Berry Sports & Recreation Centre

A multi-purpose hall for sports, theatre and dance performances, this award-winning community space brings a little light magic to the town.

This delightful project for NSW Department of Sport & Recreation is a playful response to a modest-budget brief for a children’s rec hall that also serves the community. A multi-purpose sports hall for netball, volleyball, basketball and bouldering, plus theatre performances and dance, it also serves as a night-time shelter from the rain. 

Partially cut into a gently sloping site, the Centre’s simple form and scale reference farm sheds of the district. Precast concrete walls are artfully perforated with starlight holes, adding a joyous element to this serviceable structure. By day, shafts of light permeate the interior while after dark, the glowing building melds with the night sky. 

Beyond appearances, the well-insulated building is engineered for a light environmental footprint. Wind turbines and louvre panels combine in a natural ventilation system that cools in summer and insulates in winter, while rainwater is diverted from the 3.5-metre cantilevered roof to supply tanks for irrigation.  

Project Facts


Tharawal Country, Berry, NSW


NSW Department of Sport & Recreation






Nic Bailey and Anthony Browell


2009, WAF Awards, Completed Buildings – Sport, Winner

2008, NSW Architecture Awards, Blacket Prize for Regional Architecture, Winner

2008, NSW Architecture Awards, Public Architecture, Winner

Key Contacts

Michael Heenan
Director, CEO View profile

John Whittingham
Director  View profile