The HKU Museum Society is delighted to organize a talk Hero-Village of Coast and Quarry – The Last Urban Village and Her Peoples Who Defended Our Coast and Quarry for Centuries” with historian architect Edward Leung.
The City of Hong Kong on both sides of the harbour, was built by the British since their occupation in 1841, as told by text books for schools in Hong Kong over many decades. We now know that this is not truthful history. Bustling townships and villages beneath the Kowloon Hills have taken roots since the 10th century, serving the last emperors of the Song Dynasty. They prospered in the 19th century as a key port for the East-West trade, as a coastal defense out-post for the Chinese dynasties, as a centre of salt and stone production and, as a handicraft industrial hub after the War. These settlements of Chinese houses, of brick/stone-walls and tiled-roofs hidden amongst urban high-rises and overwhelmed by the denser and denser network of roads and highways, the government calls “Squatter-Structures”. They were silently cleared over the past decades. Little is now left to testify the heroic history of these peoples of the early Chinese settlements. There are three remaining urban villages: Chuk Yuen, Ngau Chi Wan and Cha Kwo Ling.
Edward Leung is an architect with experience in conserving historic architecture, including an award winning Adaptive Reuse design and many other restoration projects in China and Hong Kong. Apart from being the former Chairman of the Heritage Conservation Committee of Hong Kong Institute of Architects (HKIA) and the Academic Director of HKU Space Cultural Heritage Management Programme, he also regularly delivers lectures and papers on local historic architectural topics.