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History & Precinct

Humble Beginnings

From humble beginnings as the Margaret River Shire Hall, through to its development as the Cultural Centre for over 30 years, the new Margaret River Hub of Entertainment, Arts and Regional Tourism continues to keep the town vibrant and diverse by presenting world class local, national and international events and touring productions whilst also supporting all sectors of our community.

Designed by local architect Chris Willcox, the former Cultural Centre was built from the last bricks produced by the Manjimup Bricks Company and was the first WA rural theatre to have a fly tower- an extremely innovative concept at the time of building.

The centre became the home for Western Australia’s only 35mm volunteer run cinema and witnessed iconic live performances by John Williamson and Slim Dusty. In partnership with the Shire’s overarching arts organisation Arts Margaret River, the multi-purpose venue has hosted many theatre productions, dances, balls, weddings, art exhibitions, school presentations, music concerts, sporting classes and movie screenings since 1936.

The Shire of Augusta Margaret River’s recent redevelopment of the former Cultural Centre into the new Hub of Entertainment, Arts and Regional Tourism (HEART) has created an innovative, modern and highly multipurpose venue. A mecca for local art and culture, the state of the art facilities at HEART continue to attract a broad spectrum of entertainment, arts, community and business events, making it one of the most popular venues in the South West.

Looking to the future

In 2023 the HEART welcomed home Arts Margaret River, the region’s longest running not-for-profit arts organisation of almost five decades. In partnerships with the Shire of Augusta Margaret River, Arts Margaret River will reinvigorate the HEART’s Arts and Culture program as part of a new co-management model with support from the HEART Technical & Production Team.

Download the timeline of the story that shaped our arts scene.

You can read more about Arts Margaret River’s history and read their 2021-2024 Strategic Plan HERE