【Stories behind the pins】Chung Hom Kok Battery
Walk along the flat road all the way to the end of the cape before passing through the Jockey Club Cheshire Home, here is Chung Hom Kok in the Southern District of Hong Kong Island. Chung Hom Kok Park has recreational facilities and barbecue areas. The Park faces the magnificent scenery of Chung Hom Wan, which attracts many visitors.
Over the past month, Hong Kong has experienced consecutive weather disasters, particularly severe in the eastern and southern areas of Hong Kong Island, with widespread flooding and landslips. The Chung Hom Kok Battery, a Grade II historical building, has become the centre of attention. Its circular cement structure has accumulated a large amount of water, and the stone stairs, tables, and chairs have all been submerged, turning the area into a pool of water. The accumulated water has not receded for more than a month, which may pose difficulties for future restoration work on the building.
Photo Credit: YK Chan
This defence facility, built to defend the southern coastline of Hong Kong Island, has a history of over 80 years. The Battery originally had two levels, each equipped with a 6-inch cannon and an associated searchlight. As the pressure from the Japanese invasion of Hong Kong increased, the British intentionally destroyed the Battery to prevent it from falling into enemy hands. After the war, the upper part of the Battery was demolished and rebuilt as a nursing home. Currently, only the lower part remains, consisting of a semi-circular protective structure and two searchlights. This has been transformed into a park managed by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (“LCSD”).
Chung Hom Kok Battery witnessed wartime history and holds rich historical value; however, looking around the Battery, the only signs posted by the LCSD are lacking historical information about the Battery. The Development Bureau proposed a conservation plan for wartime relics in June this year, stating that information boards would be gradually added to Chung Hom Kok Battery and other historic buildings to educate the public. The recent heavy rain, damage to the Battery and nearby slopes present an opportunity for comprehensive conservation work, including repairing the building structures, stabilising the slopes, and enhancing interpretive facilities to properly protect this cultural heritage.