The magnificent Trades Hall, in the heart of Broken Hill, is arguably the city’s most beautiful and historically significant building.
A stunning example of Victorian-era architecture, it was also the headquarters of Broken Hill’s fight for workers’ rights. Unionists battled long and hard to improve working conditions in the mines, gaining their first major success in 1920 when they won an Australian-first: a 35-hour week for underground workers.
Completed in 1905, Trades Hall became the first building in Australia to be owned by unions, and within its stone walls you can discover collections dedicated to Broken Hill’s proudly militant past. Significant items include union banners and picket maps from the 1909 lockout, while the vast ceiling – painted in a geometrical pattern – is a striking feature of the main hall.