1. Architecturally significant; as one of the best "Moderne" style buildings in the State; as an outstanding example of the work of the architects; and as an unusual example of the style used for a Grandstand.
2. Historically significant because of its associations with the Victorian Football League, which has played such an important role in Melbourne's social life for more than a century. The grandstand exemplifies the importance of municipal government in Hawthorn, Hawthorn Council financing the structure in 1938.
3. Significant as a part of the early Village green here associated with the Grace Park subdivision.
HO152 Grace Park and Hawthorn Grove Precincts, Hawthorn
The Grace Park and Hawthorn Grove Precincts, Hawthorn, are of heritage significance for the following reasons:
- The place is a concentrated and relatively intact precinct of generally high quality residential buildings of the later Victorian and Federation periods.
- Hilda Crescent has an unbroken set of highly distinctive Federation house designs, and the mode continues in the adjacent streets.
- The area is characterised by mature gardens and street trees, filtering the light in the more southern streets, south of Kinkora Road, and giving the area a distinctive shaded character.
- The diagonal house compositions and curving streets in the Grace Park Precinct combine to create an informal and picturesque character.
- The northern section - Kinkora Road and Hawthorn Grove - has a large concentration of 1880s housing in tighter patterns that are similarly characteristic of that earlier era, and is relatively intact. These streets were the first typically-scaled suburban development in Hawthorn, in contrast to the St James Park area which began as a mansion group.
- The Barkers Road section is more heterogeneous, but does incorporate several notable Federation and Bungalow designs. Clovelly Court is an impressive apartment group utilising garden villa forms, comparing with both the courtyard flats in the Fairview Park Precinct (HO148) and the more similar Corsewall Close (HO149).
- Located at the southern end of the precinct, the Michael Tuck Stand at the Glenferrie Oval is striking both for the way it draws on its red-brick domestic surroundings as it is for its 1938 modernity.
- The precinct is visually unified by the shared, curving park based around the former Kew Railway line, that runs though the entire precinct from south to north and reads as a reminder of the precinct's early popularity as a commuter suburb.
When the new grandstand was opened in 1938 it was described as follows:
"a red brick building with a nautical appearance and what looked like a Captains bridge perched above a sweeping, streamlined roof".
This comical description illustrates how novel, Moderne styling still was in Melbourne. The building illustrates that style in its: strongly three dimensional form; the emphasis on horizontality balanced with vertical volumes; and in the use of cantilevered elements, for the concrete roofs and the main grandstand roof. From the street the carefully arranged volumes suggest an overlying influence from Amsterdam brick group lead by Dudock in the early twentieth century. The latter is best illustrated in Australia by the Heidelberg Town Hall.
The building turns its back on the street and the park, like most grandstands. Its principle elevation faces the oval, with a small return where this abuts Linda Crescent. The front is characterised by its openness. Its curved form is probably more a reflection of the very tight ground than the Moderne style. Nonetheless once established the architects have carried this through to the rear with matching curved form. In Linda Crescent the most elegant section of the design is the sculptural manner in which the curved form is translated into the rectilinear requirements of the street frontage.
To carry through the modern theme and curved form the architects utilised several special materials including curved bricks, and steel windows.