News

Presentation House open after makeover that took two years

THE multi-million dollar renovation of Lismore Diocese's Presentation House has been given the seal of approval from the nuns who formerly resided there.

After two years of renovations, Presentation House, behind St Carthage's Cathedral in Lismore, is almost finished and will be open for business as the new home of the Catholic Schools Office come next week.

Officially opening on November 21, the Catholic Schools Office, which had outgrown their former spaces, will be moving into the century-old building starting on Monday.

Built in 1905 as a convent for the Presentation Sisters, the House has been revamped in a major overhaul taking two years to complete, Lismore Diocese business manager Greg Isaac explained.

He said he was pleased to see the life brought back into the grand old building, which had stood empty for a number of years before the renovation began.

The electrics and the drainage has been one of the biggest parts of the renovation - along with making the building fire safe and up to all building standards.

Sister Margaret Mary remembers her time spent at the Presentation House in Lismore after recent refurbishments to upgrade and modernise the building were finalised on Thursday.
Sister Margaret Mary remembers her time spent at the Presentation House in Lismore after recent refurbishments to upgrade and modernise the building were finalised on Thursday. Marc Stapelberg

"When we were doing it we took the approach that we wanted to retain the heritage value, but the workspaces we wanted to be very contemporary," Mr Isaac explained.

And contemporary they are - The workspaces for the offices are light, open plan spaces, with walls of the nun's bedrooms having come down to facilitate the functionality of the offices.

However, much of the characteristics of the picturesque building, like the main and side old cedar staircases, have remained, simply polished and brightened up.

On Wednesday the team took some of the nuns that previously lived in the building for a tour and were met with a joyous response.

"They were amazed, just amazed at the building," Mr Isaac said.

"To see life come back to their mother house, they were really pleased."

Sister Margaret Mary, who spent her early years as a novice at the Presentation Building, and then other periods here between postings across the state, said the renovation was extraordinary.

"It's magnificent," she said.

"They've done a tremendous job."

Presentation House, Lismore.
Presentation House, Lismore. Marc Stapelberg

The building was deteriorating when the nuns moved out in 2004, she said, and she was glad to see that the building had been brought back to life now rather than forgotten or demolished.

A horde of local tradespeople have worked inside the building, Mr Isaac said.

"Our policy was to always use local tradespeople when possible," he said.

He also said the renovation had been made easier by the good communication they'd had from Lismore City Council.

"Lismore City Council have been absolutely fantastic," he said.

"I've worked with (many) councils, but Lismore are one of the best councils I've ever had to deal with."

There's still some work to be done, with tidying up and landscaping and other things, but it will all be done and perfected for the grand opening in November.

Topics:  lismore, presentation sisters




REVEALED: The Lismore group behind highway sign stunt

Greens mayoral candidate Vanessa Grindon-Ekins at Lismore and Villages sign at Hinterland Way

"This is only the beginning", the group has warned

CCTV footage opens new leads in Sabrina Bremer murder case

Leaked CCTV footage shows a man getting out of the car Logan woman Sabrina Bremer was last seen alive in.

Leaked footage shows a man abandoning a white sedan

LATEST: Minor flood warning issued as rain sets in

RAIN RADAR: The latest rain radar from the Bureau of Meteorology shows further rain is on its way to Northern NSW throughout the coming hours.

UPDATE: Areas close to the border copping the most rain.

Latest deals and offers

MOVIE REVIEW: War Dogs tells a fascinating true story

Miles Teller and Jonah Hill in a scene from the movie War Dogs.

DARKLY funny film examines the business side of the war on terror.

Marvel-ous: Thor actors visit sick kids at Lady Cilento

Stars of Thor: Ragnarok dropped in on patients at the hospital

Folk singer looking forward to her Gympie Muster debut

Alternative country folk singer Fanny Lumsden will perform at the Gympie Muster.

FANNY Lumsden to serenade new fans with her country hall-style show.

Patti Smith confirmed for Bluesfest 2017

CONFIRMED: US singer Patti Smith performing in Switzerland last year.

Find out who else in the first line up announcement

Angie and Yvie ready to toast The Bachelor on Gogglebox

Angie and Yvie in a scene from the TV series Gogglebox.

ALL the regulars return in TV show about people watching TV.

Local teen actor to star in cult horror

Nicholas Hamilton.

Nicholas Hamilton, 16, has cemented his Hollywood career

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

Investors eye Gladstone's $4m island with resort approval

UP FOR SALE: Turtle Island is on the market.

CHINESE and Sydney investors flag interest in Gladstone island.

Take a sneak peek at this $19m Whitsunday mansion

Mandalay House features a private helipad.

Mandalay is currently on the market with an asking price of $19m

Guess which Sunshine Coast suburb cracked the million dollar list?

This four-bedroom home at 26 McAnally Dr, Sunshine Beach was for sale for $7 million.

List of Australia's five most-expensive suburbs

Does it get any better than this? Check out this $2M home

LUXURY LIVING: The Coral Cove home built by Steve Coates Constructions that took out the best home over $2 million and the Wide Bay Burnett House of the Year at the Master Builders Wide Bay Burnett Housing and Construction Awards.

Wide Bay's best home is right on our doorstep