Night soil collection in Hong Kong – updated – four current locations, July 2016
New information in red. Chris Yuen: The article, Night soil collection in Hong Kong – honey buckets…information needed, asks for further information:
“Night fragrance” is indeed an euphemistic term for night soil. Two articles in Apple Daily (2002 and 2013) provide some information:
In 2002, there were about 80 units that required the night soil collection service.
The service in Kowloon was outsourced.
The 50 or so units on Hong Kong Island were the responsibility of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department, which employed seven workers for this service. Each collection team had five members: one driver, one foreman, one ganger and two workmen. The vehicle stopped at 12 locations:
(1) “Octagonal Pavilion” (columbarium?) on Cape Collinson Road, (2) Chai Wan Chinese Permanent Cemetery, (3) Lin Shing Road (Chai Wan), (4) Tung Lo Wan Road (Tai Hang), (5) Wong Chuk Hang Sun Wai, (6) Po Chong Wan, (7) Shum Wan Road, (8) Aberdeen Chinese Permanent Cemetery, (9) Mount Davis, (10) Centre Street, (11) Des Voeux Road Central (near Gilman Street), (12) Wan Chai Market.
In 2013, there were only 5 locations that required the night soil collection service in all of Hong Kong — one in Kwun Tong (a temple near Ping Shek Estate), one in Aberdeen (Shum Wan shipyard public toilet) and three in Yau Ma Tei (Fruit Market).
Mr. WONG Chun Kwun (黃振均) was the only night soil collector in Hong Kong, and he was employed by an outsourced service contractor.
On 17th June 2016 I contacted the Food and Enviromental Hygiene Department inquiring whether the Department still provided a night soil collection service. If so, I asked whether the Department could let me know how many locations there were on Hong Kong Island, in Kowloon and in the New Territories and whether the service was handled by FEHD staff or by contractors.
In a reply dated 27th June 2016 an officer of FEHD wrote, “According to our record, conservancy services are still provided to some old tenements on Hong Kong Island and in Kowloon where there is no sewerage system by our contractor. The number of locations provided with such services in Hong Kong Island and Kowloon is 1 and 3 respectively.”
I wrote again on 28th June 2016 asking whether the FEHD was able to confirm as locations Sham Wan Shipyard (near Aberdeen) and Yau Ma Tei Fruit Market and what are the other two locations in Kowloon?
An officer replied on 8th July 2016 saying “conservancy services are still being supplied to the following locations:
(i) Po Chong Wan Temporary Industrial Area, Aberdeen
(ii) G/F 3-6 Shek Lung Street
(iii) G/F 14-16 Shek Lung Street
(iv) G/F Lot 12, Shek Lung Street / Waterloo Road”
HF: Po Chong Wa Temporary Industrial Area is between Aberdeen Marina Club and Ocean Park on the shoreline opposite Ap Lei Chau Island.
Shek Lung Street passes through Yau Ma Tei Fruit Market. See 2013 above. And for information about the market see below.
This article was first posted on 14th June 2016.
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