor of Newcastle and was instrumental in raising funds for the Newcastle City Town Hall and Civic Theatre. His Cessnock building was a similar design to his earlier Newcastle showroom in Hunter Street, and was believed to be the first steel framed building in the area. It later became the Grace Brothers store in Cessnock. It is quite significant that Morris Light’s Cessnock showroom is now used as the new Cessnock Community Performing Arts Centre.
The theatre sits neatly between the two existing buildings and has been designed using contemporary materials and finishes that subtly contrast with the older buildings. The entire complex totals some 2,000 sq.m. with an outdoor stage to the north between the foyer and the Aberdare Hotel , public art and landscaping and parking facilities for 70 cars.
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