St Andrew's College, University of Sydney including main building and interior, quadrangle and grounds | NSW Environment & Heritage

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St Andrew's College, University of Sydney including main building and interior, quadrangle and grounds

Item details

Name of item: St Andrew's College, University of Sydney including main building and interior, quadrangle and grounds
Type of item: Built
Category: Other
Primary address: 19 Carillon Avenue, Camperdown, NSW 2050
Local govt. area: Sydney
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
19 Carillon AvenueCamperdownSydney  Primary Address
19 Carillon AvenueUniversity of SydneySydney  Alternate Address
Missenden RoadCamperdownSydney  Alternate Address

Statement of significance:

St Andrew's College, incorporated in 1867, and opened as a residential college affiliated to the University of Sydney in 1876, is of outstanding significance at a State Level. It is one of three foundation colleges affiliated with Australia’s oldest University.

It is of high aesthetic significance featuring a collection of buildings reflecting the work of several of the most noted architects in the late 19th century and 20th century, including William Munro, John Sulman, Emil Sodersten, Leslie Wilkinson and Elice Nosworthy, as well as the landscaping of Charles Moore in the late 19th century and Bruce Mackenzie in 1967. The 1876 Main Building is a fine example of 19th Century Gothic Institutional Architecture and is a landmark of the University grounds and the local area.

The aesthetic values of the College are enhanced by its landscaped setting, which include the western embankment, landscaped boundaries, axial path and trees, central oval, and views to and from the Main Building complex.

The college is held in high esteem by current and past students as well as the wider University Community. It also reflects the history and influence of the wider Scots Presbyterian community in NSW and their commitment to education.
( Based on CLSP 2004)
Date significance updated: 03 Mar 14
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.


Designer/Maker: Incl: William Munro; John Sulman; Nixon & Adam; Power, Adam & Munnings, L Wilkinson and E Nosworthy
Builder/Maker: John McLeod (Original building)
Construction years: 1874-
Physical description: The college is located at the south-west corner of the University of Sydney laid out on its original 4 hectare (10 acres) allotment, bounded by Carillon Avenue and Missenden Road.

Along the Missenden Road is the high land of the College on which stands the Main Building, a three storey sandstone building with tower, elaborate roofscape and two minor towers with fleches. It is a fine example of a 19th Century Institutional Gothic Revival style building and is a local landmark. There have been additions executed in stone to the side and rear of the building, and a large dining hall addition with a rendered finish. The building has 30 stained glass windows of distinction, the majority by Lyon and Cottier, who also decorated the Library and Reading Room.

This main building surmounts a raised embankment looking over the College grounds and relates visually and spatially to the main University Building of 1855.

Leading from the Main Building is the path paved in stone leading to the main avenue of trees to the campus of the University.

The centre of the St Andrew's College is the large level oval which is the low point of its topography and the falling grassed embankments between the oval and the Main Building. On these embankments are located two modern wings, Reid ( Emil Sodersten 1953) and Thyne ( McConnel Smith and Johnson 1964), three and five storeys respectively. The Reid building has a distinctive shape with its angled bay windows and elliptical stair wells at either end.

The Thyne Building, along with the southern additions to the Main Building,including the Carillon Building completed in 2006, loosely recreate an eastern courtyard, which is accessed from the main entrance on Carillon Avenue.

On the opposite side of the oval from the Main Building is a two storey Edwardian Principal's Lodge, now called the Harper Building, designed by Nixon and Adam in 1904 with a theological hall addition, Gillespie Hall, a single storey red brick building with terracotta tiled roof. It was designed by Power, Adam and Munnings and competed in 1931.

Two other buildings were added to this area in the 1960s. A modernised single storey lodge for the Principal, and a theological teaching room, called Angus Hall. These were laid in a line addressed from Western Avenue and looking out onto the oval.

The grounds also contain a small Edwardian Laboratory ( 1914) and gymnasium building ( 1919) which has been converted to student accommodation. At the south - eastern corner of the college is a small 1920s gate lodge, known at the Groundsman's Cottage designed by Professor Leslie Wilkinson and Ellice Nosworthy. It is a Georgian Revival style single storey red brick building with a hipped terracotta tiled roof.

{Refs: Jack (1989), Jack (1995), Shellard (1998), CLSP (2004), Howells (2007)}
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Fair to good
Date condition updated:30 May 13
Modifications and dates: See history
Further information: Under Sydney LEP 2012 the name listing of the college in Schedule 5 is described as "St Andrew's College Group, University of Sydney, including main building and interior, quadrangle and grounds."

Heritage Inventory sheets are often not comprehensive, and should be regarded as a general guide only. Inventory sheets are based on information available, and often do not include the social history of sites and buildings. Inventory sheets are constantly updated by the City as further information becomes available. An inventory sheet with little information may simply indicate that there has been no building work done to the item recently: it does not mean that items are not significant. Further research is always recommended as part of preparation of development proposals for heritage items, and is necessary in preparation of Heritage Impact Assessments and Conservation Management Plans, so that the significance of heritage items can be fully assessed prior to submitting development applications.
Current use: University college of residence
Former use: University college of residence


Historical notes: The "Eora people" was the name given to the coastal Aborigines around Sydney. Central Sydney is therefore often referred to as "Eora Country". Within the City of Sydney local government area, the traditional owners are the Cadigal and Wangal bands of the Eora.

With the invasion of the Sydney region, the Cadigal and Wangal people were decimated but there are descendants still living in Sydney today.

In 1854, land comprising 120 acres was chosen at Grose Farm for the University and four affiliated colleges, with 10 acres sub-granted by the University for the site of St Andrew's College.

After delays caused by world-wide rifts among Presbyterians, an act to incorporate St Andrew's College was passed in 1867, the first council was elected in 1870 and the main stone buildings on the sub-grant were begun in 1874, first occupied in 1876 and completed in 1877. The architect, William Munro, and the builder, John McLeod, were Scots, and the link with Scotland has remained a major aspect of College tradition.

Munro's three-storeyed, rectangular stone building with a central tower and three metal spires, housed initially only the Principal (Dr Kinross) and his family, the porter and his wife, and seven male students. By 1890 the number of students had increased to 23 and all rooms in the original rectangle were brought into use. There were two fine public rooms : on the lower storey a lecture-theatre, junior common-room and dining-place combined, with Lyon and Cottier stained glass in all 7 large windows; on the upper storey a splendid library with a striking silk-screened ceiling also by Lyon and Cottier.

In 1892-1893, to accommodate the training of candidates for the Presbyterian ministry, a two storeyed additional wing at right angles to the main tower was constructed to the design of John Sulman. The ground floor of Sulman wing had three rooms for teaching staff and a well-proportioned lecture-room (now the Senior Common Room). Upstairs in the new wing was the first dedicated dining hall (now the Chapel), with an elegant waggon ceiling in timber. In 1898 the estate of John Hunter Baillie came to the college to endow two chairs within the Theological School.

The grounds , including the avenue of trees which leads towards the University were initially laid out by Charles Moore, Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens.

The first Principal's Lodge outside the main building was built in 1902 for Dr Harper. This freed the entire south-east corner of the Munro building for other purposes, although the Principal retained the ground-floor room as his office, which it still is today.

In 1902 also, the first female residential housekeeper was appointed : Polly McDougall and her successors were housed in a three-storeyed stone house designed by Sulman and built with the new wing in 1892-1893. Servants' quarters and the new kitchen joined the matron's residence to the 1893 dining-room.

In the period before World War I, student numbers rose rapidly with some resident tutors, and a new stone wing ( now known as Vaucluse) was added parallel to the Sulman wing in 1913-1914.

After Harper ceased to be Principal in 1920, his lodge became the Theological Hall and the lower floor of the Sulman wing was used for other purposes. The great library room in the original building was converted to a chapel under Principal Cumming Thom in 1940 and the old theological lecture-hall held the library until 1960, when the library room was restored to its original function. The Sulman dining-hall, now too small for student needs, became the chapel at this time and a final addition was made to the main building by Leslie Wilkinson and Elice Nosworthy in 1960. This addition, skilfully inserted on the Missenden Road side of College, houses the present large dining-hall upstairs with the Junior Common Room below.

By the 1950s there were 150 students in residence. Further residential accommodation was provided with the construction of Reid Building in 1953, to the design of Emils Sodesten, and Thyne Building (McConnel Smith and Johnson) in 1966.

Angus Hall, originally designed as a lecture theatre but now used as a gymnasium and tutorial room, was completed in 1961 to the design of Tomy Moore in conjunciton with McConnel Smith and Johnson. This was followed by The Principal's Residence ( The Dougan Lodge) in 1964.

The oval was constructed with an underground car park and subterranean change rooms in 1966.

In 2002 the College accepted female undergraduate students for the first time.

Providing a grand entry portal to the College, The Carillon Building was constructed to the design of Clive Lucas Stapleton and Partner ( Project Architect Hector Abrahams) in 2006.

{ Refs: Shellard ( 1998); CLSP (2004); Howells ( 2007)}

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
6. Educating-Educating Education-Activities associated with teaching and learning by children and adults, formally and informally. (none)-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
St Andrew's College was the third denominational college to be established in Australia and has continually occupied its site since 1876. It is one of three foundation colleges affiliated with the University of Sydney, Australia’s oldest University.

The founding of St Andrew' College is an achievement in the history of the Scots Presbyterian community and the development of Presbyterian Education in New South Wales

( Based on CLSP, 2004)
SHR Criteria b)
[Associative significance]
St Paul's College has associations with many notable Presbyterian clergymen as well as scholars and notable Australians who studied/worked at the College.

The buildings and grounds of St Andrew's College represent the work of several of the most noted architects and the landscape architects of the late 19th and 20th centuries.

( Based on CLSP, 2004)
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
The college is aesthetically distinctive for its interesting collection of buildings thoughtfully arranged in a park-like landscaping.

The Main Building is a fine example of 19th Century Gothic Institutional Architecture and is a landmark of the University grounds and the local area. It is an excellent example of the work of the Scottish architect William Munro and its construction by prominent 19th century builder John McLeod is of very high quality. The 1892-1893 stone wing is similarly a finely detailed early work of Sir John Sulman.

St Andrew's College, along with St Paul's College, is unusual in Australia for its later development of buildings along sensitive lines. The Harper Building by Power and Adam, looks back across the oval to the Main Building. Sodersten's Reid Building is carefully located in the landscape preserving full views of the front elevation of the Main Building from the oval and the Harper Building. Angus Hall and the Thyne Building are distinctive and well resolved examples of the Sydney School Brutalist style.

The 17 major stained glass windows by Lyon and Cottiers (1876 - 1893 ) are of high importance, as is the grand Lyon and Cottier ceiling in the Library and the firms total decoration of the Reading Room.

The aesthetic values of the College are enhanced by its landscaped setting, which include the western embankment, landscaped boundaries, axial path and trees, central oval, and views to and from the Main Building complex.

(Based on Shellard 1998, CLSP 2004 and TKD 2013)
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
The college is held in high esteem by current and past students as well as the wider University Community. It also reflects the history and influence of the wider Scots Presbyterian community in NSW and their commitment to education. The College roll shows how the major Scottish grazing and mercantile families sent their sons to St Andrew's and how Sydney graduates who were Andrewsmen have contributed to business and professional life. It continues to fulfil these functions.

(Based on Shellard 1998 and CLSP 2004)
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
As the location of works by many noted architects, craftsmen and artisans, including the artisans employed by Lyon and Cottier, St Andrew's College has the potential to yield information on these individuals and to add to the overall assessment of their careers.

( Based on Shellard 1998 and CLSP 2004)
SHR Criteria f)
As the third of six affiliated colleges to be established at the University of Sydney, St Andrew's College is rare for the unique qualities of its buildings and grounds. (CLSP 2004)

The Main Building is aesthetically rare in its interior decorations and stained glass. ( Shellard 1998)
SHR Criteria g)
St Andrew's College is representative of the residential colleges established at the University in the nineteenth century in its design and continuing operations.
Integrity/Intactness: Generally High
Assessment criteria: Items are assessed against the PDF State Heritage Register (SHR) Criteria to determine the level of significance. Refer to the Listings below for the level of statutory protection.

Recommended management:

The collegiate character of the site with its parkland surrounds is to be retained and conserved. All new works are to be in accordance with the policies of the Conservation Management Plan (CMP) prepared for the College. A Heritage Impact Statement is to be prepared prior to any major works being undertaken measured against the existing CMP. The principal room layout and planning configuration of the significant buildings as well as significant internal original features including ceilings, cornices, joinery, flooring and fireplaces should be retained and conserved. Any additions and alterations to these buildings are to be confined to areas of less significance, should not be visibly prominent and shall be in accordance with the relevant planning controls. New buildings on the site must maintain the legibility of the Main Building and not adversely impact on its setting or views to or from it. They must also be designed to respect the scale, form, proportions and materials of the existing historic buildings on the site.


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Local Environmental PlanSydney LEP 2012I4614 Dec 12   
Heritage study     

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
South Sydney Heritage Study1993 Tropman & Tropman Architects  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
WrittenAnita Heiss Aboriginal People and Place, Barani: Indigenous History of Sydney City
WrittenApperly, Irving & Reynolds1994Identifying Australian Architecture
WrittenClive Lucas, Stapleton and Partners P/L ( CLSP)2004Conservation Management Plan for St Andrew's College Campus
WrittenR I Jack1995St Andrew's College 1870 - 1995: the first 125 years in photographs
WrittenR Ian Jack1989The Andrews Book 3rd ed.
WrittenTKD Architects2013St Andrew's Colllege, Conservation Management Plan
WrittenTKD Architects2013St Andrew's College, 19 Carillon Avenue, University of Sydney - Conservation Management Plan
WrittenTrevor Howells2007University of Sydney Architecture

Note: internet links may be to web pages, documents or images.

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Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: Local Government
Database number: 2420057

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