Repainting the Woolworths building

We’re giving a facelift to this much-loved Sydney landmark on the corner of George and Park streets.

Facade of a multi-story building in the city.

Project Status: Planned

What we’re doing

We’re repainting the façade of the historic building at 536–540 George Street, opposite Sydney Town Hall, to protect the structure and improve its appearance.

We’ve chosen colours that are in keeping with its inner city setting.

Works include:

  • cleaning and repairing the roof drainage
  • repairing and re-roofing the awning for safety.
Bebarfalds premises enlarged again. Bebarfalds leaders in sewing machines. Our guarantees to you. "Service as sure as the rise of the sun." A service that leaves a feeling of happiness in a customer's mind is Bebarfalds' idea of real service. Bebarfalds Ltd (opposite Town Hall), George Street, Sydney. And at 305 Little Collins Street, Melbourne.
‘Bebarfalds premises enlarged again’Back cover of Bebarfalds Ltd catalogue, More frocks for less money, Sydney, 1929.Caroline Simpson Library & Research Collection, Sydney Living Museums, TC 646.1 BEB/30.

History of the Woolworths building

The Woolworths building was constructed for furnishing retailer Bebarfalds in 1929.

Bebarfalds Ltd was a furniture manufacturer and home furnishings retailer established in Sydney in the 1870s. The company traded on the corner of George and Park streets, opposite Sydney Town Hall, from 1894 to 1965. 

Park Street was progressively widened from the late 1920s until the mid-1930s. Bebarfalds’ new corner building had to be set back to allow the street to be realigned and widened. The architectural firm of Kent and Massie designed Bebarfalds’ 8-storey commercial shopfront and warehouse, with a basement level, in 1926. The new store was completed by 1929.

Shortly after the new building opened, Woolworths was invited to open a new branch of its store on the ground floor. Woolworths obtained the long-term lease of the Bebarfalds city store in 1965. More floors were added 2 years later. Council purchased the building in 1980.

The building remains a Sydney landmark into the 21st century. 

Remember Bebarfalds? Discover more of Sydney’s social history.