Ma On Shan Iron Mine – recent damage caused to explosives storeroom
HF: The SCMP of 18th April 2016 contained an article about damage caused to the explosives storeroom at the Ma On Shan mine complex by workers from the Lands Department who mistakenly thought it was to be demolished.
The article begins: The government last week almost flattened a house in a remote village proposed for grading as a historic building, in an apparent mistake.
Workers from the Lands Department’s squatter control office removed almost all the windows and doors and knocked down part of the wall of the former explosives storeroom inside of the forgotten Ma On Shan iron mine complex, according to RTHK…
…A man surnamed Lam had lived in the single-storey former storeroom for more than 20 years with the villagers’ consent.
On March 7, the department sent Lam a demolition order, claiming he had been illegally occupying the structure on government land.
On the same day, a month-long public consultation started on how to list the iron mine complex and nearby village.
The explosives storeroom was proposed to be listed as a grade III historic building.
After being away from home for medical treatment, Lam returned home to find the windows, doors and belongings removed. Debris from the wall was all over the floor.
A department spokesman admitted on Sunday that it had removed the windows and doors, which were not original parts of the building.
The removal work started after officers knocked, and got no response from inside.
But they stopped the demolition after seeing that more of the structure’s original form remained.
But it did not say whether it was told about the site’s historic status. It said it would speak to the those involved before future demolitions.
The Antiquities Advisory Board will meet on Monday to discuss the grading of the iron mine complex.
Board chairman Andrew Lam Siu-lo said the damage to the storeroom should have been avoided under usual procedures, but damages of such scale might not affect the discussion of its grading.
Source: Hong Kong government almost flattened former explosives storeroom in process of being listed as a historic building SCMP 18th April 2016
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