Classes, Programs and Progress!


We are already half way through Term 1 of 2015 and things are definitely in motion around here.

You can read about our exciting developments, both online and on the ground, in our recent Newsletter.

The newsletter also includes updated information on the classes and programs which are running this year at our Centre.

We are very excited about the future development of the Burnley Backyard and the Community Hub in the former Channel 9 site and their place in our vibrant and ever-changing community.

If you are excited as we are about the new plans and communal spaces for our community and want to help out in any way please contact us at Richmond Community Learning Centre on (03) 9428 9901 or We would love to hear from you!

So exciting!

Burnley Backyard. So exciting!


Burnley Backyard – Community Update Aug 2014

Demolition of most of the structures at 49 Tudor Street, Burnley

Demolition of most of the structures at 49 Tudor Street, Burnley 3121


Exciting times! The renovation has started and we have now officially begun the development of the Burnley Backyard. You can check out the pics on RCLC’s Facebook page!

What does the memory of a backyard mean to you? For most of us in Richmond, this is a dream of days gone by at our parents’ houses in the suburbs….. Planting trees, flowers and   vegetables, the shed full of mystical tools and half finished projects, space to run, play and hide,  family and friends BBQing with plenty of space for unexpected visitors and their dog!

The Richmond Community Learning Centre, with the Richmond Community Garden Group, are endeavouring to bring that backyard back to the community of Richmond. Our aim is to provide a space that offers indoor and outdoor opportunities for the community, representing the needs of residents and  fulfilling expectations of a Community Centre.

Plans for new Burnley Backyard facility [1]

Plans for new Burnley Backyard facility [1]

Proposed Timeline

Our goal is to be up and fully functional by February 2015.   The Yarra City Council are providing funding for a Community Engagement Officer whose responsibilities will be to work with Richmond Community Learning Centre, development of community programs that represent residents needs and liaise with volunteers who will be a vital ingredient in the success of the facility.

Plans for new Burnley Backyard facility [2]

Plans for new Burnley Backyard facility [2]

Community Involvement

This is where you come in…… If you are interested in being a part of this exciting project in a volunteer role, we would love to hear from you. The role of Community Engagement Officer will also be advertised locally and if you have any interest in or questions about this role, please contact Simone Gardiner at Richmond Community Learning Centre on (03) 9428 9901 or

We will be requiring volunteers for a wide variety of positions. Some of these may involve assistance with:

  • marketing the Burnley Backyard and its role in the Community
  • functions and events
  • running programs and activities
  • delivering brochures/posters to residents and local businesses
  • collecting and collating feedback and information from residents and local businesses

We are very excited about the future development of the Burnley Backyard and its place in our vibrant and ever changing community. We hope to reflect the uniqueness of our Burnley identity and ensure that all feel welcome to be a part of this exciting project.

Burnley Backyard – Community Update May 2014

It was good to see many local residents at the Festival earlier in May.   Hopefully, any information or questions you had were answered by staff and committee present on the day.  Since the festival, work has continued to comply with the requirements of the City of Yarra, and the preparation to go to tender.  Below is an update of the status of the project:

  • The Planning Permit has been approved and conditions agreed to by all parties.  The centre will be able to operate from 8 am to 8 pm weekdays and
    9 am to 5 pm on weekends to deliver programs and activities including open days, markets and community events
  • A draft Lease has been prepared by the City of Yarra and presented to Richmond Community Learning Centre (RCLC) to discuss.   There are a number of support documents that need to be developed and annexed to the Lease, so staff and committee have been working through these documents in an endeavour to sign the Lease as soon as possible.   At the time of writing this update, all documents are almost completed
  • While waiting for the above documents to be finalised, the tender for the construction of the facility was circulated and five applications were received.   Interviews were undertaken with two builders and further information has been requested, with a final decision on the successful applicant to be announced when the Lease has been signed
  • The anticipated commencement of the building works is 01 July with completion prior to the break for the December/January holidays.   The Architect and RCLC would like the build to happen as quickly as possible with no unseen delays.   Everyone is looking forward to an early 2015 opening.
49 Tudor Street, Burnley

49 Tudor Street, Burnley

So there has been much behind the scenes activity to proceed the project to this stage and there is much excitement about the approaching commencement of work on the site.

If  you would like to discuss any issues around the project, please feel free to make contact me on and I will be happy to provide further information.

Jenny Fuge
Burnley Backyard Project Coordinator

Burnley Backyard Community Engagement Session

planting-109014_640Come along to this meeting and view the plans for the landscape gardening for the proposed facility.  

Learn the layout of the garden and the types of  plants that have been chosen for the site.  This is an opportunity to meet the Landscape Architect and discuss the proposed plan for the site.

When: Saturday 07 December 2013, 2:00pm – 4:00pm
Where: Burnley Backyard Facility, 49 Tudor Street, Burnley  VIC  3121
Download: Flyer [PDF, 208Kb]

Burnley Backyard

Richmond Community Learning Centre

Container gardening and worm farming – what, when and how?

container-gardening-20131129 Richmond Community Learning Centre and the Richmond Community Garden Group will be holding a free special workshop on Friday 29 November at 4:00pm

Come and learn how to:

  • plant up a container garden with summer vegetables and herbs
  • start a worm farm (and keep it going)
  • get involved with the new Richmond Community Garden Group

The RCLC Christmas Party then starts at 5:30 pm.  If you are staying for the party with your kids, please bring a light supper and a wrapped gift valued under $10 labelled with your child’s name for distribution by Santa later.

Download: Workshop flyer [PDF, 76Kb]


Burnley Backyard – Community Update November 2013

Little Gardener

Little Gardener – image courtesy of  George Hodan,

Since the Community Information Session back in September, there has been much activity behind the scenes to move along the project.   

The list below gives residents some indication of what has been happening:

  • Soil Tests and Health Risk Assessment were completed with a favourable outcome for the proposed use of the site
  • Final Plans were completed including landscaping (these plans will be submitted for final costings, prior to tenders being awarded)
  • A planning application letter has been submitted to the City of Yarra and awaits a decision
  • A Deed between City of Yarra and Richmond Community Learning Centre (RCLC) has been signed

What Comes Next?

Once the costings have been approved and the planning application granted, tenders for the building of the facility in Tudor Street will be called for.   At present the project is running a little behind schedule, but it is hoped that the tender process will be completed by next March/April.

A Lease for the site needs to be developed and signed by RCLC and the City of Yarra prior to access being granted to commence work on site.  So the project is moving along behind the scenes even though the site remains deserted.

Community Interest

Any Burnley residents or members of the community are welcome to make contact with me to discuss the project, or to become a volunteer of the Burnley Backyard (BBY) and thereby be contacted and kept informed of the progress of the project.   So I look forward to hearing from residents.

Richmond Community Garden Club Activity

At the Community Information Session in September, residents signed up as members of the Richmond Community Garden Group (RCGG) and indicated their interest in renting a garden plot.   The membership has slowly increased and a meeting of members was conducted at the end of October.   About 12 residents attended to hear Trish Pringle outline the activities to be undertaken by the Garden Group in addition to looking after the garden plots at Tudor Street.   Trish indicated that workshops on gardening would be presented to garden club members and any community members who would like to attend.   Fundraising events will be organised to raise funds for the improvement of the community garden, with the first being a barbeque at Bunnings in Hawthorn on 28 December 2013, and volunteers to assist Trish would be welcome.

Pat Grosse, a consultant, who is assisting the RCGG with meeting its governance obligations, was also present at the meeting to provide members and prospective members with an outline of the role of the Committee of Management to be elected at the Annual General Meeting on 19 November 2013.  A number of people indicated an interest in joining the committee which will enable the garden group to run effectively.   Five new members joined the garden group,  the evening was a relaxed informal meeting, and the information provided was appreciated by all.

So the next step for the Garden Group is to hold its AGM on 19 November at 7:00 pm at ‘The Stables’ in 19 Duke Street, Richmond.   Hope to see residents at that meeting as all will be welcome and there will be an opportunity to join the Garden Group on the night.

The Festive Season

With Christmas almost upon us (and RCLC busy with its Christmas Party preparations – see below), I wish everyone a safe and happy Christmas.  Due to the closure of most organisations for some time over the December-January period,  I will endeavour to provide further information on the project early in the new year.

Jenny Fuge
Project Manager
Burnley Backyard Project

Friday 29 November, 5:30pm – Christmas Party

Come to Richmond Community Learning Centre’s free end-of-year celebration for families and individuals in the local community.  Bring a picnic rug and light supper to hear terrific singing of Christmas Carols from our childcare kids, win amazing hampers and be part of a special visit from Santa.

book now

NOTE TO FIRST TIME USERS OF OUR ONLINE BOOKINGS SYSTEM: If the bookings system indicates that your email address is already in use this means that you have had a free account set up by our administration staff because you are an existing or past user of our centre. In this case, please click the “Sign in” button, then click “I forgot my password!” and reset your password so you can log in with your new password.

How does a garden group grow?

The Richmond Community Garden Group has been formed to encourage all sorts of community gardening in Richmond.

Since the information session in September, interest has been growing in the garden group, and becoming a member of the group.    There will be a small community garden in the new Burnley Backyard facility in Tudor Street, with some individual plots available for rental, with preference given to people who live within walking distance.

workers-78002_640Informal Meeting: Tuesday 29 October; 6:30pm

To find out more about the above an informal meeting for members and prospective members of the garden group is scheduled for Tuesday 29 October, 6:30 pm at The Stables 19 Duke Street, Richmond and I would like to extend an invitation to you to attend.

At this meeting we will also be calling for nominations for our committee of management from registered members and providing information about what is involved in a Committee of Management role.  There will be an opportunity to register as a member, be put on the list of residents wanting to rent a garden plot, and learn more about the proposed activities of the garden group.

Therefore, you are most welcome to attend the meeting, learn more, and get to meet members of the garden group.    Look forward to seeing you there.

AGM Richmond Community Garden Group: Tuesday 19 November; 6:30pm

The first Annual General Meeting of the Richmond Community Garden Group will be held on Tuesday 19 November, at 6:30pm at The Stables, 19 Duke Street, Richmond.  At this meeting the Committee of Management for the coming year will be elected from registered members of the group and reports for the financial year ending 30 June 2013 will be presented.

It would be great to see all members attend and a formal invitation will be sent to all current members shortly.