In 1940 CSR provided land and buildings for Maybanke Playground, on Harris Street Pyrmont. It was named after Maybanke Anderson who helped found the Parks and Playgrounds Association and after whom Maybanke Kindergarten had been named. As well as the present site of the Maybanke Centre, the playground extended up the slope to a Mount Street frontage.
The building on the site was erected in the 1950s, along with courts, swings, jungle gym and other equipment. The Playground provided popular supervised activities for children until the 1960s; subsequently it was under Council management and unsupervised, usage waned as the population declined, and when CSR took back the area fronting Mount Street for car parking, the company gifted the current Maybanke site to Council, stipulating ‘that it be dedicated for perpetual use for recreational purposes’.
The site remained essentially unchanged into the 1990s. A cooperative relationship between Council staff and local residents during this period meant that Maybanke now functioned as a busy community centre: children of all ages played netball or basketball, had sleep-overs, played table tennis, made pottery, had art classes, knitting, trips to swimming pools and other excursions. For adults there were arts and crafts activities, meetings, afternoon teas, barbecues and fun runs.
During the mid-1990s the old Public School in John Street was refurbished to become the Pyrmont Community Centre and the building at Maybanke was reconfigured to better reflect the emphasis on health and fitness now being adopted in Council’s community centres. Council’s Youth Services took over the Maybanke building.
Now under management of the Pyrmont Community Centre, Maybanke remains essentially unaltered in 2018, although there has been a resurfacing of the lower court, repair and refurbishment of the upper court and other minor repairs and replacements.