Bootmakers to game changers: the secret life of SSE's building J
Located on the lands of the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation, within the heart of Tech Central, the Sydney School of Entrepreneurship (SSE) building is steeped in the rich history of Sydney’s innovation and entrepreneurship.
The SSE building, located on the architecturally rich campus of TAFE Ultimo, started its life as Sydney’s Technical Bootmaking School in 1940. In addition to being one of the first schools to train women in a vocational trade, the school trained returned servicemen as part of the repatriation scheme after the Second World War. Renamed the Department of Footwear in 1949, the School continued to teach, until classes were suspended in 2009. In 2017, life returned to Building J when SSE took over the lease of the building, continuing the legacy of teaching innovation, business growth, creativity, and craft.
Parquetry Hall is located on the Ground Floor if the SSE building
The ground floor of the SSE building, known as Parquetry Hall, is a dynamic learning space steeped in Sydney’s history. The floor is made of repurposed hardwood timber blocks, which had a previous life lining George Street in Sydney’s CBD in the early 1900s. The woodblocks were originally laid to improve the street’s aesthetic look and reduce the muddy erosion of the dirt roads in the bustling commercial centre with a growing population.
Laying woodblock paving on George Street. Image source: The Dirt on The Rocks
Today the SSE building continues to provide a space for learning, community, and connection.
Parquetry Hall is available for hire, and with two distinct spaces is a perfect venue for events, meetings, workshops and functions. Accommodating groups of up to 160 people with theatre, classroom, and group configurations available. For more information and to submit an enquiry, visit our website.