Shatin Airfield 1949-1962

Tymon Mellor: Following the Second World War, in 1949 the Royal Air Force established a permanent airfield at Shatin,with a 350m long concrete runway, coordinates 05/23 and a small control tower, along with building and hangars made of corrugated steel. With the growing tension in China, during the 1950’s the British Army Air Corps operated Auster AOP.9 spotter planes from the […]

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Unidentified Brickworks, (Castle Peak Ceramic Company?), Tuen Mun

Tymon Mellor: Looking at some old mapping of Tuen Mun I noted a ceramics factory in the area, see below: This looks quite a factory as the mapping indicates rails, so I suspect it is more likely to be a brick works that is mentioned in the early alignment studies (1905) for the KCRC: “There is one brick works in the […]

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The Kowloon Tram System – proposals and rejections 1901 to 1925

Tymon Mellor: In 1904, as the Hong Kong Island tram system was readying for operation, attention focused on the opposite side of the harbour on the development of a tram network for Kowloon. After many false starts, just when it seemed that work was about to start on a Kowloon tram network, the Government had a major change of approach […]

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The Kowloon-Canton Railway (British Section) Part 3 – the construction of Kowloon Station

Tymon Mellor: At the turn of the 19th century, railways and steam ships were changing the world and demanding new infrastructure to support them. With the construction of the Kowloon-Canton Railway – British Section in full swing, attention turned to the location of the terminus station in Kowloon. There were many competing requirements for the location; resulting in the site […]

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The Kowloon Canton Railway (British Section) Part 2 – Construction

Tymon Mellor: On the 20th October, 1905 the Governor, Sir Matthew Nathan wrote to the Colonial Office in London confirming that the route to be adopted for the Kowloon Canton Railway (British Section) would follow the eastern alignment via Shatin, rather than the western alignment via Tuen Mun, and which would have eight stations within the Territory. Now all they […]

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Wo Hop Shek Spur Line

Tymon Mellor: Following the Second World War, burial of the dead was a significant issue within the Territory as the graveyards were filling up. In the early 1940’s the Government proposed developing a new public cemetery at Wo Hop Shek, north of Tai Po served by a spur line from the Kowloon Canton Railway. The local community had reservations about […]

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KCR Beacon Hill Tunnel Ropeway – 1907

Tymon Mellor: Construction of the Kowloon Canton Railway included the excavation of the Beacon Hill tunnel through the Kowloon hills. At the time, the tunnel at 7,212ft or 2,198m was the longest tunnel in China and the fifth longest tunnel outside Europe. The southern and northern portals were remote from existing villages and sickness among the workers was common. To […]

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New Territories Footpaths – Pre 1900

Before the British took over the New Territories in July, 1898 there were no roads but an extensive network of footpaths paths or Chinese Roads across the territory.  These paths provided connections between the villages and to the sea shore for marine transport. The first topographical map of the New Territories, published in 1904 describes the paths as “Chinese roads about 4′-0″ […]

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