The Old Bega Hospital

Calling all creative people in the Bega Valley and the South Coast

A followup public meeting at the Old Bega Hospital Nurses Quarters at 3pm on Tuesday 21 August will work on a funding application to the Regional Cultural Fund for restoration of the Old Bega Hospital as a cultural centre for the region.

This is your chance to steer the project in the best directions. Everyone interested is invited.

It follows a public meeting in Bega on Tuesday 14 August which resolved:

This public meeting of the creative community of the far south coast:

1. commends the Old Bega Hospital Reserve Trust for taking this initiative

2. confirms that the creative community needs a base from which it can build its activities, develop its skills, and educate and engage the wider community

3. has considered costs and benefits of options including a new building, alternative locations and continuing as we are now

4. confirms that renovation of the Old Bega Hospital, as proposed by the Old Bega Hospital Reserve Trust, is the best option and will meet the requirements for housing a community arts centre for the far south coast

5. resolves to work with the Trust to develop management arrangements for operation of the centre, and

6. calls on the government of New South Wales to fund the proposed renovation of the Old Bega Hospital, to restore a very fine heritage building as a regional community arts centre for the far south coast.

See the latest draft plans. Contact Us for more information or to let us know you are coming.

Rooms and spaces available for hire or lease

Short or long term, commercial or community, indoor and outdoor. Reasonable rates. Flexible spaces. Contact the Reserve Trust for more information and bookings.

This website is in three main parts:

  1. The Old Bega Hospital and its history
  2. The Old Bega Hospital (R.180050) Reserve Land Manager which has legal responsibility to manage the site, including hiring and leasing
  3. The Friends of the Old Bega Hospital, which is how you can get involved.

The Old Bega Hospital is a collection of historic heritage listed buildings on the outskirts of Bega, on the far south coast of New South Wales. It served the community of the Bega Valley as a hospital from 1889 until 1956.

Construction began in 1888. From 1957 to the mid 1980s the Old Hospital buildings and site served for a time as a hostel for school students and then as an experimental farm before gradually falling into disrepair.

The buildings were extensively restored for the Old Hospital's centenary in 1988 by a major community effort assisted by government funds. The Hospital and grounds were then used for a great range of community purposes, including art spaces, cafe, community markets and a radio station.

The main building was extensively damaged by a fire on the night of 2 May 2004 and lost most of its roof. The Hospital was not insured. The damage has been cleaned up and the building made more or less secure, but the roof is still missing and the interior is open to the weather. Several outbuildings were not damaged, are still used and are available for hire.

The Old Bega Hospital is no longer a working hospital and has no hospital facilities.

For medical services go to the South East Regional Hospital

The Old Bega Hospital is owned by Crown Lands, part of the NSW government, and since 1990 has been managed by a Reserve Trust (since 1 July 2018 reconstituted as a Reserve Land Manager) established under the Crown Lands Act. In September 2014 the Reserve Trust adopted a strategic plan (2.5MB pdf file) which set out its vision for the future of the site and was the basis of an application for funding from the NSW government. In February 2015 the NSW government offered a grant of $500,000 towards replacing the roof of the main building, conditional on a further $1.74m being found to complete the restoration project. Following that offer, the Friends of the Old Bega Hospital and the Reserve Trust have met with many parties to work out what is required to find the additional money to make the restoration a reality. In May 2015 the Trust adopted a draft management plan (800kB pdf), and a draft proposal for a regional community and cultural centre (700kB pdf) to be accommodated on the site once the main building has been restored.

Friends of the Old Bega Hospital was incorporated in 2013 to assist the Reserve Trust to restore the Hospital's heritage and community values. Membership is open to all.

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