Hong Kong Water Supply, Tytam Reservoir – details of water connection to Victoria, 1889

IDJ has kindly sent the following article


The city of Victoria, a great commercial port and naval and military station of the British Empire, is situated on the south side of a magnificent harbour in that island, separated by a narrow strait from the mainland coast of China, and nearly opposite the entrance to the Canton River. The island is mountainous, affording not much land for profitable cultivation. The city, partly built on the steep and rocky slopes of the northern hills, is pleasant in aspect, with good streets and fine public edifices, avenues of banyan-trees, and fair public gardens. Its climate, hot and moist, except in winter, is not considered salubrious. The population, exceeds 40,000, of whom about three thousand are Europeans, not including the garrison. They will derive much benefit from the new waterworks, situated at Tytam, in the centre of the small island, and completed this year, having been begun in 1883. At Tytam, in a narrow valley amid the mountains, a reservoir, or artificial lake, thirty acres in area, with a maximum depth of 105 ft. containing 300 million gallons of pure still water, has been formed by constructing a dam of solid masonry, as shown in our Illustration. It is connected with the town by an aqueduct, with a tunnel, 7300 ft. long, beneath the mountain; the Conduit-road, from the mouth of this tunnel to the city is three miles and a half long; a view of this road, from the anchorage for ships of war in the harbour, is also presented. At the end of the Conduit-road are six filter beds for the water brought through the tunnel, and a service-tank, which holds a week’s supply of water for the townspeople. The engineer of these works is Mr. James Orange, whose designs were prepared in 1883 under the supervision of Mr. J.M. Price, then Surveyor-General of the Colony of Hong-Kong. Our Illustrations are from Sketches by Mr. R. Barff, of Hong-Kong.[see Gwulo link below]

Hong Kong Waterworks Article Illustrated London News November 1889


Hong Kong Waterworks Tytam Drawings Illustrated London News November 1889

Illustration accompanying the article…Reservoir and Dam at Tytam

Hong Kong Waterworks Article View Of Conduit Road Llustrated London News November 1889

View of Conduit-Road from the Man-Of-War Anchorage

Masonry Aqueduct Of The Tai Tam Upper Reservoir (1883-1888). Photo Courtesy: Nick Kitto

Source: Illustrated London News, November 1889.


  1. 1889 Tai Tam Reservoir & Conduit (Tytam) gwulo.com
  2. Conduit Road, Hong Kong Wikipedia
  3. The Tai Tam Tunnel gwulo.com

This article was first posted on 28th March 2021.

Related Indhhk articles:

  1. Hong Kong Water Supply – Tai Tam Upper Dam (formally Tytam Reservoir)
  2. Hong Kong Water Supply – The Tai Tam Tuk Scheme First Section
  3. Hong Kong Water Supply – The Tai Tam Tuk Scheme – Second Section
  4. John MacNeile Price, Surveyor General of Hong Kong, the Tai Tam reservoirs
  5. Tai Tam Water Works – 1885 HK Government Report
  6. Tai Tam Upper Reservoir – Historic Building Appraisal
  7. The Tai Tam Reservoirs – recent photographs

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *