When we bought our latest reno project there were 3" holes in the kitchen's suspended ceiling -- I suppose to keep the pipes going to the bathroom above from freezing -- of course! The plaster ceiling had been removed, probably due to leaking or frozen piping so after we took the suspended ceiling down, you could actually feel the breeze. Just some framing timber, tar paper and a little FG batt between the pipes and the porch ceiling (which also wasn't intact).
This kitchen wall is an outside wall. The second picture is taken from the side porch after we took the porch ceiling down and installed two inch blue board sealed with Great Stuff on the outside and insulation and new drywall on the inside. And now the plumbing is safe. You could actually see quite a few square inches of blue board from the inside before we installed insulation in the stud bays. We will install some vinyl for a new porch ceiling also.