Hong Kong Yearbook - Annual Report for the Year 1959

Hong Kong Annual Report



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 MMIS 在線閱讀






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Plover Cove



Tolo Channel...

Tolo Harbour








Tai Lom Chung

Castle Peak













Silver Mine Boy



















Rocky Harbour




Port Shelter








Shui Mun













Lei Yue Mun



Junk Bay












Drawn by Crown Lands Survey Office P.W.D. 1959.

West Lammo`Channel









Deep Water


East Lomma Channel

Picnic Boy








Jai Torn


Toi Tom



Soi Won

Big Wove




Clear Water Bay





Tathong Channel


Sheungy Sz Mun














Heights in Feet REFERENCE



Roads, Footpaths


Built up Areas

Rivers & Streams, Reservoirs Ferry Services



Crown Copyright Reserved













Mr K. Y. Lau



are obtainable at


and from



4, Millbank, London, S.W. 1

A list of current publications will be found at Appendix XX of this Report

HONG KONG ANNUAL REPORTS may also be obtained




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contact library staff for a printed copy of the copyright work.


Armorial bearings were presented to Hong Kong on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen by H.R.H. the Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, when he visited the Colony in March, 1959. The crest consists of a royal lion wearing the imperial crown and holding a pearl, representing Hong Kong as the 'Pearl of the Orient.' The shield carries pictures of a naval crown symbolising the Colony's link with the Navy and Merchant Navy, battlements indicating the Battle of Hong Kong in 1941, and two Chinese junks to indicate trade on the seas surrounding the Colony. A royal lion and Chinese dragon support the shield and crest, symbolising the British and Chinese aspects of the Colony. They stand on a green mount surrounded by water, an allusion to Hong Kong Island.

Hong Kong

Annual Report 1959

市政局公共圖書館 UCPL

3 3288 03706574 7




When dollars are quoted in this Report, they are, unless otherwise stated, Hong Kong dollars. The official rate for conversion to pound sterling is HK$16=£1 (HK$1=1s. 3d.). The official rate for conversion to U.S. dollars is HK$5.714=US$1 (based on £1=US$2.80).


Acc. No.




HK 951.25














































































I. Colonial Development and Welfare


IIA. Industrial Undertakings and Persons Employed in

Main Industrial Groups


IIB. Industrial Undertakings and Persons Employed in selected Industries in certain of the Main

Industrial Groups


III. Statement of Assets and Liabilities


IV. Statement of Revenue


V. Statement of Expenditure


VI. Authorized Foreign Exchange Banks


VII. Direction of Trade-Imports.


VIII. Direction of Trade-Total Exports


IX. Direction of Trade-Exports and Re-exports


X. Composition of Trade Classified by Sections and Divisions of the Standard International Trade



XI. Co-operative Societies


XII. Overseas Examinations organized by the Education



XIII. Hong Kong Students pursuing Higher Studies in

the United Kingdom.


XIV. Infectious Diseases Notified.


XV. Hospital Beds


XVI. Registered Medical Personnel


XVII. Students or Probationers in Training


XVIII. Crime Statistics


XIX. Members of the Executive and Legislative Councils


XX. List of Hong Kong Government Publications.


XXI. Newspapers and Magazines





Hong Kong's New Armorial Bearings Some aspects of Social Welfare.

New Territories Countryside and People.

Visit of H.R.H. the Duke of Edinburgh .

Experiment in Rehabilitation-Drug Addicts . Behind the scenes with the Hong Kong Police .

Street Scene-Modern Victoria .

The Harbour by Night.

Street Scene Old Hong Kong.

Hong Kong Craftsmen

Atlas Moth

Opening of 100th Resettlement Block







168 - 9


200 - 1





between 248 - 9



between 280-1






Hong Kong and the New Territories.

Value of Hong Kong's Imports and Exports

Volume of Hong Kong's Imports and Exports. Increase in Pupils in Schools, 1949-59

By type of school.

By age group

Births and Deaths, Infantile Mortality Rate, and

Tuberculosis Mortality Rate .

Number of Persons Resettled and Changing

Trends in Resettlement Building, 1954-9

Key Map of Hong Kong in relation to Canton

and Macau

end-paper map









end-paper map

  The Government of Hong Kong wishes to thank all those organizations and private individuals who have contributed to this Report, whether by way of textual matter or of photographs.

  All illustrations in this Report, unless other- wise stated, are the work of official artists and photographers. Requests for permission to repro- duce any illustrations should be addressed to the Director of Information Services, Hong Kong.


Visit of H.R.H. the Prince Philip

HONG KONG was doubly honoured in 1959 when Her Majesty the Queen gave her gracious permission for the new Kowloon hospital to be named the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and His Royal Highness the Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, visited the Colony and laid the Foundation Stone.

The Royal Yacht 'Britannia' entered Victoria Harbour soon after noon on Friday, 6th March to be greeted with a 21-gun salute. Shortly afterwards His Royal Highness' Standard came down as the Royal Barge headed for Queen's Pier.

In the course of a busy two days in Hong Kong, His Royal Highness saw and was seen by many thousands of people. Since, however, many could not hope to see him while he was here, he made a special radio and television broadcast to the people of Hong Kong, in which he conveyed a message of greeting and encouragement from Her Majesty the Queen.

The Royal visit aroused great interest and enthusiasm and huge crowds gathered everywhere Prince Philip went. There was evidence of this enthusiasm on his first evening in Hong Kong; as His Royal Highness drove away from the restaurant where a Chinese banquet had been held in his honour, a great cheer went up from the crowds of people who had waited patiently for hours to see him.

Saturday was a crowded day. By 9 o'clock His Royal Highness was already in Kowloon on his way to the Combined Services Parade Review at Kai Tak. At noon he gave a Reception on board the Royal Yacht. Besides leading members of the community, the majority of the guests were young people and particularly those engaged in youth welfare work.

In the afternoon His Royal Highness, watched by a crowd of several thousands, laid the Foundation Stone of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital. Before doing so, he presented to the Governor



the Queen's Warrant conferring the privilege of armorial bearings on Hong Kong. (See Frontispiece).

After a short visit to the Technical College and a helicopter flight over the harbour, Kowloon and part of the New Territories, Prince Philip crossed the harbour again to watch the second half of a football match.

     His Excellency the Governor and Lady Black gave a formal dinner party at Government House in the evening. After dinner, His Royal Highness drove to the Hong Kong Stadium to see a floodlit Youth Rally.

His Royal Highness read the Second Lesson at Matins at St. John's Cathedral on Sunday morning and then drove round the Island, stopping at the fishing centre at Aberdeen and at the Sai Wan War Cemetery, where he laid a wreath.

This drive became a triumphal progress. Huge but orderly crowds, including thousands of school children enthusiastically waving their paper flags, lined the route, waving and cheering as the Royal car, with His Royal Highness' Standard fluttering from the roof passed by.

      When, shortly after 4 o'clock, 'Britannia' moved slowly out of the harbour towards the open sea Hong Kong felt it was losing a new friend; one who in two short days had impressed his personality on thousands. As His Excellency the Governor said in his farewell message, the visit of His Royal Highness had indeed brought great honour and happiness to the people of Hong Kong.

Chapter 1: Review


THE end of the year covered by this Annual Report coincides with the half-way point of World Refugee Year: and since no review of the year's events in Hong Kong can avoid repeated reference to the social problems which arise from her recent vast increase in population, it is appropriate also at this time to look back on the pattern of the World Refugee Year Movement as it is now shaping in relation to Hong Kong; to relate its aims and achievements to Hong Kong's overall problems; and perhaps to draw some conclu- sions of interest to those who have the success of the movement at heart. For, as readers of these Annual Reports will be aware, the problem of a rapidly increasing population lies at the core of every problem facing the administration. It therefore goes without saying that Hong Kong received with pleasure and gratitude the news of the Resolution of the General Assembly of the United Nations calling for a massive international onslaught on the world- wide problem of refugees, and that she immediately recognized this initiative by the United Nations as an important milestone in her own long road towards the achievement of acceptable social standards.

Most readers will be familiar with the essentials of Hong Kong's problems from previous Annual Reports. In particular the chapter entitled 'A Problem of People', which introduces the Report for 1956, and has recently been reprinted as a separate pamphlet, describes the consequences of an influx of some 700,000 refugees -now estimated to have risen to at least 1,000,000-not long after the return of many hundreds of thousands of others to their previous homes in Hong Kong after the end of the Pacific War: homes which had in very many cases been destroyed or fallen into disrepair during the Japanese Occupation. 'A Problem of People' described the appalling overcrowding and near collapse of the social services which followed upon this wave of new arrivals;



culminating in disaster on Christmas Day, 1953, when a fire in the Shek Kip Mei squatter area left 50,000 people homeless in a single night. By this tragedy, a dilemma was resolved: for the razed area provided an extensive site unencumbered by squatters' huts on which to build the first resettlement buildings. These buildings were able to house considerably more people than were originally displaced by the fire; thus allowing the clearance of further areas of squatter huts not only for the development of more resettle- ment buildings (again allowing more land to be cleared) but also for the siting of schools, hospitals, clinics and all the other multi- farious social services which the Colony so urgently required.

      Thus land, without which nothing could be done, became available; and the Government was able to take upon itself the gigantic task of accepting the new arrivals and providing them with social amenities at as high a standard as the circumstances permitted. Once it had decided upon this policy, the Government pursued it with tenacity.

It is, of course, a valid criticism that Hong Kong did not accept this responsibility immediately the first immigrants began to arrive: but this criticism, quite apart from the fact that the rate of entry would in any event have made it physically impossible to build fast enough to prevent the squatter areas developing, ignores the fundamental facts inherent in any refugee problem. There are, indeed, only three basic solutions to such problems. Either the refugees return to their country of origin, or they move on to yet a third country, or the country in which they find themselves accepts them as an integral part of the community. In past waves of immigration into Hong Kong following upon disturbed condi- tions in China (and there have been many such), large numbers of immigrants have usually returned sooner or later to their homes in China as the conditions which gave rise to their migration sub- sided; although some remained in the Colony and others moved elsewhere, particularly to the countries of south-east Asia. The distinguishing features of this particular wave of immigration, however, were its size and the fact that, although the Hong Kong Government has placed no physical bar on return to China, it is apparent that there is nevertheless no general desire to return home. Moreover emigration, never recently possible in any degree because of the unwillingness of third countries to receive large



    numbers of Chinese immigrants, is becoming still more difficult as adjacent south-east Asian countries, judging by recent events, become more concerned with the problems presented by the Chinese already in their midst.

Prior to 1953, therefore, it was by no means as apparent as it is now that the third solution-integration--was the only possible one. Moreover, at roughly the time when this solution began for the first time to appear inevitable, the imposition of embargoes on trade with China severely disrupted the economy of the Colony; and there arose real doubts as to whether Hong Kong would be able to afford the cost of providing the social services required, even if the will and the means were otherwise there. There was also a not unnatural feeling that this was a problem for the whole free world, and not for Hong Kong alone. All these fears and doubts, serious though they were, were nevertheless brushed aside after the events of Christmas Day, 1953, and the Colony set itself firmly upon the new course of merging the new-comers and their children into the fabric of Hong Kong society.

Since then, much has been done and much remains to be done. The basic problem, however, remains unchanged; for the pressure of a still-expanding population remains at the root of all Hong Kong problems. To reiterate and bring up to date these basic figures, the population when the war ended in 1945 was estimated at 600,000; by the end of 1946 it had risen to an estimated 1,600,000; by the end of 1949 to an estimated 1,860,000; by the end of 1956 to an estimated 2,500,000; and now, at the end of 1959, the estimate stands at 2,919,000-or roughly a two-fold increase in the past 13 years. The estimated increase during the course of the year 1959 was 113,000; of which 84,329 represents natural increase. A stable or reasonably stable population is clearly not yet in sight; for, even if immigration could be wholly checked, the annual rate of natural increase would still stand at approxi- mately 3%, and this figure must be taken as the irreducible rate at which Hong Kong will grow in the immediate future.

Against this background, the reader will ask whether a sufficient effort has been made to provide adequately for the physical and social needs of all these people, and whether the results achieved are sufficient to produce a net improvement? Or is Hong Kong, as many must fear, losing the race in spite of her efforts? Is she



unable even to keep up with her own population expansion, much less improve the lot of her citizens in the years that lie ahead?

The various chapters, year by year, of these Annual Reports contain the detailed record of past achievement and this chapter cannot fully recapitulate all that has been done. But we are here more concerned to show the scale of the effort that Hong Kong has put forth, and this can be done with comparatively few repre- sentative figures-although some figures are of course unavoidable. Since any Government must deal with essentials first, it is proposed to illustrate Hong Kong's effort by reference to four essentials: water supply, housing, education and health services.

The prominence given to water supply in the foregoing list may be puzzling to some readers. The reason is that there are no rivers and only a few large streams in the Colony. In consequence, the water needs of the Colony depend upon collecting and storing rainwater by systems of catchwaters and reservoirs, of which the bulk are in the New Territories (none of the Colony's water supplies come from China, as is often mistakenly supposed). This would be a sufficient problem alone, but it is complicated by the fact that the great bulk of the rainfall occurs in the five summer months May to September; and in these five months sufficient water must be impounded to last throughout the winter. Since reservoirs are costly and take time to build, the Colony has always been short of water, and a restricted supply has been the rule rather than the exception throughout its history. The rapid increase in population has naturally exaggerated these difficulties: moreover, as dwellers in hillside shacks move in increasing num- bers to resettlement estates and other organized housing, they cease collecting their water from casual hillside streams and springs and draw water off the piped and purified supply. New sources of supply to supplement the total storage of 4,647 million gallons available in 1946 became an urgent need, and in 1951 the Government decided to construct a new 4,507 million gallon reservoir at Tai Lam Chung, with its associated catchments, reticulation systems and purification plant. This new project took some 6 years to complete and cost a total of approximately $134 million but even before it was completed it became apparent that further measures were necessary. During 1959, therefore, work started on yet another new reservoir at Shek Pik on Lantau



Island, with a storage capacity of 5,400 million gallons. This project is progressing steadily, but it will cost approximately $220 million and take 4-5 years to complete: and it is already clear that, by that time, still further supplies of water will be needed. This past year, therefore, also saw the beginning of a further investigation into the possibilities of damming the en- trances to a considerable bay in the New Territories, Plover Cove, some 4 square miles in extent and capable of holding some 29,000 million gallons of water when converted to a fresh water reservoir. A rough preliminary estimate puts the cost of this ambitious scheme at $348 million and the time required for its completion at some 10 years. Additionally, or as a possible alter- native to the Plover Cove scheme, inquiries also started during the year into the practicability of using atomic power to produce fresh water from sea water, coupled with the generation of electric power. Enough has perhaps been said to indicate the effort which is being expended on the solution of this one problem of water supply alone, and to show that forward planning does not lag behind the increases in population expected; although the supply of water will undoubtedly remain a difficult problem in the years ahead.

The need for more housing has been second only in impor- tance to the supply of water. Here two main periods can be dis- tinguished; the period prior to the Shek Kip Mei fire when the provision of housing was largely left to private enterprise, and the period from 1954 onwards when Government first assumed responsibility for assisting the efforts of private enterprise by the provision of publicly-owned housing. The full story of the battle for adequate housing cannot be told here, and it is possibly only to touch on the broad outline. The part played by private enter- prise in providing housing must first be emphasized. Expenditure on all private building work has risen from about $100 million a year in the years 1950 to 1952 to the level of about $250 million in 1958-9: that is, expenditure is running at the rate of about $5 million a week, of which, on the average, approximately 60% represents the building of domestic premises. The scale of this effort can be appreciated from the sharp rise in the amount of revenue collected in rates over the period since the war; the figure for 1946-7 was just under $7 million, while the figure for 1958-9



is $74.6 million. But impressive as this record is, private enterprise alone could never meet the demand except for housing of the better sort and this, in general terms, it can be said to have done.

The main problem of housing those sections of the population who were unable to afford the kind of housing that private enter- prise could supply had therefore to be tackled directly or indirectly by Government. As already explained, Government first entered this field on a massive scale after Christmas 1953: and, by the end of 1956, 40 multi-storey resettlement blocks had been built, spread over 4 estates and housing some 103,000 people in all. By the end of 1959, 103 domestic multi-storey resettlement blocks had been built in 9 estates and 229,956 people were housed in them. In addition, 2 further estates were under construction and addi- tional blocks were being built in all but 2 of the existing estates. During the year, plans were laid down for an expansion which is expected to provide resettlement housing for 80,000 persons in 1960 and 100,000 persons a year in succeeding years.

     Apart from those who have been provided with homes in the multi-storey estates, there are 80,386 persons living in 14,611 cottages in the cottage areas; where terrain is often unsuitable to multi-storey development. Voluntary agencies built many of these cottages and then handed them over to Government. There are in fact less of these cottages than in 1956: the reason is that some of the original cottages have been cleared to make room for multi- storey resettlement, having achieved their original purpose of providing emergency accommodation at a time when speed of construction was the overriding consideration.

In round figures, the Hong Kong Government's total estimated capital expenditure on multi-storey estates and cottage areas to the end of the financial year 1959-60 will be $125.6 million and estimated total annual recurrent expenditure will be $29.5 million. Against these expenditures, the Colony revenue will have received a total of some $25.9 million in rent payments by the end of the current financial year: and it is a measure of the popularity of resettlement housing that, up to the present, a total of only $13,763 in unpaid rents has had to be written off. Rents are calculated to cover all annually recurrent costs and to provide for the recovery of the original capital cost, including the value of the land at a flat rate of $10 a square foot and interest at 31%, in forty years



time. On this basis, a standard room of 120 sq. ft. rents at $14 a month. Rates are not payable on these rooms.

      A brief description of the multi-storey blocks may not be out of place here. The prototype blocks were six storeys high and built in the form of an 'H', the bar of the 'H' being used for communal bathrooms and lavatories for each floor. There have been few modifications to this basic design; but a seventh floor has been added and it has recently been possible to increase the usable space between bearing walls. A single-wing type of block in an 'I' shaped design has been prepared for use on restricted sites where site formation is particularly difficult, and the estate at Lo Fu Ngam is composed entirely of these blocks. Each of the seven-storey 'H' blocks accommodates about 2,500 persons in rooms varying in size from 86 sq. ft. to 240 sq. ft. Electricity is supplied to the public areas of each block and is also available to tenants who wish to install it in their own rooms. The accom- modation is admittedly not all that could be desired, but it meets essential needs and the design is such that the individual units can be combined, when circumstances finally permit, into self- contained flats. This would, of course, result in a substantial improvement in standards.

The largest multi-storey estate accommodates more than 65,000 persons and three others have populations in the region of 40,000. With communities of this size, shops, schools, clinics and other amenities are essential. To meet these demands, the roof-tops of resettlement blocks have been allocated to voluntary agencies for use as schools or boys and girls clubs. Ground floor rooms may be rented out as shops or workshops, and a certain number are now reserved for allocation by the Director of Social Welfare to voluntary organizations for welfare projects. Welfare projects already in operation in the estates include nurseries, family case- work centres, milk bars, children's libraries, and a loan and savings association. The Medical and Health Department has established clinics in the estates, or in their vicinity.

Special attention is given to the education of children living in the resettlement estates. The primary aim of the recent modifica- tion in the design of the multi-storey blocks was to make available ground floor rooms that would be more suitable for classrooms than the roof-tops. A number of rooms in all new estates is set



aside for classrooms and the Director of Education allocates these rooms to voluntary organizations. In addition there are Govern- ment or Government-aided schools in the vicinity of most estates.

The development of the resettlement estates and cottage areas is, however, only one chapter of the story of public housing in Hong Kong. These estates were designed to meet the problem of the squatters: but not everybody in urgent need of cheap accom- modation is a squatter. To meet the needs of the middle-income earner with an income of between $300 - $900 a month, the Hong Kong Housing Authority, a statutory non-profit-making enter- prise, was set up in 1954. The Authority's first estate, completed at North Point in 1958, accommodates some 12,300 persons in 1,955 flats arranged in 11-storey blocks. This estate cost some $32 million and has its own shops, school, clinics and assembly hall. The flats can accommodate from 3 to 8 persons and rents vary accordingly from $78 to $170 a month.

      The Authority completed its second estate in 1959 at Sai Wan Chuen on Hong Kong Island. This estate cost $8 million and accommodates 4,000 persons in 638 flats. Early this year, also, work started on the third and largest estate at So Uk, Kowloon. This estate should be completed early in 1961, and will accom- modate 32,000 persons in 4,520 flats at a cost of $48 million. But a further and even larger development is now being planned. It is an estate at Clearwater Bay Road, Kowloon, to be completed by mid-1962, which will house 43,000 persons in 7,620 flats at a cost of $52 million. By the end of 1962, therefore, the Housing Authority will have provided for 91,300 persons in 14,733 flats at a cost of some $140 million, borrowed from the Government.

     The Housing Authority is not, however, the only organization dealing with accommodation for the middle-income earner; there are two other voluntary organizations who are particularly active in this field. Both of them are non-profit-making bodies supported by Government funds who, like the Housing Authority, aim at providing housing at the lowest possible rentals. By the end of the year 1959, the larger of these, the Hong Kong Housing Society, had completed 3,474 flats accommodating 21,643 persons and was building or planning a further 6,808 flats to accommodate an additional 45,046 persons. This Society has been assisted with loans from the United Kingdom Colonial Development and



Welfare Fund in addition to its normal loans from the Hong Kong Government. The other body referred to, the Hong Kong Settlers Housing Corporation, erected 1,700 cottage units housing 10,000 persons between 1951 and 1954, but then ceased operations temporarily because of the scarcity of suitable sites. It is now planning a multi-storey estate at Tai Hang Sai, Kowloon, and, when this estate is completed in mid-1961, the Corporation will have built a total of 2,500 dwellings housing approximately 20,000


      To complete the story of housing for middle-income groups, Government has lent some $81.34 million to Co-operative Societies of locally recruited Government Servants to enable them to erect 2,839 flats, owned by their Co-operatives. Applications for further loans involving a total of $10.8 million for an additional 314 flats are at present under consideration.

      The story of Hong Kong's housing effort so far covers the well-to-do, who have been catered for by private enterprise; the squatters; and the middle-income earners: but there is still another class in urgent need of better housing. These are the tenement dwellers living in old, and often extremely dilapidated and dangerous, pre-war buildings. Their right to new accommodation cannot be denied: indeed, in some ways they have a better right to consideration than the squatters, for they are, very broadly speak- ing, older residents in the Colony and not new-comers. Following upon the Report of a Special Committee on Housing, presented in December 1958, the Government decided during 1959 that the time had come to make a start with the problem of rehousing persons living in such sub-standard premises. The accommodation to be built for this purpose will be of an 'improved resettlement type', and priority will be given to persons occupying buildings certified as dangerous; then to tenants of properties cleared to give way for Government schemes; and lastly to tenement dwellers earning less than $300 per month. The designers hope to be able to keep the rent of this accommodation down to between $24 and $30 a month, exclusive of rates, and the initial intention is to rehouse 20,000 tenement dwellers yearly.

The Resettlement Department will assume over-all responsibility for both the planning and subsequent administration of this new type of very low-cost housing, and will thus extend its functions



to cover all such housing. The Department, in conjunction with the Public Works Department, is already considering suitable designs, which will probably be in the form of single rooms with communal facilities.

Lastly, we must return to where we started and again consider the all-important question of building sites in land-hungry Hong Kong. As has already been explained, the catastrophe of the 1953 fire provided the first sites for development and these were shortly extended by a process of decanting into the new resettlement estates: but there comes a limit to this process, and the Govern- ment has long recognized that other courses must be adopted when natural sites can no longer be found. If no land is otherwise available, land must be made; and accordingly the Government asked Consulting Engineers to report on the feasibility of rec- lamation schemes at Kwai Chung, Sha Tin, Castle Peak Bay, Tai Po and Junk Bay. The Consulting Engineers submitted their reports on these schemes during 1959, and the Government chose to proceed as quickly as possible with the Kwai Chung scheme in association with reclamation work at the adjacent town of Tsuen Wan which has developed considerably in recent years. This scheme will provide some 400 acres of new land at an estimated cost of $96 million inclusive of the necessary services, and, when completed, the general area should be able to contain a population of some 175,000 persons.

      The housing programme outlined above, together with the ex- tensive programme of commercial and industrial expansion which private enterprise is simultaneously undertaking, undoubtedly constitutes a total development effort of which any city can justly be proud; more particularly when the Government has so far been able to meet the capital cost without outside aid or public bor- rowing. But the more important question is, is the effort sufficient? Is Hong Kong ahead of the problem or is it still, in spite of these efforts, lagging behind it? This is a difficult question to answer confidently largely because of the lack of clear criteria. Neverthe- less, while admitting the dangers of such generalizations it is possible to say with some confidence rehousing is taking place (including planned rehousing) at an annual rate of about 4-5% of the population. At this rate, and taking into account the low average age, Hong Kong is not markedly losing ground at present



and may even be gaining a little. But this assessment can be no more than a general impression in the absence of firm statistical data on which to base a more reliable judgment. A better assess- ment may prove possible after the results of the 1961 Census (planning for which started in the course of the year under review) have been analysed.

      Progress in the field of education has been equally impressive. The bare bones of Hong Kong's problem can be stated thus. The main influx of new immigrants came to Hong Kong in 1949 and in the years immediately following. They brought children of all ages with them, but young children predominated. The children born to these immigrants here have, of course, been growing to- wards primary school age in the ten years which followed. The initial problem was therefore one of providing sufficient primary school places; and in the past ten years the Education Department has concentrated its main efforts on providing these places.

      In 1954 the Department launched a seven-year primary school expansion programme aimed at providing 215,000 primary school places by the end of 1961. The active co-operation of the numer- ous bodies interested in education in the Colony is making it possible to achieve this target handsomely. By the beginning of the current school year 152,000 additional primary school places had been provided, and the total number of primary school places available was 363,500. In addition, 207 primary school projects were in hand, and these are expected to produce another 154,000 primary school places by the end of 1961. The original target will thus be exceeded by something like 91,000 places: and there will actually be an excess of about 140,000 places over the estimated number of primary school children by the end of the planning period. This may seem a strange way of planning, but the reasons are not far to seek. The first and most obvious one is that no reliable estimate of the number of children of primary school age is possible until an analysis of the results of the 1961 Census is available, and, until then, the minimum figure of registered births less deaths has to suffice for planning purposes, although an un- known quantity for net immigration should properly be added to this figure. But should an excess of places over pupils actually arise, it will then be possible to return to one sessional-working



in some schools, instead of the two-sessional system which is now, unfortunately but of necessity, common practice.

There is also another reason for permitting the planned excess. The children who entered in the original wave are now growing up, and the problem of post-primary education can no longer be deferred. At the beginning of the 1949-50 school year, the second- ary school enrolment figure was 24,725, and by the beginning of the current year this figure had risen only to 74,625. The Board of Education was accordingly considering plans for the expansion of secondary school places at the end of the year; and undoubtedly the Colony will have to concentrate an additional effort on secondary school expansion in the next few years. An excess of primary school places, which would allow some respite in the primary school programme, would clearly be of help during the period of urgent expansion of secondary education.

     Two important developments in the field of post-secondary education occurred during the past year. First, the University of Hong Kong and the Government agreed on a seven-year expansion programme which will eventually nearly double the number of students for whom places are available-the increase being from 1,000 to 1,800. In pursuance of this policy, the Government agreed to meet the deficit on running expenses involved in this expansion, which will necessitate a considerable increase in the subvention towards annually recurrent expenditure. The University will now also embark upon a capital expansion programme estimated to cost approximately $24.5 million, with support from Govern- ment funds and from United Kingdom Colonial Development and Welfare funds. The second important development was the Government's decision to help certain of the existing Chinese Post-Secondary Colleges to improve their standards with the even- tual aim of assisting them to combine into a second University in which the main language of instruction would be Chinese. One effect of these developments will be that these two institutions, together with the Hong Kong Technical College, will be better able to meet the increased demand for post-secondary education which will shortly arise as one consequence of the mass immigra- tion of the late 1940s and early 1950s.

     To sum up on educational matters, a total of 485,000 pupils were at school in Hong Kong when the new term started in



September 1959. During the year under review, 66,440 additional school places were provided, most of them in 140 new schools. The revised estimate of total expenditure on education was $107 million or about 14.8% of the Colony's estimated total expendi- ture. Since 1946, various non-Government organizations have opened over 1,000 schools in the Colony usually with financial assistance from the Government. Currently, one new school is being opened in the Colony every two weeks; and the Government itself is opening a new primary school every two months.

      The last of the four services chosen to illustrate the present scale of Hong Kong's effort in the social field is the medical and health service. A fair measure of the overall success of the public health services generally during the period since the war is the fact that, in spite of heavily over-crowded conditions, no serious epidemic has ever developed. Although this fortunate record is partially, perhaps even largely, due to the methods of food prepa- ration customary amongst the Chinese, (they are scrupulous in their preference for fresh food and boiled water) such measures are not, of course, adequate in themselves to guard against all epidemic diseases, and continual alertness is necessary.

The relevant chapters of this Report record the details of the battle to improve the health of the population, and, as before, the intention here is merely to give some idea of the scale of the effort that is going into the struggle. In 1949, there were 11 Government hospitals in the Colony, having a total of 1,750 beds: there were also 2,150 beds in Government-assisted and private hospitals, and the total number of hospital beds available was 3,900. By the end of 1959, there were 12 Government hospitals having 2,212 beds; Government-assisted and private hospitals, clinics and dispensaries had 5,490 beds and the total number of beds available was 7,702. The number of beds available has, however, long been recognized as inadequate, and in 1955 the Government decided to prepare plans for a large new general hospital, which is now under con- struction. During the year Her Majesty the Queen graciously gave permission for this hospital to be called the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Kowloon; and His Royal Highness the Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, laid the foundation stone in March 1959. The Queen Elizabeth Hospital is expected to be completed about the end of 1962, and the total capital cost will be at least $62 million.



Annually recurrent cost is expected to be about $16 million. The hospital will have a full range of specialist services and will pro- vide a further 1,320 beds. The figure of beds available per head of population should then be not less than 1 to 350, allowing for population expansion and other hospital development.

Government hospitals in all admitted a total of 53,025 patients in 1959, and Government and Government-assisted hospitals, clinics and dispensaries treated a total of 5,107,644 out-patients. The revised estimate of total Government expenditure on medical and health measures for the current financial year 1959-60 is $110 million, or approximately 15.2% of the Colony's total expenditure.

It will be unnecessary to burden the remainder of this Chapter with further figures and statistics: the reader will recall that the purpose of those already given was to illustrate briefly the size of the problem presented by social services in Hong Kong and to show that that problem is being faced energetically and positively. Much more is being done, and the record of this is in other chap- ters of this Report. It is sufficient here to say that Hong Kong is attacking with similar vigour all the other problems which arise from a greatly swollen population, and which require the expan- sion of Governmental services. In sum, the reader, one hopes, will agree that the plans coming to fruition are on a scale which encourages the belief that Hong Kong is at least not losing ground, although clearly it would be quite wrong to claim that solutions to all our social problems are yet in sight.

A word should, perhaps, be said on the financing of these multi- farious operations. This review mentioned earlier that the embargo on trade with China, imposed in the early 1950s as a result of the war in Korea, severely disrupted the local economy and raised grave doubts as to whether the Colony could ever hope to inte- grate the concurrent wave of immigrants into Hong Kong life. In the event the Colony found it possible, although the burden has been heavy, to finance from its own resources the great bulk of the development necessary to pursue this policy. This was possible largely because of a rapid change from an entrepôt to an indus- trialized economy. The opening chapter of the Annual Report for 1958 dealt in detail with the industrial development of Hong Kong, and it is therefore superfluous to recapitulate that story



here. One point only needs emphasis: the new arrivals whose presence created so many of Hong Kong's difficulties have also, many of them, materially assisted in that successful change-over to an industrial economy which has provided the general pros- perity without which a policy of integration would not have been possible. Many of these new arrivals brought with them capital, industrial skill, technical efficiency, and in some cases even indus- trial plant; and these combined with the resilience and resource of the existing population, laid the foundation for a rapidly develop- ing industrialization.

In all the foregoing, the points to note in relation to World Refugee Year in Hong Kong are, first, that Hong Kong is already making strenuous efforts to solve its own problems, both in terms of money and in terms of available resources of skilled manpower and land; second, that these efforts depend on the availability of very large sums of money for capital expenditure-sums which can only be found if Hong Kong's economy continues to thrive; and third, that, so far as one can judge, these efforts are at least en- abling the Colony, in broad terms, to hold its ground against the needs of the rising population. Perhaps we are even making some headway, but no one could be satisfied with the rate of real gain. Unlike Micawber, therefore, Hong Kong is by no means just waiting for something to turn up to solve its problems. To con- tinue in Micawber's terms, we might even be making six penny- worth or so of progress: but the situation would clearly be still a happier one if we could make half-a-crown's worth. Hence, when Hong Kong received the news of World Refugee Year, those concerned with these matters here at once realized that the significance of the movement lay not in the relative size of the contributions which could be expected (for, generous as they promise to be, clearly they can represent only a small proportion of the scale of expenditure which has been indicated above)- but in the fact that at least some of the money needed to achieve a speedier net improvement in social conditions would now be forthcoming. In other words, World Refugee Year was important because it gave an opportunity to increase the all important rate of real improvement.

This thought led immediately to the corollary that Hong Kong should not use World Refugee Year funds on any projects already



chosen for early completion. To do so would merely be to sub- stitute one method of financing by another, and would achieve thereby no real social advance nor would it be proper to transfer an already accepted financial burden to the shoulders of contribu- tors to the World Refugee Year Fund. For these reasons, it was clear that the most appropriate projects to nominate for World Refugee Year assistance were ones which, while really necessary, were temporarily held up for lack of funds. A further qualification was that these projects should be ones of permanent value, and not merely of a temporary or palliative nature.

      The next important consideration was that of available resources other than money. Enough has already been said to show that the achievement of Hong Kong's planned advances requires the em- ployment of very large numbers of trained men right through the whole range of skills from the professional to the skilled work- man. The existing programme strains these resources nearly to the limit, and there would be no gain if it became necessary to slow up projects already planned because skilled workers had to be diverted from them to new World Refugee Year projects. World Refugee Year funds, then, should support only those projects which could in fact go ahead, having regard to the skilled re- sources available. Next, it was clearly futile to suggest a building project if there were no site for the building. Lastly, the effect of a new project on Government's recurrent expenditure was an important factor; for World Refugee Year funds might, for example, build a school, but the Government would have to bear the running costs thereafter-and it costs roughly as much every two years to run a school as it costs to build it in the first place.

      These, then, were the main considerations which governed the selection of World Refugee Year projects in Hong Kong: but the very nature of the World Refugee Year movement also raised other considerations which had to be taken into account.

In the first place, obviously no one could say with any preci- sion what total sum Hong Kong might receive until the whole appeal was completed. Nevertheless some assumption was neces- sary for planning purposes; and the Government decided, on such advice as was available, to plan on a basis that it would receive HK$42 million approximately. This figure was, and of course still is, no more than a guess. Next, it would have been highly



desirable to have been able to concentrate all donations and allo- cate them to the best advantage in accordance with a co-ordinated plan; but it was soon apparent that this was not possible. This point is emphatically not made in any spirit of complaint. Donors obviously have a personal interest in the disposition of the sums they give and they quite understandably wish to exercise degree of choice over the projects which their gifts support.

Hong Kong also had to adjust its plans to the fact that it might receive money in an almost bewildering number of ways; for example, donations might be made by other Governments to the Hong Kong Government; by private firms or individuals to the Hong Kong Government; by Governments or private agencies abroad to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees for distribution for specific purposes or generally; by other Gov- ernments to voluntary agencies in Hong Kong for purposes which may or may not have been previously discussed with the Hong Kong Government; by voluntary agencies abroad directly to their counterparts or correspondents in Hong Kong; by National Com- mittees to the Hong Kong Government or to voluntary agencies here; and, indeed, according to almost any permutation or com- bination of these channels. Furthermore, some donors might prefer to offer gifts in kind rather than in cash.

       The Government had, therefore, to take these two different sets of factors into account when considering how to make the best possible use of the opportunity generously provided by the World Refugee Year movement. It was necessary to discard certain initially attractive ideas immediately. The selection of one single large project, for example, had obvious objective merits, but it was impossible to entertain this suggestion both because no one knew the amount that might be received, and because of the desire of donors not only to choose their channel of contribution but also particular projects. It would have been inappropriate to devote any substantial part of the funds received to housing, for the simple reason that the Government has already formally under- taken responsibility for that part of this vast commitment which cannot be met by private enterprise. The real obstacle to speeding up the housing programme is not so much lack of money as the shortage of formed sites and the limits of constructional capacity. Other ideas which would have been of value to Hong Kong



generally had to be ruled out because they did not operate amongst that sector of the population which contains the greatest proportion of recent immigrants-the closest, for reasons which will by now be obvious, that Hong Kong can get to allocating funds specifically for the relief of refugees.

     The Hong Kong Government therefore decided to prepare an official list of projects which the Government considered worthy of presentation to the world at large, with the suggestion that donors support these projects as far as possible. The Government hoped that in this manner it might be possible to effect a degree of concentration on a co-ordinated programme without over- circumscribing the individual wishes of donors; particularly if the schemes chosen gave scope for diverse interests.

With all these considerations in mind, the Government gave first place in the official programme to the building of six Com- munity Centres in or near the Resettlement Estates. These Centres will be of real assistance in the task of integrating new-comers into Hong Kong in the fullest sense as well as providing for a much needed expansion in a number of social welfare activities. The intention is that the Social Welfare Department will occupy only a small part of each of these Community Centres for its own direct activities. The Department will make the remaining space available to any voluntary agencies which care to avail themselves of the opportunity to expand their own activities-World Refugee Year funds received directly by the voluntary agencies will no doubt finance these activities in some cases. The Centres will initially be housed in 5-storey structures built to the same design as a standard 24-classroom Government primary school, with minor modifications. This use of an existing design saves much architectural effort and eliminates many delays in construction. The Social Welfare Department does not intend to impose any over-rigid pattern on the activities of the various agencies in these Community Centres, and the organization of each will vary with the needs and wishes of the people of the area which they serve, and with the suggestions and desires of the voluntary agencies themselves, whose co-operation is such an essential part of the scheme.

For those primarily interested in education, the official list suggests the building of additional primary schools in or near



resettlement estates. These schools will also be housed in buildings of standard design, but the Education Department will operate them. Another educational suggestion on the Government list is the provision of Junior Secondary Schools. Again a standard design will be used, but these schools are a new departure for Hong Kong and to some extent the curriculum must be experi- mental. The need for them arises from the fact that not all the children who pass through the primary schools are temperamen- tally suited to an academic secondary school education: the pur- pose of which is to provide an opportunity for children to go on to a higher education if they exhibit sufficient capacity. Further- more, in many cases the family cannot afford to support a child right through a normal secondary school course. Such children are at present at something of a disadvantage, and the purpose of these schools is to fill the gap between primary school and employ- ment age with an education which, though well-rounded, is never- theless directed towards the needs of a boy whose future may lie in becoming a junior technician or a skilled workman. The Educa- tion Department will also run these schools.

      It has already been mentioned that the existing programme stretches Hong Kong's resources of skilled manpower to the limit, and that this imposes unwelcome limitations on the general development of social services. With this in mind, the official list of projects includes a proposal to establish a fund for the support of training schemes generally. If it is to be of best use, it must operate in a highly flexible manner, financing training projects both within and outside the Colony for either individuals or groups of individuals: the only criterion being that the training given should in some way assist the quicker development of the social services. It is not only the Government which lacks trained workers; many voluntary agencies too have an urgent need for them; and very great benefit could result from the establishment of this fund if only in providing social welfare institutions with the trained staff to man them properly.

      Next on the official list is a group of three medical projects: an infirmary for chronic tuberculosis cases, to relieve the hospitals of the need to care for this type of patient (tuberculosis is still Hong Kong's biggest health problem, although there has been substantial progress in combating it); expansion of existing



    facilities for the care of crippled children by additions to the Children's (Orthopaedic) Convalescent Home at Sandy Bay; and finally a Rehabilitation Centre for the Disabled, a facility which is much needed at the present time.

Two smaller projects, which might appeal to donors whose funds are limited, complete the official list. The first is to provide a school library service to assist poorer students to obtain access to the books they need without excessive cost; and last (a new proposal added after the original list was produced) for a Children's Reception Centre to care for abandoned babies and children available for adoption, pending the completion of arrange- ments for placing them in the care of new parents.

A further word of warning as to the intentions behind the preparation of this list is perhaps necessary. Certainly it is highly desirable to co-ordinate World Refugee Year activities as far as possible if Hong Kong is to derive the maximum benefit, but the official list consists only of strongly recommended suggestions and it is not by any means intended to be exclusive. The Hong Kong Government's attitude in this matter may be summed up by saying that it greatly prefers these projects, or projects which expand or complement them, because they arise from a careful assessment of the problem; but it is recognized that other people may have different ideas. The general feeling is, therefore, that any money that comes into Hong Kong and is spent in a careful and intelligent manner contributes to the common good; and that it is by no means necessary or desirable to attempt to exercise any great degree of centralized control over the spending of World Refugee Year funds.

As events have turned out, donors have already given a gratify- ing amount of support to the official list. In chronological order of announcement of the gifts, the British Red Cross Society has given £10,000 to the Society for the Relief of Disabled Children for improvements to the Orthopaedic Department of the Children's (Orthopaedic) Convalescent Home at Sandy Bay; the Government of the United States of America has given HK$1.15 million to construct and equip the first of the Community Centres, and this building is now several storeys high; the United Kingdom National Committee has announced that they will allocate £129,000 to Hong Kong from the donations which they have collected or have



been promised so far, and the Committee and the Government have agreed to build another Community Centre with the first instal- ment of this gift; and finally, towards the end of the year, the Government of the United States of America gave two further amounts of HK$1,491,435 and HK$512,325 to the Hong Kong Government. These sums will finance the building respectively of a Junior Secondary School and a pilot Rehabilitation Centre- to be operated by the Hong Kong Society for Rehabilitation.

This is not a complete list of the gifts which Hong Kong has so far received, for it includes only the sums received in direct support of the official list of World Refugee Year projects. Other gifts include a supply of drugs given by a number of German firms to the Hong Kong Government and, of course, the very substantial grants which voluntary agencies abroad have made to their associ- ates in Hong Kong. It is not possible to list these latter gifts here as the full details are not available at the time of writing.

Further donations are known to be under discussion, but not yet announced. An interesting local development is the campaign launched by the Hong Kong Council of Social Service to collect locally the sum of $2 million for the erection of another Com- munity Centre. This campaign, by the end of the year, had already reached the figure of $150,000.

      The struggle to provide the people of Hong Kong with an acceptable social setting, in spite of their ever-increasing numbers, presents a challenge which could easily be daunting. As with all difficulties which are tackled resolutely, however, the very meeting of the challenge generates resourcefulness and enthusiasm, which are noticeable characteristics of Hong Kong today. Hong Kong is a city of scaffolding: wherever the eye turns, in whatever part of the twin cities, the great grey unfinished blocks with their cocoons of bamboo scaffolding-poles rise with their promise of domestic housing, schools, hospitals, clinics, factories, all repre- senting a brighter future. Visitors to the Colony remark frequently upon this atmosphere of bustle and enthusiasm; and they too seem to become infected in some degree with the buoyancy of the place. Mr. C. B. Burgess, the Officer Administering the Govern- ment, took this spirit as his theme when speaking at the opening of the 100th multi-storey resettlement block towards the end of the year. He spoke of '. . . . the enthusiasm, the sense of purpose,



the daring experimentation which characterized the first tentative multi-storey block. I think it is necessary' he continued 'indeed I think it is vital, that the same enthusiasm, the same tough resolu- tion should be applied to the 101st block. I know that is asking much of the administrators who may be tempted at this stage to think of resettlement as a routine, work-a-day scheme; and also of the legislators and tax-payers who are constantly being asked to provide more and more money for a project from which, perhaps, some of the initial glamour has gone. But I see no alternative at present to a 101st, to a 150th, to a 200th block-and if it is to be achieved enthusiasm and resolution must not be allowed to flag in any quarter'.

     This same spirit must not, and will not, be confined only to the resettlement programme. If Hong Kong is to forge ahead of its problems, it must maintain its enthusiasm in every field. It is an encouragement to all who are concerned in these matters, whether public servants, workers in the voluntary agencies, or interested members of the public, to know that their efforts are now being supplemented by the work of sympathizers abroad through the World Refugee Year movement.

Chapter 2: Population

     THE total civilian population at the end of 1959 was estimated to be 2,919,000 of whom less than 1% was non-Chinese. It was decided during the year that a census of the population should be conducted in March 1961 and until the results of that census become known, the basis of the population estimates should remain unchanged. Thereafter, an accurate figure will be available.

The last population census was held in 1931 when the civilian population was found to be 840,473. Another census should have been held in 1941, but the unsettled conditions following the Japanese invasion of China in 1937, the fluctuations in population following the attack on Canton in 1938, and later the Japanese invasion of the Colony, caused the plan to be abandoned. The influx of immigrants to which Hong Kong has been subjected since the end of the war has been one of the main considerations which have so far made the holding of a census impracticable.

      An unofficial count by air-raid wardens in 1941 before the Japanese attack put the population at about 1,600,000. This number was greatly reduced during the occupation and it is estimated that the total amounted to less than 600,000 when the Colony was liberated in August 1945.

      The population grew rapidly after the liberation, and by the end of 1946 it was believed that the immediately pre-war level of 1,600,000 had been reached. An assessment of the population in September 1949 by the then Department of Statistics put the total at 1,857,000.

      Estimates for subsequent years have been based mainly on the birth and death registration figures and on the arrival and departure figures modified, where necessary, by additional infor- mation available at the time of making the estimate.

      The population problem is complicated by illegal immigrants who may have added considerably to the estimates given above and who, during 1959, are thought to have numbered very approxi- mately 30,000, though this figure has not been taken into account



for the purposes of this Chapter. In addition, the number of recorded journeys made both ways across the frontier in any one year can be equal to or greater than the estimated total number of the population.

The population increased during 1959 by some 113,000 to reach an estimated total of 2,919,000. Of this increase 84,329 was due to the excess of registered births over registered deaths, and 28,181 to recorded immigration. The actual number of registered births was 104,579 in 1959 compared with 106,624 in 1958 and of registered deaths was 20,250 compared with 20,554 in 1958. These figures yield for 1959 a birth rate of 36.6 per mille and a death rate of 7.1 per mille, on a mid-year population of 2,857,000. For the first time since the end of the war the number of recorded births has fallen compared with the previous year.

     This decline is interesting but no particular significance can be attached to it in the absence of any analysis of the structure of the Colony's population to which it can be related. Such an analysis should be possible after the Census in 1961, and until then it is only possible to speculate on the possible reasons for the decline.


At the end of 1959 the number of British subjects from the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth, excluding Service per- sonnel and their dependents, numbered about 15,000. The total of non-Chinese residents and visitors (shown in brackets), excluding British nationals, was about 11,500; of these the most numerous national communities were:

American, 3,831 (1,861 residents); Portuguese, 1,941 (1,573 residents); Filipino, 994 (369 residents); Japanese, 536 (278 residents); Dutch, 391 (275 residents); and Indonesian, 395 (240 residents).

The districts of Kwangtung which have supplied the largest elements of Hong Kong's urban Chinese population are neighbour- ing Po On and Tungkwun, Waiyeung and Muiyuen (principally Hakka), Chiuchow, the so-called Four Districts (Sunning, Sunwui, Hoiping and Yanping), Namhoi, Punyü, Shuntak and Chungshan. Other elements in the urban population include a Fukien com- munity and numbers of overseas Chinese whose families originally came from Kwangtung or Fukien.

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      Hong Kong's vastly swollen population of some 3,000,000 souls, the majority of whom cram themselves into the 12 square miles of the urban areas, challenges the ingenuity and resources of health authorities and welfare organizations. Overcrowding is rife and, not surprisingly, tuberculosis the principal health problem. Although just over two per cent of the adult population have the disease in active form, control measures are now beginning to show results. Improvements are being noted, especially in children under five. This picture shows young TB patients sailing their boats in a miniature pool at the Grantham Hospital, the Colony's largest tuberculosis institution.

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    This small boy lives on a roof. He and his parents are just one tiny unit in an estimated 80,000 'roof squatters'. He is a symbol of the poverty and squalor that is the lot of hundreds of thousands who have sought asylum in Hong Kong and as such his picture has gone out to the world on a quarter of a million wallsheets and folders produced by the Hong Kong World Refugee Year Committee to give people in other lands some idea of the magnitude of Hong Kong's problems.

The million or more refugees who have entered Hong Kong since the end of the Pacific War have placed a heavy burden on the Colony's health and social facilities. More than 100 volun- tary welfare agencies are doing invaluable work in squatter areas and the resettlement estates. Upper pictures show noodles being made in a relief centre from corn flour and dried milk sent from overseas.

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Each year the voluntary agencies distribute more than 50 million pounds of powdered milk, corn meal flour and wheat flour, giving the highest priority to pregnant women and babies. Milk and biscuits are distributed to the children (below) and the additional nutrition thus pro- vided is vital to their well-being.

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Typical of Hong Kong's nine resettlement estates is Tai Hang Tung, which now houses nearly 39,000 of the 230,000 people provided with new homes in multi-storey buildings since 1954. As part of its World Refugee Year programme the Hong Kong Government

plans to build community centres in the larger resettlement estates and the first of these is under construction at Wong Tai Sin estate. The centres will act as a focal point for community activities and will also offer a wide variety of social and trade training facilities.

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At the Wan Chai Polyclinic, a small boy, victim of poliomyelitis, learns to walk again with the help of a physiotherapist. Children are taken to the clinic by their parents, who are also taught how to care for them at home and shown simple exercises. The clinic has a gymnasium, treatment cubicles and a hydrotherapy tank.

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   Mothers (above) take their babies to hospital for vaccination. Most babies born in maternity hospitals are also given B.C.G. immunization against tuberculosis. Health education programmes include lectures and demonstrations for mothers. The necessity for family unity is illustrated by the lecturer (below) whose diagrams show that a household will fall apart unless the parents ensure that theirs is a 'happy family'.

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   One of the most heartening aspects of 1959 was the measure of increasing prosperity among people living in the resettlement estates. This showed itself in the clothes they wore, in the little luxuries some could afford but most of all in their attitude. Ever cheerful, more and more of them are now coming to look upon Hong Kong as their permanent home.



      The chief linguistic characteristic of the urban area is that, although a wide variety of Chinese languages and dialects are used in daily life, Cantonese is the lingua franca. Apart from Can- tonese, the languages or dialects most widely heard are Hakka, Chiuchow, Kuoyü (the national language), the Shanghai dialect and, of course, English, the popularity of which has increased considerably in the last ten years. Before the war the Colony was not much affected by the movement in China to popularize Kuoyü. The war, however, took many local residents into China, and many came back afterwards with some knowledge of Kuoyü. Though this language is not normally spoken by Cantonese people in Hong Kong, a far greater number understand it now than before the war.


      The indigenous inhabitants of the New Territories consist of four principal groups: Cantonese, Hakka, Hoklo and Tanka. Although these groups show differences in physical appearance, dress, organization and custom, which suggest that they are racially distinct, it is safer to treat them as linguistic rather than racial groups.

The Cantonese occupy the best part of the two principal plains in the north-western sector of the New Territories, and own a good deal of the best valley land in various other areas. The oldest villages, those of the Tang clan in Yuen Long District, have a history of continuous settlement since the late eleventh century, in the Southern Sung dynasty, with whose imperial family the clan was connected by marriage. Villages in the Tung Chung and Shek Pik valleys, on Lantau Island, date back to the early Yuan dynasty, in the late thirteenth century. Subsequent migrations have brought Cantonese from many districts of Kwangtung, and throughout the principal islands they are the majority community. The earliest families in Yuen Long District speak a form of the Namtau dialect, an offshoot of Tungkwun, not very easy for city Cantonese to follow, but city Cantonese (Punyü dialect) is the lingua franca of all the New Territories market towns, regardless of whether the particular area is predominantly Cantonese or Hakka.

      The Hakka (this is their own word for themselves, and is ex- plained as meaning strangers) began to enter this region at about



the same time as the first Cantonese, or even before. The Cantonese were the more successful settlers, however, and in the areas where both groups live side by side the Hakka are always found upstream, along foothills, and in general on the worse land. At an early stage they seem to have become dependants or serfs of the powerful Cantonese families. The balance was restored later by heavy immigration from the East River districts in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and the Hakka are now almost exclusive possessors of the Sha Tau Kok, Sai Kung and Hang Hau peninsulas, and of the foothills of Tai Mo Shan. They are the majority community in Tai Po, Sha Tin and Tsuen Wan, and on the islands of Tsing Yi and Ma Wan.

The origin of the Hakka is unknown. They have contradictory traditions pointing to both a northern and a southern origin, and, while the greatest numbers of them are found in eastern Kwang- tung, there are many in Kiangsi and some in Szechuan and Taiwan. In the New Territories there are certain villages which show indications of being of non-Chinese origin; such villages are invariably Hakka-speaking. Both Cantonese and Hakka are lan- guages of the Yueh group, presenting features characteristic of the standard speech of the early T'ang dynasty (seventh century); and Hakka, while closely resembling Cantonese in most respects, preserves a few even earlier characteristics.

In Kwangtung for many centuries there was strife between Cantonese and Hakka, culminating in a war in the early nine- teenth century which required the intervention of the Manchu Government. They are now at peace and inter-marriage, formerly unknown, is now not unusual. Some villages are peacefully shared between the two groups and most Hakka people can speak Cantonese, except in the remotest areas.

The Hoklo have frequented the area since time unknown. They are traditionally boat dwellers, but in some places they have been settled ashore for several generations. There are influential land communities of them on Cheung Chau and Peng Chau. Their name suggests that they originated from Fukien Province (Hok- kien), but this is probably a misnomer, Fukien being only one of their places of origin. Their language belongs to the Min group, found all along the South China coast from Fukien to Hainan Island. The more primitive types of Hoklo dwelling are



distinguishable by the use of thatch and mud bricks, instead of tiles and stone.

The Tanka (egg families) are boat dwellers who very seldom settle ashore. They themselves do not much use this name, which they consider derogatory, but usually call themselves 'Shui sheung yan' (water-borne people). They are the principal seafaring people of South China, owning large sea-going junks and engaging in deep-sea fishing, Their entire families live afloat. These people were subject to discrimination in Imperial China, for they were forbidden to live ashore or to engage in trade, and they were not allowed to enter for the Imperial examinations. Like the Hoklo, whom they resemble in many respects, they have been in the area since time unknown. Chinese records suggest that they originally spoke a non-Chinese language. At present they speak their own distinctive dialect of Cantonese, which they appear to have adopted early in the fourteenth century, during the Yuan dynasty. At Tai O, on Lantau Island, there is the rare instance of a fairly large group of Tanka living ashore, or rather half- ashore, in huts built on stakes over a muddy inlet.

      Certain parts of the New Territories mainland have been affected by the great numbers of refugees who, since 1937, have come to the Colony from all parts of China. In the rural areas these refugees have largely been assimilated although small groups of Tungkwun and Chiuchow cultivators and the miners from North China have resisted assimilation and continue to live as groups apart. In the rapidly expanding industrial area of Tsuen Wan the majority of the population is composed of immigrant workers. Most of these came from Shanghai in the mass exodus of 1949 and have in turn been followed by merchants and small businessmen from the same district.

      In addition, an increasing number of properties have been developed in recent years for occupation by families of all nationalities from the urban areas. These residences, most of which lie along the main roads of the New Territories, are generally used for week-ends or holidays.

Chapter 3: Occupations, Wages and

Labour Organization


THE principal sources of employment in Hong Kong are industry, commerce, agriculture, fishing, and the internal distributive trades.

No comprehensive employment statistics are collected by Gov- ernment except those relating to industrial concerns registered or recorded* with the Labour Department. These cover the bulk of the Colony's industries.

The number of persons engaged in agriculture and fishing is estimated to be slightly over 380,000. The total number of persons employed by the Hong Kong Government is slightly over 45,000. An additional 26,000 are engaged in the public transport services. About 160,000 workers are estimated to be employed in building and engineering construction. During the year fewer persons were employed in a civilian capacity by the Armed Services. Over 1,900 such persons were discharged from H.M. Dockyard, which offi- cially closed on 28th November.

The main factor in employment continued to be, as for several years past, the rapid expansion of local industry, which now accounts for about 70% of the total exports from the Colony. In spite of discriminatory and other trading restrictions encountered by local manufacturers in various countries and of the continued shortage of suitable industrial premises, the number of registered industrial undertakings rose by 288 to 2,993. There were 2,030 recorded undertakings, a decrease of 171 from the previous year. The number of registered and recorded industrial undertakings increased, therefore, by 117 to 5,023, and the number of workers employed in them rose by 37,370 to 217,367. At the end of the year 784 applications for registration of industrial undertakings were under consideration.

* This term is explained on page 42 in the Chapter under Factory Inspection and Registration.



New regulations, introduced at the beginning of the year, con- trolling further the working hours of women and young persons, resulted in an increase in the number of persons employed in particular sections of industry. In the cotton spinning and weaving industries, where continuous operation of machinery is economic and large numbers of women are employed, a change from two to three shifts a day in many of the mills involved the employment of a larger working force. The extent to which the new regula- tions were responsible for the increase in the employment figures cannot be determined with accuracy because they were introduced during a period of industrial expansion.

      The manufacture of textiles, engaging 52,936 workers, remained the principal source of industrial employment. Within this industry the majority of the workers are employed in cotton weaving (21,359 workers) and cotton spinning (14,932 workers). The manufacture of wearing apparel employed 44,606 workers. Thus, 97,542 workers or 45% of the industrial working force are engaged in the textile and garment industries. Other important industries were the manufacture of metalware (26,473 workers) and the manufacture and repair of transport equipment, including shipbuilding and repairing (12,906 workers). The rapid growth of the plastic flower and shipbreaking industries was a striking feature of the year.

The expansion of industry and industrial employment over the past three years has been as follows:





Industrial Undertakings

Male Workers

Female Total Workers Workers



58,454 153,033



71,153 179,997


122,766 94,601 217,367

A more detailed table showing the development of industry over the same period by main industrial groups and by selected industries within certain of these groups is at Appendix II.

Work on the reclamation at Kwun Tong to provide sites for industry continued, and by the end of the year 32 factories were in operation and 43 were under construction. Plans for 22 other factories had been approved. Land sales and reclamation at Kwun Tong are also mentioned in Chapters 6 and 10.



      Unemployment. The absence of comprehensive statistics relating to the working population precludes anything but estimates on the broadest basis of unemployment and under-employment, Certain industries, such as the manufacture of garments and textiles, in which expansion was very rapid because of a high level of produc- tion, experienced some difficulties in recruiting suitable staff. These difficulties were encountered particularly by factories established in new industrial areas on the outskirts of the urban area. The general shortage of housing and school facilities does not en- courage the movement of families from areas where such facilities are already established and the cost of transport, relatively high in relation to daily earnings, discourages long-distance travel. Consequently, labour lacks mobility and local shortages tend to occur. Although industrial expansion and the sustained high level of building activity kept large numbers employed, it is believed that a large surplus of unskilled labour in the under-employed category still exists in the urban area. On the other hand it seems likely that shortages of skilled labour will persist for some time to come while the present expansion of industry continues.

Migration for Employment. Migration for employment con- tinued on a small scale, largely because of immigration restrictions imposed by countries unwilling to accept Chinese as permanent settlers. A small number of workers left permanently to join relatives in the United States, Canada, South America, Australia, and France. Skilled and semi-skilled workers continued to be much in demand for development projects in North Borneo, Brunei, and Sarawak. They were also recruited by the British Phosphate Commission for work in Nauru and Ocean Island and for a shipyard in New Guinea. Local textile and enamelware factories sent skilled hands to develop associated enterprises in Thailand, Indonesia, and territories in Africa. During the year the number of employment contracts for emigrant manual workers officially approved by Government showed a slight decrease, the total being 1,875 compared with 2,054 in 1958.

      In 1959, 110 agricultural workers went to North Borneo under the North Borneo Government scheme for the settlement of a limited number of Hong Kong agricultural workers. These emigrant agricultural workers are protected in their employment



by a two-year contract until such time as they are allowed to settle permanently or required to return to Hong Kong.


Wages. Wages are generally calculated on a monthly, daily, or hourly basis or on piece rates, but it is customary to pay many daily and piece-rated workers at weekly or fortnightly intervals. Most unskilled workers, employed as general labour, are on daily rates of pay as are a considerable number of skilled and semi- skilled operatives in industry. The majority of industrial produc- tion process workers are paid on piece rates. Both men and women receive the same piece rates but, in general, men receive slightly higher monthly or daily rates than women engaged on the same work. Pay for learners in trades where a period of training in the factory is necessary is frequently below the unskilled rates, but includes in most cases food and sometimes accommodation; and wages rise with increases in skill.

      The demand for suitable labour in the textile industry in particular affected wage levels in other industries and there were definite indications in the latter half of the year of an upward trend in wages in many sectors. At the end of the year, the wage range for daily-rated workers was estimated as:

Skilled workmen


Semi-skilled workmen

Unskilled workmen

$7 to $18 a day

$4 to $8 a day $2.50 to $6 a day

A bonus of one month's wages is paid at Chinese New Year in many concerns.

Higher rates of pay for all grades of Government employees were recommended in the report of the Salaries Commission appointed by Government in January. The recommendations of the Commission were generally accepted by Government and the arrangements to implement them were nearing completion at the end of the year.

Some firms provide free food and accommodation for regular employees. Others provide canteens, from which food and other necessities are supplied at subsidized rates. Most European con- cerns and some Chinese concerns run on Western lines pay a basic wage, together with a variable cost of living allowance to



compensate for price fluctuations. The allowances paid are based on the Retail Price Index, compiled and published monthly by the Commerce and Industry Department. This system was in force during the year for Government employees: but the Salaries Com- mission recommended that cost of living allowances, other than for minor staff, should be incorporated in basic salaries.

      Working Hours. Regulations made under the Factories and Industrial Undertakings Ordinance, 1955, which came into effect on 1st January 1959, introduced new restrictions on the hours of work for women and young persons between the ages of 14 and 18 employed in industry. By these regulations, the maximum hours which may be worked were limited to 10 hours in a day, with a break of not less than half an hour after five hours work. To allow for overtime to meet pressure of work, the hours of work can be increased to eleven in any day, provided that, for any industrial undertakings, overtime does not exceed in the aggregate one hundred hours in any year or six hours in any week and does not take place in more than twenty five weeks in any year. In exceptional circumstances additional overtime may be worked with the approval of the Commissioner of Labour. A weekly rest day must be given.

      Young persons under the age of 16 may work only 8 hours in a day, with an hour's break after 5 hours work. Children under the age of 14 may not be employed in industry. Women and young persons may not work at night. There are no restrictions on the working hours of men.

Three-quarters of the men employed in industry normally work 10 hours a day or less. This proportion includes the majority of workers in the plastic, metalware, rubber shoe, and torch case manufacturing industries, the printing trade, shipbuilding and repairing, and the public utilities. Outdoor staff in the Govern- ment service and employees of commercial and industrial concerns operated on Western lines work an 8-hour day.

      Daily hours of work in excess of 10 for male workers are largely confined to the enamelware industry and, to a decreasing extent, to cloth-dyeing and other textile concerns working a single or two shift system. A significant development during the year was the increasing resort to an 8-hour shift system in the textile industry. At the end of the year all 23 cotton spinning mills were operating



     on three 8-hour shifts (14 mills having changed over from a 2-shift to a 3-shift system during the year) and 57 weaving mills and 1 silk spinning mill had adopted the same system of work. In addi- tion, 1 garment factory had adopted a system of two 8-hour shifts, and some 10 other garment and glove factories had indicated that they would change to this system after the Chinese New Year at the end of January 1960. In public utility companies the system of three 8-hour shifts is also used. There were no significant changes during the year in hours of work in non-industrial occupations.

Rest periods varying between half an hour and three hours a day are usually given, and this is invariably the case where hours of work exceed eight a day. Daily rest periods over the whole of industry average 1 hour for both men and women. The weekly rest day, where given, is usually Sunday, except in concerns where continuous production must be maintained and rest days are accordingly arranged in rotation. They are usually unpaid. A large proportion of male workers in local manufacturing industry do not enjoy a regular rest day, but where this is the case it is customary for them to be granted leave without pay on request. The new regulations restricting the hours of work for women and young persons and providing for a weekly rest day, although not applicable to male workers, have, in certain cases where men and women are employed in the same industrial processes, brought about corresponding reductions in the hours of work for men.

Cost of Living. The average monthly figure of the Retail Price Index during the year was 9 points higher than the corresponding figure in 1958. Bad weather conditions in the Colony and in China, culminating in abnormally severe storms and flooding in June, restricted both the production and marketing of many foodstuffs, the prices of which in consequence stayed at a high level until the end of October. The Index for September (132) was the highest recorded for any month since the war. The average of the Index for the year was 126.

      The following table shows the fluctuations which occurred in the officially published Retail Price Index during the year:

January February

   March ... April


























The Retail Price Index covers a wide range of commodities and is weighted according to a budgetary survey carried out in 1948. The base of 100 is for March 1947 and, although the expenditure pattern used for weighting is that of the artisan and white collar worker, the Index gives a fair reflection of general changes in the cost of living.


Government's responsibilities in labour matters are dealt with by the Labour Department and the Registry of Trade Unions.

Labour Department. The Commissioner of Labour is the prin- cipal adviser to the Government on all matters connected with labour and industrial relations. He is ex-officio Chairman of the Labour Advisory Board, on which both employers and employed are represented, and which is consulted on all legislative matters affecting labour. The Commissioner is also Chairman of the Standing Committee on Technical Education and Vocational Training, an ex-officio member of the Port Committee and a member of the Kwun Tong Advisory Committee concerned with the provisions of industrial sites. Concurrently he is Commissioner of Mines. The registration of trade unions, formerly a function of the Labour Department, has been undertaken by the Registrar of Trade Unions since 1954.

The Labour Department is responsible for the initial preparation of all labour legislation and keeps under review the legislative and administrative arrangements for giving effect to the Colony's obligations under International Labour conventions. It carries out the registration and inspection of industrial undertakings to ensure, in particular, safe and healthy conditions of work. It acts as a channel of conciliation in disputes between trade unions and employers and individual workmen and employers. It provides advice and assistance to trade unions in the management of their



affairs, including the organization of classes on various aspects of trade unionism; seeks to encourage joint consultation in industry; and advises on the establishment of appropriate machinery for this purpose. It offers training in supervisory techniques to repre- sentatives of local industry. It is responsible for the protection of women and young persons employed in industry. It protects emigrant workers and administers the Workmen's Compensation Ordinance, primarily by investigations conducted by a staff of trained labour inspectors. It carries out surveys of wage rates and conditions of employment, and is responsible for ensuring that publicity is given to the major provisions of the legislation with which the Department is concerned.

During the year the distribution of a large number of industrial safety posters to local factories continued. In addition to the publication of various pamphlets by the Department, twenty seven different articles dealing with aspects of safety, health, welfare, trade unionism, etc., were prepared by officers of the Department and distributed through the Information Services Department for use by the local vernacular press. Through the courtesy of the Chinese Manufacturers' Association, the Labour Department was for the third time provided with a stall to mount a display at the annual exhibition of Hong Kong products held in December. The display aroused interest and the opportunity was again taken to spread more knowledge of the Department's activities among local employers and workers by means of numerous hand-outs and by radio broadcasts.

The Registry of Trade Unions is responsible for dealing with applications by new trade unions for registration under the Trade Unions and Trade Disputes Ordinance, and with applications by registered unions for registration of alterations of rules, of change of name or of amalgamation, and with dissolutions. The Registrar also has the power to cancel the registration of a union in certain circumstances.

Registered trade unions are required by the Ordinance to trans- mit to the Registrar before 1st June each year annual returns, showing changes in membership figures and the names of the principal officials, and their audited accounts within one month of presentation to members. During the year the Department successfully prosecuted four unions for late submission of annual



returns, and four workers' unions and one organization of mer- chants for late transmission of accounts.

While no less than fifteen new trade unions (including one association of merchants) were registered, eight unions of workers and three other organizations were removed from the register. Six of the unions of workers were removed from the register as having ceased to exist and two dissolved; two associations of employers applied for cancellation of registration as trade unions in order to form one society, while one association of merchants became a limited company.

The year ended with 316 unions on the register, as against 312 in December 1958, the total being made up of 243 workers' unions, 63 organizations of merchants or employers and 10 mixed organizations of employers and workers.


Labour Organization. The number of workers' unions on the register is in excess of practical needs. Most of the trade unions in the Colony continue to be affected by political considerations. With the exception of a small number of independent unions, the majority of workers' unions are affiliated to one of the two trade union federations.

     The Hong Kong Federation of Trade Unions, which supports the policies of the Chinese People's Government, has sixty five affiliated unions, the majority of whose members are employed in leading shipyards and utility companies. There are in addition twenty five unions, nominally independent, which subscribe to the policy and participate in the activities of the F.T.U. During the year the F.T.U. continued its policy of providing welfare benefits not only to members of affiliated unions but also to all workers willing to accept them.

The Hong Kong and Kowloon Trades Union Council, which supports the policies of the Government of Formosa, has seventy two affiliated unions, including four mixed unions of employers and employees, with a further fifty three unions participating in its activities. The majority of the members of these unions are employed in building construction, Chinese restaurants, tea-houses, and in catering and miscellaneous services. The T.U.C. remains



affiliated to the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions, but does not play an active part within that body.

      Independent unions are few and mostly small in membership, and several of them are undecided as to where their interests should lie. Some of them, however, have made continuing efforts to improve their internal administration and the services offered by them to their members. The Teachers' Association was repre- sented in 1959 at the Annual Conference of the World Confedera- tion of Organizations of the Teaching Profession held in the. United States of America.

During the year there was a steady expansion of the trade union education programme of the Labour Department. A short course of eight lectures on simple trade union accounts, organized by the Department in co-operation with the Hong Kong Technical College, was attended by persons from 20 workers' unions. An- other course on the same subject was in session at the end of the year. A course of lectures on various aspects of trade union administration, and two courses on labour legislation (the latter a new feature of the trade union education programme) were also organized during the year. Total attendance at these courses was 120 trade unionists.

      A booklet entitled 'A Simple Guide to Trade Union Accounting' was published by the Labour Department at the beginning of this year. The booklet is in English and Chinese and is specially directed to local trade unions, particularly those which cannot afford to engage professional accountants. Copies of this booklet have been distributed, free of charge, to all registered trade unions.

Joint Consultation. Joint consultation is not widely practised in the Colony but there is evidence that an understanding of its value is slowly growing. Many employers, who understand and appreciate its purpose, are reluctant to experiment in this field while political interests dominate labour in Hong Kong. During the year officers of the Labour Department made about 90 visits to factories to explain to managements the advantages of joint consultation, and these were also stressed in press releases, talks, and radio broad- casts. These methods have succeeded in arousing general interest in joint consultation and the appointment of personnel managers. Labour Disputes. Freedom from serious industrial disputes, a noteworthy feature of the Colony's industrial life in the last few



years, continued. During the year there were six minor strikes resulting in the loss of some 4,500 man-days. This total is lower than for any year since the war, except 1952 when only 195 man- days were lost, and compares very favourably with a post-war annual average of 75,480 man-days. Two of the strikes resulted from difficulties surrounding the introduction of three-shift systems in two textile factories and accounted for 3,000 of the man-days lost. Another strike had a political background, while two others resulted from alterations in conditions of employment by the management and ended in compromise settlements. One strike was caused by the dismissal, on disciplinary grounds, of a number of workers, together with dissatisfaction over terms of service, and resulted in concessions being made by the management.

     Redundant Employees of H.M. Dockyard and the Armed Services. Discharges of civilian employees of H.M. Dockyard continued throughout the year. The phased run-down of the Dockyard started at the end of 1957 and it officially closed on 28th November 1959. During the year 1,913 workers were dis- charged, 28 on grounds other than redundancy, and 1,407 redun- dant workers found fresh employment in the same period; the great majority through the efforts of the Employment Liaison Office, set up on the advice of the Employment Advisory Com- mittee to assist with re-employment. The total run-down, excluding those discharged on grounds other than redundancy, up to the end of the year was 4,059 workers, of whom 3,324 or 82% were known to have secured new jobs. Help was also given by the Employment Liaison Office to Dockyard workers laid off in 1957 before the closure announcement, as well as to redundant civilian employees of the War Department and the Royal Air Force. During the year the Office helped 184 such workers to find new employment.

     Groups of workers discharged from H.M. Dockyard continued to visit the Labour Department during the year to press for re- employment. The incidence of such visits rose at the time of the Dockyard closure and in the succeeding weeks, but the groups were orderly and tension was noticeably absent.

In January the naval authorities gave warning that the consider- ations which had given rise to the closure of H.M. Dockyard would



      necessitate a reduction in the strength of the locally entered per- sonnel of H.M.S. 'Tamar', the Royal Naval shore establishment in the Colony. During the year, 226 men were discharged as redundant, almost all in the period April to July. By the end of the year all but 27 of these persons were known to have found fresh employment, 178 through the Employment Liaison Office. All personnel discharged were eligible to receive gratuities, but the size of these gratuities for men with less than 9 years service gave rise to dissatisfaction, and groups of discharged personnel made representations to the Labour Department and prominent local citizens in this connexion.

Canadian Tools Limited. The management of this company suspended operations in their factory in Kowloon on 4th February so as to enable the works to be removed to new premises in Shau Kei Wan. Some 29 workers were needed to supervise the move- ment of the machinery but there was no work for the other 115 workers, mostly female, until the factory reopened. The manage- ment decided to take the opportunity presented by the move to get rid of certain workers with whom it was dissatisfied by dis- charging all those for whom work could not immediately be found and then re-engaging only those whose work had, in its opinion, been satisfactory. A notice was posted in the factory on 4th February informing the workers that they were discharged, and requesting those interested in resuming work at the new factory to give their names to the foreman. The workers at once protested against this action and demanded the re-engagement of all the workers dismissed and the payment of some form of wage over the period of the transfer of the works. Negotiations between the management and the workers' representatives were unsuccessful; and on 25th February the workers called at the Labour Depart- ment to request intervention to settle the dispute. The manage- ment agreed in principle to pay a gratuity to those not re-engaged. A series of lengthy and acrimonious meetings was held in the Department between the management and the workers' repre- sentatives and a settlement was finally reached on 14th March whereby a gratuity of 31 days at a standard rate of $4 a day was paid to all those not re-engaged at the new works.

China Dyeing Works, Tsuen Wan. At the beginning of August the management took steps to introduce a three 8-hour shift



system, which would take some time to bring into force because of shortage of labour. A small group among the 250 workers in this factory demanded an earlier introduction of the new system and a general improvement in conditions of employment. The management agreed to change to three shifts as soon as possible, but rejected the other demands. The workers then staged a strike on the morning of 12th August. This was followed that evening by the management's declaration of a lockout and the dismissal of 10 strike leaders, all of whom were members of the Regional Committee (in the China Dyeing Works) of the Hong Kong and Kowloon Cotton Spinning, Weaving, Printing and Dyeing Trade Workers' General Union. After discussions between the manage- ment and the workers, work was resumed on 17th August. 1,250 man-days were lost in this dispute.

     South China Textile Limited (Spinning Branch). The manage- ment introduced three-shift working on 11th August, accompanied by an adjustment of piece rates necessitated by the shorter working hours per shift. The revision of rates was understood to have caused no material change in the workers' earnings, but the workers expressed dissatisfaction at the new rates and demanded a more favourable re-adjustment. While the management was considering these demands, some workers staged, short stoppages of work on 15th August, which two days later, developed into a strike of the whole factory. The management offered to negotiate a settlement with the strike leaders but the workers' representa- tives refused to have talks with them. In view of this refusal, the management announced the discharge of all workers and asked for their registration for re-employment on the evening of 17th August. A majority of the workers subsequently registered for continued service with the factory which reopened on 19th August. 1,800 man-days were lost in this dispute.

     Fang Brothers Company Limited. A dispute between the man- agement and the 120 workers of this weaving factory over the hoisting of a flag by workers on the factory premises led to a general stoppage of work in the factory on the 11th and 12th October, causing a loss of 120 man-days. The workers returned to work in the evening of 12th October following a meeting between management and workers' representatives at which both parties agreed that no wages would be paid for the period of



stoppage, but this period would be counted as service for the purpose of calculating full attendance bonuses.

      Walkfort Leather Shoe Works Limited. This concern employed 130 workers on piece rates and supplied them with free food on the factory premises. On 3rd October, a new system was in- troduced by the management whereby the supply of food was discontinued but the piece rates were increased to cover the value of the food previously received. 76 workers were dissatisfied with the amount added to the wages and demanded a higher payment. The management found the counter-proposals unacceptable, and the 76 workers then took action to slow down production from 7th October to 26th October. This action at times brought produc- tion in the factory to a complete standstill. The dispute was finally settled when the management and the workers agreed on a figure for the daily food allowance, an increase in wage rates, and incentives for work above quota. The employer lost 40% of his production during the period of the dispute, while an estimated 860 man-days were also lost.

      Collective Agreements on Terms of Service. An agreement covering wage rates was signed on 7th August in the Labour Department by representatives of the employers' association and the workers' unions in the rattan industry, which employs some thousand workers. The agreement, replacing one drawn up in 1947, is effective for one year in the first instance.

      A dispute over hours of work in the copperware industry was brought to an end by the signing on 27th November in the Labour Department of an agreement covering working hours by repre- sentatives of the employers' association and the workers' union.

      Minor Disputes. The number of minor disputes dealt with by the Labour Department during the year was 2,014, an increase of 303 over the number in the previous year. The increase was believed to have been the result of the widespread publicity given to the activities of the Department during the year.


      Although no labour legislation was enacted during the year, progress was made with the Industrial Employment (Holidays with Pay, Sick Leave and Maternity Leave) Bill. Progress was



also made with the following legislation: Boilers and Pressure Receivers Bill; Mining (Amendment) Bill; Trade Union Registra- tion Bill; Workmen's Compensation (Amendment) Bill. The Clean Air Bill, 1959, which affects local industry and with the enforce- ment of which the Labour Department is concerned, is dealt with in Chapter 12.


Factory Registration and Inspection. During the year, 579 appli- cations for registration were received and 500 registration certifi- cates were issued; 6 were refused, the premises being unsuitable for industrial use; and 62 applications for registration were with- drawn. 288 factories found operating in unsuitable buildings were closed down, and 212 registration certificates were surrendered for cancellation because the premises for which they were issued were no longer used as factories. At the end of 1959 there were 2,993 places of employment registered under the Factories and Industrial Undertakings Ordinance, and 784 in course of registration. At the end of the year there were 2,030 recorded establishments. These are small premises not registrable under the Ordinance but kept under observation by the inspectorate because from 15 to 19 workers are employed, or for industrial health and safety reasons, or because of the employment of women and young persons. The total number of industrial undertakings registered, in the process of registration, or recorded was 5,023 at the end of the year.

Visits made by the labour inspectorate during the year totalled 35,158. Of these, 18,456 were routine inspections for the enforce- ment of safety, health, and welfare provisions, while 732 were concerned with industrial or occupational accidents and work- men's compensation; 508 were night visits to factories in con- nexion with the employment of women and young persons during prohibited hours; 143 were wage inquiries; 287 were connected with the employment of young persons; and 15,032 were connected with special surveys on hours of work, women supervisors, workers' accommodation and checks on the nature of the trade carried out.

Industrial Health. The activities of the Industrial Health Sec- tion of the Labour Department fall into three main divisions: the investigation and prevention of occupational diseases; the



improvement of medical services in industry, including the care of industrial accident cases in particular; and the maintenance of healthy working conditions in factories and other workplaces.

      The majority of industrial health problems can only be tackled by field inspection and investigation. It is the policy of the section to devote much time to field work, either by routine inspection of individual factories, or field surveys of industries in which specific health hazards are suspected or known to exist. During the year field surveys were carried out by the Industrial Health Section on the atmospheric dust concentrations in quarries and button factories; the use of leaded petrol in rubber factories; the atmos- pheric concentration of butyl acetate in artificial pearl factories; and the health of agricultural workers handling organic phos- phorous insecticides.

Notification of occupational diseases is not compulsory; cases may be discovered in the course of routine factory inspections, but more often cases are voluntarily notified by hospital doctors and private practitioners. Each case is investigated by the Industrial Health Section. A single case of occupational disease may draw attention to conditions potentially dangerous to many workers. Silicosis and dermatitis still constitute the most important local occupational diseases.

The number of cases of occupational disease recorded during the year was as follows:



Insecticide Poisoning Gassing

Total ...






Silicosis is the most serious occupational disease found in Hong Kong, and the number of cases on record is 43. It occurs in quarry workers and stone grinders. The majority of quarries in Hong Kong produce granite, which has a high free silica content. Pure quartz, which constitutes 100% free silica, is commonly used in the stone grinding industry. Preventive measures taken to eliminate the free silica dust hazard include the enclosure of quarry plant, and water spraying of the crusher feeds. The effectiveness of the latter is hindered during the dry winter months by water shortage,



and the inaccessibility of an adequate water supply at a number of quarries.

Dermatitis is the most common industrial disease; cases dis- covered by the government dermatologist are referred to the Industrial Health Section for detailed investigation of working conditions. The most important causes are the use of organic solvents and detergents.

      All known lead workers are subject to a three-monthly blood count. Quantitative analyses of lead in urine are carried out in suspected cases of lead poisoning.

      Radio-active powders used in local industries include luminous paint powders, used for clock and instrument dials, and thorium nitrate, used in the manufacture of gas mantles. Workers handling such materials are subject to periodic blood counts, and are re- quired to wear film badges, which are checked by the Radio- logical Protection Service of the Medical Research Council in England. 174 film badges were issued during the year, and 65 blood counts carried out as follows:

Lead workers


Gas mantle workers

Godown keepers





      When cases of disease due to the patient's occupation are found, the circumstances are investigated and recommendations made in conjunction with the labour inspectorate. Where a whole trade appears to be involved, standard conditions are drawn up which can be applied to every factory; in the case of silicosis an inter-departmental committee has been set up to investigate the whole problem. In nearly every case of occupational disease it is possible to follow-up the individual workers affected and to keep their workplaces under observation.

All newly opened factories are inspected by an Industrial Health Officer who advises on environmental and occupational health problems. These inspections provide an opportunity to keep a watch for possible hazards and to make further investigations when necessary. Advice is given on the improvement of existing medical arrangements in factories. The inclusion of first aid rooms is required in all newly built factories where the size, the nature of the trade, or other circumstances warrant it and suggestions



are made regarding the design and equipment of such facilities. Satisfactory liaison has been established with many of the general practitioners working in industry.

       First aid training for factory workers was continued during the year; three first aid classes, conducted by the St. John Ambulance Association, were run concurrently. Since this scheme was inau- gurated in 1956, 215 workers from 83 undertakings have been granted first aid certificates.

      Two health visitors follow-up cases of industrial accident by individual case work and visits to factories and homes. Physio- therapy is arranged whenever necessary, and rehabilitation in some instances. In many instances workmen's compensation is required, and disability is assessed by the Industrial Health Officer. During the year, the Hong Kong Society for Rehabilitation was estab- lished, with the aim of providing a permanent rehabilitation centre staffed with trained personnel. Industrial accident cases in need of rehabilitation will be dealt with at this centre. The Maryknoll Fathers established a clinic near the Kwun Tong industrial area where cases from the factories can be attended to, pending the opening of a government clinic.

      Industrial Accidents. 5,940 industrial and occupational accidents (100 fatal) involving 6,083 persons were reported and investigated. This is 992 more accidents, with one more fatality than in 1958. Of the total, 3,146 (26 fatal) were in registrable workplaces, an increase of 340 accidents, but a decrease of 9 fatalities. Compared with 1958 there was a decrease in accidents per thousand indus- trial workers from 15.5 to 14.5 for all accidents, and from 0.194 to 0.120 for fatalities.

      Industrial Welfare. Every registrable workplace must supply first aid equipment and drinking water. Where the size and nature of a proposed industrial undertaking make the provision of dining and rest rooms possible, the Labour Department insists on their inclusion in the factory plans. An increasing number of industrial managements appreciate the importance of welfare facilities for their workers and many have progressed beyond the minimum standards required by the Labour Department. Besides dining and rest rooms, more than thirty clinics are provided by industrial concerns and at these doctors attend periodically each week to treat occupational and general diseases of the workers and



sometimes their families, in some cases free of charge. In some industrial undertakings canteens, non-profit-making co-operative stores, subsidized meals, free cooking facilities, barber shops, laundries, reading rooms, and school rooms are provided. Many of the large concerns in the Colony provide accommodation for their workers. Among the more prominent of such housing schemes are those of the Taikoo Dockyard and Engineering Co. of Hong Kong Ltd., in association with the Taikoo Sugar Refining Co., Ltd., which pioneered workers' housing projects in Hong Kong over fifty years ago; the Hongkong Tramways Ltd., the China Motor Bus Co., Ltd.; the Hongkong Electric Co., Ltd.; the Hong Kong Telephone Co. Ltd.; the 'Star' Ferry Co., Ltd.; and the Hong Kong Spinners Ltd. All these companies provide, in addition, welfare centres attached to the housing schemes. A number of firms pro- vide accommodation of the dormitory type, and, in such cases, canteens are generally provided which serve free or subsidized meals. In eleven cases dormitory accommodation is provided free of charge. During the year the Nan Yang Cotton Mill Ltd. pro- vided accommodation for its work force, numbering 1,800, at Kwun Tong. Many concerns which cannot afford to erect their own accommodation either rent or buy tenement buildings for this purpose.

Some undertakings organize picnic excursions for their workers in the summer and walks in the country in the winter. Welfare facilities frequently include cinema shows, Cantonese opera, table tennis, libraries, sports grounds for football and basketball games, and, in a few instances, swimming pools. In some cases free or subsidized schooling for workers' children, and free classes for adults are arranged. During the year several firms took advantage of the Workers' Playtime Programme organized by Radio Hong Kong. Several films have a Welfare Officer and Welfare Depart- ment and in others a member of the staff is in charge of personnel matters. Some voluntary organizations cater for the welfare of industrial workers by providing hostels and playgrounds. The Salvation Army's Thomson Memorial Boys' Hostel houses 149 young workers and the Y.W.C.A. runs two hostels for factory girls.

Workmen's Compensation. Both employers and workers are be- coming increasingly familiar with the provisions of the Workmen's



Compensation Ordinance, 1953, which lays down minimum rates of compensation payable to workmen for injuries received in the course of their work. Experience indicates that amendments to the ordinance may be desirable, and these are at present under consideration.

      During the year 82 cases of fatal accidents and 4,948 cases of non-fatal accidents were settled. A total of $1,761,258.75 was paid as compensation, of which $590,601.66 was awarded by the District Courts to dependants of workmen killed in industrial accidents.

      Industrial Training. A Supervisory Training Section was set up in the Labour Department at the end of 1958 to offer training in supervisory techniques to representatives of Government and local industrial and commercial concerns. During 1959 the Section intro- duced training courses in the giving of clear instructions (job instruction), and the efficient organization of work (job methods). These programmes were carried out in both English and Chinese. Preparations were made for the introduction of training in rela- tionships at work (job relations), and in accident prevention (job safety). These four courses comprise the internationally recognized programme of Training within Industry.

      Training is done primarily through the medium of trainers who attend a course at the Supervisory Training Centre and then return to their own organizations to run courses for supervisors. For the benefit of organizations which do not wish to employ their own trainers the Section also offers courses for supervisors.

      Support for the training scheme was good. Within six months of its inauguration over 100 supervisors in the Colony were attending courses each month either on the premises of their employers or at the Supervisory Training Centre of the Labour Department.

In December, a five-day study course for management on indus- trial relations was organized by the University of Hong Kong and the Labour Department. This was attended by twenty five repre- sentatives of the managements of local industrial and commercial concerns. The course, an experimental one, was designed to in- dicate to participants the problems existing in this field, to suggest ways of dealing with them, and to facilitate an exchange of views on these matters in the light of their own experiences. The course



was considered by those who attended it to have been useful, and it is intended to hold further courses of this kind.

Craft apprenticeship within the Government service is provided by the Kowloon-Canton Railway, the Public Works Department in its electrical, mechanical, and waterworks branches, the Stores Department in its workshops, and the Printing Department. Voca- tional training classes for coxswains and engineers are organized by the Marine Department for Government employees, and by the Fisheries Division of the Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Department for fishermen.

A new group of apprentices started work in September in the Public Works Department and the Kowloon-Canton Railway under the scheme of recruitment and training introduced in 1955. Apprentices are selected by means of examination and interview and are required to sign indentures. Attendance at supplementary technical classes is compulsory, but the boys are released from the workshop one day a week to attend classes at the Hong Kong Technical College. In addition they attend classes in their own time on two evenings a week.

      Apprenticeship training schemes are operated by the Taikoo Dockyard and Engineering Co. of Hong Kong Ltd., the Hong Kong and Whampoa Dock Co. Ltd., by the public utility com- panies, and by a number of other firms. These concerns encourage apprentices to attend technical classes, and financial help towards fees is often provided. Some large spinning and weaving mills have apprenticeship schemes for mechanics or junior engineers; in certain cases recruitment is by competitive examination and the mills provide classes on their own premises in both technical and general educational subjects.

The Standing Committee on Technical Education and Voca- tional Training, set up in 1954, met three times during the year. The work of the Technical College and the two government technical schools is described in Chapter 8.


      Although farming and fishing are the two principal occupations in the New Territories, the pattern of country life has been modi- fied by factors common to other maritime areas of South China.



Even before the New Territories became part of the Colony, Hong Kong's influence as a growing commercial city had begun to attract young men away from their villages in search of work either in town or overseas. Lamma Island, close to Hong Kong, was the first place to be affected, many of its young men becoming seamen in British ships. In the first decade of this century many Hakka youngsters migrated to the West Indies, principally from the Sai Kung, Hang Hau and Sha Tau Kok areas. The Tung Chung valley, on Lantau Island, is another area from which large numbers have gone abroad as seamen or to settle in other coun- tries, including the United Kingdom and the United States. The villages adjoining the northern border, notably San Tin and Lo Wu, provide the cooks and waiters for many Chinese restaurants in European ports.

       Remittances from family members abroad or working in the urban area of the Colony thus came by the 'thirties to form a significant item in the economy of most New Territories villages. In one or two instances they were even the largest single item in the economy of a village. One obvious result of the reduction in the farming population, following this movement abroad, was that hilly land formerly under cultivation was neglected, sea-walls and dykes protecting fields near the sea were not properly repaired, and agriculture became confined in some parts to the more easily accessible and well-watered areas. Agriculture furthermore became largely an occupation for women, the younger and able-bodied men going abroad to earn their living.

       A sharp change occurred after the war. While the natural rate of rural population increase rose steeply, China coast shipping, due to international restrictions on trade with China, declined sharply, throwing many former seamen out of work. Less favour- able conditions in the West Indies cut off emigration opportunities. Younger men, who would normally be reaching the age to follow in their fathers' footsteps and go to sea or to settle abroad, had to stay in their villages. At the same time there was a reflux of former emigrants from the West Indies, and even from urban Hong Kong. Quite suddenly, the land was insufficient to maintain its own population. The long-neglected higher terraces and coastal fields had by this time been lost, the former by erosion, the latter



by invasion of the sea, and, in general, to repair the damage was beyond village resources.

Gradual progress is now being made, with Government assist- ance and encouragement, in repairing these several decades of neglect, and agriculture, which had formerly tended to become subsidiary to other more exciting and profitable jobs, is gradually regaining its previous importance.

Since 1952 industries have been set up on an increasingly large scale in various parts of the New Territories. The Tsuen Wan area, which has been most affected, has developed from a group of old-fashioned villages into a large industrial town mainly occu- pied in the manufacture of textiles. Industry has also spread to Sha Tin and Castle Peak. New Territories people have not, how- ever, been much attracted by factory work. Most of the workers engaged are from Hong Kong or Kowloon, with a strong element in Tsuen Wan of Shanghai refugee labour. The large iron mine situated in the hills beneath the peak of Ma On Shan employs almost entirely immigrant labour from North China. Other smaller mines employ local labour.

The industries more truly typical of the New Territories are the operation of salt pans, the preparation of salt-fish, fish-paste, beancurd, soya sauce and preserved fruits, the burning of coral and sea-shells for lime, brick manufacture, shipbuilding and re- pairing, stone quarrying and leather manufacture. On Peng Chau, in the Southern District, there is a match factory for which, as a sideline occupation, villagers on neighbouring islands make hand- prepared match-boxes. In all the fishing towns a substantial section of the land population earns a livelihood by providing restaurants and shops, chiefly used by the floating population.

Chapter 4: Public Finance and Taxation

THE Colony's Statement of Assets and Liabilities at 31st March. 1959 is at Appendix III and analyses of the Colony's Revenue and Expenditure in the financial years 1957-8 and 1958-9, together with the Estimates for 1959-60, are at Appendices IV and V.

       Apart from the cost of external defence, to which, however, a contribution is made, Hong Kong is financially self-supporting, raising revenue from local sources to meet the cost of all local works and services. The Colony's Legislative Council is the sole taxing and spending authority. There are no financially inde- pendent subsidiary bodies such as local government authorities in the United Kingdom.

In 1948 the Colony was released from Treasury control and given a large measure of autonomy over its own finances. The control which the Secretary of State still retained was that his approval was required for the annual Estimates, for supplementary provisions exceeding $1 million in the case of capital expenditure and $4 million in the case of recurrent expenditure, for the issue of any loan and for any expenditure involving important points of principle. In 1958 these powers were transferred to the Colony's Legislative Council which then became the only authority in such matters, and the previous system of control has been replaced generally by informal consultation between the Financial Secre- tary and the Finance Branch of the Colonial Office. Prior approval of the Secretary of State is, however, still required in certain matters including currency and banking.

Since the first post-war financial year, when in spite of the legacy of the war years there was only a very small deficit, the budget has been balanced each year and in many years a sub- stantial surplus has accrued. The financial year runs from 1st April to 31st March. Revenue and expenditure since 1st April 1954 have been as follows:











$ mill.

$ mill.

$ mill.



















1959-60 (estimate)


It is especially noteworthy that these surplus balances have been accumulated despite the fact that all capital expenditure, other than a small amount which was met by an increase in public debt (see below), was met from revenue. For example, in the years 1957-8 and 1958-9 the contribution to capital expenditure from recurrent revenue collected in those years was $102 million and $163 million respectively.

The principal reason for these results, which are on the face of them so favourable, is that the exceptionally rapid increase in population during these years generated internal economic activity which substantially raised the yield of taxation without an increase in the rates of taxation; whereas there was an inevitable time- lag before the Government could develop the public and social services necessary to meet the requirements of the increased population. Since 1950-1, when the last significant increase in tax rates was made, revenue has increased from $291.7 million to $629.3 million in 1958-9. The rate of increase in revenue has been affected by variations in such factors as the economic situation and capital inflows, but the upward trend is unbroken. As the development of public and social services has accelerated, the margin between recurrent revenue and expenditure has tended to narrow: for example, the proportion of the latter to the former was 50% in 1952-3 but had risen to 64% by 1958-9. There is even now a fair margin between them, but the Colony still faces a formidable programme of expansion of public and social services and a vast public works programme to meet the needs of the present population.

The Revenue and Expenditure figures for 1958-9 are at Appendices IV and V. Revenue, totalling $629 million, was $75 million more than the original estimate, the main excess being on Internal Revenue ($31 million, of which Earnings and Profits Tax



contributed $23 million), Fees of Court or Office ($15 million, including an $8 million credit from provision made in the previous year but not required) and Land Sale ($15 million). Expenditure was $58 million below the original estimate, the main elements of under-spending being Public Works Non-Recurrent ($44 million, which represented 23% of the estimate) and Stores ($10 million, due to running down stocks of steel).

       A deficit of $92 million has been budgeted for 1959-60 but the figures for the first half of the year suggest that the deficit will be substantially lower, owing to revenue being slightly higher than the estimate and expenditure a little lower.

       The formal statement of Liabilities and Assets at Appendix III shows that at 31st March 1959 net available public assets amounted to $599 million, of which $138 million was earmarked in a Revenue Equalization Fund as a reserve against future deficits on current account. There was, in addition, a Development Loan Fund of $200 million, used to finance social and economic develop- ment projects of a self-liquidating nature. The greater part has been used for low-cost housing schemes. At 31st March 1959 outstanding commitments on approved projects exceeded the unspent balance of $74 million by $78 million.

      According to normal government practice the Statement of Assets and Liabilities excludes the Public Debt of the Colony from the liabilities. The debt at 31st March 1959 was equivalent to approximately $30 per head of population and was made up as follows:

34% Dollar Loan 1934


34% Dollar Loan 1940


34% Rehabilitation Loan 1947-8 ..


Kai Tak Airport Loan


C.D. and W. Loans



Indebtedness rose by $7 million during the year, in consequence of drawings from the United Kingdom's interest-free loan of £3 million for the development of Kai Tak Airport; this loan will be repayable in fifteen annual instalments commencing in 1961-2. The Rehabilitation Loan, which was raised in 1947-8 to cover part of the cost of post-war reconstruction, is repayable in 1973-8;



there is provision for a sinking fund which stood at $16 million on 31st March 1959. The 34% Dollar Loan 1934 was fully redeemed in July 1959.

     Details of Colonial Development and Welfare grants and loans are given in Appendix I.


     There is no general tariff, and most goods are free from duties levied for protection or revenue purposes. There are, however, five groups of commodities either imported into or manufactured in the Colony for local consumption, upon which duties are levied under the authority of the Dutiable Commodities Ordinance. These are liquor, tobacco, hydrocarbon oils, table waters and methyl alcohol.

     Certain changes were made to the list of dutiable goods and duty rates this year, and from the 25th February toilet preparations and proprietary medicines became duty-free, although duty con- tinues to be payable on any alcohol content in these goods. At the same time, adjustments were made in the rates of duty on tobacco other than tobacco of Commonwealth origin and manu- facture, and on certain wines. The effect of these changes was to increase the duty by approximately one cent per packet of non-Commonwealth cigarettes, to bring the duty payable on vermouth into line with port and sherry, while reducing by fifty per cent the duty payable on other still wines imported in casks.

     A preferential rate of duty for liquor of Commonwealth origin is levied at between 80% and 87% of the rate for non- Commonwealth liquor. Locally-produced beer is allowed a further preferential margin over Commonwealth beer. Rates of duty on different types of liquor range from $1.30 per Imperial gallon on locally-brewed beer to $61 per Imperial gallon for liqueurs and spirits not of Commonwealth origin. On Chinese wine and liquor the rate, depending on origin, is $6 or $7 per gallon plus 24 or 28 cents per gallon for every 1% by which the alcoholic strength by weight exceeds 25%.

     The scale of duties on imported tobacco ranges from $3 per lb. on Chinese prepared tobacco to $7 per lb. on cigars of non-Commonwealth origin. Preferential rates are granted to



tobacco of Commonwealth origin and tobacco of Commonwealth manufacture.

Duty on light oils is 80 cents per gallon. For heavy oils the rates are $104 per ton for diesel oil for road vehicles, $26 per ton for other diesel oil, $24 per ton for furnace oil, and 10 cents per gallon for other kinds of heavy oils.

Table waters attract duty at 48 cents per Imperial gallon, and the duty payable on methyl alcohol is $7 per gallon plus 28 cents per gallon for every 1% by which the alcoholic strength by volume exceeds 25%.

        The actual revenue from these duties for the last three financial years and the estimated yield for 1959-60 are as follows:













Hydrocarbon Oil



24,477,764 26,145,514 28,621,221 24,659,782 26,566,105 27,972,324






40,774,037 45,163,230 46,670,892


Toilet Preparations and

Proprietary Medicines


5,188,186 5,335,062

Table Waters





Methyl Alcohol



Total ..


105,722,731 111,378,306


The small yield from the duty on methyl alcohol is explained by the fact that the only purpose for which it is levied is for controlling the movement and use of this toxic substance. Methyl alcohol used in the overhaul and testing of aero-engines is exempt from duty.

No dues are levied on exports. Drawback is paid, in certain circumstances, on duty-paid commodities used in process of manu- facture or preparation locally, if exported from the Colony.


       Rates have been levied in the Colony since 1845 when an Ordinance was passed to raise an assessed rate on lands, houses and premises for the upholding of the requisite Police Force'. Today rates are one of the largest revenue-producing items, the estimate for 1959-60 being $79,010,000.



The basis of rateable value is the annual letting value of a tenement, by which is meant any land or any building or part thereof held or occupied as a distinct or separate tenancy or under licence from the Crown.

Rates are levied in Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, New Kowloon and also in that part of the New Territories adjacent to the main road from Lai Chi Kok to Castle Peak.

In Hong Kong Island, Kowloon and New Kowloon rates are, with a few exceptions, charged at 17% per annum of rateable value, and are payable quarterly in advance: in respect of the New Territories the corresponding charge is 11%. The valuations are prepared by the Commissioner of Rating and Valuation, and demand notes are issued by the Accountant General for payment at the Treasury. There is provision for a surcharge on any rates in arrears, but the yield from this has been comparatively small.


     Tax on Earnings and Profits: Direct taxation on incomes was first introduced in Hong Kong in 1940 when the War Revenue Ordinance (1940) was enacted for the purpose of raising funds by way of a tax on incomes to assist His Majesty's Government in the prosecution of the War. The object of the wartime legislation had been removed by August 1945 when the Colony was liberated and no attempt was made to re-establish the administration of that temporary measure.

     Post-war rehabilitation imposed a heavy drain on the Colony's resources and in 1947, in view of the urgent need of revenue, it was decided to introduce some measure of taxation on incomes in a more permanent form. The Inland Revenue Ordinance was enacted with the object of raising revenue through legislation which would be simple in operation; the principle of taxation at source being adopted in preference to that of obligatory individual


The scope of charge under the Inland Revenue Ordinance is limited to incomes and profits arising in or derived from the Colony. Overseas income of a Hong Kong resident does not attract tax whether remitted to the Colony or not. The Ordinance imposes four separate taxes which cover the various types of income or



profit. These are Property Tax, Interest Tax, Salaries Tax and Profits Tax, the first two being collected by deduction at source.

The standard rate of tax has remained unchanged at 12% since 1950-1. Profits of businesses, interest payments and most annuities are charged in full at the standard rate. However, small unincorporated businesses whose profits do not exceed $7,000 are exempted from Profits Tax. Property Tax is charged at half the standard rate on the net rateable value of all land and buildings in the Colony, originally with the exception of property situated in the New Territories. The development of the Colony during the past twelve years has led to expansion of the urban areas resulting in certain built-up districts in the New Territories being rated with a consequent increase in the scope of Property Tax. Profits for Profits Tax purposes are computed in an orthodox manner as is the chargeable income for Salaries Tax purposes. Allowances granted in the latter case include Personal Allowance at $7,000, allowance for wife $7,000, and allowances for children ranging from $2,000 for each of the first two to $200 for the ninth child. The balance of the income which remains after deducting the allowances is charged at a stepped rate which commences at 24% on the first $5,000 and rises by 21% for each subsequent $5,000 until a maximum rate of 25%, chargeable on the excess over $45,000, is reached. Under no circumstances, however, can the tax exceed 124% of the total income liable to Salaries Tax.

Although the Ordinance imposes four separate taxes, every resident, either temporary or permanent, may elect to be personally assessed by stating in one sum the total of his Hong Kong income which would otherwise be chargeable with any of the other taxes. He is then granted allowances and charged at graduated rates of tax on a scale similar to Salaries Tax, except that there is no limit to the amount which may be charged at 25%. Any sums paid on account of the four principal taxes charged are set off against the tax chargeable on the total accumulated income. A temporary resident is defined as one living in the Colony for 180 days during any one fiscal year or 300 days during two consecutive fiscal years one of which is that in respect of which the election is made.

       It is estimated that taxes collected under the Inland Revenue Ordinance will produce revenue amounting to $120,000,000 during



the current financial year ending on the 31st March 1960. This is the largest single item in the Revenue Estimates of the Colony for that year.

Estate Duty is levied on conventional lines. The Estate Duty Ordinance was amended on the 1st February 1959 to conform approximately to the latest United Kingdom practice. The rates of tax were also amended and now range from 2% on an estate valued at $50,000 to 40% on an estate valued at over $15,000,000. Estate Duty, like Earnings and Profits Tax, is charged only on Hong Kong estates; no charge being made in respect of assets outside the Colony. The estimated yield from this tax for the financial year ending on the 31st March 1960 is $12,500,000.

     Stamp Duty legislation in the Colony is based on the United Kingdom Stamp Acts. Fixed duty varies from 10 cents on proxy forms to $20 on deeds. Ad valorem duty varies from 10 cents per $500 to $2 per centum. In addition, an excess duty of 3% is payable on conveyances of land in respect of the first sale after September 1948. The estimated yield from Stamp Duty for 1959-60 is $26,000,000.

Entertainment, Dance Halls, Bets and Sweeps Taxes also provide substantial amounts of revenue. The total estimates of revenue from this source for 1959-60 amount to $25,200,000. Entertainment Tax is normally charged on the price of admission to all places of public entertainment at an average rate of approxi- mately 22%. Certain categories of performances are entirely exempted from tax, whilst a remission of 75% in tax is granted for live performances which in the opinion of the Colonial Secretary are of special cultural or artistic value. Remission was granted in twenty cases of this latter type during 1959. A Public Dance Halls Tax is levied at 10% on dance hall charges, while a 5% duty is imposed on all totalizator receipts and a 25% duty on cash sweep receipts.

Business Registration was introduced by the Business Regulation Ordinance but is now conducted under the Business Registration Ordinance. The latter Ordinance, which repealed the former, was enacted in February 1959. The new Ordinance reduced the annual fee for registration from $200 to $25. It is estimated that fees totalling $2,100,000 will be collected during the financial year 1959-60.

Chapter 5: Currency and Banking

     IN 1841, when Hong Kong was founded, China's currency was based on uncoined silver. The normal unit for foreign trade throughout the Far East was the Spanish or Mexican silver dollar, and by a proclamation of 1842 Mexican or 'other Republican dollars' were declared to be the Colony's legal tender. Until 1862, however, the Government kept its accounts in sterling, and there were several unsuccessful attempts to change the basis of the Colony's money from silver to gold.

A mint producing a Hong Kong equivalent of the Mexican dollar was set up in 1866, but the new coin was not popular and the mint was closed down two years later, the machinery being sold to establish the first modern mint in Japan.

      By an Order of the Queen in Council dated 2nd February 1895 a British trade dollar, equivalent to the Mexican dollar, was authorized to be minted in India, and in Hong Kong this gradually replaced the Mexican dollar, although the latter still remained legal tender and the standard by which other dollars were judged. The sterling or gold value of the dollar varied with the price of silver. This gave Hong Kong a variable exchange relationship with London and the world at large, but a reasonably stable one with China.

In 1845 the Oriental Bank issued the first banknotes in the Colony, and was followed by the Chartered Bank of India, Australia and China, the Chartered Mercantile Bank of India, and the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation. Although not legal tender, these notes became more and more the customary means of payment, because of the inconvenience of dealing with large amounts of silver, and from 1890 onwards they were established by convention as practically the sole medium of exchange, apart from subsidiary coinage. An Ordinance of 1895 restricted the issue of banknotes to specifically authorized banks-- the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation and the Chartered Bank of India, Australia and China (now the Chartered



Bank) the Oriental Bank having closed its doors and the Chartered Mercantile Bank of India having reorganized. In 1911 the reorganized Mercantile Bank of India (now the Mercantile Bank) was added to the list of authorized note-issuing banks.

     The rising price of silver from 1931 onwards forced China to abandon the silver standard in 1935. Hong Kong followed. By the Currency Ordinance of that year, later renamed the Exchange Fund Ordinance, an exchange fund was set up to which note- issuing banks were obliged to surrender, in exchange for certificates of indebtedness, all silver previously held by them against their note issues. These certificates, which are non-interest-bearing and are issued or redeemed at the discretion of the Financial Secretary, became the legal backing for the notes issued by the note-issuing banks, apart from their fiduciary issues. The silver surrendered by the banks was used to set up an exchange fund, which in practice keeps its assets in sterling and operates in a similar manner to the normal Colonial Currency Board. The Ordinance also made the banknotes legal tender. At the same time the Government under- took to issue one-dollar currency notes to replace the silver dollars in circulation; these are backed by a Note Security Fund, which maintains its assets partly in sterling and partly in Hong Kong dollar bank accounts. The Government at present also issues subsidiary coins to the value of 5 cents, 10 cents and 50 cents; and, during 1959, decided to re-introduce 1 dollar coins to replace the present 1 dollar notes in the course of time.

     Since 1935 the value of the Hong Kong dollar has been main- tained at approximately 1/3d. sterling, although the banks may deal with the public at a few points on either side of this rate, both to allow for a profit margin and, to a slight extent, to meet fluctuations in demand and supply.

     The total currency in nominal circulation at 31st December 1959 was:

Bank note issue

Government $1 note issue

Subsidiary notes and coin





The Colony has been a part of the sterling area since August 1941. Exchange Control is administered under powers conferred



by the Defence (Finance) Regulations, 1940. The system of control is based on that in force in the United Kingdom, with some modifications necessitated by the position of Hong Kong as an entrepôt.


The Banking Ordinance provides that no institution may engage in banking without obtaining a licence from the Governor in Council and that each bank must publish an annual balance sheet. At the end of 1959 there were eighty two licensed banks, of which forty two were authorized wholly or partially to deal in foreign exchange. A list of these latter is given in Appendix VI. Many of these banks have branches or correspondents throughout the world and are thus able to offer comprehensive banking facilities to the public. Interbank transactions are facilitated by a clearing house association with fifty three members. Monthly clearings in 1959 averaged $1,494 million.

In consequence of the growing importance of subsidiary commercial and industrial centres local branch banking is now developing at an accelerated rate. This development has not yet extended to the New Territories, although there are several towns there which in the United Kingdom would have one or more bank, but it is expected to do so in the near future.

Chapter 6: Industry and Trade


IN the last decade there has been a fundamental change in the pattern of Hong Kong's economy. Industry, which prior to the Second World War was of minor importance, has now assumed a predominant role. The circumstances which led to this significant change from a mainly commercial to an industrial economy were reviewed in the opening chapter of last year's Report.

      Today there are 5,023 registered and recorded factories employ- ing 217,367 persons in Hong Kong. A detailed breakdown of these figures will be found in Appendix II. The great majority of these concerns are owned and operated by the Colony's Chinese resi- dents. In addition, a large number of smaller concerns, mostly pursuing traditional Chinese handicraft activities, in many cases set up by refugees, employ over 150,000 people.

     No special benefits are available to industry by way of income tax or import duty concessions. Apart from a few revenue- producing duties, the Colony is a free port and Government regulation of trade is kept to a minimum.

     The variety of goods produced by local industry is now con- siderable, but in general, while the heavier industries such as shipbuilding continue to be important, the Colony has become best noted for the price, quality, and range of the products of its light industries. Of importance are cotton piecegoods, cotton yarn, towelling, ready-made garments of all kinds, cotton and woollen gloves, enamelware, aluminiumware, torches, torch batteries and bulbs, vacuum flasks, plasticware, paints and varnishes, rubber and leather footware, and rattanware. Among traditional Chinese goods produced, brocade piecegoods, embroideries and drawn- work, crocheted gloves, carved articles of wood and ivory, and paper novelties are the best known.

     Industrial development in the Colony is hampered by scarcity of water and lack of land suitable for industrial purposes. To



     offset the shortage of flat land, the Government is levelling hilly ground and using the spoil to reclaim land from the sea. The largest of these schemes is at Kwun Tong situated in Kowloon Bay where 58 acres of land have already been provided in the first stage of the scheme, largely by reclamation from the sea. The second and third stages on which work is proceeding will even- tually provide a further 177 acres. Twenty two factories have already been built on the first stage and are now operating. It is estimated that when the whole scheme is completed the industrial town thus created will sustain nearly a quarter of a million people.

      A second large-scale scheme to provide land for light industry has recently been approved. This development will involve the filling of Gin Drinker's Bay at Kwai Chung which is adjacent to the industrial area of Tsuen Wan in the New Territories. This scheme, which will take approximately five years to complete, will ultimately provide 217 acres of industrial land. A number of smaller schemes are being planned to provide land for general industrial use or for specific industries such as boat-building and repairing and ship-breaking.

Water conservancy schemes, such as the recently completed project at Tai Lam Chung and the new scheme at Shek Pik on Lantau, are helping to alleviate the chronic shortage of water.


Shipbuilding and Repairing. This section of industry is mainly centred on two large establishments which together have an annual new building capacity of 80,000 gross tons and can accommodate vessels up to 500 feet in length on their building berths. Major repair work, including the complete rewinding of large motors, and all types of engineering, electrical, sanitary, refrigerating and underwater work can be carried out. General civil engineering and construction work is also undertaken. During 1959 the total num- ber of ships which have been slipped or docked in the two major shipbuilding yards was 458 with a gross tonnage of 1,730,631.

There are six granite dry docks in the Colony, the largest being 787 feet overall and 93 feet 4 inches wide. Two stationary hammer- head cranes each with a lifting capacity of 150 tons, and a crane



barge with sheerlegs of 40 tons lifting capacity, are available. Other facilities include foundries which can handle castings up to 30 tons, ocean-going towage and salvage vessels, and a fleet of harbour repair launches.

      Throughout 1959, the shipyards in the Colony were kept busy notwithstanding the present world depression in shipping. A number of cargo vessels were launched and delivered during the year from Hong Kong yards and special purpose vessels, such as river craft and vehicular ferries, were completed and delivered to their buyers.

      The smaller local yards build a variety of wooden and steel craft such as lighters, launches, Chinese junks and sampans, yachts and other pleasure craft, many of which find a ready and expanding market overseas due to the high standard of con- struction at competitive prices.

      The closure after 80 years of operation, of the Naval Dockyard which employed over 5,000 men and had a local payroll of some $12,000,000 a year, was a serious loss to the Colony's economy. The circumstances of the closure are dealt with more fully in Chapter 3 of this Report.

Ship-breaking and Steel Rolling Mills. There has been a rapid expansion during the last two years in the ship-breaking industry and Hong Kong is now acknowledged to be the world's largest ship-breaking centre. At present over fifty per cent of the scrap produced from ships broken up locally is exported to Japan, but a substantial and increasing proportion is used in the Colony's steel rolling mills, which produce an estimated 6,000 tons per month of mild steel reinforcing bars, approximately 60% of the requirements of the Colony's building industry. A sizeable quan- tity of rods and bars is shipped abroad, principally to Asian territories.

      There are also several rolling mills which produce stainless steel, brass and aluminium sheets and circles, most of which is sold locally for the manufacture of consumer goods.


Textiles. Since 1948 the textile industry has expanded rapidly to become the Colony's major industry. Spinning of cotton, rayon,






Total Imports

Imports from China


Total Exports

Exports to


























Total Imports Total Exports

Imports from China

Exports to China





















silk and woollen yarns, weaving, knitting, dyeing, printing, and finishing, and the manufacture of all types of garments and textile goods are carried on. The spinning mills, operating over 387,000 spindles, are amongst the most up-to-date in the world and first class amenities are generally provided for workers. Cotton yarn counts range from 10s to 60s carded and combed in single or multiple threads. Production of all counts in 1959 was over 136,000,000 lbs., the greater part of which was consumed by local weaving establishments.

       In the weaving section which has increased its loom capacity during the past year to over 12,500 looms, cotton grey drill, canvas, shirting, striped poplins, ginghams, and other bleached and dyed cloth and prints are the main items. Production in 1959 was in excess of 340,000,000 square yards, most of which was exported, although there is an increasing tendency, as the quality of locally woven and finished cloth improves, for the Colony's garment manufacturers to utilize local materials. Other products of the Colony's weaving industry are silk and rayon brocade of traditional Chinese design, tapes, military webbing, lace, mosquito netting, cotton open mesh, carpets and rugs.

      Dyeing, printing and finishing of textiles in the Colony has shown a marked advance during the past few years, although this section has rather lagged behind other sections in speed of develop- ment. Multi-colour printing, pre-shrinking by several processes under licence and polymerizing for the production of 'drip-dry' fabrics are undertaken for use by the local garment industry and for export. A large new finishing mill employing the most up- to-date equipment and techniques commenced production during December 1959.

An almost unlimited range and variety of garments is manu- factured in Hong Kong, the most important being shirts. Silk and brocade house and evening coats, tea gowns and embroidered blouses, underwear, and nightwear, have a world-wide popularity in quality markets.

      Custom and mail-order tailoring, principally of men's suits, has developed in recent years into a considerable industry. Suits of excellent cut and quality, in whatever material is required, are exported all over the world.



The Colony's knitting mills produce towels, tee-shirts, singlets, underwear and nightwear, swimsuits, gloves, socks and stockings in cotton, silk, wool and rayon, and other fabrics.

Felt Hats. The felt hat industry is mainly concerned with manu- facture from imported hoods or imported discarded hats; one factory carries out the entire process of manufacturing from wool. Hong Kong is one of the largest exporters of cheap-quality felt hats.

      Enamelware. Production is principally of brightly coloured household utensils suited to the requirements of South-East Asian and African markets. More sophisticated designs, however, are also manufactured.

Aluminiumware. Good quality household ware in a wide range of articles is produced. Aluminium ingots, which are imported mainly from Commonwealth countries, are melted and rolled in the Colony.

Vacuum Flasks and Jugs. The manufacture of vacuum bottles, flasks, and other containers is an old-established industry in Hong Kong and exports are substantial. All components are locally made and the finished products are of excellent quality and design.

Electric Torches, Batteries and other Electrical Products. The high standard of workmanship in the electric torch industry is now well known and Hong Kong-made torches have found their way into almost every country in the world. In addition to the many local brands, 'Ray-O-Vac' and 'Ever-Ready' torches and 'Winchester' batteries are manufactured under licence in the Colony on a substantial scale.

       Other sections of the industry deal with the assembly and manufacture of electrical appliances of all kinds, the assembly of neon lights, radio assembly and repair, and the manufacture of Christmas tree lighting sets and other novelties. Electric and battery-driven clocks are also produced, and by the end of the year a number of industrial concerns interested in manufacturing transistor radios had reached the stage of producing sample radios for examination by overseas buyers. It appears likely that in the coming year this new industry will make its impact on world markets.

Other Metal Products. The range and variety of light metal products is too wide to enumerate. Examples are hurricane



lanterns, kerosene pressure stoves and lamps, nails, screws, tin cans, novelties, metal windows, umbrella ribs, zip fasteners, steel furniture, safes, office equipment, domestic refrigerators and air- conditioners, and kerosene radiators and water heaters. A new precision engineering factory will shortly commence production of watch and aeroplane parts.

      Paints. High-quality paints, varnishes and lacquers are produced for local sale and for export, and Hong Kong paints have a repu- tation for quality and durability. The Public Works Department of the Hong Kong Government is the principal local user.

      Foodstuffs and Beverages. Although Hong Kong's preserved ginger is perhaps its best-known food product overseas, the food- stuff and beverage industry has many branches, including flour and rice milling, bakeries, canning and preserving of fruits, fish products and vegetables, the manufacture of soy sauce, gourmet powder, confections, bean curd, fruit juices, soft drinks, Chinese wine, beer and malt.

      Products are largely for local consumption, but considerable quantities are exported to South-East Asia.

      Sugar Refining. The Colony's largest sugar refinery was estab- lished in 1884. High grade refined crystals, and granulated and soft sugars are produced from imported raw sugar. Specialities are the making of half cubes, icing, castor and soft brown sugar, and golden syrup in colourful retail packings for domestic use.

Tobacco Manufactures. The cigarette industry uses modern machinery, much of it automatic, and Hong Kong-made cigarettes are comparable in quality with any in the world. Packaging material of a high standard is also made locally. The export of cigarettes to China has virtually ceased since 1949, and the bulk of the industry's output is now consumed locally, but some exports are made to Macau and the Pacific Islands.

Footwear. The Hong Kong rubber boot and shoe industry has been established since 1932, the range of products including Wellington boots, plimsolls, beach, sports and house shoes and slippers, mainly for export to traditional markets in the United Kingdom and Canada.

      Good-quality leather footwear is also manufactured for local demand and export, principally to Malaya.



      Leather and Travel Goods. Suitcases, travelling bags, trunks and handbags, and all varieties of leatherware are manufactured in the Colony. Both imported and locally tanned hides and skins are used in production.

      Cement. The cement needs of the Colony's constantly expanding building industry are met in large measure by the products of one large establishment. All raw materials, apart from some clay and iron ore, are imported.

Cordage, Rope and Twine. The requirements of shipping using the port gave rise early to the rope industry which is one of the oldest established in Hong Kong. All types of ropes and hawsers are manufactured from imported Manila hemp.

Plasticware. A very wide variety of small articles is produced and locally-made dies and moulds are used. The latter are of a high standard of workmanship and are now exported to manu- facturers in other parts of the world. Most of the larger establish- ments have fully up-to-date equipment, some of the injection and extrusion machines being manufactured in the Colony. Tooth brushes, mugs, beakers, combs, coat hangers, chopsticks, cigarette cases, mahjong sets, toys and novelties, many of which are of considerable ingenuity, are made. The well known 'Walt Disney' and "Tom & Jerry' characters are produced under licence. Within the past year a number of existing plastic factories have turned to the production of artificial flowers and many small factories have recently been established to meet the overseas demand for this commodity. The flowers, of excellent quality and design, are ex- ported principally to the United States and European countries. An ancillary industry is the plastic coating of rattan by extrusion for use by local rattan weavers. Plastic insulation of wire is also carried out.

      Wood and Rattan. The manufacture of good-quality wooden furniture and toys is a sizeable industry in the Colony, and Hong Kong bamboo and rattan household articles have achieved a world-wide popularity.

Wood carving in camphorwood and teak is a traditional skill. Aircraft Engineering. One large establishment in the Colony provides transit and repair facilities for eighteen airlines using Kai Tak Airport. Facilities exist for complete airframe and engine



overhaul, and work is received from twenty four countries as far afield as Australia, New Zealand and Canada.

       Miscellaneous. Traditional handicrafts such as carving in ivory, jade and precious stones, embroidery, lace and fine needlework, the manufacture of brass, pewter and other metal ornaments, flourish in the Colony side by side with the more modern types of industries.


The Colony's external trade in 1959 was substantially greater than in 1958, and the values of both imports and exports in- creased. The combined value of imports and exports in 1959 was $8,226.91 million which represents an increase of $644.38 million over the 1958 figure of $7,582.53 million, a rise of 8.5%. Cargo tonnages by all means of transport rose from 7,376,471 in 1958 to 7,551,996 in 1959.

In 1959 the total exports from the Colony were completely separated for statistical purposes into exports of local produce or manufactures and re-exports. Comparison with previous years is thus in many cases not possible as in no previous year has such a breakdown been made. In the following paragraphs on trade, therefore, only total exports are compared with those for 1958.

       The value of total exports in 1959 was $3,277.54 million, an increase of $288.74 million or 9.6% over the total for 1958. The United States, Japan, the United Kingdom and Canada all in- creased considerably the value of their purchases from Hong Kong while the value of purchases by Indonesia, Thailand, and China continued to decline; this has been the trend over the past several years. Four countries, the United States, the United Kingdom, Malaya and Japan took 51% of the value of the total; the coun- tries of the Commonwealth took 40%. Textiles and clothing together accounted for 42% of the total and miscellaneous manu- factures a further 9%,

In 1959 exports of the produce and manufactures of Hong Kong accounted for some 70% of total exports and were valued at $2,282.13 million. They were sent chiefly to the United States, the United Kingdom and Malaya which imported 53% of the total value of local exports. Textiles and clothing were the main items of local products and comprised 53% of the total value of such



exports. In all, countries of the Commonwealth took 45% of these

local exports.

The re-export trade which accounted for 30% of total exports and was worth $995.41 million in 1959 was mainly directed to Malaya, Japan, China and Thailand, these four countries together taking 48% of the total of re-exports. There was also a valuable re-export trade with Macau, Formosa, South Korea and Indonesia. The traditional entrepôt trade in the exchange of China produce against the manufactures and chemicals of Europe has given way to an inter-Asia trade through Hong Kong. Only 5% of the re- export trade was directed to Europe (excluding U.K.) while 59% went to Asian countries (excluding Malaya), and only 12% of the value of imports came from Europe (excluding U.K.), and 50% from Asia (excluding Malaya). The main items entering into the re-export trade are textiles, fruits and vegetables, animal and vegetable inedible crude materials and medicinal and pharmaceu- tical products; machinery and dyeing and tanning materials are also of importance.

The value of imports in 1959 was $4,949.37 million, an increase of $355.64 million or 8% compared with 1958. China remained the principal source of supply, providing 21% of total imports, while China, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States together provided 58% of the value of all imports. The value of imports of food represented 25%, and of manufactured goods classified chiefly by material 32%, of total imports. The value of imports rose from most countries, especially from Japan, Pakistan, the United States and Formosa, while the greatest decrease was recorded from China.

The United States was the most valuable of Hong Kong's trad- ing partners in 1959, taking $591.01 million of total exports and providing $516.68 million of imports. Total exports rose in value by 81% compared with 1958. Exports of local products to the United States were valued at $563.84 million, representing 25% of the value of all exports from Hong Kong, and considerable increases were recorded in the value of clothing, which represents 57% of the total, miscellaneous manufactured goods (mainly arti- ficial flowers and plastic toys and games) and textiles and rattan furniture. Imports from the United States also increased over the 1958 figure; the main import is raw cotton, worth $84.03 million



      in 1959, while cigarettes and tobacco leaf, antibiotics, fruits, plastic moulding compounds, textiles and machinery were also of impor tance. The United States takes first place on the export list and fourth place on the import list.

The United Kingdom was the second biggest customer taking goods worth $462.19 million, of which $439.41 million was spent on local products. This represents an increase in total exports of $68.95 million over 1958. Exports to the United Kingdom repre- sented 19% of all Hong Kong exports and were made up largely of textiles (mainly cotton piecegoods); clothing (mainly shirts, outerwear, underwear and blouses); footwear; and miscellaneous manufactured goods such as plastic dolls and toys and artificial flowers. The United Kingdom was third on the import list with $573.72 million, also an increase over 1958. The main imports were machinery such as power cables, telegraph and telephone apparatus, electric switchgear, textile machinery, and machinery parts; iron and steel manufactures; textiles, especially woollen fabrics; and motor cars.

Malaya is of considerable importance to both the export and re-export trade taking $212.57 million of exports in 1959 and coming third on the export list. The most important items were clothing, books and pamphlets, refined sugar and enamelled iron and steel household utensils. Malaya was the most valuable des- tination for re-exports, to the extent of $167.54 million; the most valuable items were fruits and vegetables, plants and seeds for medicine and perfumery, finished cotton piecegoods, paper and paperboard (especially joss paper) and miscellaneous articles such as joss sticks and fountain pens. Imports from Malaya rose in value over the 1958 figure to a total of $123.06 million, of which more than a third consisted of petroleum products. Other imports of value were charcoal, rattan canes, plants and seeds for use in medicine and perfumery, spices and textile fabrics.

Although China remains the principal source of supply of the Colony's imports, the figure of $1,034.17 million from that country in 1959 showed a decrease of $362.75 million compared with 1958, and represented only 21% of the value of total imports compared with 30% in the previous year. Foodstuffs represented 49% of the value of imports from China and 41% of the total import of foodstuffs from all sources. The most valuable of these foodstuff



imports are swine, rice, eggs and fresh water fish, the value of which has declined considerably since 1958; a decrease in the value of poultry imports was also marked. Other imports of value are cotton grey sheeting, embroidered table linen, plants and seeds for use in medicine and perfumery, and cement. The value of total exports to China continued its downward trend, being worth $114.33 million in 1959; of this figure $105.46 million were re- exports. Of importance among these re-exports were sulphate of ammonia fertilizers, gunny bags, linen fabrics, plants and seeds for medicine and perfumery, coal-tar dyestuffs other than indigo, antibiotics, base metals and machinery.

      Japan expanded her world trade in 1959, following the general decline at the end of 1957 and 1958. The value of imports from Japan into Hong Kong has grown from $596.99 million in 1958 to $769.60 million in 1959 and puts Japan second to China on the import list. Of this total some 44% was in textiles, especially white and dyed cotton piecegoods and spun rayon piecegoods. Electrical machinery (mainly radio sets), non-mineral manufac- tures (cement); textile machinery, soya bean oil, and miscellaneous manufactured goods such as zip fasteners and articles of plastics were of importance. Many of these imports are destined for re- export to South-East Asia, U.S.A. and Europe. Japan took fourth place in respect of total exports, valued at $231.11 million and of exports at $93.49 million; but second place in respect of re- exports, valued at $137.61 million. The principal export was metal scrap, mainly iron and steel, bronze and brass, and which accounted for some 87% of the value. Re-exports consisted of vegetables, especially beans, peas and lentils, soya beans, sheep's and lamb's wool and woollen fabrics.

      Thailand and Indonesia both exhibited similar trends during 1959 showing an increase in the value of their imports into Hong Kong compared with 1958-$36.59 million in the case of Thailand, $8.16 million in the case of Indonesia-and a fall in total exports, Thailand a fall of $70.19 million, Indonesia of $135.59 million. Imports from Thailand were valued at $196.88 million of which 61% was rice and 19% bovine cattle and swine; teakwood and vegetables were also imported. Of the $102.84 million worth of imports from Indonesia $85.28 million represented petroleum products; rattan canes accounted for a further 13%. Exports to



both countries consisted mainly of textile yarn, fabrics and made- up materials, in the case of Indonesia to the extent of 89%; there were also exports of clothing, paints and enamels, and enamelled iron and steel household utensils to Thailand. Exports were valued at $79.67 million to Thailand, and $46.97 million to Indonesia. Re-exports also consisted mainly of textile yarn, fabrics, and made-up articles-80% in the case of Indonesia and 79% in the case of Thailand. The value of re-exports to Thailand was $67.15 million and to Indonesia $28.19 million.

Other countries which contributed during 1959 to the increase in the value of Hong Kong's trade were, on both the import and export side, Burma and Canada; on the export side, Western Germany, Macau, Sweden and Ceylon; on the import side, Australia, the Netherlands and Belgium.

The trend of the Colony's trade by value and volume for the years 1949-59 is illustrated by the graphs facing pages 64 and 65. Tables showing the principal countries trading with the Colony and the composition of the trade, with comparative figures (where available) for 1957, 1958 and 1959 are at Appendices VII to X.


The export of Hong Kong's domestic products continued to expand during the year and new footholds were gained in many markets. The Colony's textile industry is now established as an important factor in world trade; this is shown by the fact that it is already facing some of the problems which have beset more highly industrialized countries.

Success in any particular overseas market is apt to invite tariff or other restrictions on exports against which the Colony's liberal trade policy offers no satisfactory counter-measures, and the Colony is increasingly faced with the introduction or intensifica- tion of discriminatory measures by importing countries designed to protect their industries in the face of the Colony's competitive products.

Late in 1958, the local textile industry had voluntarily agreed to limit the export to the United Kingdom of cotton textile manu- factures, whether in the piece or made-up, for a period of three years commencing on 1st February 1959. The annual ceiling is 164



     million square yards. The undertaking does not apply to cotton yarn and thread, articles made from United Kingdom cloth, sacks and bags, knitted garments, gloves, plimsolls and canvas shoes, nor to any cotton textiles imported into the United Kingdom for re- export with or without processing.

Agreement between the Hong Kong Textile Negotiating Com- mittee and the United Kingdom Cotton Board was only reached after protracted negotiations by both sides and with considerable misgivings on the part of the Colony's textile industry. The under- taking was not conditional on similar undertakings being given by other Commonwealth countries. In the event the Indian and Pakistani industries did not ratify their earlier provisional agree- ments, which had been conditional on a Hong Kong agreement, until September. They come into effect on 1st January 1960.

Various aspects of the operation of the undertaking gave rise to dissatisfaction on the part of the Colony's industry. They were taken up with the Cotton Board, so far without result.

Although textile exports to the United Kingdom are thus now limited, the effect on the industry as a whole has not yet been as serious as was feared owing to the high world demand and the development of other markets. But not all these outlets can be regarded as reliable. In February, Mr. Kearns, Assistant Secretary for International Affairs in the United States Department of Com- merce, visited the Colony to urge the Hong Kong garment manu- facturers to limit their penetration into the United States market and to diversify their products into other lines. There were no immediate results from this visit, but in November Mr. Kearns returned to the Colony for continued discussions with representa- tives of the trade, in which opinion was sharply divided. After Mr. Kearns had left Hong Kong, certain manufacturers represent- ing a very substantial section of the trade in cotton garments with the United States formed themselves into a new association and by the end of the year had offered a voluntary undertaking to the American industry. This offer, which Government supported although reserving the right to consult other sections of Hong Kong's trade and industry which might be affected, proposed that ceilings be set on the quantities of five types of garments exported to the United States during each of the three years from 1st July 1960. The ceilings allowed for a reasonable rate of growth during



      the three-year period. The U.S. industry had not reacted by the end of the year.

      Thus the path of Hong Kong's thriving industry is anything but smooth. The policies of the Common Market countries have been carefully watched; and the formation after negotiations in Stockholm of the European Free Trade Association may adversely affect Hong Kong's exports to members of the Association.

       The Australian Tariff Board, at the instigation of Australian footwear manufacturing companies, investigated the alleged threat to their local industry of increasing imports of casual rubber foot- wear from, in particular, Hong Kong and Japan. In the meantime a non-discriminatory quantitative restriction was imposed which had the effect of reducing exports from Hong Kong substantially below the previously current level. The Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce assisted by the Commerce and Industry Department submitted representations on behalf of the local industry and the outcome of the Tariff Board's deliberations is awaited.

The Benelux countries have been tightening control on the importation of Hong Kong manufactured gloves; those made of wool, partly of wool, or partly of synthetic fibres have been sub- jected to quota restrictions following a period during which import licences were temporarily suspended. Representations have been made.

Import duties on enamelware imported into Kenya and Uganda were amended by the addition of an alternative specific duty which represents an increase in the effective ad valorem rate from 30% to as much as 385% in some cases. This change, which was designed to provide protection to local industries, has brought exports to these countries to a virtual standstill.

In November 1958 the liberalized regime for certain textile goods imported into French West Africa which had applied since 1951 to imports from all O.E.E.C. territories, was withdrawn by the French Government in respect of imports from Hong Kong only, and a quota for these goods unilaterally determined at less than half the current level was established in its place. Some of the quotas opened by French West Africa for imports from O.E.E.C. countries of non-liberalized textile items excluded Hong Kong as a source. During the year Metropolitan France liberalized



     a range of textile manufactures for all O.E.E.C. countries exclud- ing Hong Kong. Negotiations took place in Paris in May in an effort to have these discriminatory measures withdrawn, but no progress had been made in this direction by the end of the year.

A Government representative attended the fourteenth and fifteenth sessions of the G.A.T.T. Conference held during the year at Geneva and Tokyo respectively.

Trade Promotion. In the face of these curbs on Hong Kong's expanding exports, Government's activities in the field of trade promotion have necessarily been primarily defensive.

      Succeeding paragraphs deal with some of the more positive work of the Export Promotion Branch of the Commerce and Industry Department. In these activities the Director of Commerce and Industry is ably assisted by the Trade and Industry Advisory Board, on which serve leading representatives of the Colony's merchant and industrial community.

The Export Promotion Branch of the Commerce and Industry Department, which is responsible for organizing Colony participa- tion in overseas trade fairs, also publishes and distributes overseas a monthly illustrated 'Trade Bulletin' which is partly financed by local advertisers. At the end of the year local circulation was 1,500, while 8,000 copies were being distributed free to readers overseas. The 1959 edition of the department's 'Commerce, Industry and Finance Directory' was published in May. This Directory is a comprehensive guide to Hong Kong business in its economic and administrative setting. The 1960 edition will be published in the late spring.

The Trade Promotion Branch also maintains a trade reference library and a display room where samples of local products are on show for the benefit of both overseas visitors and members of the public.

One important function of the branch is to deal with trade inquiries from abroad and to arrange factory visits for overseas visitors or meetings between them and local trade bodies or representatives. During the year arrangements of this nature were made for trade missions from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Sweden, Greece, Ghana, Burma and Thailand, for several Members of Parliament, from the United Kingdom and for officials from the



Central African Federation, New Zealand, the Board of Trade in London, Canada, Cambodia and Germany.

      Hong Kong sent a delegation to the second session of the Com- mittee on Trade of the Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East held in Bangkok in January 1959. In March another delegation attended the fifteenth session of the full Commission which was held at Broadbeach, Australia.

      In the early spring of 1959 Hong Kong participated in the Melbourne International Trade Fair, during which some 400,000 visitors saw the Hong Kong stand with its display of varied products. Several hundred trade buyers expressed their lively interest in commerce with the Colony. The official Hong Kong delegation was led by the Hon. Dhun Ruttonjee, O.B.E., J.P. It is difficult to make any definite estimate of the contribution which the exhibit might have made to the value of the Colony's export trade, but there has been a noticeable increase in the level of exports to Australia since the summer of this year.

      In September, Hong Kong displayed its products at the Vienna Autumn International Trade Fair. This fair was only open for nine days but it is estimated that some 660,000 visitors passed through and once again several hundred trade inquiries were transmitted back to Hong Kong by the delegation led by Mr. G. E. Marden, a prominent Hong Kong businessman who had recently retired. The layout of the exhibit was the subject of much favourable comment.

The stands for both these exhibits were designed by Professor W. G. Gregory of the University of Hong Kong's Faculty of Architecture.

      The Commerce and Industry Department considerably extended its research services during the year, a new Overseas Trade Rela- tions Branch being set up within the Development Division to survey tariff and other overseas commercial regulations and their effect on the Colony's trade.

      Documentation of Origin. Hong Kong is traditionally an entrepôt so that, in a world of regulated trade, certification of the origin of the products which it sells has become increasingly a matter of impor- tance. The Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce, the Chinese General Chamber of Commerce, the Chinese Manufacturers'



Association and the Indian Chamber of Commerce issue certificates of Hong Kong and other origin which are acceptable in varying degree to overseas authorities. The majority of overseas authorities requiring certificates of Hong Kong origin stipulate those issued by the Commerce and Industry Department. Possess- ing almost no raw materials, Hong Kong's claim to originate its manufactures rests on the work done in processing imported materials, or their transformation into entirely new products. During 1959 the Commerce and Industry Department continued to take pains to ensure that goods which it certified as of Hong Kong origin warranted that designation.

      Except in the case of exports to the United Kingdom the depart- ment also issues Commonwealth Preference Certificates for exports claiming entry at preferential rates into those Commonwealth countries which grant preference to Hong Kong. They certify the proportion of Commonwealth content in the goods they cover and are based on cost statements prepared by public accountants approved for the purpose. In the case of the United Kingdom, the accountants themselves issue the certificates and submit cost state- ments in support direct to H.M. Customs and Excise in the United Kingdom.

During 1959 the certification work of the department continued to expand and the administrative practices for the issue of certi- ficates of origin were under constant review. The department modified its practices and procedures wherever possible to expedite the issue of certificates and to simplify the handling of an increased volume of applications. Co-operation and liaison with overseas customs authorities proved beneficial in both the promotion and the control of certified exports. Exports of goods certified by the Commerce and Industry Department as of Hong Kong origin were valued at $595.5 million during 1959. Commonwealth Preference certificates covering goods (other than exports to the United Kingdom) to the value of $138.5 million were also issued.

An additional complexity arises from the need to maintain Hong Kong's trade with the United States in accordance with the United States Foreign Assets Control Regulations which prohibit the import of a range of products presumed to originate in China or North Korea unless evidence is produced to the contrary. Procedures operated by the Department and designed to produce



this evidence were expanded in 1959. Exports of 'presumptive' commodities were valued at over $483.8 million.

      Statistics. The Statistical Office of the Commerce and Industry Department publishes monthly statistics of the quantity and value of goods imported or exported. Figures for trade statistics are collected from the declarations which importers and exporters are required by law to file with the Statistical Office.

       With effect from January 1959 the complete separation of domestic exports from re-exports was affected in these statistics, and the country classification was on a more extensive basis than in previous years.


The licensing of cotton textile exports to the United Kingdom came into operation on 1st February 1959, with the promulgation of the Exportation of Cotton Manufactures (Prohibition) Regula- tions, 1959. This was the result of the voluntary undertaking given by the Hong Kong Textiles Negotiating Committee to the United Kingdom Cotton Board for the placing of a temporary limit on shipments of certain types of cotton textile manufactures to the United Kingdom. The Hong Kong Government is responsible for the legal and administrative arrangements necessary for the proper carrying out of this undertaking.

Towards the end of the year arrangements were made for allocating the quota for the second year of the undertaking ending 31st January 1961.

The Importation and Exportation (Prohibition) (Strategic Com- modities) Regulations, 1959 came into effect on 17th November replacing earlier regulations and thereby considerably reducing the list of goods for which licences are required, while maintaining control over goods still on the embargo list. On the same day, the Importation of Acetic Anhydride (Prohibition) Regulations, 1959, and the Importation (Prohibition) (Radiation) Regulations, 1959, were enacted to control the import of acetic anhydride, used in the manufacture of heroin, and radioactive materials and irradiating apparatus.


       The enforcement of trade controls, and the inspection of fac- tories and goods in connexion with the export of Hong Kong



products under certificates of origin and Commonwealth Preference certificates are among the duties of the Preventive Service. This is the uniformed and disciplined enforcement branch of the Com- merce and Industry Department. Its tasks are many and varied, but in the main the Service is concerned with the protection of revenue accruing from goods which are dutiable. Other responsi- bilities include the prevention, in co-operation with the Police Force, of illicit traffic in narcotics. The presence of over 20,000 small craft in the waters of the Colony and the long rugged coast- line impose their own peculiar problems and difficulties, in addi- tion to those normally encountered in a major seaport.

The reorganization of the Service was completed during 1959 and the numerous vacancies were, to a very large extent, filled. Of 117 new appointments made during the year, 36 were ex-Naval Dockyard personnel, while 28 were formerly employed in various military establishments in the Colony.

Further changes were made during 1959 in the general organiza- tion of the Service which now comprises a Chief Preventive Officer, a Deputy Chief Preventive Officer, two Assistant Chief Preventive Officers, an inspectorate of 205 and 268 other ranks. A system of 'ship-guards' was introduced during the year for the purpose of providing an improved control over narcotics. This necessitated an increase of 126 posts.


      The allocation of duties between the two major branches of the Service, the 'Inspection Branch' and 'Operations Branch', modified during the year.

Control over the sea lanes is carried out by a fleet of five patrol launches and one fast pursuit launch, while a new harbour launch was commissioned during the year for transporting per- sonnel between ship and shore.


There is a Hong Kong Government Office in London, adminis- tered by a Director and situated in Grand Buildings, Trafalgar Square, W.C. 2. The Hong Kong Section of the British Embassy, Tokyo, will be closed and absorbed within the Embassy by 31st March 1960.



Among Commonwealth countries India is represented in Hong Kong by a Commissioner and the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and Pakistan by Trade Commissioners. Consulates-General are maintained by Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Cuba, France, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Norway, Panama, the Philippines, Switzerland, Thailand and the United States. Consulates are maintained in Hong Kong by Portugal, Sweden, Venezuela and Vietnam. The consular representatives of Argentina, Mexico, Poland, Spain and Turkey are resident in London and have jurisdiction extending to Hong Kong. Austria, Burma, Costa Rica, Denmark, the Dominican Republic, Equador, El Salvador, Finland, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, the Irish Republic, Nicaragua and Spain have Honorary Consuls or Vice-Consuls resident in Hong Kong. In addition, France, Italy and Thailand have Trade Commissioners, while Austria has an Honorary Trade Representative, all resident in the Colony.

Chapter 7: Primary Production and Marketing


     SHORTLY after the New Territories were incorporated into the Colony a Land Court was set up to hear the inhabitants' claims to tenure of land, and all existing tenures thereby established were confirmed by the Hong Kong Government and recorded in a single Block Crown Lease. Such holdings are known as Old Schedule Lots. The Land Court completed its work in 1905. All land not recorded in the Block Crown Lease was deemed to be unleased Crown Land, leases of which could be sold at public auction, as in Hong Kong and Kowloon. New Territories lands thus acquired are known as New Grant Lots. Certain prescriptive rights over 'Crown Land' have, however, always been recognized either tacitly or by official acknowledgment; most villages have rights of this kind over a greater or smaller area adjoining them, where they graze their cattle, cut grass, and bury their dead; and no Crown Land in the New Territories is put up for auction with- out giving the nearest village or villages a chance to object. Such objections, whether on economic or geomantic grounds, are usually accepted if reasonable.

      Most of the land in the New Territories is separately classified as either agricultural land or building land, and permission is required to convert land from one status to the other. Minor buildings, such as watchmen's sheds, pigsties, or other buildings definitely concerned with farming, are usually allowed to be erected on agricultural land. In cases where the owner of an Old Schedule Lot in agricultural status wishes to erect a small house of simple design, this is usually permitted without payment of a premium, provided the building will not interfere with any rural development or country town plan.

      New Territories land policy follows the same general lines as that for the urban area, particularly in the towns and in areas required for industrial development. In the more rural parts the



New Territories Administration is primarily concerned with pre- serving a balance between the sometimes conflicting needs of agricultural production on the one hand and of urban develop- ment on the other.

         Some account has to be taken of the fact that much of the best land is owned by clans established in the area for hundreds of years. By tradition a proportion of the rent raised from clan land is set aside by the clans themselves for the upkeep of ancestral halls and observances, for purposes of clan welfare, and for the maintenance of schools. Such land may not be disposed of with- out the consent of the clan members (sometimes numbering many hundreds) and the permission of the District Officer.

       Rents and values of agricultural land in the New Territories are customarily reckoned in paddy, convertible into money, where other crops are grown, at the market rate of a specified variety. Crown Rents, however, are collected in cash at a rate fixed when the lease was granted. Most Crown Rents have thus progressively declined in relation to the customary value of agricultural land, and in some cases are now hardly worth the trouble of collection.

An average rent for two-crop rice land would be about 1,600 lbs. of paddy per acre per annum, or about 40% of the total annual yield from two crops. Though much of the land is owned by clans, individual holdings are uniformly small, averaging under two acres. There are very few farmers who cultivate more than five acres. Where land is rented it is usually on annual tenancy, and often the arrangement between landlord and tenant is verbal. A general description of land policy is to be found in Chapter 10.


In 1954 Dr. T. R. Tregear, Senior Lecturer in Geography of the University of Hong Kong, made a reconnaissance study of land utilization in the Colony and his data on a scale of 1:80,000 were published by the University of Hong Kong. In 1953 the Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Department commenced a Land Utilization Survey of arable land. This work was completed in 1955 and maps prepared on a scale of 1:20,000. The work of both teams forms the data for a new report entitled Land Use in



Hong Kong and the New Territories by T. R. Tregear, which was published by the University in 1958.

      According to this report the Colony's total land area of 391 square miles may be classified from the viewpoint of land utiliza- tion as follows:


Area (sq. miles)



of whole

(i) Built-up (urban areas)



(ii) Steep country



Includes roads and railways. Rocky, precipitous hillsides incapable of plant establish- ment.

(iii) Woodlands



Natural and established woodlands.

(iv) Grass & Scrub lands



Natural grass and scrub.

(v) Eroded lands



Stripped of cover. Granite country. Capable of re- generation under pine.

(vi) Swamp & Mangrove




Capable of reclamation.

(vii) Arable



Includes orchards and vege- table gardens.

The land area of the Colony is now estimated to be 3984 square miles, but this change does not significantly affect the percentages given for the various classes of land.

       In 1937 it was estimated that the total afforested area was 103 square miles. During the Japanese occupation most of the timber was stripped from the hills and catchment areas. This is being replaced and extended by a vigorous afforestation policy. During 1959 an additional area of 1,729 acres was afforested. Of the land in Class (iv), some could be brought into cultivation for a limited range of crops by terracing and the provision of irrigation water and this is being done in several areas as population pressure increases. The balance of this type of land is suitable for the establishment of forest plantations.

      All readily cultivable land, including a considerable and grow- ing area of terraced country, is highly cultivated, skilled use being made by traditional practices of natural sources of irrigation. A survey of arable land made in 1959 indicates that, as compared with 1958, there has been an overall increase in land under culti- vation of some 410 acres, but that land under two-crop paddy



decreased by some 70 acres and there was a total loss of some 140 acres of paddy land to other crops, etc. Land under vegetable cultivation however increased by some 290 acres, while land under field crops was more or less the same as the previous year. Most of the remaining increased cultivation was due to orchard and fruit tree cropping.

Against this purely agricultural use of land must be set the demands of a predominantly urban Colony with a rapidly rising population and an economy that is becoming increasingly indus- trial. Urban industry is now Hong Kong's largest employer and industries require land. Wherever possible, factories and urban extensions in country zones are concentrated on land reclaimed from the sea-as at Kwun Tong and Tsuen Wan-but towns such as Yuen Long, Tai Po and Sha Tin are all expanding, and it is unavoidable that in the process fields in the close vicinity of towns will be lost to agriculture; or at least that agriculture will be restricted in such areas to market gardens. The land policy of the New Territories Administration restricts the process as far as is reasonably possible, but each year's figures of agricultural acreage emphasize the struggle between the demands of town and country.

In view of the pressure of rapid industrial expansion on land requirements, more hillside land is being opened up for agricul- tural purposes. In order to have some idea of the potential agricul- tural value of the land available, most of which is marginal, the Government has made use of the services of experts from the Colonial Pool of Soil Surveyors and the Soil Survey of the Colony is now almost complete.

Indispensable adjuncts to the agricultural development of unused land are improved communications and irrigation. Here Govern- ment has made a considerable contribution with assistance from Colonial Development and Welfare funds (see Appendix I) and from the Kadoorie Agricultural Aid Association.

A Rural Development Committee was appointed by the Gov- ernor in June 1954, with official and unofficial members under the Chairmanship of the District Commissioner, New Territories, to advise Government on all matters relating to New Territories development and in particular on the extension of agricultural



credit and the preparation of Colonial Development and Welfare schemes.


The Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Department was formed in 1950. Prior to this, there had existed for several years a small Department of Forestry and Botany and in 1948 two specialist officers were appointed to advise the Government on Agriculture and Animal Industries, which were assuming importance in the New Territories. The Department now consists of four divisions: Agriculture, Animal Industries, Fisheries (Marine and Fresh Water) and Forestry. It has expanded rapidly since 1953 and the overall policy is to increase food production, and conserve plant and animal resources. The Department gives technical advice to farmers, fishermen, administrators and welfare organizations con- cerned with farmers and fishermen. By demonstration, teaching and extension of approved farming and forestry practices, the Department encourages the conservation of vital water supplies, soil and soil fertility, and, in general, appropriate use of land. The Department also organizes an annual Agricultural Show which is popular with the farming community and townsmen alike.

The Director of the Department is a qualified agricultural scien- tist and is assisted administratively by an Assistant Director and by the heads of the four divisions, who are also qualified pro- fessional officers. The Director is a member of the Rural De- velopment Committee, Chairman and Trustee of the Kadoorie Agricultural Aid Loan Fund and a member of the Fisheries Advisory Committee. The headquarters of the Department are at Lai Chi Kok on the outskirts of Kowloon.

The total permanent staff of the Department is now 834 com- pared with 200 in 1952. The estimated expenditure in 1959-60 was $5,333,700 compared with $2,470,395 in 1952-3.

The policy and organization of the various divisions of the Department are described in succeeding paragraphs. These are followed by a general account of agriculture, animal industries, fisheries and forestry in Hong Kong during 1959.



Agricultural and Animal Industries Divisions. A broad policy for the development of Agriculture and Animal Industries was accepted in principle by the Government towards the close of 1955. This policy envisaged the improvement of irrigation and communications throughout the New Territories, planned settle- ment of undeveloped land, the diversification of farming to include the extension of animal industries, a soil survey of the Colony, and planned experimental work directed to the introduction of new crops, the improvement of existing crop varieties, soil fer- tility and the control of pests and diseases of crops and animals.

The general experimental station of the Department serving agriculture and animal husbandry is situated at Castle Peak in the New Territories. This station is concerned with pig improve- ment (local pig breeding), poultry investigation and rice work. A veterinary laboratory is available for the diagnosis and investi- gation of animal disease, and for the preparation of rinderpest vaccine. A considerable amount of the agronomy and crop investi- gational work has been transferred from this station to the present Forestry Research Station at Tai Lung. This will allow greater concentration on animal husbandry problems and the expansion of vaccine production facilities at Castle Peak. A market garden research station has been developed at Sheung Shui and a horti- cultural sub-station, primarily concerned with citrus production, at Tai Po. Exotic pig breeding is conducted at Sheung Shui Livestock Research Station and pig cross-breeding work at Sai Kung Livestock Research Station. Joint investigation into dry land farming problems is being undertaken by the Agricultural and Animal Industries Divisions at the Dryland Research Station at Ta Kwu Ling. Sub-stations, allied with the above research stations, are also established at Silvermine Bay, Tung Chung and Sha Tin. Extension and advisory services are operated from district offices or posts at Au Tau, Ko Po, Tai O, Chek Keng, Lamma Island and elsewhere in association with research stations and sub- stations. Chemical, soils and general analysis is undertaken at a laboratory at Administrative Headquarters at Lai Chi Kok.

The Agricultural Division is under the immediate control of the Agricultural Officer and carries out research, extension and advisory work on all forms of crop husbandry and agronomy problems. Research and investigation, such as crop variety trials,



     seed selection, soil fertility studies, manurial trials, and investi- gations into pest and disease control, are carried out on a number of research stations, including the Market Garden Research Station at Sheung Shui, the High Altitude Research Station on Tai Mo Shan at 2,000 feet, and the Kadoorie Agricultural Aid Association Farm at Pak Ngau Shek at 1,250 feet. The Division also carries out joint research projects in conjunction with other divisions such as those at the Ta Kwu Ling Dryland Research Station of the Animal Industries Division. Investigations and demonstrations are also undertaken on land rented from farmers. Agricultural officers operating from district offices or posts carry out the exten- sion and advisory work; for this purpose the Colony is divided into nine areas. The total permanent strength of the division is twenty five and includes ten University graduates in several fields of agricultural science and two officers with diplomas in agri- culture. The remainder of the subordinate staff have been trained in service. The division comprises two major sections dealing with extension and advisory services and with research services, which include research on agronomy, crops, market gardens, horticulture and pest and disease control. During 1959 steps were taken to expand rural education and agricultural credit services. These services now come under the direct control of Administrative Headquarters and are closely co-ordinated with the other divisions of the Department. The permanent staff is nine and includes three University graduates and six subordinate staff trained in service.

       The Animal Industries Division was established in 1955 and is under the control of the Senior Veterinary Officer, with a total force of ninety four permanent officers including two qualified veterinarians and fifteen graduates in other fields of animal husbandry. The balance of the subordinate staff have been trained in service. The division is divided into four sections: Animal Disease Control (Field Services), Animal Husbandry (Research), Diagnostic Services and Disease Control (Regulatory). In the latter section the division deals with animal quarantine, rabies control, dairies and slaughterhouses in the New Territories, including meat inspection. The Senior Veterinary Officer is also technical adviser to the Director of Urban Services on problems connected with urban slaughterhouses at Ma Tau Kok and Kennedy Town.



        Fisheries Division. It is the aim of the Government to foster the orderly expansion of the marine and fresh water fisheries of the Colony to supply the needs of the local population and to improve the economic status of those engaged in fishing or fish farming; such questions as overfishing and the conservation of fisheries resources are also studied. In the immediate post-war years the emphasis was on the organization of the wholesale marketing of marine fish, which is described later in this Chapter under Market- ing. In 1952 the Fisheries Division of the Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Department was set up and in the same year the University of Hong Kong formed a Fisheries Research Unit. These bodies, together with the Co-operative Development Department, which controls the Fish Marketing Organization, are represented on the Fisheries Advisory Committee, at which discussions take place on matters of common interest.

        The Fisheries Division, the Fisheries Research Unit and the Co- operative Development Department also participate in the activities of the Indo-Pacific Fisheries Council of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization.

        The Fisheries Division is concerned with fisheries demonstration and extension work, the promotion of mechanization, the training of fishermen for certificates of competency as masters and engi- neers, operational investigations concerned with fishing methods, craft and fishing gear, the extension of pond fish culture and oyster farming in co-operation with the Fisheries Research Unit and the demonstration of approved fishing techniques.

Until recently the activities of the Fisheries Division were confined mainly to problems of the inshore waters, involving the mechanization of the smaller craft. Since 1958 policy has been broadened to include deep sea operational research in international waters. With this objective in mind, a second larger Fisheries Research Vessel, the 'Cape St. Mary', has been provided as a gift from H.M. Government and will operate under the control of the Fisheries Research Unit. The small steel Research Trawler 'Alister Hardy' has been transferred from the Fisheries Research Unit to the Fisheries Division for operational research and training in mid- waters. In addition, at the end of 1959, approval was given for



the allocation of a sum of $2,000,000 from the Colony's Develop- ment Fund for loans for the following purposes:

(i) Mechanization of existing commercial deep sea vessels

(including any necessary hull modifications).

(ii) Replacement of existing engines with types more suitable

for mid or distant waters.

(iii) Installation of winches.

(iv) Installation of navigational aids and fish detecting aids.

(v) Purchase of more efficient fishing gear for trawling and

long-lining in mid and distant waters.

(vi) In special cases, loans for the purchase of new vessels, either of existing types or of a proto-type designed by the Fisheries Division.

Detailed plans for the wooden proto-type deep sea fishing vessel were well advanced.

The staff of the division number forty seven permanent officers including the Fisheries Officer, three Assistant Fisheries Officers and eleven Fisheries Supervisors. One of these officers is a qualified graduate and four have diplomas in marine or fresh water fisheries. District offices have been established throughout the Colony and the marine headquarters is at Aberdeen adjacent to the market operated by the Fish Marketing Organization. The division pos- sesses two small inshore mechanized junk-type fishing vessels.

Forestry Division. A Forest Policy was approved by the Govern- ment in 1953. The principal aims of this policy are to afforest waste hill-lands in order to stabilize the soil, prevent erosion and protect water supplies; to produce the maximum quantity of fuel and timber; and to encourage private and village forestry.

The Forestry Officer and the two Senior Supervisors moved their offices to the Departmental headquarters at Lai Chi Kok during 1959, but the Assistant Forestry Officer remained at Tai Lung. By the end of the year a new district office and quarters at Nam Shan on Lantau Island were ready for occupation.

District organization has been strengthened by the recruitment of new supervisory staff and the total permanent strength of the division at the end of the year was 339, an increase of forty over the previous year. This total includes a Forestry Officer, an Assist- ant Forestry Officer, two Senior Forestry Supervisors, ten Forestry



     Supervisors, two Overseers, a Foreman, fifteen Forest Rangers, twenty Foresters and 141 Forest Guards.


       Rice. The area under two-crop paddy has fallen from 20,191 acres in 1954 to 18,980 acres in 1959. This land has not gone out of production but is now being used for permanent vegetable cultivation. A further area of 2,915 acres is used for one-crop brackish water paddy and 225 acres for one-crop upland paddy. On a milling percentage of 68, a total of 21,288 metric tons of rice was produced in 1959 at an average price of $59.00 per picul; the money value of the crop was $20,761,547. The average yield of rice from one acre of two-crop paddy land is about 1.1 metric tons. With seed of approved varieties, good irrigation and the use of fertilizers, production reaches 1.5 metric tons an acre on average land and up to 1.8 metric tons on better soils.

      Vegetables. The permanent vegetable area has increased from 2,254 acres in 1954 to 3,905 acres in 1959. This increase of 1,651 acres is due mainly to the fact that 1,211 acres of rice land have gone over to vegetable culture, and the further development of 440 acres of marginal land. An additional area of approximately 950 acres of two-crop paddy land is used for the cultivation of European vegetables after the harvest of the second rice crop.

      Six to eight crops of Chinese vegetables can be harvested annually. During 1959, 1,507,869.51 piculs of vegetables were sold through the Vegetable Marketing Organization at a value of $33,808,230. The main varieties are white cabbage, flowering cabbage, turnips, leaf mustard, Chinese kale, Chinese lettuce, tomatoes, water spinach, string beans, watercress and cucumbers. During the cool months cauliflower, cabbage, lettuce and tomatoes are produced in quantity and are of excellent quality. Further details concerning vegetable production are given below under Marketing.

      Sweet Potatoes. Two crops of tubers on approximately 2,732 acres are harvested annually and the average yield per annum is about 14 tons per acre. On an average market price of $18.00 per picul the annual value of the crop is approximately $11,566,195. An additional area of 5,694 acres of paddy fallow



following the harvest of the second rice crop is planted with short-term sweet potatoes, the vines of which are used for pig feeding.

Other Field Crops. About 683 acres are cultivated in numerous small areas for field crops such as peanuts, taro, radish, yams and sugar-cane. These crops are grown mainly for home consumption in the New Territories.

Fruit. The local production of fruit is small at present but is expanding with the successful establishment of village orchards. The main varieties produced are wong pei, local lemon, tangerine, Japanese apricot, guava, papaya, laichee, pineapple and orange. Accurate statistics are not available, but it is estimated that 31,814 piculs of assorted fruits were harvested during the year, valued at about $2,000,000, for export and local consumption.

      Crops and Fruits for Export. A limited range of fruits and crops are processed for export to Chinese living overseas. The main market is the United States of America. Although the quantities exported are small, they provide an additional source of earning for the small farmer. These products include water-chestnut, Japanese apricot, local lemon, taro, bitter cucumber, white cabbage, ginger, radish, laichee, wong pei, mushroom, lotus root, olive, turnip, yam and mustard. It is estimated that the area planted to these crops in 1959 was 3,580 dau chung and the value of exports was in excess of $2,000,000.

New crops. The recent interest shown in the revival of tea cultivation is continuing and an experimental area on Grassy Hill to the north-east of Tai Mo Shan is being prepared for the culti- vation of this crop. Certain hilly areas in the New Territories are being planted up with ginger under arrangements with local fruit preserving firms, which wish to reduce their dependence on supplies from China. Some fair crops have been harvested and the quality is improving as the farmers gain experience.

      As part of the Government's agricultural policy, much has been done over the past six years to improve water supply and irrigation for farming. Up to the end of 1959 the Government, aided by grants from Colonial Development and Welfare funds (see Appen- dix I), had constructed two impounding reservoirs of 48,000,000 gallons capacity at Lo Fu Hang and Hung Shui Hang, 133,000 ft. of irrigation channels, 72 diversion dams, 19 water ponds for



vegetable farming; an irrigation system at Sheung Shui by pump- ing water from the Indus River; and work had begun on the construction of three more impounding reservoirs of 130 million gallons total capacity at Ho Pui and Tsing Tam. In addition, seven small impounding reservoirs were repaired and more irri- gation systems installed.

Apart from these larger works the New Territories Adminis- tration has at its disposal a Local Public Works vote for which a sum of approximately one million dollars was provided during the year. As stated in Chapter 25 this vote provides funds for materials supplied to villagers for the improvement of irrigation and water supplies, the building of paths, vehicle tracks, wells, small bridges and other minor works to improve the amenities of the villages. Labour is normally supplied by the villagers them- selves except where the work is of a technical nature. New works completed during the year included 2,062 ft. of irrigation channel- ling; 7,415 ft. of drainage channelling; over 14 miles of pathway; 6,902 ft. of tracks; 11,930 ft. of kerbs; 3,106 ft. of bunds; 8,022 ft. of water pipeline; 16 wells and 13 diversion dams.

       Valuable assistance both in regard to water supply and irriga- tion for farming and also in the construction of roads, paths, bridges and similar works was rendered by the Kadoorie Agricul- tural Aid Association, a philanthropic organization which asso- ciates its welfare work with Government planning and whose activities are directed in the technical field by the Director of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. By the end of 1959 this organi- zation had supplied sufficient cement to farmers to enable them to construct fourteen new wells, twenty one diversion dams, numerous irrigation channels totalling 6 miles in length, and eight small reservoirs. In the same period repairs were affected to twelve wells and four diversion dams. Gifts of cement and other building materials (and in some cases where the work is beyond the competence of village groups, the employment of skilled labour) have enabled village communities to construct or repair twenty miles of village paths and roads, ten piers, eleven bunds for flood control, 7,165 feet of drains, fifty eight bridges, eight sea-walls and two culverts. In 1959, 16,588 bags of cement were given for these and similar projects, bringing the total donated to date to 61,555 bags.



The Association has also assisted during periods of drought by pumping water for nurseries, the pumping units being operated by the Agricultural Division. It has provided village groups with 200 Japanese Rice Threshers and 5,150 Japanese Knapsack Sprayers for pest control, and made gifts of cattle, goats, pigsties, pigs, poultry, farm buildings, and free livestock inoculations to the poorer members of the farming community. A new scheme of livestock improvement is described below under Animal Indus- tries.

The most significant change resulting from these efforts is that although rice is still the major crop and is efficiently cultivated, it no longer occupies a dominant position in the thinking of the farmer. There is a greater tendency to diversify agriculture and, on the average, about 35% of fallow rice land is used for catch- cropping following the harvest of the second rice crop. Orchards are being established where land is available and more small live- stock are being raised in association with rice and vegetable culti- vation. Farmers are using more and more artificial fertilizers to enhance their production and more insecticides to control pests and diseases.

The formal training classes for young farmers in practical crop and animal husbandry which were started in 1957 were consider- ably increased in 1959. Agricultural education is now the responsi- bility of one senior officer of the Department, and during 1959 a total of sixty eight students was trained at Sha Tin, Castle Peak and Sheung Shui Agricultural Stations in courses arranged by specialist officers. This scheme has been enthusiastically adopted by farmers and will be further extended in 1960.


Pigs and poultry are the principal food animals reared in the Colony. Cattle are mainly used for draught purposes. There is insufficient land for extensive grazing.

A census of the livestock population completed in November 1959 yielded the following numbers of animals and birds:

Dairy Cattle

Yellow Cattle

Water Buffaloes...





150,000 (13,000 breeding stock)















2,000,000 (100,000 breeding stock)

53,000 (3,000 breeding stock)

300,000 (8,000 breeding stock)


15,000 (5,000 breeding stock) 90,000 (22,000 breeding stock)


Pigs. The pigs of Hong Kong are mostly Chinese types of Fa Yuen, Wai Chau and Lung Kong breeds. The Department main- tains herds of pure exotic strain pigs such as Berkshire, Mid White and Large White for experimental purposes, cross-breeding and distribution for the eventual improvement of the Colony's pig stock. In the villages pigs are often kept under primitive condi- tions, but the influence of the Department and the Kadoorie Agricultural Aid Association has brought about a decided im- provement.

       In 1959 the number of pigs of local origin admitted to the local abattoirs for slaughter was 246,890. This represents 19% of all the pigs slaughtered in the Colony for food. The comparative figure for 1953 was 64,000. The value of pigs raised in Hong Kong in 1959 is estimated at between $25 and $30 million.

       Important experimental work is being undertaken by the Depart- ment on the selection of pure strains of local pig breeds, the cross-breeding of local and exotic breeds and feeding, with emphasis on local products. The Department, together with the Kadoorie Agricultural Aid Association, is carrying out an impor- tant livestock improvement plan which has as its aim the establish- ment of 4,000 women farmers as pig raisers using improved local sows (provided by the Government and the Association) crossed with exotic and improved local boars at boar centres provided by Government.

       Cattle. Local brown cattle and buffaloes are kept for work purposes but surplus stock is sold to butchers. The Chinese brown cattle appear to be ideally suited to the local environment and village management. The return from sales of local cattle for



     slaughter was in excess of $1,800,000. Over 1,439 farmers have been helped to acquire better-type animals either by gifts from the Kadoorie Agricultural Aid Association or by loans from the Kadoorie Agricultural Aid Loan Fund, a fund started in 1955 with equal contribution by the Government and Messrs. Lawrence and Horace Kadoorie.

      Poultry. The curtailment of imports of live poultry and hatching eggs from China brought about a considerable improvement in the economic position of the local poultry industry during the year, though the establishment of a stable poultry industry in Hong Kong is difficult in the absence of control over imports from China.

      Ducks and Geese. Ducks are raised for home consumption and export in the water areas of the Colony and along the banks of streams, and over the past three years the rearing of geese for the local market has spread. Reliable statistics on local sales are not available, but a conservative estimate places the year's total in excess of $3,000,000.

      Pigeons. Pigeon keeping is now a thriving industry and prices in 1959 ranged up to $7.00 a pair for squabs. One of the most popular types of table birds is the White or Blue King crossed with the Homer. The sales of squabs in 1959 at an average price of $6.00 a pair, were in excess of $1,500,000.

      Milk. The dairy cattle in the Colony consist mainly of Friesians but there are also Ayrshires, Jerseys and Illawarra Shorthorns. These animals are concentrated in three areas, one large farm in Hong Kong, one large group of farms in the Diamond Hill area of Kowloon, and one smaller group in the Tsuen Wan district of the New Territories. There is also a small private farm on Lantau Island maintained by Trappist monks. All these animals have passed the single intradermal (comparative) test for tuber- culosis. 10,902,890 pounds of milk were produced during 1959 valued at $9,812,601.

Peasant farmers are increasingly availing themselves of the advisory service of the Animal Industries Division. The Colony remained free during 1959 from rabies and rinderpest, but foot and mouth disease continued to occur in quarantine stations in

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Thanks to men like this farmer, patiently tending his small plot of land alongside the Castle Peak Road in the New Territories, Hong Kong can now grow about half the vegetables it needs. And thanks to the fisherfolk, some of whose craft are shown (centre pages, this section), anchored in a quiet bay at Tai Po, the Colony is completely self-sufficient in fish.

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Out of a total land area of 398 square miles, Hong Kong possesses only some 50 square miles of good to indifferent arable flat land and about 10 square miles of marginal hilly land. The New Territories farmers employ agricultural methods that have remained basically unchanged for centuries. In rice-growing, for example, the whole family wades almost knee-deep in water to hand-plant paddy (above) which will later be threshed by hand (below). But the Research Stations of the Agricul- ture, Fisheries and Forestry Department are helping the farmer to grow improved crops and breed better animals by modern scientific methods. Below, right, a field officer of the Department shows a farmer how to select the best seed paddy.

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Urban congestion and overcrowding render_imperative the need for satellite towns in the New Territories. But because good agricultural land is so scarce the new towns can be planned only on marginal land or reclamations. Thus, the shallow waters of Tide Cove at Sha Tin (above) are one of five sites now being considered for ultimate reclamation, while the new town of Kwun Tong (below) is built almost entirely on reclaimed land.



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The big event in the Hong Kong farmer's calendar is the Agricultural Show held each January at the thriving market town of Yuen Long. Everyone agrees that each year's show is better than the last, reflecting the growing prosperity of the farmers. Above, cattle are shown parading the ring, and (below) a judge examines cattle a section of the show where competition is always keen.


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The show, which lasts three days, is a carnival event for the farmers and their families who travel from all parts of the Colony to be there. Farmers' wives and children (above) inspect farm implements, while (below) economy-minded wives run an appraising eye over a special_O exhibit of vegetables from the Kadoorie Agricultural Research Station. More than 70 cups and trophies are up for competition every year.

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Duck breeding is becoming an increasingly profitable field of agricultural endeavour. Small duck farms are to be found along the banks of streams and on the flatter parts of the New Territories west coast. The ducks are raised both for export and home consumption and, although reliable statistics on local sales are not available, conservative estimates place the annual total in excess of $1,500,000.



      animals imported for slaughter. There were also 330 outbreaks of a mild type of this disease in cattle and pigs in the New Terri- tories and a similar outbreak in the dairies in the Diamond Hill area of Kowloon. The increasing realization amongst farmers of the value of preventive inoculation is shown by the fact that in 1959 34,360 pigs were inoculated against swine fever, 11,500 cattle against rinderpest and 8,128,000 doses of Ranikhet vaccine and 1,956,600 doses of Intranasal Drop vaccine were used for the pre- vention of Newcastle disease in poultry. The veterinary diagnostic laboratory is well established and, in addition to this diagnostic service, is producing lapinized rinderpest vaccine for use in the Colony.

       In view of the inadequate land resources of Hong Kong and the small cattle population, no work has been done on the improve- ment of pastures. Extensive grazing is not practised; instead dairy cattle are stall fed on planted guinea grass as green fodder and on concentrates, and are exercised in courts. Working animals are fed cut fodder and a little concentrate. Through its extension service the Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Department has demon- strated the value of planting up rice bunds and other available areas with green fodder grasses for animal feeding. A wide range of fodder grasses and legumes have been introduced for trial.


      Marine Fish is the main primary product of Hong Kong, and the fishing fleet is the largest of any port in the Colonies. It con- sists of over 9,400 junks of various sizes and designs, and twenty Japanese-type trawlers, nine of which are of British registry. They are manned by a sea fishing population of approximately 80,000, chiefly Tanka, operating from various ports and fishing centres, the most important of which are Aberdeen and Shau Kei Wan (on Hong Kong Island), Cheung Chau, Tai O, Tai Po and Sai Kung.

Junks are built locally from imported timber, of which China fir is the most popular. Owing to continued shortages of fir, however, more teak and yacal have been used. About 95% of the fleet is owner-operated, the rest being owner-directed by fish dealers and fishing companies.



      The inshore fishing grounds for purse seiners, gill netters, shrimp trawlers and small liners are confined to the waters south of the Colony up to twenty fathoms. The bigger junk trawlers and long liners have gradually extended their area of operation and now work in waters from 30-70 fathoms along the coast of Kwangtung, from 111° 30′ to 116° E. and 20° to 22° 31′ N. A large number of these deep-sea vessels are sailing craft, and during the typhoon season, from July to October, their crews occupy themselves with repairing junks, nets, rigging, sails and equipment.

      The restrictions imposed in 1958 by the Chinese People's Gov- ernment on inshore fishing in Chinese territorial waters remained in force throughout the year under review, the quotas of fish to be landed in China by Hong Kong based vessels varying from time to time.

The mechanized fleet increased from 2,287 to 2,366 vessels in 1959, the major increases being among small long liners, purse seine net boats and shrimp trawlers. The total quantity of fish and sea food products marketed was 49,893 tons (valued at $57,142,637), as compared with 44,906 tons in 1958.

Further statistical data on the fishing industry are given below, under Marketing.

      Oyster-beds and Fish Ponds. Oyster culture in this region has a tradition of 700 years behind it. The principal area is Deep Bay where, from the 6,060 acres on the New Territories side of the Bay, a total of 905 tons of fresh oyster meat, valued at about $1,500,000, was produced in 1959. The bulk of this was processed into dried meat and into oyster juice, and, following certification of local origin by the Fisheries Division staff, was exported.

      The Pearl Culture (Control) Ordinance which was enacted during 1958 permitted commercial operations on pearl culture to commence in Tolo Harbour during the year.

       Additional land was converted into fish ponds in 1959, bringing the total area devoted to fish culture in the New Territories up to some 557 acres. The estimated production of carp and mullet was 297 tons, valued at $1,450,000 as against 500 tons in 1958. This decrease was largely due to the shortage of grey mullet fry to stock the ponds.



      Fish fry exporters despatched some eighteen million fry, as against fifteen million in the previous year. The main destinations were Singapore, Thailand and Taiwan.


      It is only in recent years that any serious attempt has been made to carry out afforestation on a considerable scale in the New Territories, and the landscape has not yet been appreciably changed. The hills are predominantly grass covered, but a thicker cover of shrubs is found in some areas and there is some scrub forest in remote and inaccessible places. Where the vegetation has been protected against cutting and fire, as for example on Hong Kong Island, there are also thickly-wooded areas. The villagers cut grass for fuel and this practice, combined with the prevalence of hill fires in the dry season, has brought about the complete destruction of the vegetation with consequent soil erosion in many parts of the Colony. On the lower hill slopes the villagers have forestry lots, but in most of them the pine trees are so scattered and badly lopped that they scarcely alter the barren aspect of the land.

       The Forestry Division of the Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Department encourages forestry generally and is directly con- cerned with afforestation of the water catchment areas, assistance to village forestry and amenity planting. A thick forest cover is essential in the catchment areas to prevent erosion and silting of reservoirs and to promote regular stream-flow by inducing maxi- mum retention of water in the soil. In other areas forestry can provide timber and fuel for local consumption and can improve the economy of the rural population. In fact, forestry is the only form of extensive land development possible in the New Terri- tories, where much of the land could not be developed profitably in any other way.

Depending on the weather, planting is usually started in the cool, wet spring and is continued until June or July. Although planting has been done successfully in the late summer, it has usually been found that trees planted after July have too short a period in which to settle down before the onset of the dry weather in October.



The 1959 planting began in January and February but most of the work was done between April and July when there were exceptionally heavy rains. 1,729 acres of new plantations were formed in forest reserves and 637 in villagers' forestry lots, and 1,129 acres were replanted because of failures in the 1958 season. Total areas planted in forest reserves during the past five years









690 acres









6,903 acres

The forest reserves cover much the same ground as the Colony's water catchment areas. In the Tai Lam Forest Reserve afforesta- tion was continued in the remaining grass areas of the direct catchment area, where the forest labour force was supplemented by approximately 150 prisoners from Tai Lam Prison. A small extension to the Tai Po Kau Forest Reserve was made and planted. Over three quarters of the Pat Heung and Fu Shui Forest Reserves are now planted. These reserves together extend unbroken across the mountains of the Colony from Castle Peak in the west to Tai Po in the east and comprise in all about 13,000 acres.

Planting was also done in the Kowloon Hills Forest Reserve, the catchment of the Kowloon reservoir, and at Shap Long on Lantau Island. The work at Shap Long was done by prisoners from Chi Ma Wan Prison. The pits in which the trees are planted in this area are of a greater size than elsewhere, and growth rates have been better. Approximately four-fifths of this reserve are now planted.

In connexion with the establishment of a village for destitute refugees in the hills at Cheung Sha a forest reserve was laid out in the vicinity and a nursery started, employing villagers, to raise trees for planting in 1960.

Forest reserves are divided into compartments of 200-300 acres, and records and maps are prepared giving details of the areas of various species planted in each compartment. Track is



thus kept of each plantation so that replanting and tending can be prescribed annually: in addition to the new planting, there is a great deal of work to be done in the established plantations. The main species planted is pine (Pinus Massoniana), but experi- mental plots of a wide variety of other species have been made and some of these are now being planted more extensively. Among the most promising are species of Casuarina and Eucalyptus.

       In November a team surveyed the hills which will serve as the direct and indirect catchment for the Shek Pik reservoir now being constructed on Lantau, and prepared a report for Government on the feasibility and probable cost of afforesting the area.

       In order to provide tree seedlings for afforestation the Forestry Division maintains a series of nurseries in the New Territories, a main one of twenty three acres at Tai Lung, smaller permanent nurseries in each forest district and temporary nurseries in many of the areas currently being planted. Altogether there are some twenty nurseries with a total area of approximately forty acres. These nurseries are capable of producing two to three million tree seedlings annually. Most of the seedlings are now raised in poly- thene tubes instead of open nursery beds and constant efforts are being made to improve handling and planting techniques. Trees for amenity planting are also raised in large polythene bags rather than in earthenware pots.

       A scheme of assistance to village forestry has been evolved, the final object of which is to teach the villagers how to plant and manage their forestry lots profitably. Model plantations have been formed which show quite clearly the result to be achieved, and these plantations have been useful in arousing the interest of the villagers and as demonstration areas. The Forestry Division also offers financial and technical assistance in forming trial plantations in village lots. Trees take a long time to grow and it is not always easy to convince the villagers that forestry will be profitable. Interest in the scheme is spreading steadily, if somewhat slowly, and it will be a number of years before the work now being done will begin to produce results. During 1959 many new applications for assistance were received as the scheme gained popularity; on Tsing Yi Island a nursery was established to produce seedlings for forestry lot owners on the island. Some of the older stands now need their first thinning which will be the beginning of steady



returns for the owners. Closely connected with the Forestry Lot scheme is the Tree Planting Day campaign. This is held annually in April to encourage more tree planting by schools, public bodies and private individuals, and to make the general public 'forestry conscious', since protection of plantations would be almost im- possible without public understanding and co-operation.

During the dry season from October to March there is a constant threat of fire in plantations and elaborate fire precautions are observed. Fire-lookouts established on strategic hill-tops in planta- tion areas are connected by field telephone to fire control points, where men, equipment and transport stand by during particularly dangerous periods. A system of roads, paths and fire-barriers is also maintained. Six new fire-lookouts have been erected on hill- tops in forest reserves and connected by field telephone to district offices. There were fewer fires and much less damage than in 1958, outbreaks being largely confined to grass areas.

The officer in charge of Research and Investigation continued to add to the herbarium collection, to inquire into the suitability of various species for planting and to conduct experiments on nursery techniques.

Staff training and educative propaganda have been furthered by the holding of courses, the publication of literature, and by broad- casting. Two courses each lasting four weeks provided intensive training for forty Forest Guards and two one-week special courses on fire-spotting and reporting were held for a further twenty men. Three simple pamphlets in Cantonese were published and distrib- uted to forestry lot owners concerning the defoliating Pine cater- pillar, seed collection and fire prevention. Five talks were given over the radio.

The re-export of graded timber to the high-class markets of the United States, Australia, Europe and South Africa continues to expand. There is no locally grown timber available, all timber for local consumption or export being imported, mostly from Borneo.


      Fish Marketing Organization. With the aim of promoting the general development of the local fishing industry, Government imposed certain controls after the war on the landing and whole- sale marketing of marine fish. These controls are exercised through



an agency known as the Fish Marketing Organization, which in one aspect of its operations provides many services which would otherwise be undertaken by middlemen. The Organization is a non-profit-making concern deriving its revenues and covering its expenses from a 6% commission charged on all the sales of fish at its markets. Its operations ensure that the fishermen obtain fair prices and a stable market for their catches; consumers also benefit through the cheap and efficient services which are provided. The Fish Marketing Organization is a non-Government body, although one or two of its more senior officials, including the head of the Organization (the Commissioner for Co-operative Development, previously known as the Director of Marketing) are civil servants. The Organization at present operates under emergency legislation, in replacement of which the Marketing (Marine Fish) Ordinance, 1956, was enacted in May 1956. The introduction of this Ordinance has, however, been deferred pending the preparation of the necessary subsidiary legislation.

      The Fish Marketing Organization was established shortly after the reoccupation of Hong Kong in October 1945, and now operates five wholesale fish markets. These are established at Aberdeen and Shau Kei Wan on the Island, at Yau Ma Tei in Kowloon, and at Tai Po and Sha Tau Kok in the New Territories. Six fish-collecting depots and posts have also been set up in the main fishing villages, and from these the Organization provides sea and land transport to the wholesale markets.

At the markets the Organization's staff sorts the fish into species and sizes, weighs it and prepares it in lots for sale by public auction. Fishermen may collect the proceeds from their sales directly after the sale has taken place; alternatively, if they so prefer, the Organization will send the money back to the depot or post which serves their area. As an additional marketing service, the Organization provides transportation of fish to buyers' estab- lishments in the urban areas.

      The following species of fresh marine fish were marketed in greatest quantity during 1959:

Average wholesale price per catty

Piculs Tons

Golden Thread

135,961 8,093


Lizard Fish

46,633 2,776


Carangoid Fish ...

38,530 2,293



Conger Pike

Horse Head




Average wholesale price per catty

34,624 2,061


26,374 1,570


25,016 1,489


Red Sea Bream

      Total quantity of fish sold through the wholesale markets during the last five years and average wholesale prices during the same period were as follows:

Quantities & Values






Average Wholesale Prices

(in cents per catty)






Piculs 677,599


Value ($)



679,187 40,428











Fresh Fish

Salt Fish











Traditionally, the fishing grounds of many Hong Kong based fishermen are in or near to Chinese waters, but early in 1958 the Chinese authorities gave notice that they intended imposing restric- tions on the use of fishing grounds within their territorial waters. These restrictions were not strictly enforced until the latter part of 1958 when the landings of the local fleet were greatly affected. In 1959, however, there was an easing of restrictions and, in the main, comparatively little interference with Hong Kong based junks, although towards the end of the year there were indications that the Chinese authorities were again considering a revision of these restrictive policies.

Landings by the local fishing fleet were generally good through- out 1959. On the whole weather conditions were favourable and fishermen took full advantage of the relaxation of restrictions im- posed by the Chinese authorities. Considerable quantities of both fresh and salt/dried fish continued to be imported from China, although towards the end of the year the quality of the salt/dried fish from this source was poor and much of it, which was unfit



for human consumption, was sold as animal feed and fertilizer. As a result of the more favourable conditions experienced by fishermen sales through the Marketing Organization increased by some 15% compared with 1958.

Prices were good throughout 1959: the increase over last year was mainly due to a substantial decrease, particularly in the spring and early summer, of imports from China of other protein foods such as pond fish, pigs and cattle.

The embargo on the importation of salt/dried fish from the Colony, imposed by the Chinese Government in June 1950 re- mained in force throughout the year. Salt fish exporters continued to explore other outlets, but have met with little success in the face of increasing competition from other countries in the region. The main importing countries were U.S.A., Thailand and Canada. In June 1957 the Fish Marketing Organization became con- cerned for the first time with the marketing of prawns and shrimps. This development was introduced specifically to meet the require- ments of the American market. In June of this year, however, following the discovery of irregularities practised by some Hong Kong exporters, the American authorities banned all imports of shrimps and prawns from Hong Kong, and the prawn market was closed down on 17th June. Prior to this date some 343 tons of shrimps and prawns valued at approximately $1,190,473, were handled by the Organization.

The provision of cheap credit is one of the most important of the services which the Fish Marketing Organization offers to local fishermen. The Organization's revolving loan fund, first established in 1946, had by the end of 1959 made 4,864 loans totalling $6,099,000, and of this total some $5,180,000 had been repaid. In 1957, C.A.R.E., an American relief agency, donated $31,000 to serve as the nucleus of a loan fund for shrimp and prawn fishermen. Forty loans totalling $38,840 had been issued from this loan fund by the end of 1959.

The education of fishermen's children is another principal object of the Fish Marketing Organization, the general aim being to provide education up to Primary IV standard; in two fishing centres, Shau Kei Wan and Ap Chau, educational facilities have been extended to include Primary VI. In addition, a Fishermen's Adult Education Class has been opened at Shau Kei Wan: this



class has an enrolment of twenty fishermen and their studies include Chinese, English, Arithmetic and Social Studies.

Schools have been established in nine main fishing centres and considerable progress was made during the year in constructing new premises. In particular, two new school buildings were com- pleted a six-classroom school at Tai O on Lantau Island and a two-classroom school at Stanley on Hong Kong Island.

At the end of 1959, 2,259 fishermen's children were receiving education through the Organization. Of this number 1,363 were students at the Organization's own schools while the remainder were receiving scholarships or other awards with which to finance their education at other institutions.

The success of the Organization has attracted world wide in- terest, and many visitors and students from other lands have studied the operations of the Organization with a view to setting up similar schemes in their own countries.

Vegetable Marketing Organization. Following the success of the Fish Marketing Organization, the Government decided to intro- duce a similar system for the wholesaling of locally-produced vegetables, where the problems were not dissimilar. The scheme, which was first established in September 1946, now operates under the Agricultural Products (Marketing) Ordinance, 1952, which pro- vides for the appointment of a Director of Marketing (now known as the Commissioner for Co-operative Development) who is made a corporation sole with power to acquire and dispose of property, and for the appointment of a Marketing Advisory Board, con- sisting of the Director as Chairman and four other persons, nomi- nated by the Governor, who have wide and practical experience of the difficulties and needs of farmers. It is the Government's declared policy that the Organization should one day be run by the farmers themselves as a co-operative enterprise. (See under Federation of Vegetable Marketing Co-operative Societies later in this Chapter).

The Organization undertakes two main functions. First, it col- lects vegetables from Vegetable Marketing Co-operative Societies, depots and posts conveniently located throughout the New Territories and transports them to the wholesale vegetable market in Yau Ma Tei. Second, it arranges the sale of this produce and manages all the attendant financial transactions.



      In these respects the Organization is very similar to its Fish Marketing counterpart. Important differences, however, lie in the method of sale which in the case of the Vegetable Marketing Organization is by negotiation and not by auction, and in the degree of practical assistance provided by Co-operative Marketing Societies which are responsible for handling approximately 67% of the total local production of vegetables. The reasons for nego- tiated sales, as opposed to an auction system, are not difficult to find on an average, approximately 15,000 separate lots are sold daily to some 3,000 buyers. The number of lots rises to over 22,000 a day in the main season, making sales by auction impracticable.

The Organization is self-supporting and the costs of the various services are met from a 10% commission charged on sales. Of this commission 30% is refunded to co-operative marketing soci- eties in respect of the vegetables for which they are responsible.

The weights and values of vegetables marketed through the Organization over the last five years are as follows:







Imported 1955









Value ($)

1,117,629 66,526


1,293,354 76,985





1,387,797 82,607

















108,185 6,440


      As with the Fish Marketing Organization, it is intended that any financial surpluses should be ploughed back into the industry in the form of improved services and other benefits. An example of this policy is the aid which the Organization has given to local farmers in overcoming their main problem of recent years, the lack of cheap fertilizer, through the operation of a scheme for the maturation and distribution of nightsoil to farmers at a low price.

      Cheap credit facilities for the improvement and encouragement of agriculture under the control of the Commissioner for Co- operative Development and Registrar of Co-operative Societies are



available from two sources: the J. E. Joseph Trust Fund and the Vegetable Marketing Organization Loan Fund. Since the establish- ment of the J. E. Joseph Trust Fund in July 1954, farmers have received 6,117 loans totalling approximately $6,052,534, while 446 further loans totalling some $1,555,747 have similarly been made from the Vegetable Marketing Organization's Fund.

The main types of vegetables, both locally grown and imported, are shown below together with their average wholesale prices :

Average whole- sale price in cents

Piculs Tons


per catty

White Cabbage...

344,577 20,511


Flowering Cabbage

179,650 10,693


Leaf Mustard Cabbage ...




Chinese Lettuce ...




Chinese Kale





Chinese Melon








Tientsin Cabbage








Round Cabbage





The first appointment of a Registrar of Co-operative Societies was made in May 1950, and the combined Co-operative and Marketing Department (now known as the Co-operative Develop- ment Department) came into being in October of the same year. Since 1950 the Co-operative movement in Hong Kong has made rapid progress and is being accepted by an increasing number of persons, including peasant farmers and fishermen, as a sound and democratic method of improving their lot.

Inevitably, particularly among farmers and fishermen, the main weight of effort has been directed towards the physical formation of societies and towards ensuring that these are organizationally and economically sound. The next step, which can only be achieved over a period of years, will be the development of the existing societies into a fully effective co-operative movement.



An interesting development during the past four years has been the growth in the number of Co-operative Building Societies; these societies are at present formed exclusively of local pension- able officers of the Civil Service and operate with funds lent by the Government.

      During 1959 forty four additional co-operative societies were registered, bringing the total on register at the end of December to 257. The societies registered in 1959 comprised two Vegetable Marketing Societies, six Pig-Raising Societies, two Better Living Societies, one fishermen's Thrift Society, seven fishermen's Thrift and Loan Societies, one Federation of Fishermen's Societies, three Consumers' Societies, two Salaried Workers' Thrift and Loan Societies and twenty Co-operative Building Societies. At present there are fourteen different types of society and their functions and scale of operations are briefly described below:

Vegetable Marketing Societies. The twenty one societies collect and market the vegetables grown by their members, and handle loans obtained for their members both from the J. E. Joseph Trust Fund and from the Vegetable Marketing Organi- zation Loan Fund. In addition, some of these societies have instituted savings schemes for members with a view to en- couraging thrift. In 1959 about 67% of locally-produced vegetables marketed through the Vegetable Marketing Organi- zation came from members of these co-operative societies. Federation of Vegetable Marketing Societies. The Federation was established in March 1953. It has as its object the improvement of liaison between member-societies and the undertaking of a number of activities on their behalf. Its principal and long-term aim, however, is the gradual taking over of the functions of the Vegetable Marketing Organiza- tion. In March 1959, the Federation took over part of the sales floor in the Vegetable Marketing Organization's whole- sale market as the first step towards taking over all opera- tional work within the market.

Pig-Raising Societies. The forty three societies have as their object the provision of assistance to members in increasing pig production and particularly in the provision of credit facilities for the purchase of stock and feed.



Federation of Pig-Raising Societies. The Federation was regis- tered in November 1954 with the purpose of improving liaison between pig-raising societies and of assisting member-societies in their contacts with Government departments.

Fishermen's Thrift Societies. The main object of these four societies is to inculcate the habit of making small savings and they may be regarded as being the foundation of co-operative effort among the fishing community. After a period of success- ful operation as Thrift Societies, individual societies may qualify for 'promotion' to the status of Thrift and Loan Societies.

Fishermen's Thrift and Loan Societies. The first of these societies was registered in September 1952. They have proved very successful, and at the end of 1959 thirty eight societies were registered. Their main functions are to encourage thrift and to provide security for, and arrange the disbursal of, loans granted to members from the Fish Marketing Organiza- tion. In addition to thrift schemes these societies have set up revolving funds from their own resources amounting to over $210,000 for all societies. One of these societies undertakes the additional function of providing loans for construction of houses by its members.

Early in 1959, C.A.R.E. generously donated parcels of fish- ing gear valued at $100,000 to a number of fishermen's co- operative societies. In order to make the best use of the donation, these societies adopted a system whereby the parcels were considered as loans in kind' and the recipients under- took to pay into their respective society's revolving loan fund the value of the gear parcel, thus increasing the future loan power of the society.

Fishermen's Credit and Marketing Society. The functions of this society are parallel to those of the Thrift and Loan societies, but in addition it owns and operates a mechanized collecting vessel which brings its members' catches to the market for sale.

Federation of Fishermen's Co-operative Societies. This Federa- tion, formed exclusively of fishermen's co-operative societies in the Tai Po district, was registered in March. Its purpose



      is to improve liaison between member-societies and assist them in their contacts with Government departments. Salaried Workers' Thrift and Loan Societies. There are now four Thrift and Loan Societies. Their aims are to encourage members to save a portion of their income and to utilize their savings for small individual loans. In addition, one society has introduced a medical scheme for the benefit of its members and their dependants.

Irrigation Societies. The two existing societies own and operate

pumps and irrigation channels.

Co-operative Building Societies. 132 of these societies had been registered by the end of 1959. These societies were formed to comply with the conditions prescribed by the Government as part of its programme to assist the housing of local pension- able officers. The work is described further in Chapter 10. Fish Pond Society. The only society of this kind, the Luk Keng

Fish Pond Society, owns a fish pond at Luk Keng near Sha Tau Kok with the purpose of improving and developing fish culture.

Credit and Consumers' Societies. There are now five Consumers' Societies and their functions are the purchase of consumer goods in bulk for resale to members, thereby encouraging members to save and to utilize these savings for small individual loans.

Better Living Societies. These two co-operative societies, formed by villagers of Tai Po Kau and Sai Kung, have as their main objects the improvement of their members' living conditions and the promotion of their welfare and economic interests. The operation of these societies is being closely watched for, if successful, they may well set a pattern for other villages in the New Territories.

Figures of the membership and finances of societies will be found at Appendix XI.


        Iron, lead, wolfram, and graphite are mined by underground methods and kaolin clay, quartz, and feldspar are worked by opencast methods. Iron ore and kaolin are exported to Japan, lead ore to the United Kingdom and other countries in Europe,



wolfram to the United Kingdom and United States, and graphite to the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Thailand, Taiwan, and India. Kaolin is also used locally by manufacturers of rubber goods. Quartz and feldspar are produced solely for local consump- tion, principally by the enamelware, ceramic, and glass-making industries.

      At the close of the year there were four mining leases, twenty two mining licences, and two prospecting licences in operation, all on the mainland or the islands of the New Territories. Operations were mainly controlled by individuals or by small Chinese mining companies.

      In 1959, production from the Ma On Shan Iron Mine was almost entirely from underground sources. The ore was treated in the 700-ton-a-day crude ore capacity dressing plant situated near the waterfront and concentrates were transported by barge to ships anchored in Tolo Harbour.

      Although the market price for wolfram improved at the end of the year, its generally low level discouraged interest in the mining of this mineral and all production in 1959 came from the Needle Hill Mine.

      Prospecting for beryl, graphite, and iron ore continued, but there was no discovery of economic importance during the year.

The Colony's production of minerals was as follows:

Production in



long tons

in $


Graphite, 80% fixed carbon





Graphite, 50% fixed carbon



Iron Ore ...






Lead Ore Quartz






      The Mines Department is under the control of the Commissioner of Mines, who is concurrently Commissioner of Labour. The Department is under the day-to-day direction of a Superintendent of Mines, assisted by two Assistant Inspectors of Mines.

      The ownership and control of all minerals is vested in the Crown under the Mining Ordinance, 1954. This ordinance also provides



for the issue by the Commissioner of Mines of prospecting licences for periods of six months, renewable up to a maximum of two years, and of mining licences for periods of six months, renewable up to a maximum of five years. It also provides for the Land Officer to issue mining leases for periods up to twenty one years. Details of mining leases and licences and prospecting licences in operation on 1st January and 1st July of each year are published in the Government Gazette. The Superintendent of Mines issues Authorized Buyers' Licences for the sale and purchase of ores, grants Mine Blasting Certificates, and examines Export Licences for minerals mined in the Colony. He is also responsible for assessment of royalties on mineral sales at the rate of 5% of the value of minerals won, and for the issue of demand notes for royalties, rents, premia and fees in connexion with licences and leases. Inspection of mining areas and survey work in connexion with applications for, or the grant of, mining and prospecting licences are also part of the Department's work.

Chapter 8: Education

THE number of children in Hong Kong schools continues to rise rapidly. By the end of September 1959 it was nearly 485,000. On the liberation of the Colony in 1945 the number was just over 4,000.

      The number of schools and total enrolment on 30th September 1959 were as follows:

No. of




No. of Teachers



at 31.3.59



(a) Grant









(b) Subsidized










Special Afternoon Classes



Special Education (including

handicapped children)



Total ...





The percentage of children in private schools dropped slightly during the year: this was due to the increased provision of government and aided schools. Even so, private school enrolment itself increased considerably during the year, and still amounts to over half the total enrolment. As private schools are self- supporting and therefore charge higher fees than government or government-aided schools, their numerical predominance in the educational system clearly demonstrates the continuing public demand in the Colony for education even at a relatively high cost.

School Expansion Programme. The Government seven-year plan for the expansion of primary education, instituted late in 1954 with the aim of providing by the end of 1961 places for all children of primary school age, made good progress during the year. The present target figure is 33,000 new places each year. Between 30th



     September 1958 and 30th September 1959 the following new accommodation was completed:

No. of No. of

Schools Classrooms

Accom- modation

Government Schools




Subsidized Schools




Private Schools








      Government schools are built, equipped and operated entirely from Government funds. Subsidized schools are assisted by the free grant of land, by building subsidies, and by subsidies for recurrent costs: they often receive interest-free loans for new buildings as well. Selected private schools, operated on a non- profit-making basis, may receive a free grant of land and interest- free building loans. The schools mentioned in the table above were all in new buildings.

Two features of the school building programme during the year deserve comment. Firstly, the large number of government schools completed, accommodating more than twice as many pupils as in government schools completed in any previous year. Secondly, the inception of ground floor government-aided primary schools in Resettlement Estates, built as part of the resettlement housing blocks. It is hoped that most of the children in new resettlement estates will be accommodated in this new type of school, which will materially ease the general problem of finding primary school places for all the children in the Colony.

      The Government directly maintains sixty six primary schools, eight secondary schools, two technical secondary schools, a tech- nical college, two teacher training colleges and three evening institutions. During the year eleven new schools were opened and extensions were built to three existing schools. The average age for entering and leaving government primary schools is six and twelve respectively, and for secondary schools over twelve and nineteen.

Grant Schools (which are concerned mainly with secondary education) function under the terms of the Grant Code, under which the Government pays the difference between the approved expenditure of a school and its income from fees and other



sources. This approved expenditure includes salaries, leave pay, incidentals, and passages for teachers who are so entitled. Alter- natively, a block grant may be made. Grants may also be made for up to 50% of the cost of new buildings, equipment and major repairs. The usual medium of instruction in Grant Schools is English.

A joint examination is held annually for pupils from Primary 6 classes in government schools, government-aided schools and private schools to select pupils for secondary education in govern- ment and aided secondary schools.

      Subsidized Schools (which are mostly primary schools) are operated under a Subsidy Code. With government aid under the Code, selected schools can keep fees reasonably low and pay teachers the same salaries as are paid in government schools. There are now 386 subsidized schools, an increase of 8 over last year, brought about by the building of 43 new subsidized schools and by the admission of two private schools to the Subsidy Code; 37 schools changed their form of registration. These latter schools were formerly registered separately for morning and afternoon sessions, but have now combined and are registered as one school only. In addition, some schools erected new buildings and others added classrooms as a part of normal expansion. The subsidized schools benefited by the employment of an increasing number of trained teachers.

Private Schools. Indirect Government assistance is given to private schools through special courses for improving the profes- sional qualifications of teachers and through inspection and advice from specialists. A Special Advisory Panel was set up in the Education Department to assist and advise managers of private schools on all aspects of school management, including registra- tion, premises, equipment, staffing, finance and general administra- tion.

Private colleges are now playing a more important part in post- secondary education and show increased enrolment and better facilities. The Chinese Colleges' Joint Council representing three of these institutions has been established since 1957 for the pur- pose of formulating a common policy for study and administra- tion. The first event of significance was the establishment of a



Joint Entry Examination held in June 1959. Government scholar- ships and bursaries are tenable for a four-year course at these institutions. The holders of bursaries take either an arts or science course and then receive a year's training at a government teacher training college. (See also under 'Higher Education.").

      Special Afternoon Classes were formed in 1950 for the benefit of children who were unable to obtain admission to primary schools. They are of two hour's duration, cover general subjects, and are run through the co-operation of a large number of schools, mostly private. Enrolment in these classes, which in 1958 was 15,241, is now 13,156.

      Training of Teachers. In 1959 the University of Hong Kong awarded 33 Diplomas of Education and twenty Certificates of Education to university graduates. 616 students from the two government training colleges passed their college examinations and 222 members of government in-service training courses for teachers passed the qualifying examinations. A special course for the training of kindergarten teachers was organized in 1958 and eighteen members are now in the second year of this course.

The total enrolment for full-time training courses in 1959-60 was 732; enrolment for in-service training courses for unqualified teachers was 1,260. The latter figure represents an increase of 729 over the figure for the previous year, and were due to the establish- ment of a new Evening Institute Course for Unqualified Teachers. In all, 17,878 teachers were in service at the end of March 1959; this figure is considerably higher than for 1958, due to the inclu- sion of part-time teachers in the total teaching staff.

A Professional Teachers' Training Board is responsible for dealing with general matters concerning teacher-training and ad- vises on the integration of teacher-training in government training colleges and the University.

Voluntary Education and Welfare Work is carried out by a wide variety of bodies in Hong Kong. The Kaifong (or Neighbourhood) Welfare Associations provide free schooling for poor children, and the British Red Cross Society organizes hospital schools for crippled children. There are schools for the deaf, for the blind



and for lepers and orphanages, and homes for maladjusted children, while the Po Leung Kuk provides free schooling for the homeless young women and children in its care. (See also Chapter 11).

      Other agencies which contribute to the educational effort include the Y.M.C.A., Y.W.C.A., the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals, the Boys' and Girls' Clubs Association, the Children's Playground Association, the Boy Scouts' and Girl Guides' Associations and the Rotary Clubs.

In co-operation with the Social Welfare Department, the Educa- tion Department works closely with voluntary agencies of this kind. The Department is represented at the meetings of the Hong Kong Council of Social Service and on the Mental Health Associa- tion of Hong Kong. It is also closely associated with the Medical and Health Department in the sphere of health education, and, in the professional sphere, with the Hong Kong Teachers' Association. Libraries are maintained by the British Council, the United States Information Service, the local Chambers of Commerce, a number of Government departments including the Education Department and the University of Hong Kong; access to the University and official libraries is restricted. Books, pamphlets, journals and visual-aid material are distributed by the Information Services Department, the British Council, various consular authori- ties and commercial agencies. The British Council, whose activities are described further in Chapter 20, administers certain post- graduate scholarship awards and gives advice and assistance to students intending to take courses in the United Kingdom.

In the educational scene, three main problems confront all interested bodies, public or private: a swollen population, due both to the influx of persons from China and to the high rate of natural increase; the scarcity of new school sites in a small and highly developed territory; and the problem of obtaining sufficient qualified teachers.

Expenditure on Education. A brief summary of expenditure by the Education and other Departments from August 1958 to July 1959 is given on next page.





Recurrent Expenditure :

Personal Emoluments

Other Charges



Maintenance and Repairs of School

     Buildings (Public Works Department) Grants and Subsidies to non-Govern-

ment Schools




Capital Expenditure:

New Government School Buildings, including furniture and equipment (Public Works Department)


Furniture and Equipment for other

Government Schools



Grants and Subsidies to non-Govern-

ment Schools



Grants to the University of Hong Kong


Expenditure by Other Departments :

Medical and Health Department

Kowloon-Canton Railway

Co-operative Development Department





$ 1,000,339

       Legislation. All non-Government colleges, schools and other institutions of learning, with the exception of a small number of schools for the children of members of Her Majesty's Forces, are subject to the provisions of the Education Ordinance. The Director of Education, who, under the Ordinance, has general control over education in the Colony, is chairman of the Board of Education, which has advisory functions, its members being appointed by the Governor. The Director is required to keep registers of schools, teachers, and managers of schools, and to ensure that satisfactory standards are maintained in respect of school buildings, methods of enforcing discipline, the keeping of registers and accounts, the payment of fees, and the proper conduct and efficiency of schools and teachers. The University of Hong Kong is governed by a separate Ordinance.



      Higher Education. The University of Hong Kong, which began its life largely with financial assistance from generous friends and benefactors, has since been largely supported by recurrent and non-recurrent grants from the Government. Its recurrent expendi- ture for the year under review is estimated at $12,000,000 and the Government subvention towards recurrent expenditure is $5,500,000, while the budgeted capital subvention is $3,000,000. Grants of Crown Land have been made from time to time; the central University estate now covers an area of thirty six acres and other estates total almost nine acres.

      There are faculties of Arts, Science, Medicine, and Engineering and Architecture. Enrolments in October 1959 were 507, 163, 299 and 141 respectively. The Institute of Oriental Studies had thirty one students, the Education Diploma and Certificate courses ninety nine and the Social Study course twenty six, giving a total of 1,266 undergraduate and post-graduate students, of whom 115 were part-time. 343, or 26.9% were women. The general medium of study is English. The minimum qualification for entry to undergraduate courses is gained through the University's matricu- lation Examination, which is similar in type and standard to the General Certificate of Education Examinations conducted by the Universities of the United Kingdom. Most of the under- graduates are Chinese but several other races are represented, particularly from South-East Asia. About 340 students receive financial aid in the form of scholarships and bursaries.

      With the increasing numbers qualifying for entrance from the schools, Government and the University have agreed on a programme of expansion which will increase the number of undergraduates to about 1,800 in the next seven years.

      The number of full-time teaching staff, from demonstrators upwards, is 184. Over eighty of these are the University's own graduates.

Final plans for the new Library and Students' Union, to be built on a site south of the Main Building, have been approved and building will soon start.

      A capital sum of $700,000 was needed to enable the Faculty of Engineering and Architecture to reinstate degree courses in electrical and mechanical engineering, Government contributed half this sum, and with generous donations from various local



industries and firms the target figure was almost in sight at the end of the year.

The reader is directed to Chapter 18 for an account of research work in the University during 1959.

The Post-Secondary Colleges in Hong Kong are post-war institutions, the initial impetus to their establishment being the influx of students and university staffs from China during the years 1947-50. These colleges now help to satisfy the growing demand for higher education in the Chinese language.

A draft Ordinance for Post-Secondary Colleges was prepared during the year. The Bill has been framed to meet the needs of the colleges and to improve their status, as well as to assist them to achieve recognition at a higher level in the future. Post- Secondary College Grant Regulations were also drawn up to provide terms for financial assistance to the colleges, to ensure satisfactory conditions for staff, and to provide adequate financial control. A Joint Establishment Board was set up in August 1959 to advise the Director of Education on the staffing of colleges, and to assist in assessing grants for establishments. A grant Colleges Diploma Board is also envisaged.

Scholarships. Twenty government scholarships, amounting to $36,500 a year and tenable at the University of Hong Kong, were awarded to six Arts, three Engineering, five Medical and six Science students on the results of the 1959 Hong Kong Matricu- lation Examination.

Thirty nine government bursaries, amounting to $110,500 a year and tenable at the University of Hong Kong, were awarded to Students in financial need, including five taking the Diploma course in Education, twenty one taking the Arts course and thirteen taking the Science course, to enable them to be trained as secondary school teachers. Nine government bursaries amount- ing to $17,400 a year were also awarded for the Social Study course at the University of Hong Kong for the purpose of training more social workers.

Thirteen government scholarships, amounting to $18,500 a year and twenty nine government bursaries amounting to $38,900 a year, tenable at Chinese post-secondary day colleges, were awarded to suitable students who passed the 1959 Hong Kong Chinese School Certificate Examination.



127 pupils at Anglo-Chinese secondary schools and thirty three at the Special Classes Centre were assisted in their matriculation studies by maintenance grants amounting to $10,830 a month. The Special Classes Centre exists to prepare selected students who have passed the Hong Kong Chinese School Certificate Examination for entry to the University of Hong Kong.

Higher Studies Overseas. The British Universities Selection Committee appointed by His Excellency the Governor interviews, selects and recommends students who wish to be placed in universities or other institutions of higher education in the United Kingdom. The Students' Branch of the Colonial Office and the Hong Kong Students' Unit in London arrange the placing of these students. The Director of Hong Kong Students in London and his assistant are also responsible for arranging the reception and accommodation of students on arrival, and for advising them on educational or personal problems during their stay in Great Britain.

On 30th September 1959, 1,687 Hong Kong students, the majority of them private students, were known to be pursuing higher studies in the United Kingdom, and a table showing the main category of courses being taken is given at Appendix XIII. Figures for Hong Kong students in other countries are not available.

From October 1958 to September 1959, 311 students are known to have left for the United Kingdom and the Irish Republic for further studies. This number includes students going for pre- university and nursing courses. During the same period 192 students left for Canada, 665 for Australia and many others for the United States to continue their studies.

Hong Kong House, a residential hostel and social centre for Hong Kong students in London, is controlled by a Board of Governors responsible to the Hong Kong Government. The House, which has accommodation for about 80 students, receives financial support from the Government.

Local Examinations. The Education Department conducts the following local examinations each year:

The Hong Kong School Certificate

The Hong Kong Chinese School Certificate

The Joint Primary 6 Examination.



      The last of these is taken for entry into Government and aided secondary schools. There were 3,090 Form I and Junior Middle I places available, an increase of 649, but this could hardly keep pace with the increase in the number of candidates. The number of Government scholarships awarded on the results of this Exami- nation was increased by 20 to 170.

       There was a marked increase in the number of candidates sitting each of these examinations, as the following table shows:

Hong Kong School Certificate

Day Schools

Night Schools

No. of Candidates



1958 1959

1958 1959 1958



3,309 3,944




2,593 67.8 65.7

489 46.5 37.3

2,118 2,316

7,573 10,246

1,477 1,644 69.5


Hong Kong Chinese

School Certificate

Joint Primary 6 ...

2,441* 3,090* 31.7* 30.1*

* i.c. promoted to Form I/Junior Middle I in Government Schools and in the places available in aided schools.

Overseas Examinations. The Education Department organizes a number of examinations on behalf of examining bodies in the United Kingdom. These examinations, offering a recognized quali- fication, are increasingly popular and cover a wide range of subjects. (Appendix XII).

Technical Education. Government maintains a technical college, a secondary technical school for boys and another for girls. There are, in addition, a number of Government-aided and privately operated institutions for technical training.

       The new Technical College includes a large classroom block, a number of engineering laboratories and workshops, a machine and fitting shop, a foundry and blowroom, and spinning and weaving shops. An auditorium and students' canteen was com- pleted in January 1958. Three new buildings are still under construction: the China Light & Power Co. electrical laboratories, the Taikoo production engineering workshop and a pilot dyeing and finishing plant.

      The College has at present 615 full-time and part-time day students, 6,670 evening students and a full-time staff of thirty nine assisted by 360 part-time lecturers. The day students are organized into Departments of Building, Mechanical and



Production Engineering, Commerce, Textiles, Electrical Engineer- ing with Telecommunications, and Navigation. The medium of instruction is English and applicants for admission are required to have a general education to the level of the Hong Kong School Certificate.

The Technical College Evening Department offers courses in the same subjects. Courses are of one, two, three and five year's duration, according to subject and standard. Most of them are 'grouped' courses in which students study a number of related subjects, single subject courses being exceptional. Preliminary courses in general subjects are available for apprentices and artisans whose general education does not permit admission to the Certificate courses. Only a few courses are taught in the medium of Chinese, since the majority of students prefer to enrol for courses given in English.

Students take the examinations of the Institutions of Mechanical Engineers and of Electrical Engineers, the City and Guilds of London Institute, the Institute of Builders, the London Chamber of Commerce (book-keeping and Pitman's shorthand).

      A conference on technical education, attended by representatives of the Federation of Malaya, Singapore, Sarawak, British North Borneo and Hong Kong, was held at the Technical College in April.

The Victoria Technical School, with an enrolment of 569, is a secondary technical school for boys. Entry is by competitive examination. In addition to the normal academic subjects, pupils are taught metalwork, woodwork, technical drawing and workshop technology. At the end of the five-year course, pupils sit for the Hong Kong School Certificate Examinations in technical and academic subjects.

       The Ho Tung Technical School for Girls is also a secondary technical school where the curriculum combines general subjects with homecraft, dressmaking and embroidery, industrial arts such as pottery and weaving, and commercial subjects. Many of these subjects are taken in the School Certificate Examinations. The enrolment is 336.

      The Salesian Order operates two private technical schools-the Aberdeen Technical School and the Tang King Po School. The



former provides an excellent training for mechanics, electrical mechanics and carpenters. The school aims eventually to present candidates for the Hong Kong School Certificate. The Tang King Po School also includes a secondary technical school but maintains a trade school section, equipped with modern printing and type- setting machinery, principally for pre-apprenticeship training in the printing trades.

        The Po Kok Vocational School is a Buddhist charitable institu- tion where girls from poor families receive a general education, together with instruction in book-keeping and dressmaking, in the medium of Chinese.

       Of the private technical schools, the Far East Flying Training School offers day and evening classes in aeronautical engineering and in radio subjects. The Hong Kong General Chamber of Com- merce runs evening classes in commercial subjects. There is in addition a wide variety of evening classes in commercial and technical subjects, but these differ widely in enrolment and in efficiency. The commercial schools offer classes in book-keeping, shorthand and typewriting, while courses in radio subjects pre- dominate in the technical schools.

Adult Education. Adult Education is provided through classes organized by the Evening Institute, the Technical College Evening Department, the Evening School of Higher Chinese Studies, the Department of Extra-Mural Studies of the University of Hong Kong, private night schools and voluntary organizations. Enrol- ment in government institutions was as follows:

Evening Institute

Technical College Evening Department

Evening School of Higher Chinese Studies




       The Evening Institute offers different types of evening courses designed to make up educational deficiencies and to improve em- ployment prospects. At the beginning of the session there were 327 classes as compared with 299 classes in the previous year. Most of these classes are held in government school premises in both urban and rural areas.

       There are 136 English classes ranging from Primary 5 to Lower Form VI standard; thirty five Teachers' classes for art, music, handwork, woodwork, mathematics, general science, domestic science and teaching of English; eighteen School Certificate classes



leading to the two School Certificate Examinations; eighteen post- primary extension classes providing an additional three-year train- ing course with practical bias for those who do not anticipate further education at the secondary level; thirty five general back- ground education classes for adults who have not had the oppor- tunity to complete primary school education during childhood, and eighty five practical classes for sewing and knitting, housecraft and woodwork. These are designed to help in the acquisition of skills needed in the home and in everyday life.

      The Evening School of Higher Chinese Studies provides a three-year course in General Arts at the post-secondary level. The course is intended for men and women who have passed the School Certificate Examinations and are prepared to spend their evenings in pursuit of advanced studies through the medium of the Chinese language. Among the subjects taught are Chinese Litera- ture, Philosophy, Sociology, Philology, Chinese Poetry, Novels and Drama. English Language and Literature also occupy an impor- tant part of the curriculum.

The scheme for combining education with recreation for the lower income groups of the community was implemented when the first Adult Education and Recreation Centre was opened in October 1955. The success of this centre warranted further expan- sion of the scheme. By December 1958, eight such centres had been opened, and in September 1959, another one was started at Sha Tau Kok in the New Territories, making a total of nine centres four in Hong Kong, four in Kowloon and one in the New Territories.

Each centre is staffed by one organizer, two general supervisors and one specialist supervisor. The services of the latter are nor- mally shared among the centres, so that it is possible for a variety of specialized activities, such as folk-dancing, dramatics, art, music, etc., to be arranged for different groups within each centre. The organizer is responsible for administration and supervision of the centre while the general supervisors direct activities of a less specialized nature such as group discussion, library, games, inter- centre competitions, and personal interviews. In addition there are also special talks on health and citizenship by officers of various Government departments, and instruction is given on hobbies as the demand arises.



Apart from cultural and recreational activities, the centres also offer formal education courses, both on general background educa- tion and on practical subjects. The general course is designed to provide basic education up to primary 6 standard, and the prac- tical courses are of a domestic nature. The overall membership of the nine centres in October 1959 was 20,997 and the nightly attendance at each centre ranges from 300 to 800 per evening.

       Music, Drama and the Arts occupy an important place in the school curriculum and in extra-curricular activities. The Eleventh Annual Schools' Music Festival was held between 24th February and 14th March. The 2,100 entries made a new record. Mr. Maurice Jacobson, a pianist and composer as well as Chairman of the music publishing firm of Curwen's, was the adjudicator for all music classes. Mr. A. W. T. Green, Senior Lecturer in Linguis- tics at the University of Hong Kong, adjudicated the elocution classes.

Owing to the large number of entries (1958: 1,673; 1959: 1,921) the practical examinations of the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music had to run for three months, from 15th September to 15th December. Of the 1,921 candidates who sat this examination, 1,425 passed, 354 with merit and 184 with dis- tinction.

       In the theory examinations there were 280 entries for March and 399 for November, making a total increase of 24% over the figures for the previous year. In the examination held in March, 380 candidates entered and 323 passed. The results of the exami- nation held in November are not yet available.

Mr. HONG Yat Pang, a violin student, won the Associated Board Scholarship awarded to Hong Kong every three years by the Royal Schools of Music and is now studying at the Royal College of Music.

During the year the Schools' Music Association presented ten concerts by local and visiting artists. In order to promote interest in Chinese Classical Music the Association invited the Hong Kong Philharmonic Chinese Music Group to give a concert. A further increase of membership (1958: 2,569; 1959: 2,684) was reflected in the excellent attendances at these concerts and recitals.

      A new venture was the Chinese Orchestra formed by students of Queen Elizabeth School.



A successful Inter-School Drama Competition was held this year in which schools entered for both English and Cantonese competitions. Some 140 teachers have been trained in short courses on art. Routine inspection has revealed that the standard of art is gradually improving in the 600 schools which are now visited.

In Physical Education, some progress was made in introducing the subject into the curriculum of kindergarten schools. In the training of teachers in service, emphasis was placed on training those who had had no previous training, and also on those teachers undergoing qualifying courses. 240 teachers attended short courses during the year. Towards the end of the year a new qualifying course for primary teachers was started and 256 teachers attending this course were undergoing training in physical education. The New Territories Sports Association introduced minor games in its competitions for primary school children.





























52 53







Note: The above figures include the Evening Institute but not the University of Hong Kong









Age 4 - 14 Primary

Age 12-20 Secondary

Age 18 and over Post-secondary























The above figures include Evening Institute students but not students at the University, nor 13.156 students attending special afternoon classes.

Chapter 9: Public Health


STATUTORY responsibility for administering the services which safeguard public health in Hong Kong lies jointly with the Director of Medical and Health Services, the Urban Council, the District Commissioner, New Territories and the Commissioner of Labour. The Medical and Health Department has the executive responsibility of providing the Government hospital and clinic services through- out both urban and rural areas. In addition the epidemic and endemic disease control, maternal and child health, school health and port health services are maintained by the Department.

      The Urban Council, through the Urban Services Department, is concerned with environmental sanitation, including food hygiene, in the urban areas of Hong Kong and Kowloon. In the rural areas the District Commissioner, New Territories is the statutory authority and the District Administration maintains environmental services broadly comparable to those provided by the Urban Services Department in the urban areas. The Industrial Health Section of the Labour Department is responsible for the assessment and control of occupational diseases, for accident prevention in work places, for the medical aspects of workmen's compensation and for environmental health conditions in factories. Doctors from the Medical and Health Department are seconded to the Urban Services Department, to the Industrial Health Section and to the Prisons Medical Service.

      Government's policy is to provide, directly or indirectly, low cost or free medical and health services to that large section of the population which cannot afford to seek medical attention from other sources. To this end it maintains general, infectious disease, maternity and mental hospitals, general and specialized out-patient clinics and gives substantial subventions to hospitals maintained by voluntary associations and medical missionary bodies. Treat- ment is available free at Government institutions for tuberculosis,



leprosy and venereal diseases; ophthalmic services are free to the blind and to all children under ten years of age, exclusive of the cost of spectacles. Preventive inoculations against diphtheria, typhoid, cholera, rabies, tetanus and plague are similarly available at Government hospitals, clinics and dispensaries and B.C.G. vaccine is given without charge by doctors and midwives through- out the Colony.

At Government clinics there is a charge of $1 for each attend- ance. In the general and maternity wards of all Government hospitals no charge is made for treatment or accommodation; when food is provided there is a nominal dietary charge. Fees are charged for first class or single ward accommodation and for second class accommodation in wards of two to eight beds. In all cases, however, fees can be waived if necessary.

      Grants-in-aid from public funds are given to certain non-profit- making hospitals where treatment is either free or at low cost, subventions normally being calculated to meet the excess of expenditure over income. In some cases, notably for the in-patient treatment of tuberculosis, the cost of maintenance of a fixed number of beds in hospitals run by voluntary or missionary bodies is met by a subvention.

Government also has a contractual obligation to provide free medical, dental and hospital care in its own clinics and hospitals to all its monthly-paid employees.

      Finance. Recurrent expenditure on the services maintained by the Medical and Health Department during 1959-60 was estimated to be $47,806,000. A further $19,324,200 was disbursed as re- current or special grants-in-aid to medical work maintained by welfare and missionary agencies. The Tung Wah Group of Hospi- tals, the Hong Kong Anti-Tuberculosis Association, the Grantham Hospital (run by the Anti-Tuberculosis Association), the Hong Kong Auxiliary of the Mission to Lepers and the Alice Ho Miu Ling Nethersole Hospital received grants totalling over $450,000. The largest subvention of $13,425,600 went to the Tung Wah Hospitals and included a capital grant of $4,925,600 towards the rebuilding of the Kwong Wah Hospital.

Estimated capital expenditure on Medical and Health Depart- ment projects was $18,706,200; in addition to this the Hong Kong



      Jockey Club during the year undertook to provide buildings to the value of $8,025,000, which when complete will be handed over to Government and maintained by the Medical and Health Department.

The estimated recurrent expenditure, including subventions, represents 9.69% of Government's total estimated recurrent ex- penditure. This does not include the expenditure on environmental sanitation by the Urban Services Department and by the District Administration of the New Territories.

      Professional Registers. There are five statutory bodies dealing with the registration of medical practitioners, dentists, pharmacists, nurses and midwives. The Hong Kong Medical Council is respon- sible for the registration of medical practitioners and has respon- sibilities in connexion with disciplinary proceedings and offences; it is not an examining body. The Dental Council, Pharmacy Board, Nurses Board and Midwives Board all maintain registers, regulate training, hold examinations leading to registration or enrolment and have disciplinary powers.

       During the year the Dental Registration Ordinance, 1940 was repealed and re-enacted in amended form by the Dentist's Regis- tration Ordinance, 1959. The former Board has been replaced by a Dental Council and the new Ordinance brings dental legislation into line with that enacted for the medical profession in 1957. An important innovation is the power to prescribe regulations for the establishment of classes of ancillary dental workers and to define their qualifications, scope of work, and titles.

      Towards the end of the year the Society of Apothecaries in London again held qualifying examinations in Hong Kong for the L.M.S.S.A. to which 106 unregistered doctors were admitted. For the practical and oral examinations which started during the last week in November, the Society's examiners came out from London; associate examiners were appointed by the Society from amongst the staff of the Medical Faculty of the University of Hong Kong. Thirty nine unregistered doctors passed in all parts of the examination and a further 45 passed in one or more subjects. There is now a total of 83 doctors who have obtained the L.M.S.S.A. qualification in Hong Kong during the past two years as a result of this special arrangement with the Society of



     Apothecaries. The Society is being requested to hold a third and last examination in the Colony towards the end of 1960.


Against the background of overcrowding, a limited water supply and lack of adequate housing and modern sanitation the general level of health is remarkably well maintained, but the rising incidence of diphtheria and the enteric diseases gave cause for concern, particularly as protective inoculations are widely available, at no cost, to all who seek them.

For the seventh year in succession there were no cases of the six quarantinable diseases which are the subject of control under International Sanitary Regulations. Outbreaks of cholera and smallpox in nearby countries on the main air and sea routes to Hong Kong made special vigilance necessary. During the outbreak of smallpox in Singapore additional facilities for vaccination were made available and the response resulted in some 1,034,138 vaccinations being performed, as compared with 564,244 during 1958. For the fourth year in succession the Colony was free of animal and human rabies.

      The incidence of notified cases of measles, chicken pox and whooping cough was lower than in the previous year, but this does not reflect the true situation as many cases occur which are not reported. This gave an unduly high fatality rate for measles, as all cases of death are necessarily recorded. There was relatively little influenza and malaria notifications dropped by approximately 40%.

Tuberculosis continues to be the major health problem, but progress is being made and the results of the control measures applied are encouraging. Accidents inside and outside the home continue to cause much disability, death and loss of working time. Education in the prevention of accidents, particularly those due to fire and traffic has been greatly intensified. The toll, however, remains very high on account of the density of the population, overcrowded living conditions and the phenomenal increase in vehicles.

Vital Statistics. Until the population census has been taken in 1961 the precise age structure of the population will not be known,



It is estimated, however, from data accumulated in surveys of limited scope, that one-third of the population is aged 14 years or under and that there is a predominance of males in the young adult age groups. The estimated mid-year population was 2,857,000.

        For the first time since records were re-established after World War II there has been a decline over the previous year both in the total number of births registered and in the birth rate. The natural increase of 84,329 persons was 1,741 less than for 1958 and the birth rate also declined to 36.6 per 1,000. The crude death rate of 7.1 per 1,000 was again the lowest on record. The following table gives the figures of births and deaths for the last

five years:


Death rate per 1,000 of estimated mid-year population

Birth rate per 1,000 of






1954 ...





1955 ...





1956 ...





1957 ...





1958 ...





1959 ...





The infant mortality rate dropped to 48.3 per 1,000 live births; the neonatal mortality rate was 21.3 per 1,000 live births and the still birth rate was 13.1 per 1,000 live births. There were only 77 maternal deaths and the maternal mortality rate further declined to 0.73 per 1,000 total births. The perinatal rate, the deaths of infants under 1 week of age, was 25.7 per 1,000 total births.


The total of 20,241 cases of notifiable diseases represented an increase of 7.3% over the 1958 total. The increase was due largely to a rise in the number of reported cases of diphtheria, enteric fever, bacillary dysentery and tuberculosis. There were fewer deaths, however, from notifiable communicable diseases, the total of 2,589 being less by 173 than that for the previous year. There were fewer deaths from tuberculosis, enteric fever and diphtheria. Tuberculosis. Tuberculosis continues to be the major communi- cable disease problem in Hong Kong and an estimated 2% of the



adult population have the disease in an active form. The chances of contact with an open case are therefore very high and it is not yet possible or practicable to segregate in institutions some 60,000 active cases. The approach to control has therefore been to protect that most vulnerable section of the population, the infants, by vaccination with B.C.G.; to treat by ambulatory chemotherapy the known cases; and to select for hospital treatment those recover- able cases who are not responding adequately to chemotherapy or whose recovery can be hastened by surgery.

       Vaccination with B.C.G. is offered free throughout the Colony and during the year just under 60% of the children born received it within two to three days of birth. Young children attending the M.C.H. Centres who have not received B.C.G. but who have a positive tuberculin test without signs of active disease are given a course of isonicotinic acid hydrazide as a preventive measure.

      Government operates three major full-time chest clinics in the urban area and 10 smaller part-time clinics, 6 of which are in the rural areas. These clinics are the main source of case finding and those cases with active disease are immediately started on a full course of treatment as out-patients. During the year more than 20,000 persons were receiving continuous therapy involving some 1,400,000 attendances at the clinics. For those receiving strep- tomycin injections, night clinics have been opened at a number of strategic points so that patients who are in employment are able to receive treatment, with the minimum of loss of working time, as near as possible to their home or place of work. A further major chest clinic is nearing completion and will be opened early in 1960; two other major clinics are proposed and are now in the planning stage.

       1,846 hospital beds are set aside for the medical and surgical treatment of tuberculosis. The majority of these are maintained wholly by Government either in Government hospitals or through a recurrent subvention to voluntary agencies or missionary bodies engaged in hospital work. Patients from the Government chest clinics are admitted to Government hospitals and to hospitals maintained by the Hong Kong Anti-Tuberculosis Association which contain a total of 876 beds. There is the closest co-opera- tion between the Association and Government and 444 beds in the Association's Grantham Hospital are under the clinical



supervision of the staff of the Government Tuberculosis Service. In addition to the 198 tuberculosis beds in Government hospitals, subventions from public funds are granted to voluntary agencies for the maintenance, in total or in part, of 1,426 beds.

       Since 1951, when the death rate from tuberculosis was 208 per 100,000, the highest figure on record in Hong Kong, the death rate has declined steadily to 76.2 per 100,000 in 1959. The percentage of deaths from tuberculosis occurring below five years of age has also declined from 34.0% in 1951 to 19.0% in 1959. The figures for the last five years are as follows:

Percentage of T.B. deaths below 5





Death rate per 100,000

Percentage of all deaths registered

years of age




























Although encouraging progress is being made there is still a very long way to go before population surveys can be instituted. Existing services and planned clinic and hospital facilities due to materialize within the next 3 years are likely to be more than fully committed by the steadily increasing demand for treatment. X-Ray surveys, however, are carried out among special groups such as school teachers, University students, in orphanages, and in industrial undertakings when specific guarantees are given by employers in respect of sick leave and re-employment.

       The Tuberculosis Service has at its disposal funds for the assist- ance of tuberculosis patients who have been advised by its medical officers to give up work to undergo treatment in hospital. Assist- ance in kind as well as in cash is given at the discretion of the Almoner. Welfare services, mainly assistance in kind, are also maintained by other official and voluntary agencies.

Venereal Diseases. Generally speaking, the decline in the inci- dence of venereal diseases has continued with certain exceptions which are not significant in relation to the whole problem. There was an increase in the number of cases of primary and secondary syphilis, and the figures for early latent syphilis also rose, though the number of cases of late latent syphilis dropped considerably.



The incidence of gonorrhoea remained the same, but surprisingly there was a decrease of some 160 cases of non-gonococcal urethritis; chancroid incidence increased but lympho-granuloma decreased considerably.

Penicillin continues to be the first choice for the treatment of syphilis and gonorrhoea, but in the case of syphilis the slightest manifestation of a reaction to penicillin is followed by a change to chloramphenicol. One death due to anaphylactic shock occurred in an elderly female patient following an injection of penicillin in oil.

An increase in the establishment of social hygiene visitors has resulted in greatly expanded follow-up activities.

The surveillance of cases of syphilis treated solely with peni- cillin has now been in operation for seven years. The number of persons who have been under surveillance for the whole period represents only 5% of the total cases treated. However, of these, 30% have been consistently sero-negative, 70% have had the blood titre of sero-positivity reduced and only 2% of patients have shown signs of recurrence of active disease.

Ante-natal blood tests were carried out on 53,201 women, an increase of 19,592 over the 1958 figure. The percentage positive rate was 2.98% for general clinic cases and 2.32% for cases seen by private midwives. The figures for 1958 were 3.3% and 3.2% respectively.

Figures for cases treated at clinics over the past five years are

as follows:






Primary syphilis






Secondary syphilis






Early latent syphilis ...






Late latent syphilis






Early congenital syphilis


















Lymphogranuloma venereum











Non-gonococcal Urethritis

      Leprosy. There are eight out-patient centres in operation solely for the diagnosis and treatment of leprosy cases and ten sessions are held at these centres each week. In addition four other sessions



      each week were held at social hygiene centres in conjunction with dermatology and venereal disease clinics. One clinic session is also held once each month at Tsuen Wan. Total attendances amounted to 32,442 and 297 new cases of leprosy were diagnosed and placed under treatment compared with 379 in 1958. 138 cases were admit- ted to the Hei Ling Chau Leprosarium maintained by the Hong Kong Auxiliary of the Mission to Lepers; of these the greatest number were new infectious cases and the remainder were either in reaction or in need of surgical attention.

At the end of the year 2,732 cases of leprosy were receiving treatment as out-patients. Dapsone is still preferred for routine treatment; the use of diaminodiphenyl sulphoxide which was in- troduced for selected cases in 1958 has been discontinued follow- ing upon conclusions reached at the W.H.O. seminar held in Tokyo in November 1958. A clinical trial using ditophal by inunction was started in May 1959. Preliminary results have been very encouraging and ditophal will soon be available for general use. Diphenyl thiourea is now available in tablet form and is used in selected cases showing intolerance to Dapsone.

       The surgical rehabilitation of patients suffering from deformities and disfigurements has been still further developed in the Maxwell Memorial Hospital at the Hei Ling Chau Leprosarium. Ortho- paedic treatment is also given in Government hospitals where a very limited number of beds is available for this purpose.

Contact investigations are increasing steadily in number and child contacts are vaccinated with B.C.G. Defaulters from treat- ment are followed-up by home visiting and of 574 defaulters who were visited 208 returned to treatment; a success rate of 36.6%. The Almoner service to leprosy patients continues to expand and a small number of cured lepers were found employment with Government.

       Dermatology. Out-patient sessions for the diagnosis and treat- ment of skin complaints are held at the Social Hygiene clinics where treatment is given free. This has proved to be a useful method of detecting latent syphilitic conditions and early leprosy. In addition out-patient sessions are now held four times each week at certain hospitals and general clinics on both sides of the Har- bour. There were 11,046 new attendances at the Social Hygiene centres and 3,086 new attendances at the other four centres; total



attendances at all centres amounted to 61,118. Diagnostic tests including biopsies, antibiotic sensitivity tests, fungus culture and patch testing for allergy are carried out at all centres.

Over 150 cases were referred to the Queen Mary Hospital for radiotherapy of skin conditions. Neurodermatitis is now being treated with hydrocortisone lotion, using the vibra puncture tech- nique, and a notable innovation has been the use of an oral anti- biotic, which is particularly suitable for ringworm of the hair, body and nails, for the treatment of fungus infections.

A simple classification of the common skin diseases encountered in Hong Kong, comprising 45 headings, has been compiled in order that a year-to-year record of the incidence and distribution of these diseases can be maintained.

Malaria. Despite one of the longest wet seasons on record the number of cases of malaria notified was only 442, as against 659 during 1958. Notifications are compulsory and, as usual, reached a peak during the last quarter of the year. There was one death recorded as due to malaria and again, as in the previous year, the victim had been the subject of repeated blood transfusions, this time for a malignant condition of the blood.

In the urban areas, consisting of Hong Kong Island, Kowloon and New Kowloon and certain limited areas in the New Terri- tories, anti-larval operations directed against anopheline breeding are maintained continuously.

The major part of the New Territories, where the wet cultiva- tion of rice is practised, is not controlled; the only protected areas are Cheung Chau and Hei Ling Chau Islands, the prisons at Chi Ma Wan and Tai Lam, the Shek Pik dam area and Rennie's Mill Camp. There is a continuing influx of large numbers of infected individuals into the unprotected areas as a result of the traffic between China and the New Territories. The numbers, estimated at one million persons annually, make surveillance as a quarantine measure impractical; nor is interruption of transmission or eradica- tion of malaria by either anti-adult or anti-larval measures yet a practicable proposition.

      The cost of control by anti-larval methods is 37 cents (approxi- mately fivepence halfpenny) per capita per annum,



Just over 90% of all cases notified were from the unprotected areas and of these 72.6% came from the Sai Kung district in the eastern part of the New Territories. 28% of the Sai Kung notifica- tions emanated from the boat population, the remainder being scattered among the 43 small villages in the district. Of the 24 fresh cases appearing in the urban areas, none could be traced to an infection contracted locally and there was strong presumptive evidence that the infections had not originated in the protected zones. In fact no anopheline mosquitoes or larvae were recovered in these protected zones despite careful routine searches. Of the blood parasites identified 91% were P. vivax, 8% P. falciparium and 1% P. malariae.

      In the Sai Kung district a pilot scheme, using prophylactic paludrine, was started in two villages towards the end of March. The paludrine was distributed weekly with the co-operation of the Village Representatives in an attempt to estimate whether or not malaria in the Sai Kung district could be reduced significantly by chemoprophylaxis. It is too early yet to assess the result and the scheme is still in progress.

      Two malaria surveys were carried out, one in the urban pro- tected areas and the other in the border zone in the north of the New Territories between Lo Wu and Sha Tau Kok. The former survey was amongst children between 2 and 14 years and was carried out in co-operation with the School Health and Maternal & Child Health Services. Between April and October 1,744 children aged two to five years were examined; the spleen rate was zero. From April to June 6,676 school children aged five to fourteen years were also examined and the number with palpable spleens was 18 or 0.27%. In addition 4,033 blood smears were taken from infants under one year of age attending urban M.C.H. centres. All smears were negative for malaria.

In the border areas 907 children between the ages of two and ten years were investigated in eleven villages of whom 11 or 1.1% had palpable spleens. There were no smears positive for malaria in 1,005 blood smears taken from children under 10 years of age.

      The laboratory continued to carry out routine identification and dissection of mosquitoes and the staining and examination of blood smears. Field tests were conducted in the efficacy of insecticides and the susceptibility of anophelines to insecticides, Information



on tests for insecticide resistance in adult mosquitoes and larvae was forwarded to the World Health Organization.

      Poliomyelitis. Sporadic cases of poliomyelitis were notified throughout the year and there was not the marked seasonal in- crease during the summer months which marked the previous years. A total of 86 cases was recorded of which 57 occurred in Chinese children under 3 years of age. There were 20 deaths, one being that of a European recently resident in the Colony. 7 cases were notified amongst the non-Chinese population. A full course of Salk-type vaccine is highly desirable for all, irrespective of age, who intend to take up residence in Hong Kong.

      The poliovirus laboratory, which is being established in conjunc- tion with the Department of Pathology of the University, was almost completed by the end of the year.

      Diphtheria. Despite ample facilities for the protection of young children against diphtheria, 1959 was the worst year on record. 2,087 cases were recorded with 116 deaths as against 1,555 cases and 134 deaths during 1958. The case fatality rate, however, was 5.6% as against 8.6% the previous year.

      The consistently poor response to the facilities for protective inoculations offered widely at no cost, despite intensive and con- tinuing propaganda, made it obvious that much more needs to be done to bring home to parents the necessity of full co-operation. An Inter-Departmental Committee on Health Education under the chairmanship of the Assistant Director of Health Services was formed in May 1959, with representatives of the Education, Urban Services, Social Welfare, Information Services, and Medical and Health Departments and of the Secretariat for Chinese Affairs. The Committee concentrated attention on the education of the public in the causes, results and prevention of diphtheria. Particular em- phasis was laid on the necessity for parents to co-operate by ensur- ing that children were brought for the full course of inoculations. By the end of the year this intensive effort appeared to be achiev- ing some success, but the situation is still not satisfactory. Records of second and booster doses of A.P.T. compared to 1958 were:

1st Dose 2nd Dose 'Booster Doses'











       A new record card of prophylactic inoculations has been intro- duced and as an incentive a small plastic figurine symbolizing 'Health' is now given to each child completing the two initial inoculations against diphtheria.

      As in previous years a number of severe secondary infections of the neck was encountered. This is due to the widespread practice of insufflating herbal powder into the fauces as a treatment for sore throat. A number of samples of the powder were analysed and significant quantities of arsenilic acid were recovered. Action is being taken to stop the sale of these traditional powders.

       Enteric Fever. Despite continuing and intensive control measures there was a further rise in the incidence of typhoid and paratyphoid fevers to the highest level encountered over the five-year period 1955 to 1959. The number of deaths was approximately the same, but the case fatality rate is still declining, presumably due to the more widespread and efficient use of antibiotics.






No. of cases

No. of deaths

Case fatality rate
















       Facilities for free T.A.B. inoculations are available throughout the year at all Government hospitals, clinics and inoculation centres. Between July and September each year intensive inocula- tion campaigns are launched and inoculation teams tour the Colony with a loud hailer van disseminating information and offering in- oculations on the spot. Health Officers of the Urban Services Department give talks and instruction throughout the year on personal hygiene, on the cleanliness of restaurants and eating houses, and on the handling and preparation of food. Carriers were given treatment under the supervision of the Health Officers concerned.

      A special survey was made during September of the distribution of cases. As expected, it was found that the majority occurred in areas of high population density associated with low standards of



hygiene and sanitation. Response to the inoculation campaigns was better during the year and the comparative figures are:

Second doses 'Booster doses'



First doses







Bacillary Dysentery. There was a 56.4% increase in the number of notifications compared with 1958, but no distinct seasonal varia- tion was noted and the fatality rate was lower than in the previous year. More carriers were discovered and treated. The comparative figures are:



Cases Deaths

Carriers detected and treated







Much health education work in the prevention of these infections is carried out by Health Officers amongst those connected with the handling, preparation and sale of food.

Measles. The incidence of notified cases was again at much the same level as in previous years, with 743 cases as against 786 in 1958. The case fatality rate was 23.7% (24.3% in 1958). Of the total cases notified 506 occurred during the first quarter of the year. Measles is known to be a mild but widespread disease, and the high percentage of fatal cases is related to the number of cases notified rather than to the virulence of the infections. Nevertheless it causes more deaths than diphtheria and amongst the deaths from communicable diseases ranks next to tuberculosis. The deaths are almost entirely due to severe bronchopneumonia which is encoun- tered too late for treatment to be effective.

       Other Communicable Diseases. The notified incidence of influ- enza was just over one-third of that of the previous year and 26 deaths were recorded as due to influenza. Notifications of influenza have been carried out on a voluntary basis since the epidemic of 1957-8. Whooping cough accounted for 110 cases and scarlet fever for 24 cases. Only one case of puerperal fever was recorded.


Apart from nursing homes, and excluding institutions maintained by the Armed Forces, there are 31 hospitals in the Colony, of



which 12 are the responsibility of the Medical and Health Depart- ment, and 19 are maintained by voluntary agencies, medical missions and private bodies. Ten of these receive substantial assist- ance from Government in respect of the free or low-cost services which they offer.

Government hospitals accommodate a total of 2,212 beds, the Government assisted hospitals 3,664 beds, and private hospitals 1,093 beds. In addition, various Government clinics and maternity homes provide a further 148 beds, mainly in the New Territories and practically all for maternity cases. There are 585 beds in private maternity and nursing homes. There is therefore a total of 7,702 beds for all purposes, including the mentally ill and those suffering from infectious diseases. Excluding the 1,846 beds set aside for tuberculosis, the 260 beds for the mentally ill, and the 540 beds for the treatment of leprosy, there are 5,056 beds avail- able for all general purposes, including maternity. The mid-year estimated population for 1959 was 2,857,000 and this gives a ratio of 1.77 beds per thousand of the population. The figures quoted for beds are for the normal bed-capacity of the various hospitals but, in many cases, the actual bed-occupancy is much higher as extra camp beds are used extensively wherever the need arises and space can be found.

      The 12 Government hospitals comprise two large general hospi- tals, two mental hospitals, two maternity hospitals, one large hospital for both long-term cases and infectious diseases, one infectious diseases hospital, two prison hospitals, one small hospital for the treatment of venereal diseases, and the St. John Hospital with general, maternity and tuberculosis beds on Cheung Chau Island. At Appendix XV is a table detailing the distribution of hospital beds in the Colony.

The two largest hospitals handling acute cases and those in need of specialized treatment are the Queen Mary Hospital of 601 beds on Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Hospital of 339 beds, situated in the centre of Kowloon. Both are Government hospitals and the Queen Mary Hospital is the Teaching Hospital for the Medical Faculty of the University of Hong Kong. The Tsan Yuk Government Maternity Hospital of 200 beds, also on the Island, is the specialist obstetric unit which is also a Teaching Hospital for the University.



      The Queen Mary and Kowloon Hospitals are approved Nurses Training Schools for general nurses. Midwives are also trained at the Tsan Yuk Hospital.

The Foundation Stone of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Kowloon was laid on the 7th March 1959, by His Royal Highness the Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. This hospital of 1,320 beds is expected to be ready for use towards the end of 1962. The construction of the Nurses Training School and the Sisters and Nurses Quarters is now well advanced. These Buildings will be available for occupation during the latter half of 1960, when the Government facilities for the training of nurses will be doubled.

The Tung Wah Group of four hospitals, consisting of the Tung Wah Hospital, the Kwong Wah Hospital and Infirmary, the Tung Wah Eastern Hospital and the Sandy Bay Infirmary, accommodate a total of 1,647 beds. The Tung Wah Hospital is an entirely Chinese charitable organization which is also responsible for various other services to the poor and needy of the Colony. A large recurrent subsidy is granted by Government, and the Medical Superintendents of the three main hospitals are Government Medical Officers. These hospitals provide a most useful service and are gradually being modernized. The Board of Directors have planned to rebuild the Kwong Wah Hospital in Kowloon, to provide, in five stages, a large modern general hospital of 1,238 beds. The construction of the first stage was completed in March and work on the second was well advanced by the end of the year.

      Hospitals maintained by missionary organizations provide general medical, surgical and maternity care and vary in size from 270 beds to 50 beds. In addition the Hei Ling Chau Leprosarium provides accommodation for 540 leprosy patients and the Haven of Hope Sanatorium for 210 tuberculosis patients. Several of these institutions receive substantial financial assistance while others are supported in varying degrees by the charging of fees, by voluntary donations and by grants from mission funds. In a number of instances where low cost or free treatment is given and any excess of income over expenditure is put towards hospital development, land is granted without premium and the rates are refunded by a Government subvention.

      Hospitals maintained by the Hong Kong Anti-Tuberculosis Association comprise the Ruttonjee Sanatorium, the Freni

























'47 '48 '49 '50 '51 '52 '53 '54 '55 '56 '57 $58



"Per 1,000 live births)









(Per 100,000 population-













'58 1959


















JUN 54 DEC 54 JUN 55 DEC 55 JUN 56 DEC 56 JUN 57 DEC 57 JUN 58 DEG ST♥

DEC 59






Number of Cottages in Resettlement Areas

Number of Rooms in Resettlement Areas







JUN 54 DEC $4 JUN 55 DEC 55 JUN 56 DEC 56 JUN 57 DEC 57 JUN 58 DEC 58 JUN 59 DEC 59



Memorial Convalescent Home and the Grantham Hospital. The Grantham Hospital of 540 beds is a non-profit-making institution which provides accommodation for fee-paying patients. Owing to the need for more free tuberculosis beds, Government has now assumed responsibility for 444 of these beds, to which patients are admitted for free treatment through the Government Tuber- culosis Service. The Anti-Tuberculosis Association, the Ruttonjee Sanatorium and the Freni Memorial Convalescent Home receive substantial annual subventions.

Clinics. Out-patient services of varying scope are available at 42 Government clinics and dispensaries situated throughout the urban and rural areas. The buildings range from multi-storey buildings accommodating general and specialist services to small dispensaries, two mobile dispensaries and two 'floating clinics'. The latter are launches donated by the Hong Kong Jockey Club. They visit isolated centres of population on the indented eastern and western coasts of the New Territories and on the adjacent islands. In the New Territories there are maternity beds for normal midwifery in certain of the clinics and dispensaries. Visiting teams from Hong Kong and Kowloon hold specialist sessions at the larger clinics for tuberculosis, eye diseases, ear, nose and throat, leprosy, venereal disease, dermatology, dentistry and maternal and child health. In the urban areas out-patient specialist sessions are also held at the clinics.

Though $1 is normally charged for each out-patient attendance at the majority of centres, certain services are provided without charge, notably for tuberculosis, leprosy, venereal disease, eye disease in children and at maternal and child health centres.

        Evacuation of cases of serious illness from isolated centres is carried out by helicopter, by fast police launches and by the float- ing clinics. A road ambulance service is maintained throughout the Colony by the Fire Brigade.

Attendances at the Government clinics and dispensaries over the past five years have been as follows:



















      The out-patient clinic and maternity home services of Govern- ment are considerably augmented by Chinese voluntary and charitable organizations which take a most active interest in medical and health problems. The only other services which attract equivalent interest amongst these organizations are educa- tion and the provision of death benefits.

      Reference has already been made to the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals which also maintain very large free out-patient clinics at the three hospitals. It is also noteworthy that, of all babies born in institutions in the Colony, 30% were born in the Tung Wah Maternity Wards.

Two other long established Chinese charitable Associations, the Chung Sing Benevolent Society and the Lok Sin Tong, also run medical clinics. The former also operates a dental clinic and the latter a maternity home.

The Kaifong Welfare Associations also support a number of clinics where treatment is free or given at nominal cost. During the year the Hung Hom Kaifong Association, aided by Government, built a 3-storey clinic and maternity home which was handed over to Government and will be maintained from public funds. This clinic serves a densely populated area near the Hong Kong and Whampoa Dockyard, the Board of which contributed substantially towards the cost.

      The Kaifong Associations have co-operated fully with Gov- ernment in vaccination campaigns, education in environmental hygiene, and in the control of diphtheria.

District Associations, whose members claim a common ancestral home in the mainland of China, also provide a number of low cost clinics, and Clansmen's Associations, whose members have the same surname but who are not necessarily related, have arranged for doctors from amongst their members to provide low cost treatment for clansmen belonging to their Associations.

Buddhist organizations also contribute their share to medical and health work. They have established clinics at Wan Chai, Happy Valley, Wong Tai Sin and Tai Po Market and a sanato- rium at Ngong Ping on Lantau Island. The Hong Kong Buddhist



Association is considering the establishment of a Buddhist hospital in Kowloon.


Doctors. Since 1911 the University of Hong Kong has awarded the degree of M.B., B.S. (Hong Kong), on the successful comple- tion of the requisite period of undergraduate medical training and of the prescribed examinations. As from 1952 the acquisition of the M.B., B.S. has entitled the holder to provisional registration only and a further twelve months of experience in medicine and surgery or obstetrics has been essential before a certificate of experience from the University can be issued prior to full regis- tration. The Hong Kong qualification has had reciprocal recognition by the General Medical Council since 1911.

Training for higher qualifications granted outside Hong Kong is also available and is supervised by a panel consisting of Univer- sity Professors and Government Specialists under the Chairmanship of the Director of Medical and Health Services. After holding recognized training posts in the Queen Mary Hospital, graduates who are in Government service may be given study leave at Government expense to go abroad to sit for the qualifications recognized by the Secretary of State for eventual promotion to specialist rank.

       During 1958 and 1959 examinations for Part I of the Diploma of Medical Radiology (Diagnosis) and (Therapy) were held in Hong Kong. The Examining Board in England sent out examiners and 23 candidates, of whom 15 were successful, sat the examina- tions. Thereafter further training is given before study leave is granted in the United Kingdom to take the Part II examinations.

Doctors are being trained for higher qualifications in medicine, surgery, orthopaedics, paediatrics, anaesthesiology, radiology, psychiatry, otorhino-laryngology, plastic surgery, ophthalmology, dermatology, obstetrics and gynaecology and public health. Ex- perience in the Government and University clinical units in Hong Kong is recognized by the majority of the examining bodies in the United Kingdom as qualifying for entrance to the various examinations.

       Nurses. General nursing training is carried out for both men and women students in English and Cantonese. The course in



     English is carried out at the Government Hospitals School of Nursing; that in Cantonese is conducted at the Tung Wah Hospitals, the Alice Ho Miu Ling Nethersole Hospital and the Hong Kong Sanatorium & Hospital, all of which maintain courses of training approved by the Hong Kong Nursing Board.

      The training in general nursing lasts for three years and pre- liminary and final examinations are held by the Nursing Board. On passing the final examinations, nurses are entitled to regis- tration with the Board and are thereafter eligible for the State Registered Nurses Certificate of the General Nursing Council of England and Wales.

      Midwives. The great majority of female nurses on completion of the general training take a midwifery course of one year which qualifies them for entry to the examinations held by the Hong Kong Midwives Board. The course is conducted in English at the Government Hospitals and in Cantonese at the other approved schools. For student midwives who are not registered nurses a two-year course of training in Cantonese at the Tsan Yuk Govern- ment Maternity Hospital is accepted by the Midwives Board for entry to the examinations.

      If a Hong Kong Registered Midwife wishes to obtain the State Certified Midwife Certificate of the Central Midwives Board of England and Wales she is required to do a further three months training in the United Kingdom and to pass the examination for the State Certified Midwife Certificate. This is due to the fact that, owing to the very overcrowded housing conditions in Hong Kong, there is little scope for domiciliary midwifery and the requisite training in midwifery in the home cannot be given satisfactorily.

Health Visitors and Health Inspectors. The Examination Board in Hong Kong of the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health conducts examinations for the Health Visitors Certificate, the Public Health Inspector's Certificate and the Tropical Hygiene Certificate of the Society.

For the Health Visitors Certificate, a one-year course of training is carried out at the Government Harcourt Health Centre for candidates who are both Hong Kong Registered Nurses and Midwives.



Health Inspectors are trained within the Urban Services Depart- ment and the course of instruction for the basic certificate lasts for two years. Thereafter, Health Inspectors may take the Tropical Hygiene Certificate examination in the Colony after not less than a further two years experience or training in the examination subjects. The Meat and Other Foods and Advanced Sanitation Certificate examinations are not held in Hong Kong and candidates for these additional qualifications normally undergo training in the United Kingdom.

Radiographers. Radiographers are trained by the Radiology Branch of the Medical and Health Department for the examina- tions leading to the Membership of the Society of Radiographers, which are also held locally.

      Other Training. Departmental training preparatory to study leave abroad for recognized qualifications is carried out for Phy- sicists, Medical Laboratory Technologists and Physiotherapists. In-service training is also available for departmental examinations for Dispensers and Laboratory Technicians.


Port Health. The sanitary control of the seaport and the airport, the enforcement of the Quarantine and Prevention of Diseases Ordinance, 1936, which is the statutory instrument under which effect is given to the International Sanitary Regulations, 1951, the correlation and dissemination of epidemiological information on communicable notifiable diseases and the planning and supervi- sion of immunization campaigns against smallpox, typhoid fever, diphtheria and cholera are the responsibility of the Port Health branch of the Medical and Health Services.

There was a regular exchange of epidemiological information throughout the year with the World Health Organization Epidemi- ological Intelligence Station in Singapore and with ports in other countries. Quarantine measures were enforced against arrivals from ports and airports infected with smallpox and cholera. Medical inspections of passengers arriving by train, sea and air were carried out at the respective quarantine stations as the cir- cumstances warranted. Passengers from infected areas without



valid international certificates were vaccinated and placed under surveillance.

Quarantine facilities both for ships and aircraft were expanded during the year and ships arriving in Kowloon Bay are now in- spected up to half an hour before midnight. This has involved clearing an average of 105 ships each month between sunset and 11.30 p.m. The night landing service at Kai Tak Airport was inaugurated in July and the medical inspection hours extended to midnight with emergency facilities thereafter if required. The comparative volume of work was:

Incoming ships


Passengers Crew





59,879 281,377



65,974 293,288


Air passengers from infected




Rodent control was maintained in the dock and airport areas and ships were inspected on arrival to determine the degree of rat infestation on board. Returns of rats destroyed and of bacterio- logical examinations for plague were submitted weekly to the In- telligence Station at Singapore. International deratting certificates were issued to 74 ships after fumigation and deratting exemption certificates to 139 ships after inspection.

The Aedes aegypti index was maintained at zero throughout the year in the seaport and airport areas. Regular control measures exist in the perimeter of the airport and in the harbour, particular attention being paid to junks and sampans using the typhoon shelters.

      Inspection of dock hydrants and water boats is carried out each week and samples of water are taken for bacteriological exami- nation. Of 428 samples taken 47 were not up to standard and remedial action was instituted immediately to deal with the un- satisfactory sources. Forty eight samples of water from ships were taken on request, of which 12 were below standard.

Three inoculation centres are maintained for the issue of Inter- national Certificates of vaccination to persons making international journeys. These centres also give free vaccination on request to members of the public.

      Medical advice to ships at sea travelling without doctors aboard was given by radio on 22 occasions.



       Maternal and Child Health. The Government midwifery serv- ices, which offer facilities free of charge for maternity home and domiciliary deliveries, now operate from 23 centres, four in Hong Kong, six in Kowloon and thirteen in the New Territories. Owing to the very crowded home conditions, relatively few deliveries take place in private houses. During the year 53 midwives at the 23 centres undertook a total of 13,427 deliveries of which only 3,106 did not take place in hospitals or maternity homes.

122 private maternity homes and 5 nursing homes also under- take midwifery. Of these 37 maternity homes are in Hong Kong, 75 maternity homes and 4 nursing homes in Kowloon and 10 maternity homes and 1 nursing home in the New Territories. These homes, the majority of which have two to four beds, are visited regularly by the Supervisor of Midwives and her staff to ensure that the conditions of registration are being complied with and that the standards of midwifery and record keeping are ade- quate. A total of 34,496 babies were delivered in these maternity homes and there were 3,109 domiciliary deliveries.

        The maternal and child health staff hold ante-natal sessions at 28 centres and post-natal sessions at 16 centres. There were 61,891 attendances at ante-natal sessions and 4,870 post-natal attendances. Infant welfare and toddlers clinics for children up to 2 years of age and from 2 to 5 years respectively are held at 24 centres, seven of which are full-time; in the other 17 centres infant welfare clinics are held once, twice or three times each week in Govern- ment clinics and dispensaries, the frequency depending on the population to be served. There was a total of 327,898 attendances, 35,538 of them at toddlers clinics.

       Health Education forms a most important part of the work and takes the form of health talks illustrated by diagrams and flannel- graphs, film strips, slides, practical demonstration, individual ad- vice to mothers and the distribution of booklets and pamphlets. The response is very encouraging and talks and demonstrations are followed with the closest interest. A not inconsiderable number of fathers also attend talks and film strips, particularly at the toddlers clinics.

Routine immunization against smallpox, diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus are given. Depending on circumstances, triple vaccine, combined vaccine or A.P.T. may be given. B.C.G. is given to



children with a negative tuberculin test and I.N.A.H. to children aged one year or under with a positive tuberculin test not due to B.C.G.

      Home visiting by Health Visitors is an important and ever expanding activity. Following the monthly birth returns visits are paid to new-born babies and babies attending the clinics are also visited at home, as required. A total of 46,248 home visits were paid.

Training sessions for practising midwives, student midwives, social workers, secondary school students and medical under- graduates are held at the Harcourt Health Centre. In-service training for the Maternal and Child Health staff is also given and classes are held regularly by two Health Sisters in Kowloon and Hong Kong respectively.

      An important part of the training is the demonstration, to mid- wives in private practice, of the technique of handling and giving B.C.G.

Dietary supplements consisting of UNICEF skimmed milk powder are distributed widely. In addition vitamins and iron preparations are given as a routine. To cases recommended by Medical Officers or Almoners, full cream and half cream milk powder are also given.

      School Health Service. The Working Party appointed to make recommendations on the future pattern of the School Health Service completed its work during the year and submitted a report to Government which is now being studied.

The School Health Service is organized in two sections, a general health service for all schools and a medical and dental treatment service for pupils and teachers participating in a fee paying scheme.

      The general health service is concerned with the sanitary condi- tion of school premises, the control of communicable disease and health education. All building plans are scrutinized before final approval for construction is recommended and there is regular inspection of the sanitary condition of school premises. During the year 1,430 inspections were made and 90 plans were submitted for scrutiny.

All school children are offered free immunization against diph- theria, typhoid and smallpox. Inoculating teams visit regularly all



registered schools, B.C.G. vaccination is given to all tuberculin negative reactors and during 1959 a total of 7,323 children were tested and 1,083 were vaccinated with B.C.G.

       Health education receives strong emphasis at the teacher train- ing level particularly; it is also directed towards parents and children, the work being carried out by a Health Sister and four Health Visitors. The Health Sister gives lectures in health educa- tion and training in first aid at the Teachers Training College. The Health Visitors work in the school clinics and the schools and, when necessary, make home visits as well.

For those children participating in the medical treatment scheme, medical inspections are carried out and defects are either treated in the school clinics or referred to eye, ear, nose and throat or dental clinics. Cases referred for hospital treatment are charged maintenance fees only, while appliances such as spectacles are pro- vided either at cost or without charge depending on the almoner's recommendation.

        The School Dental Service undertakes routine dental examina- tions and limited treatment of those school children who partici- pate in the School Health Service.

        Industrial Health. The Industrial Health Section of the Labour Department is staffed by the Medical and Health Department. The responsibilities include the protection of workers against health hazards due to environmental conditions, the prevention of accidents and occupational diseases, the assessment and follow-up of industrial injuries involving compensation, training in first aid and research into hazards arising from industrial processes.

       Routine factory inspections are made, particular attention being paid to lighting, ventilation, sanitation and working processes. Advice is given on the planning of clinics, first aid facilities, kitchens and canteens, dormitories and sanitary accommodation, especially in new factories.

An important and increasing activity is the surveillance of those handling radioactive substances and lead or who are exposed to free silica dust. The principal occupational diseases encountered at present are industrial dermatitis and silicosis. So far the num- bers affected are small as shown by the following figures for an estimated labour force of 218,000.



Industrial dermatitis








       Industrial accidents recorded reached a total of 5,940 of which 100 were fatal. 2,341 compensation cases were dealt with during the year and were followed up by the Health Visitors attached to the Service.

Since 1956 first aid classes have been conducted by the St. John Ambulance Association. Since the inauguration of this training, 215 employees from 83 factories have been granted certificates. At the end of the year there were 83 candidates from 57 factories undergoing training.

      Field surveys have included a report on the artificial humidi- fication of textile factories, the use of lead in rubber factories and the atmospheric concentration of butyl acetate in artificial pearl factories. Pest control staff and agricultural workers handling in- secticides were medically examined to assess the risk of poisoning; of 45 so examined not one showed any signs of it.

       Health Education. Health education covers a wide field and is an integral part of the activities of all branches of the Medical and Health Department. Particularly useful work has been done by the Maternal and Child Health Services. Immunization cam- paigns, especially in Resettlement Estates, have been regularly carried out by means of loud hailer van. Mention has already been made of the Inter-departmental Committee and its work in connexion with the control of diphtheria.

The Health Education Select Committee of the Urban Council has organized publicity campaigns in Resettlement Estates in the field of environmental sanitation including domestic hygiene. The Industrial Health Section of the Labour Department and the Social Welfare Department have also been very active in their respective spheres.


In Government Hospitals there are clinical specialists in anaes- thetics, chest surgery, dentistry, ear, nose and throat diseases, eye diseases, general medicine, general surgery, neuro-surgery, obstetrics and gynaecology, orthopaedic surgery, pathology, radio- diagnosis and radiotherapy. There are specialist posts in



tuberculosis and in social hygiene including dermatology, leprosy and venereal diseases. Malaria control and Forensic Pathology are also in charge of officers of senior rank.

       The Government Institute of Pathology maintains clinical pathology and public health laboratory services. The autopsies at the public mortuaries are carried out by pathologists from the Institute or, in medico-legal cases, by the forensic pathologists.

       Blood banks are maintained at the Queen Mary and Kowloon Hospitals and the Hong Kong Branch of the British Red Cross Society operates a blood collecting centre on Hong Kong Island for the voluntary donation of blood. The Institute of Pathology carries out the laboratory work for the Blood Banks.

The Government Chemist is responsible for the work of the analytical laboratory and investigations are undertaken over a wide range in connexion with food hygiene, water supplies, nar- cotics control, medico-legal work and import and export control, including dutiable commodities. A considerable amount of inves- tigation into standards of commodities included in Government contracts has also been done.


        The General Dental Service undertakes the treatment of monthly- paid Government employees and their dependants, in-patients in Government hospitals and prisoners. It also provides an emergency service for the general public at certain clinics, mainly for the relief of pain and for extractions.

        The School Dental Service undertakes the routine examination of participants in the School Health Service and gives such treat- ment as the limited staff resources permit. This normally consists of fillings and extractions.

At the end of the year there were 16 Dental Clinics in operation including one mobile unit and the work done was:




Total Visits



Government Officers



Dependants of Government Officers



General Public



School Children





      A number of welfare organizations maintain free or low cost dental clinics, many dentists giving their services free of charge for this purpose. The Hong Kong Dental Society also operates free evening clinics at two centres in Hong Kong and one in Kowloon. The St. John Ambulance Brigade Penetration Squads pay weekly visits on Sundays to remote areas of the New Terri- tories where dentists give emergency treatment.

The first industrial dental clinic in Hong Kong, opened by the Hong Kong Tramways in 1958, was in full use throughout the year. The Church World Service started a Mobile Dental Service in the New Territories during 1959 and the Christian Children's Fund established a dental clinic in its Orphanage Hospital at Wu Kwai Sha.

      The Government Dental Scholarship Scheme continued and seven students were awarded scholarships to study in Australia. At the end of the year there were 26 students abroad, 20 in Australia and 6 in Singapore. Since the Scheme began in 1954, nine students have qualified and returned to practice in the Govern- ment Dental Service, five of them in 1959. Two further women Dental Surgery Assistants were given World Health Organization Fellowships to train as Dental Nurses in Penang. Three others are already under training and one qualified Dental Nurse has returned and is employed in the School Dental Service.


      The Urban Council, whose constitution is described in Chapter 25, has statutory responsibility for bathing beaches, swimming pools, cemeteries, crematoria, mortuaries, the collection and dis- posal of refuse and nightsoil, the inspection and health control of domestic premises and food establishments, food hygiene and sampling, markets, hawkers, parks, playgrounds and urban ameni- ties, pest control, public latrines and bathhouses and slaughter- houses. The Council is empowered by the Public Health (Sanitation) and the Public Health (Food) Ordinances, and other enactments, to make by-laws for the regulation and control of these matters, subject to the approval of the Legislative Council. The whole of this legislation has been revised and incorporated in a new and comprehensive Public Health Bill, with subsidiary legislation, which awaits introduction.



The Urban Services Department has three main divisions dealing with health matters, the first with cleansing, the second with hygiene, and the third with hawkers, markets and slaughterhouses, parks, playgrounds and urban amenities. At the end of the year these divisions contained 282 administrative, professional and technical officers and 8,276 others. The Health Inspectorate con- sisted of 237 officers, of whom 215 had passed the Royal Society of Health examination for Public Inspectors.

       District Health Work. Intense overcrowding presents many serious health problems, and measures designed to achieve the best possible standard of domestic and environmental sanitation are exceptionally important. For the purpose of inspection, the urban area is divided into a series of Health Units, each with approximately 600 domestic floors which include a number of licensed premises. Two or three of these units form a Health District, for which a District Health Inspector is responsible. These districts are in turn grouped appropriately to form Health Areas, each under the supervision of a Senior Health Inspector. This system permits easy variation of boundaries in conformity with the development of individual areas.

The greater proportion of the district inspectors' time is allotted to the regular inspection of some 150,000 domestic floors in the urban areas, an average of 1,600 floors per inspector; this is well in excess of the desirable maximum of 1,200 floors. The limit- ing factor is the capacity to recruit, train and absorb new officers. No probationary inspectors were recruited for training during the year but 26 newly qualified inspectors from the previous course became available and were posted for duty, bringing the number engaged on house inspection work to 94. During the latter part of the year, an experimental scheme for a new grade of Assistant Health Inspector was introduced. While undergoing a 2-year course of technical training to qualify as substantive Health Inspectors, these Assistant Health Inspectors will, at the same time, do routine jobs such as the detection and abatement of sanitary nuisances in houses, under the direct supervision of Health Inspectors. After passing the Royal Society of Health Examination for Public Health Inspectors, these officers will form a pool from which qualified and experienced Health Inspectors can be drawn when needed.



      Public reaction to the system of block house inspection intro- duced during 1958 was again favourable. Householders are notified by postcard of a date and time when their premises will be inspected and a team of 5 to 7 inspectors is employed to carry out block inspection in one district on five mornings a week. This method allows the inspecting officer to deal with nuisances by direct action, to instruct occupants in elementary health measures, and to receive information or complaints from the public. Access to premises has proved much easier and the public has given greater co-operation.

       The other major part of the district inspectors' work is the supervision of some 11,996 premises operating under licences issued by the Urban Council, most of them for the preparation of food for human consumption. Persons handling food and in the catering trades often have little knowledge of the basic principles of food hygiene; once again the fundamental need is health education. To this end, inspectors have given special attention to licensed food establishments and this has resulted in a marked improvement in standards of cleanliness.

To effect closer control and supervision of licensed premises, a regular 'evening task force' for checks on these premises outside normal office hours was contemplated, but it is not expected that the scheme can be put into operation until the staffing position improves. In the meantime, from October onwards, a systematic programme of surprise visits was carried out by the Senior Health Inspectors personally during certain evenings each week.

Most people in Hong Kong are not conscious of the importance of proper health measures, and the Council has paid special atten- tion to health education covering a wide range of subjects. To this end, a series of 3-month campaigns on different health topics was held throughout the year. The subjects concerned were 'Keep Your Food Pure'; "Typhoid & Other Intestinal Diseases'; 'Keep The House Repaired'; and 'Take Care of Yourself'.

       During the campaigns, advice on elementary rules of hygiene and good health was given to the public through various media including the press, posters, handbills, cinema slides, and radio slogans.

In addition to these campaigns, a 'Keep Your City Clean' cam- paign was held. The object was to eradicate three evils commonly



practised in public places: discarding litter and refuse; spitting and nose-blowing; and allowing children to relieve themselves.

       The campaign opened with a pilot scheme in the Western and Sham Shui Po districts in August. It was designed to run in- definitely and, in time, to cover the entire urban area. The cam- paign consisted of the display of posters and the distribution of pamphlets in the two districts concerned; a special daily patrol round each district to catch offenders; messages broadcast several days a week in each district from a mobile van; the free showing in the open of two Cantonese films in the evenings, on different days in each district; and the provision of an increased number of litter-containers at suitable points in the two districts.

To improve standards of hygiene and general cleanliness, 'Miss Ping On' competitions offering prizes for the best kept premises were held in Resettlement Estates from January to March and from October to December.

Following upon the 1958 Oratorical Contest for school children, which formed part of a health education campaign, another con- test was arranged to cover the period from December 1959 to February 1960.

       Food Inspection. Locally recruited inspectors are sent to the United Kingdom for training as food inspectors and to qualify for the Diploma for Meat and other Foods of the Royal Society of Health. In this way a small but important health unit is being expanded to meet the needs of the Colony's dependence on im- ported foodstuffs and of the important export trade in Chinese delicacies. During the year no less than 56,341 lbs. of foodstuffs of different kinds were condemned as unfit for consumption in addition to large quantities of meat rejected during routine inspec- tions at slaughterhouses.

Slaughterhouses. Two public slaughterhouses, one at Kennedy Town and the other at Ma Tau Kok where food animals for the urban areas are slaughtered, function in unsatisfactory premises and under severe pressure. 982,550 pigs, 124,297 cattle and 9,629 sheep and goats were slaughtered during the year.

Although the staff was increased to cope with the additional volume of work the congestion in the inadequate premises made improvements virtually impossible.



      Sketch layout and building plans for the new abattoirs at Kennedy Town and Cheung Sha Wan were received from the consultants in the United Kingdom and the main problems were satisfactorily resolved. It became evident, however, that some of the statistics, on which the basic plans had been conceived, were already out-of-date and that certain changes would have to be made in the plans.

The by-products plant functioned efficiently and produced some 147 tons of meat and bone meal and nearly 126 tons of animal grease, both of which were well received in the local market.

       Hawkers and Markets. In the interests of public health, legisla- tion to control the sale of meat, fish, poultry, fruit and vegetables has been in force for many years. In the early days, it was con- sidered that standards of hygiene could only be satisfactorily con- trolled if these commodities were sold from stalls in Government retail markets of which there were 42 at the end of the year. Present policy is not to confine the sale of these commodities to markets but to allow freely the sale of fruit and vegetables by hawkers and the sale of other fresh commodities under licence in shops, so long as these shops meet the conditions laid down by law. The trade in fish, meat and poultry is no longer exclusively confined to market premises and new shops are continually opening in areas where they are needed. The building of markets in newly developed areas is therefore regarded as less important than the reconstruction of some of the older, congested market buildings. Twelve of these are due to receive attention, and details of accom- modation for most of these were prepared during the year. Plan- ning of the first of these markets at So Kon Po reached the stage where revised sketch plans from the architect were under study. It is estimated that this market will cost $1,000,000.

      At the beginning of the year, the temporary market on the island of Ap Lei Chau was provided with a roof. Opportunity was also taken to re-arrange the stalls to give the market a neater appear- ance. The Tung Tau Village market was moved from its old site at the end of August and re-established nearby in order to permit the construction of a resettlement estate. In October, a market in Hing Wah Village, Chai Wan, was resited to permit the construc- tion of a new road.



The number of hawkers is still rising and is conservatively estimated at 40,000, including both licensed and unlicensed. Some sell commodities of all kinds while others operate cooked food stalls or ply such trades as cobbling and furniture repairing.

At the end of 1957 a report on the hawker problem was tabled in the Urban Council, the product of lengthy and detailed investi- gation by representatives of the Police and Urban Services Depart- ment. The major recommendation was that a disciplined body should be established within the Urban Services Department to exercise effective control over hawkers. The report was accepted by the Government and towards the end of the year recruitment was put in hand. Some delay was experienced owing to the difficulty in securing a suitable training camp.

Various methods of controlling hawkers have been tried out, the object being to bring hawkers of all kinds and classes into line with the law without depriving any of them of the means of earning an honest living. These measures, coupled with special arrangements for night scavenging in the worst hawker sites, achieved a great improvement in the areas where they were instituted.

The end of October saw the establishment of yet another hawker bazaar, this time in the Wong Tai Sin Resettlement Estate. First introduced at the Tai Hang Tung and Shek Kip Mei Resettlement Estates in 1958, this method of control confines hawkers to prop- erly constructed stalls allocated to them by ballot. An extensive programme is in hand to provide similar bazaars in all districts of the urban area where such arrangements are practicable.

In the growing industrial town of Kwun Tong, cooked food stalls serve the needs of workers in an area where there are insufficient restaurants and eating houses. These stalls were con- centrated on a site specially built for them and capable of taking ninety six stalls.

Obstruction caused by cooked food stalls in the urban area received attention, but no intensive campaign was started pending the formation of the Hawker Control Section.

Public Latrines and Bathhouses. Additional public bathhouses and latrines are built in accordance with a long-term programme,



the primary object being to meet the needs of residents of densely- populated areas where flush sanitation is scarce or non-existent. Two new buildings containing a public latrine and bathhouse were completed, making a total of twenty two in the urban districts. In addition, one new public latrine was erected. Twenty three bath- houses providing free hot and cold showers were used by 2,887,812 people during the year, a daily average of 7,912.

         Pest Control. The Pest Control Section of the Urban Services Department is responsible for the control of rats, mice, mosquitoes, fleas, cockroaches, bed-bugs, lice, midges, and other pests. This section also carried out regular control measures against flies at the Gin Drinker's Bay Refuse Dump.

Control of rodents is an important part of the Section's duties, and a total of 293,175 rodents (including those deposited in rat-bins by the public) were collected during the year. Another important aspect of the work is that of mosquito control. 11,495 breeding places were found and dealt with during 1959. The control of Cat Fleas, arising from infestations of both cats and dogs, called for continued attention; 191 disinfestations of premises were car- ried out by the Section during the year.

       Scavenging and Conservancy. About 4,000 persons were em- ployed on the collection and disposal of refuse and on street cleansing, using 63 specialized refuse-collecting vehicles, 12 street- washing vehicles, 2 combined cesspit emptiers and washing vehicles and 22 dumb barges especially constructed for the transport of bulk refuse. A day and night street-washing service was also maintained for the cleansing of roads, lanes, side channels, foot- paths, market and hawker areas, the flushing of street gully traps and the laying of dust round building sites and reclamations.

The daily average amount of refuse collected rose from approx- imately 2,200 cubic yards in 1958 to about 2,400 cubic yards in 1959. The annual increase in volume is about 10%. Disposal is by marine dumping on an area of foreshore which is being reclaimed at Gin Drinker's Bay in the New Territories, some five miles west of the urban area of Kowloon. Since the dump first opened in September 1955 some 705,800 square feet of land have been reclaimed.

Only about two-thirds of the buildings in the urban area have water-borne sanitation, and the conservancy section provides for



the collection and disposal of nightsoil from nearly 376,000 floors with dry latrines. This section employs a staff of about 1,600 male and female workers, operating at night with nine specially designed dumb barges, and sixteen specialized motor vehicles. More than 72,000 cubic yards of nightsoil were collected. Most of it was delivered by barge towed to the Tsuen Wan Maturation Station from where, after the requisite period to render it safe, it is delivered by the Vegetable Marketing Organization to New Terri- tories farmers for use as fertilizer.


A post of Senior Medical Officer of Health for the New Terri- tories was created during the year. This officer is responsible for services provided by the Medical and Health Department in the New Territories which include personal health services and certain environmental health services mainly connected with the licensing of food premises.

Reference has already been made to the Government clinic and maternity home services in the New Territories. In addition there are two hospitals one of which, the Lutheran Hospital at Fanling, was built during the year, but is not yet in operation. The other is the old established Pok Oi Hospital of 50 beds, run by a Chinese charitable organization and providing medical, education and welfare services. During the year plans for the further exten- sion of the hospital by 60 beds were completed and the extension should be ready for use early in 1960.

On the environmental health side a Medical Department Health Officer and a staff of Health Inspectors seconded from the Urban Services Department to the Medical and Health Department have executive responsibilities in connexion with the licensing of premises, with the District Commissioner, New Territories, as the statutory authority. The District Administration provides cleansing and scavenging services with the Senior Medical Officer of Health and his staff acting in an advisory capacity.

In the villages, health work is mainly advisory with the em- phasis on health education and self-help. Rural committees and villagers are given advice on water supplies, drainage, sanitation and refuse disposal. Standard plans of simple and economical



      sanitary structures such as aqua-privies are provided both for vil- lages and for individual premises. Many licensed premises were improved by the substitution of aqua-privies for dry pail latrines.

There are two systems of scavenging in the New Territories. In the townships and built-up areas there is a daily house-to-house refuse collection service for which 5 three-ton tipper lorries are used. These lorries also collect the sweepings transferred from handcarts used in the streets and side lanes, where scavenging labourers work in beats, covering the area three or four times a day. The refuse collected is dumped at the main refuse dump at Gin Drinker's Bay or at the subsidiary dumping grounds at Tai Po, Au Tau and San Hui. Teams of labourers are posted to smaller villages which cannot be reached by lorry. If the villages are very remote, mobile teams pay periodical visits to collect the refuse and dispose of it on the spot by burning or burying. Incinerators have been built in a number of remoter villages and others are planned or are in the course of construction.

      During the year the scavenging staff of the New Territories was doubled and this enabled certain improvements to be made in the scavenging services. The duties of the street sweeping patrols were reorganized to provide for more frequent sweeping of the main streets. Scavengers were posted to a number of villages formerly not covered by full-time scavenging services.

Chapter 10: Land and Housing


      Land Tenure. The form of land tenure in use in the Colony is leasehold from the Crown. In the early days of the Colony, Crown leases were granted for 75, 99 or 999 years, and the present practice is for leases to be granted for 75 years, renewable for a further 75 years at a re-assessed Crown rent. In the New Terri- tories, in order to coincide with the period of the lease from China, which will expire on 30th June 1997, Crown Leases used to be granted for the residue of a term of 75 years from 1st July 1898, renewable for a further 24 years less the last three days. They are now granted for the residue of a term of 99 years less three days from 1st July 1898.

       Land administration in Hong Kong and Kowloon is the respon- sibility of the Director of Public Works, who is concurrently the Building Authority and Chairman of the Town Planning Board. The Director also deals with New Kowloon, which is that part of the New Territories situated immediately north of Boundary Street, Kowloon, and south of the Kowloon hills. The District Commissioner, New Territories, is responsible for land adminis- tration throughout the rest of the New Territories. Records of land grants by the Crown and of all private land transactions are kept in the Registrar General's Department (see Chapter 13) for Hong Kong and Kowloon, and in the District Offices situated in Kowloon, Tai Po, Ping Shan, and Tsuen Wan, for the New Terri- tories, with the exception of certain lots which are administered by the Director of Public Works and are usually known as Inland Lots. These cover the majority of the built-up parts of New Kowloon and deeds relating to them are recorded in the Registrar General's Department.

       The principal laws relating to the development and use of land are the Buildings Ordinance, 1955, the Town Planning Ordinance (Chapter 131) and the New Territories Ordinance (Chapter 97).



       Land Policy. The Government's basic policy is to sell leases to the highest bidder at public auction; all land disposed of for commercial and industrial purposes and residential sites sold to the general public are dealt with in this way. Land required for various types of special housing projects described later in this Chapter, for public utilities, and for schools, clinics, and certain other charitable purposes is usually granted by private treaty. The premium charged in such cases varies from nothing for non-profit- making schools, etc. up to the full market value for public utilities.

      Policy concerning the sale or grant of Crown land is governed by the scarcity of all types of land. In order to ensure that avail- able Crown land is put to the best possible use, all sales or grants are subject to a covenant in which the lessee undertakes to develop the lot up to a certain rateable value within a specified period, the amount of expenditure depending on the location and type of development allowed. In addition to this covenant, new leases contain clauses controlling the use to which land may be put, in accordance with town planning. They also provide for the annual payment of Crown rent.

      The policy of sale by public auction ensures, by and large, that the person best able to develop the land in accordance with the terms of the lease obtains the right to do so, and that the com- munity receives the maximum return in cash for such leases. Due to the low Crown rent reserved, this policy does not, generally speaking, enable the Government to derive direct financial gain from any subsequent increase in the value of the land after sale. For this reason the very large increases in land values in recent years have resulted in relatively little increase in recurrent revenue from land, since the bulk of the Colony's more valuable land is held on long lease.

In the earlier part of this century the leases of lots lying in the better residential districts frequently included restrictions limiting the type and height of buildings. These restrictions have served their purpose well, but the demands of an increasing population now require more intensive development of these areas. It is there- fore the practice now for lease conditions of this sort to be modi- fied in accordance with standard zoning schedules which, while preserving the amenities of the district, are designed to allow more intensive development subject to the payment of a premium.



Considerable interest has been shown in these zoning schedules and many developers have availed themselves of this opportunity to redevelop existing property by higher buildings.

In recent years certain groups of 75-year Crown leases granted in the Colony's early years, and chiefly affecting land in Kowloon, have reached their expiry dates. Public statements of Government's policy on that group of new Crown leases were made in 1946 and 1949. Terms and conditions for new leases have already been agreed in a large number of cases, and other leases will become due for renewal in rapidly increasing numbers. Renewal premia may be paid either in a lump sum or by instalments over an agreed number of years, and the majority of lessees avail them- selves of the latter method of payment. For this reason the revenue in any one year is relatively small, but since payments will con- tinue to be made for upwards of 80 years, the total revenue involved is considerable.

On renewal, the boundaries of these lots are adjusted to conform with street improvement lines, etc., and where land is required for major replanning schemes the leases will not be regranted. In these latter cases the Government announced its intention to pay ex gratia compensation for buildings.

Government Land Transactions. In 1959 the demand for Crown land for industry continued to be brisk, but the amount available for sale was not as great as in the previous year. Two lots were sold at Kwun Tong for industrial purposes. The development of lots sold at Kwun Tong in the previous year did not continue as rapidly as expected and it became clear that some purchasers were not in a position to finance development. 35 sites totalling about 14 acres were sold at Yau Tong Bay (also known as Kwun Tong Tsai Bay), restricted to the shipbuilding and timber and sawmill trades, the total amount realized being $4,488,000. When, however, the practice at Kwun Tong of allowing payment by instalments over a period of 18 years was extended to this area, the majority of purchasers took the opportunity to pay in this manner and the actual amount received was $481,072.70. Two sites were granted by private treaty for low-cost housing schemes. Other grants were made for various non-profit-making and institu- tional purposes, including eight lots for schools.



Several large areas of private land, principally agricultural, were acquired by compulsory purchase. These areas were required mainly for resettlement estates, schools, roads and other main services. In some cases former owners received their compensa- tion in land instead of cash.

Once again the amount of land sold at auction for housing was small. This is believed to be due partly to scarcity of suitable Crown Land in or near the urban areas where the demand for housing is strongest. There was a diminished demand for sites for this type of building on a commercial basis, thereby reflecting Government's contribution towards solving the low-cost housing problem, which is described later in this Chapter.

Revenue obtained from the sale of land by auction amounted to $4,051,587.70, from renewals of expired 75-year leases $1,809,897.67 and from private treaty sales, modifications, extensions and ex- changes $23,323,267.58.

Where it is not possible to dispose of land immediately, either because public services are not yet available or because a site is reserved for some future purpose, the land is not usually left empty, but is allowed to be occupied on a temporary annual licence. The 1958-9 revenue from these licences was $3,031,447.88. Due to the expansion of permanent development, it became neces- sary to cancel some of these licences, and the remainder are likely to decrease in number as time goes on. Legislation was prepared to revise the scale of fees for temporary occupation of land to more realistic figures which would take into account present high land values. This legislation, the Summary Offences (Licences and Fees) Regulations, 1959, took effect from the 1st September 1959. Land Value and Development Trends. Although the sale of Crown Land for residential development declined, the reduction in the volume of sales was more marked than the drop in values. The value of industrial land on the other hand was maintained and even rose in the best industrial areas. In mixed industrial and residential areas the gap between the respective values diminished noticeably.

      The trend towards higher buildings continued, particularly in the main commercial centres. Redevelopment of existing premises continued on a considerable scale and tenancy tribunals were kept


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VISIT OF H.R.H. PRINce philip, duke of EdinburgH

Stepping ashore at Queen's Pier at 2 o'clock on Friday, March 6, 1959, His Royal Highness was met by the Governor, Sir Robert Black, K.C.M.G., O.B.E. An Inter-Service Guard of Honour gave a Royal Salute and the Governor presented many leading citizens to the Prince.

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As he drove with the Governor through streets decorated in his honour-Prince Philip's cipher and badge can be seen on the vertical panels-His Royal Highness waved to dense crowds lining the route. On arrival at Govern- ment House he inspected a Guard of Honour of the Hong Kong Police.

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On behalf of the people of the New Territories six Justices of the Peace went to Government House to present an Address of Welcome to His Royal Highness. At night Prince Philip was the guest of the Chinese community at a Chinese banquet where Sir Tsun-Nin Chau, C.B.E., then Senior Unofficial Member of the Executive Council, made a speech of welcome and presented a memento of the occasion.

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Above: An unrehearsed incident took place when students of the University's Lady Ho Tung Hall stopped the Royal procession as it passed the University and presented their hall pennant to Prince Philip. Right: His Royal Highness inspected a Combined Services parade- review at Kai Tak at which nearly 3,500 officers and men of the Regular Services and the Royal Hong Kong Defence Force

past while aircraft of the Royal Air Force flew overhead. Below: Some of the thousands who waited to see the Royal visitor.


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Teams playing in a specially arranged football match between the Hong Kong Combined Chinese and a representative non-Chinese side were presented to His Royal Highness before play began. Prince Philip watched the second half. Shown below are some of the 30,000 students who eagerly awaited Prince Philip's arrival the Government Stadium for a floodlit youth rally. The programme included traditional Chinese dances, demonstrations

training and a


of physical

torchlight display.


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After laying the foundation stone of the 1,320-bed Queen Elizabeth Hospital, His Royal Highness inspected a model of the hospital and the sisters' and nurses' quarters and training school which will be attached to it. Later he inspected the new Technical College at Hung Hom, taking a keen interest in all he saw. The picture below was taken in the College's building department.




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Two dragons each 165 ft. long were made for traditional dragon dances performed at the youth rally. Before the dragons performed in public a ceremony known as 'dotting the eyes' had to be held to bring them to life.


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In the course of his triumphal drive round the Island, Prince Philip visited the Aberdeen fish market, where he met representatives of fishermen's thrift and loan co-operative societies and inspected a trawler and a long-liner. These pictures show him on board one of the fishing vessels, where he signed the traditional piece of red silk, and waving to the fisherfolk on his way through the market.

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fully occupied with exemption proceedings under the provisions of the Landlord and Tenant Ordinance, with compensation to tenants remaining at a high level.

On 7th October 1959 Government announced the conclusion of an agreement with the Admiralty providing for the surrender of a large part of the Hong Kong Naval Dockyard and the entire Kowloon Naval Yard. In return Government undertook to pay the Admiralty the sum of $7,000,000 over seven years, the first instalment being due on 1st July 1960. The traffic bottleneck between the centre of Victoria and the important commercial and residential districts in the eastern part of the Island will thus be eliminated, and some 962,000 square feet of valuable land in the very heart of the town will become available for redevelopment. The areas are to be planned in conjunction with the military lands in the vicinity of Murray Barracks, the surrender of which was announced in 1958.

      Surveys. All surveys in Hong Kong are plotted on the Colony Grid which is a Cassini Plane Rectangular one with its origin on Victoria Peak. The grid meridian does not coincide with the True Meridian at this point.

      The main triangulation, which is of a secondary order of accuracy, was observed in the 1920's, and was adjusted by the War Office in 1928-30. Minor triangulation stations have been established over the years during the course of surveys in specific areas, and the Horizontal Control further broken down by travers- ing. During the year 93 triangulation stations were established and 108 miles of main traverses run.

      The urban area of Hong Kong Island, Kowloon and New Kowloon is surveyed at the large scale of 1/600 (50′ = 1′′). This is necessary for the congested and crowded conditions in the built- up areas of the Colony. An unusual feature of this survey is that for the convenience of the Public Works Department, Police and utility companies detailed objects such as lamp posts and fire hydrants are shown.


The New Territories which are still largely rural are surveyed at a scale of 1/1,200 (100′ 1′′). This again is a large scale because of the intricate fragmentation of land holdings in the




Altogether, in 1959, four square miles of detail survey were completed at a scale of 1/600 and over seven square miles at a scale of 1/1,200, requiring 365 miles of detail traverse.

       These surveys form the basis for further scale plans which are required for planning, land records, and other purposes and which are redrawn from photographic reductions.

       The first recorded levelling in the Colony was carried out by H.M. Surveying Vessel 'Rifleman' in 1866 when a copper bolt was driven into the wall of a store house in the Royal Naval Dockyard and its height determined as 17.833 feet above principal datum. All levelling in the Colony is based on this principal datum which is approximately 3.9 feet below Mean Sea Level. In order to supplement the existing network of levels based on this datum, 13 miles of precise levelling establishing 80 Bench Marks and 24 miles of ordinary levelling for spot heights and other levels were completed during the year. The demand for large scale contour plans continued to increase, substantial surveys being required for new development areas in the New Territories, for reservoirs and for other schemes. During the year over 2 square miles were surveyed and plotted at scales varying from 1/600 to 1/2,400.

      The Survey Division also made surveys for, and prepared 933 lease plans and 309 surrender plans, for the Land Registry, and set out 8 miles of road and building lines.


       Previous Annual Reports have referred to the grave housing problem in Hong Kong, a problem accentuated by an influx of around one million people over the past ten years.

Housing in the urban areas falls broadly speaking into the following main categories: high-standard accommodation in houses and apartments, floors in tenement buildings, low-cost accommoda- tion usually of multi-storey construction, resettlement areas and estates, and squatter huts. The rural population and the boat people have their own type of dwellings. Each group has its problems and a major difficulty in tackling the housing problem has been the lack of reliable data on the size and make-up of the population, the amount of accommodation available, and the accurate projection of statistics.



The following extract from the 1958 Report of the Special Committee on Housing gives a brief historical summary of the housing situation:

'During the early and middle "thirties", the housing of the urban areas was increasing at a rate almost commensurate with, but slightly less than, the increase in population, and the housing situation was slowly worsening each year, although still considerably better than in any subsequent period. This situation continued until the outbreak of the Sino-Japanese War in 1937. At the beginning of 1937 the total population was just under 1,000,000, increasing annually by about 22,000; the population of the urban area was probably about 800,000. The number of domestic floors in the urban area was about 84,000, increasing at a rate of about 500 floors a year. (The expression "floor" refers to each separate floor of a building. In this context, where the bulk of domestic accommodation consists of tenement houses, the expression is almost, but not quite, equivalent to separate premises). The years subsequent to 1937 saw a large influx of immigrants, which immediately created a severe housing shortage. In the four years 1937 - 1940, the total population appears to have almost doubled. There were signs of an exodus just prior to the outbreak of the Second World War in the Pacific in 1941, but there is no doubt that at that date the existing housing was extremely overcrowded. The damage to housing during the Japanese occupation from 1941 to 1945 was considerable. An official report in 1946 shows that about 20% of the domestic accom- modation in the urban area had been damaged or destroyed, of which almost 10% was totally destroyed. The population, which is estimated to have been reduced to 600,000 in August 1945, jumped to well over a million by the end of 1946; this increase, together with the greatly reduced amount of domestic accommodation, again created extreme overcrowding. Although damaged property appears to have been repaired with com- mendable speed, notwithstanding the post-war shortages of essential supplies, it was some time before the property totally destroyed was replaced. In fact, this probably did not occur until about 1949 1950, but by that time the population had also regained its pre-war level, overcrowding was no less,




and the Colony was already facing a further large influx of immigrants consequent upon the changing position in China.' In recent years there has been a building boom, but in the field of housing its effect has been less than might be imagined, since much of the new building represents redevelopment of old property. In this way, since the war, about 72,000 new units of domestic accommodation have been built, making a total of about 131,700 units existing in the urban area; not including resettlement blocks, buildings occupied by the Services, illegal structures or temporary buildings on permit. The average rate of the provision of additional domestic units over the past three years is about 9,000 a year, of which 3,260 are tenement floors. At the present time tenement floors, of which there is a total of about 93,726, are usually sub-divided by the owner or principal tenant into three, four or more cubicles, each housing a single family, but in sub- standard and overcrowded conditions. If it is assumed that each additional domestic unit can reasonably accommodate ten persons, the average rate of provision would house 90,000 persons a year, whereas the annual increase in population is now averaging about 120,000.

      The majority of post-war housing is of reinforced concrete construction with concrete floors, roofs and stairs. There are still approximately 20,000 premises built before 1903 which have no modern sanitary facilities and which constitute the core of the slums. Some 7,000 of these, mainly in the central districts of Hong Kong Island, are back-to-back houses with wooden stairs, which present a considerable fire risk.

Some indication of living conditions in relation to housing is shown in the results of a Housing Survey conducted by the Hong Kong University in 1957 at the request of the Special Committee. This survey covered most of the regular housing of the urban area, occupied by 1,265,000 persons in 267,000 households. The survey showed that 56% of the households had a family income below $300 a month, and 79% had an income below $600 a month. Nevertheless, 32.3% were paying from $40 to $150 a month for rent, rates and services. 79% of all households were sharing the accommodation they occupied. 95,000 households were living in cubicles, 43,000 in bedspaces, 8,000 in cocklofts and 4,000 on



verandahs. Only 20,000 households had accommodation with a living room not used for sleeping.

The estimated total population at the end of 1959 was 2,919,000 persons, of whom approximately 80% were living in the urban areas of Hong Kong, Kowloon and New Kowloon. At the same date the regular domestic accommodation in these urban areas consisted of 1,148 houses, 10,049 large flats, 17,249 small flats, 93,726 tenement floors and 9,522 low-cost housing units. 54.63% of these units were of post-war construction, an increase of 8.26% over the previous year. 11,554 new domestic premises were erected during the year, but 1,506 old premises were demolished.

      The Special Committee on Housing appointed in 1956 to investi- gate and report on the housing situation rendered two interim reports and one final report, the Final Report being laid on the table of Legislative Council in December 1958. This Report was considered during the ensuing year and the principal outcome was the announcement of Government's decision to embark on a programme of very low-cost housing for persons whose family income is less than $300 a month. The Resettlement Department will be expanded to undertake responsibility for this housing programme, and the Public Works Department will design the buildings. They will be constructed on the principle of resettlement blocks but will be of improved quality and with better amenities. It is hoped to embark on this programme in 1960, and in the first instance priority will be given to those families displaced from buildings which are dangerous or which must be demolished to make way for public projects. It will therefore be some time before this new accommodation becomes available in sufficient quantity to make an appreciable impact on the overcrowded conditions of the older tenement buildings.

Succeeding paragraphs describe some of the other ways in which Government, in many cases in association with private enterprise, has been tackling the housing problem.

       Since the war land has been made available by Government at one-third of the estimated market value in order to encourage non- profit-making housing projects by a number of voluntary societies providing housing for the lower income groups and also to en- courage employers to provide housing for their own employees.



      Amongst the voluntary societies, the principal role has so far been played by the Hong Kong Housing Society, a non-profit- making organization which has been active for eleven years. In 1948 a group of public spirited men and women decided to form a small Committee to try to do something to improve housing conditions. Many of its original members still form the present committee. During the year the Society completed 1,301 new flats. They have now built 3,474 units in all, housing 21,643 persons, at Ma Tau Chung, Sheung Li Uk, Hung Hom, Healthy Village, Tsuen Wan and Kwun Tong.

       Three estates were completed during the year, Hung Hom after four years, the second phase of Healthy Village, and one at Tsuen Wan. This estate of 465 flats is the first low-cost housing project to be built in the New Territories. It houses many factory workers and a day nursery is provided in the community centre.

       1,481 flats are under construction at Kwun Tong, Kai Tak and Tanner Hill. Site formation began for 1,480 flats at Shau Kei Wan, while 3,847 further units are planned at Aberdeen, Shau Kei Wan and Kai Tak and on a third site at Healthy Village.

      At Kwun Tong the Society runs dormitories for single factory workers in addition to family flats. The estate includes a medical clinic and shops. A community centre is also being built in one of the blocks. The rents, which are the lowest in all the Society's projects, range from $52 to $88 a month inclusive of rates, refuse collection and water charges.

       The Society's Kai Tak Pilot Scheme is an experiment in solving the problem of a very large group of applicants earning less than $300 a month who are unable to afford the normal type of accom- modation and are not eligible for resettlement. The design consists of single rooms with adequate communal kitchens and one water- closet with a tap between two families. This, it is hoped, will bridge the gap between Resettlement accommodation and the individual-type flat with its own kitchen and water-closet. Appli- cants whose total family income is as low as $160 a month have been accepted for the smaller rooms on this estate.

      The demand for cheap housing has been indicated by the fact that over 20,000 application forms were issued in five days when the Society's list was opened for Tanner Hill (rents $63 - $108 a month inclusive) and Kai Tak (rents $32 - $68 a month inclusive).



       During the year the Society allocated 58 flats to one commer- cial firm under a loan scheme, whereby firms lend money to the Society to cover the cost of construction and in return are assured of accommodation for a number of employees corresponding to the size of the loan. The loan is free of interest and is repaid in twenty years. Government also plans to provide accommodation for 1,000 of its junior employees in an estate at Shau Kei Wan under this scheme, and several firms have expressed interest in the scheme for the Tanner Hill flats.

       Other voluntary societies interested in low-cost housing include the Hong Kong Model Housing Society, which in 1952 completed 100 flats in an estate at North Point and in subsequent years has added a further 200 flats; the Hong Kong Economic Housing Society, which in 1955 completed its estate housing 280 families at Lady Grantham Villas in Kowloon; and the Hong Kong Settlers Housing Corporation which has built 1,309 cottages housing 6,720 persons and is planning to build 9 seven-storey buildings at Tai Hang Sai (1,700 units) which will accommodate over 7,000


Many employers have also provided accommodation for their staff. Large industrial concerns have built dormitory-type accom- modation for their workers, and a number of public utility com- panies and commercial firms have built flats for employees and their families. A summary of the units of accommodation provided by nine such firms prior to and during 1959, is given below:


Flats 955 (5,473) 250 (1,259)



Prior to 1959. During 1959 Figures in brackets indicate the number of persons housed. As an employer, Government has fostered the formation of co- operative building societies by offering loans to groups of local civil servants on the pensionable establishment to enable them to purchase land and construct blocks of flats. By the end of 1959, 134 building co-operatives, with a total of 2,839 members, had been formed, and projects involving the loan of over $81,000,000 had been completed or approved.

       1,243 flats have so far been built and occupied under these co-operative schemes, 518 of them during 1959. Further flats are under construction and further schemes under consideration.



      The Housing Authority, which was set up five years ago under the provisions of the Housing Ordinance, No. 18 of 1954, and charged with the duty of providing accommodation for people living in overcrowded and unsatisfactory conditions, continued to make steady progress throughout 1959. The Authority consists of all members of the Urban Council, ex-officio, with not more than three other members to be appointed by the Governor (two such appointments have so far been made), and the Commissioner for Housing ex-officio. The Authority functions as a commercial enter- prise and, although rents are kept as low as possible, they must be sufficient to cover expenditure. Crown land is allocated at one- third of the estimated market price. Government loans are granted at favourable interest rates with repayment over forty years. 31% is charged on the first $45 million and 5% on the remainder. Loans have been approved up to $139 million of which over $52 million has been spent and over $90 million committed. The Government maintains a general control over the Authority's affairs, and all its projects must receive the prior approval of Government.

The administration and execution of the decisions of the Authority are carried out by the Housing Division of the Urban Services Department, under the direction of the Commissioner for Housing, functioning as the Authority's principal executive officer. The salaries of the staff, numbering ninety eight officers, are reim- bursed to the Government by the Authority, plus a 30% surcharge to cover the cost of pensions, quarters, passages, office accommo- dation, printing and other overheads.

The Authority's first estate, constructed on reclaimed land on the sea front at Java Road, North Point, was completed in November 1957 and is now fully occupied with a total popula- tion of over 12,400. The estate occupies a fine site of about 61 acres, and contains 1,955 flats as well as an 18-classroom primary school for 800 pupils, two health clinics, a post office, an assembly hall to seat 500 people and 71 shops. A bus terminus has been incorporated within the concourse and plans for a passenger ferry terminal connecting with the mainland at Hung Hom are now under consideration. Although the gross density, including the adjoining concourse and half the width of the roads, is 1,550 per acre, each flat has through draught and uninterrupted access to



light and air. In addition, ample provision has been made for open spaces and playgrounds within the estate. The flats are all self-contained and are of different sizes accommodating from three to eight persons. Rents vary from $75 to $169 a month, inclusive of rates, refuse collection, public lighting and lifts. The minimum accommodation consists of a living/dining room, lavatory, shower, balcony and facilities for drying clothes. An adequate lift service is provided and there are refuse chutes at central points in each block. The school, clinic and post office were built at Government expense and are operated by Government departments. This estate, which cost nearly $33,000,000 was designed by Mr. Eric Cumine, F.R.I.B.A.

       Overlooking the harbour near Green Island at Sai Wan Tsuen, Kennedy Town, the Authority's second estate was completed in February. The site, the highest point of which is 285 feet above street level, covers 31 acres, and is on a steep hillside which en- tailed very extensive cutting. The cost of site formation was almost entirely met by a grant from Colonial Development and Welfare funds. The estate, planned on cross-contour development, consists of 638 flats, in five blocks, averaging ten storeys in height, and occupied by nearly 4,200 people. There is also a three-storey community centre, and a godown which has been leased to the Urban Services Department; playgrounds and open spaces have been provided within the estate. The flats, which are of different sizes to accommodate from five to ten persons, are generally of a simpler type than at North Point, but are likewise self-contained and comprise balcony, kitchen, lavatory and ablution facilities. The type of plan adopted is the gallery approach system, with blocks only one flat deep; this ensures that all the flats are airy and well-ventilated. An interesting feature of the arrangement is that with very little structural alteration two adjoining single-room flats can be converted into a large flat with a living-room and two bedrooms, should this prove practicable at some further date. Lifts and refuse chutes are installed. Rents vary from $99 to $169 a month inclusive. The total cost of this scheme, designed by Mr. T. S. C. Feltham, A.R.I.B.A., was just over $8,000,000 including the construction of a retaining wall and other repairs made neces- sary by the heavy rains in June.



      The Authority's third project is at So Uk, Kowloon. The site formation contract which began in February 1957 was seriously hampered by rainy weather during 1958 and was not completed until January 1959. Three-quarters of this cost was met from Colonial Development and Welfare funds. Four private architects, working as a consortium under the chairmanship of Mr. Eric Cumine, F.R.I.B.A., were appointed to design the buildings on the estate, working to a master plan designed by Mr. Cumine. Piling of certain sections started in February 1959, followed shortly after by the commencement of building work. The first block of the estate is likely to be finished by May 1960. The whole estate, which will be completed towards the end of 1961, will eventually house over 32,000 people in about 5,300 flats at monthly rentals ranging from $37 to $112 exclusive of rates. The estate includes two 24-classroom schools, and the total capital cost of the scheme will be in the region of $50,000,000. This 19-acre site slopes from north to south and the blocks, most of which face south over the harbour, will be on different levels and so enjoy adequate light and air. There will be plenty of covered play areas and open recreation space.

      In September Messrs. Palmer and Turner's plans for the de- velopment of the Clearwater Bay Road site by the Authority were approved by His Excellency the Governor. This scheme, the biggest to be undertaken by the Authority, will provide accom- modation for over 43,000 people in 7,630 flats. In addition to numerous recreational areas within the estate three 36-classroom Primary Schools and two 30-classroom Secondary Schools will also be provided. A bus terminus is to be located at the entrance to the site. A site clearance programme has been drawn up and it is hoped that building work on the first phase of the scheme will commence towards the end of 1960. The whole project is expected to cost approximately $52,500,000 and will be ready late in 1962 if work goes according to plan. The Authority's fifth project at Ma Tau Chung, Kowloon, is now in the early planning stages and a site investigation has been undertaken to determine the nature of the soil and its load bearing capacity. This estate, the first to be designed by the Authority's own architectural staff, will contain about 2,000 flats and accommodate some 12,000 people.



      Concurrently with planning and building, work has continued on the selection of tenants for the Authority's flats, on the basis of a points scheme, in which the most important factor is the applicant's housing need, although other factors, such as tuber- culosis in the family, are also taken into account. The general register for applications was closed at the end of July and no further applications are being considered at the present time for the North Point and Sai Wan Tsuen Estates, where long waiting lists already exist. With the closing of the register applications for So Uk Estate were invited, and for this estate it was decided to dispense with the previous residential qualification which restricted applications to persons who had lived in the Colony continuously since July 1948. A points system, however, has been devised to give a certain degree of priority to persons who have spent the larger part of their lives in Hong Kong. The family income ceiling has also been extended for So Uk from $900 to $1,200 p.m. When the general register was closed there were 11,735 outstanding applications out of which number 6,706 applicants expressed an interest in So Uk. Since invitations were announced for So Uk 15,401 application forms have been issued and 7,598 returned. A considerable volume of work is involved in visiting applicants in their homes in order to check the particulars given and collect further information, and by the end of the year the total number of these visits had reached 13,013, in addition to 17,085 personal interviews given at the Head Office on points of difficulty.


      The 1947 Landlord and Tenant Ordinance replaced certain temporary proclamations made shortly after the end of the war. It was designed to protect tenants in controlled pre-war premises, and determined the maximum increases in rent (30% for domestic premises and 45% for business premises over the standard 1941 rents) which any landlord could charge in these controlled premises. Essentially the same controls exist today, although increases of 55% of standard rent for domestic premises and 150% for business premises were permitted in 1954, the latter having already been raised to 100% in 1949. It is now possible for a landlord wishing to redevelop controlled property to obtain permission to do so



through a Tenancy Tribunal on conditions which include the pay- ment of compensation to tenants for the loss of their tenancies. Particulars of exemption proceedings during the year are given in Chapter 13.

      Since 1953 two Tenancy Inquiry Bureaux have been set up with- in the framework of the Secretariat for Chinese Affairs to assist in the smooth working of the Landlord and Tenant Ordinance. The principal statutory responsibilities placed on these Bureaux are to provide Tenancy Tribunals with certain factual information whenever an application is made by a landlord for exemption from control or by a tenant for the reduction of rent. As a direct result of their contact with landlords, principal tenants and sub- tenants, the officers of these Bureaux are drawn into mediating in a large number of minor but varied tenancy disputes. This service has been of great value, for the parties concerned are usually reluctant to go to a court, and still more reluctant to testify in public against their closest neighbours. 954 of these arbitration cases were handled by the staff of the Bureaux during 1959 and not one had to be referred for final settlement to a Tribunal or to a Magistrate's Court.


      The squatter problem in Hong Kong is a direct result of the rapid increase in the population of the Colony during the years following the war. The housing available was soon swamped by the stream of immigrants from China, which increased to a flood in 1949 as the Chinese Civil War spread southwards, and those who could not find or could not afford normal accommodation built squatter shacks on the hillsides, or wherever they could find space. By these means large parts of the urban areas of Kowloon and Hong Kong were soon covered by squatter colonies, some of which had a population of more than 50,000 persons. Squatter fires were frequent, and these colonies, besides constituting a grave health risk, occupied almost all the sites urgently needed. for the Colony's rapidly expanding needs, in particular for more houses, more schools and more factories. It was therefore decided in 1951 to establish resettlement areas in which sites for one- storey cottages or huts could be offered to squatters cleared from



      areas required for permanent development. The living conditions in these cottage resettlement areas were a great improvement on those in the squatter areas, but progress in their development was slow, partly because most squatters could not afford to build cottages on the sites offered, and partly because the only sites available for such development were steep, relatively remote, and on heavily eroded hillsides.

       At the beginning of 1954, after the disastrous Christmas night squatter fire at Shek Kip Mei in which over 50,000 people were made homeless in a few hours, a major change in policy was made. It was decided to construct from public funds large multi- storey resettlement estates as the only practicable solution of the squatter problem, and to set up a Resettlement Department, working under the direction of the Urban Council, to co-ordinate all activities relating to the control and resettlement of squatters. In the six years since that decision was taken multi-storey resettle- ment accommodation has been built by the Government for nearly 225,000 squatters, at a total capital cost of $106,000,000.

       The design and construction of the multi-storey resettlement blocks is undertaken by the Public Works Department. They are of a standard design, seven storeys high and divided into rooms varying in size from 86 square feet to 240 square feet, the majority being of 120 square feet for a family of five. Communal latrines, washing spaces, and bathing cubicles are provided on each floor, and electricity is available in the public areas, as well as for all settlers who can afford it. Rents have been calculated to cover administrative costs and the repayment of all capital costs, includ- ing all engineering works and a fixed figure of $10 a square foot for the land, in 40 years with interest at 34%. On this basis the rent of the standard room is $14 a month. Ground floor rooms are let to settlers residing in the estate for use as workshops, or as shops or restaurants, a rent of $100 a month being charged for the standard shop of 240 square feet. The average resettlement block accommodates about 2,500 persons, and the larger estates have a population of between 40,000 and 65,000 persons.

        The estate blocks have been so designed that the rooms can be readily converted to self-contained flats, and a number of them have already been converted in this way to provide quarters for the estate administrative staff. In 1957 one block at Lo Fu Ngam



Estate and another at Wong Tai Sin Estate were built entirely as self-contained flats in order to rehouse families who were living in accommodation of a similar standard at the time of clearance. In 1959 a similar block of self-contained flats was built at Jordan Valley. Each of these flats has its own bathroom, kitchen and small private balcony. The rent, including rates and water charges, is $45 a month for a flat of 240 square feet and $65 a month for a flat of 360 square feet.

      During the year 21 multi-storey domestic resettlement blocks were built making a total of 103 blocks completed since the department was established in 1954. A memorial tablet at Block L, Wong Tai Sin Estate, commemorating the completion of the hundredth block, was unveiled by His Excellency the Officer Administering the Government on 26th November 1959. At the end of the year there were nine multi-storey estates. Of these only two had reached their final stage of development and addi- tional blocks were under construction or planned in the remainder. In addition sites were being formed for two further estates at Tung Tau, near Kowloon City, and at Tai Wo Hau, near Tsuen Wan, and plans had been approved in principle for another five estates.

Most squatter areas that have to be cleared contain not only domestic squatters but also workshops and small factories. Some of these can be resettled in ground floor rooms of resettlement estates, but these rooms are unsuitable for the larger concerns and those using power-driven machinery. To meet this need an experimental resettlement factory was built at Cheung Sha Wan in 1957; it is a five-storey building with 94,000 square feet of floor space, and it is of the same basic design as the standard domestic resettlement block. The rents have been calculated to cover all recurrent costs and to provide for the recovery of the capital cost in twenty one years, with interest at 5%. Rents vary from floor to floor, the average being $55 a month, including rates, for the standard unit of 200 square feet. Similar factories, with minor modifications, have now been built at Chai Wan and Jordan Valley, and site formation is in progress for a second factory at Cheung Sha Wan.

      The development of the fourteen cottage areas has not been on the same scale. These areas are essentially temporary in nature



      and as the needs of the Colony increase most of them will in the course of time be required to make way for permanent develop- ment. This process has already begun: during the year 578 cottages were cleared from the Tung Tau Resettlement Area, to be replaced by a new multi-storey estate; 401 cottages and wooden huts were cleared from Chai Wan to make way for an access road to the new Chai Wan Estate; and 58 cottages were cleared from Tai Hang Sai Resettlement Area to enable the link road between Tai Hang Tung and Shek Kip Mei to be widened. In these operations 6,231 settlers from the structures demolished were transferred to multi-storey estates.

       At the same time it has been found possible to make a limited number of sites available for new cottages, in areas which are unlikely to be required for more permanent development in the near future, and as a result, an additional 724 cottages were built during the year, of which 331 replaced previously existing wooden huts.

       The cottage areas are administered by the Resettlement Depart- ment, which is responsible for the provision and maintenance of terracing and paths. The cottages themselves are now built by voluntary organizations, which either rent them direct to families eligible for resettlement, or hand them over to the department for disposal.

During 1959, 37,591 persons were cleared and resettled. This figure includes the 6,231 settlers who were transferred from cottage areas to resettlement estates, as described above, the remainder being fire victims, and squatters occupying land required for de- velopment. By these clearances 171.98 acres of land were freed for development, including sites for further resettlement blocks, for other housing, schools, hospitals and for Public Works De- partment engineering works, in particular for new roads and the widening of existing roads. The largest clearance operation during the year was for the new multi-storey estate at Tung Tau. The clearance area covered 13 acres and included squatter huts, cottages, factories and other structures. The operation was carried out in six stages and, in all, 868 structures were cleared (including the 578 cottages in the Tung Tau cottage area): twenty factories were resettled in the resettlement factory at Jordan Valley Estate;



and 8,350 persons were resettled at Wong Tai Sin and Jordan Valley Estates.

For the squatters remaining the weather during the year con- siderably increased the hazards of fire or of flood and landslide. In the violent rains of June, 41 squatters were killed by landslides and falling boulders and 3,860 were made homeless. By contrast the extremely dry weather during the last three months of the year facilitated the outbreak and spread of squatter fires. One fire, at Lo Fu Ngam, made 2,602 people homeless and while the rest were of less severity they destroyed the homes of 7,224 squatters in all during the year. It is not normally possible to offer immediate resettlement to the victims of these disasters but, wherever possible, alternative sites are allocated on which they can build themselves new huts, either in the same area or on any suitable Crown Land that may be available in the vicinity. Where this is not possible sites are laid out in the public streets where they can build temporary huts to live in until they can be resettled. During the year 1,022 victims of earlier disasters were resettled from these street huts.

      The administration of large multi-storey estates presents special problems, partly because of their size and partly because of the poor circumstances of the inhabitants, many of whom are not in regular employment. Resettlement has, however, solved the housing problem for these people, and there is no doubt that the majority realize that they are better housed than most of the families in normal tenement buildings in the Colony and appreci- ate what is being done for them. One indication of this is the fact that, out of a total of $8,224,038.00 due as rents of rooms in 1959, only $4,865 had to be written off as irrecoverable arrears.

      Every assistance is given to any voluntary organization willing to carry out welfare work in resettlement estates or cottage areas. In the cottage areas, sites are granted on permit to such organi- zations. In the multi-storey estates, where no sites can be made available, the roof-tops of the estate blocks, which have pent- houses at either end, are allocated to charitable organizations for use as boys' and girls' clubs, under the supervision of the Social Welfare Department, or as schools, under the supervision of the Education Department. In addition, a modification in the design of new estate blocks constructed during the year, providing a



larger usable space between bearing walls, has made it possible to establish schools, run by voluntary organizations, on the ground floors of selected blocks. Ground floor rooms are also allocated to the Medical and Health Department or to voluntary organiza- tions for clinics or welfare centres, the new design also providing greater flexibility in their use for these purposes. The voluntary organizations have done most valuable work in both the estates and the cottage areas and the facilities provided by them now include eighty schools, as well as clinics, case-work centres, nurseries, milk-bars, a loan association and children's libraries.

       Details of the resettlement population and of the different types of premises in the cottage areas and in the multi-storey estates at the beginning and end of 1959 were as follows:

A. Population

1st Jan. 1959

31st Dec. 1959

Cottage Areas

(one-storey buildings)...



Multi-storey Estates

(b) 6- and 7-storey permanent

(a) 2-storey temporary buildings









B. Premises of various types on 31st December 1959 (The numbers on 31.12.58 are shown in brackets).

Cottage Areas



Domestic cottages and huts

14,611 (14,709)


Self-contained flats




Domestic rooms

Shops of various kinds

Restaurants and cafes


40,362 (32,632)




1,635 (1,108)



187 (175)









Schools, Clinics and Welfare Centres






44 (43)

145 (87)


      The volume of private building works in 1959 again showed an increase despite the fact that the number of schemes dealt with by the Building Authority was actually less. This is accounted for



by the emphasis on large scale schemes for multi-storey develop- ment. The value of new buildings in Hong Kong, Kowloon and New Kowloon reached the record figure of $244,693,451.67.

      This multi-storey development is not wholly confined to the city centre and buildings of fifteen to twenty storeys are being con- structed throughout the urban areas of the Colony.

      Private developers again made the greatest contribution to housing, if Resettlement projects are excluded, but non-profit groups were also very active and continued to expand. More local Government officers took advantage of the Government assisted co-operative housing schemes, many of which were completed, while others were under construction. The demand for apartment buildings in the upper rental bracket continued and several major schemes of architectural merit providing luxury accommodation were completed or were under construction.

       Stimulated by the increase in tourism the character of the Kow- loon peninsula is changing rapidly. Five modern hotels offering a total of 1,064 rooms and 80 suites will be ready for tourists in the near future. In the same district seven multi-storey composite buildings comprising nearly 500 shops and over 2,000 flats are under construction and work on others will soon start. On the Island too, there are proposals for several hotels.

      Industrial development has been concentrated mainly on the mainland. Many large modern factories have been erected in the Hung Hom, Cheung Sha Wan, and Kwun Tong areas and more are under construction. The industrial town at Kwun Tong, in particular, continues to grow.

      The rate of development is reflected in the figures that follow. Plans for 1,066 new buildings were submitted to the Building Authority during 1959 and of these 783 were for houses, flats or apartment blocks, housing schemes, Chinese-type tenements, and low-cost one-room flats. In addition, several thousand plans were received dealing with works other than for new buildings; these covered the reconstruction, alteration or enlargement of existing buildings, site formation schemes, drainage works, demolitions, and amendments to plans previously approved.

      During the same period 610 permits were issued allowing the occupation of completed buildings. Of these permits 440 were for



residential buildings. Non-domestic buildings included 23 schools, 1 clinic, 42 factories and workshops, 14 offices, 3 churches and chapels, 16 godowns and stores, 1 broadcasting station, 1 telephone exchange, 3 petrol filling stations, and 66 other miscellaneous structures.

The Buildings (Amendment) Ordinance, 1959, was passed by Legislative Council in November and was due to come into oper- ation on 1st January 1960.

During the year the Building Authority gave continued assist- ance to the District Commissioner, New Territories on building matters, and in August an interim procedure was brought into operation whereby all proposals for building works in the New Territories were to be submitted direct to the Building Authority for scrutiny.

The exceptionally heavy rainstorms in June made it necessary for a 24-hour shift system to be organized to deal with the resulting landslides and collapses. By prompt action and close co-operation with both Police and Fire Brigade a number of old buildings which had been rendered dangerous were closed and evacuated and subsequently demolished, thus averting collapses which might otherwise have resulted in disaster.


In the New Territories (apart from New Kowloon) the Buildings Ordinance does not apply, but control of buildings is exercised by the New Territories Administration, with the assistance of the Buildings Ordinance Office. In general the provisions of the Buildings Ordinance are followed where town buildings are con- cerned, but District Officers have wide latitude in respect of village-type houses. A survey was carried out during the year of the number and types of temporary structures which have been put up, often without official permission, in all areas of the New Territories. New control measures are being introduced with the object of ensuring that all existing and new temporary structures are covered by a permit from the District Office and that this sort of development only takes place in specifically designated areas.

In villages of traditional South Chinese construction the houses are built in rows one behind another, usually all facing the same



      way, the exact position of the village being determined according to principles of geomancy. A typical example of geomantic siting is for a village to be built on the lower slopes of a hill, facing rice-fields and sea, with hills extending like two arms on the right and left, and with a grove of trees, which by tradition must not be cut down, immediately behind the village. Often there is a pond, and more trees, across the front of the village.

Many villages (but not so many as in the adjoining part of China) have walls, gates, watch-towers, and even a moat. In front of the first row of houses there is usually an open cement-paved space which may be used for drying vegetables and medicinal plants, as well as being a convenient meeting-place. The spaces between each of the back rows of houses are narrow, with paved access and open drains. Houses are constructed of locally-made blue brick or rough-cut granite blocks, a heavy tiled roof, and, in recent years, cement floors. Such houses stand for hundreds of years. In the poorer villages houses are built of sun-dried mud brick, faced with plaster. These houses deteriorate after a few years, the owner usually rebuilding in similar style. If left un- occupied, they soon disintegrate into heaps of rubble: in which case superstition will often forbid rebuilding on the same site. A well-built stone village house usually consists of a single ground floor room with only one entrance, often separated from the outer court by a covered porch. One side of the room (usually near the door), or one side of the porch, may be used for cooking, while the other side is used for storing grass, the principal fuel. The rear portion of the room may be screened off with wooden parti- tions, for use as a bedroom, and over this portion, raised some eight feet above floor level, there may be a wooden platform or gallery used for storage or for extra sleeping accommodation. There are no ceilings, fire-places or chimneys, and few windows. The altar and shelf for ancestral tablets is at the back of the room, facing the main entrance. In the hilly Hakka areas, on account of the scarcity of level ground, many houses have their sleeping accommodation in an upper storey reached by ladder.

New Territories housing is at the present time being substan- tially influenced by more modern ideas, particularly in imitation of new buildings (such as schoolhouses) designed by urban architects. These, however, mainly affect the choice of materials. The



essential form of the traditional Chinese house is maintained, except that newer houses have more windows. Architects are seldom, if ever, employed for village houses.

      In recent years city dwellers have built modern bungalows and small week-end residences in the New Territories, particularly along the main roads to Castle Peak and Fanling. Cheung Chau Island and Silvermine Bay on South Lantau have also been affected. More recently the demand for permanent accommodation in the New Territories has led to the building of large blocks of flats, particularly in the Tsuen Wan district and in Yuen Long town. In the market towns, where two- or three-storey buildings have existed for many years, the modern shop and tenement buildings differ little from those in Kowloon. For any building in reinforced concrete, or of other than traditional design, it is obligatory to employ an architect.


      In the post-war circumstances of the Colony it has been a fundamental consideration that planning should be flexible, able to adapt itself to rapidly changing circumstances, and realistic in terms of economic and social conditions. More recently increasing stability has made it possible to foresee future trends with greater certainty.

       Population surveys have enabled estimates to be made of future demographic conditions and it has become clear that new land for development must be opened up in the next few years. One result of this was the appointment of engineering consultants to prepare schemes for the formation and reclamation of new development areas in the New Territories. Reports on six of these areas were received and careful study was given to them. At the end of the year Government announced its decision to proceed forthwith with the most promising of these schemes, at Kwai Chung, South-east of Tsuen Wan.

      Planning activities are co-ordinated within the Planning Division of the Crown Lands and Surveys Office and are concerned mainly with the preparation of outline development plans. Since 1953 plans have been prepared for twenty six of the thirty seven plan- ning districts in the urban area. One major district in the New



      Territories, Tsuen Wan/Kwai Chung, has been covered in some detail and draft plans prepared for several other districts. In addi- tion many large scale layout plans covering small portions of the urban area and the New Territories have been prepared. These plans are used as guide in the sale of Crown land and the re- development of private land, but have no statutory effect, except where approved in accordance with the Town Planning Ordinance.

      The Town Planning Board, comprising five official and three unofficial members, set up in accordance with the Town Planning Ordinance (Cap. 131), has published layouts and outline develop- ment plans for ten districts; nine of these have been approved by the Governor in Council and approval of one has been refused. These plans are prepared for the Board by the Planning Division. Approved plans cover the following areas:


North Point

Chai Wan

Yau Ma Tei

Hung Hom

Ma Tau Kok


Fung Wong Village

Ngau Tau Kok Village Cha Kwo Ling Village

Kwun Tong Tsai Wan

      A plan for Tai Hang Village which involved complete rede- velopment of the area and raised special problems of rehousing was not approved by the Governor in Council in view of more urgent housing needs in other parts of the Colony.

      Planning has been much concerned with the provision of land for projects such as resettlement housing and flatted factories and to meet the growing demands of industry. The steadily increasing population calls for the provision of more schools, hospitals, play- grounds and open spaces, and demands more detailed planning in new development areas. To this end the Planning Division works in close liaison with Government departments and other agencies and private companies, and particularly with the public utilities.

      The possibility of resiting the Kowloon Terminus of the Kowloon-Canton Railway has been under study for some years, and towards the end of 1959 Government announced its intention to reconstruct the terminal at Hung Hom, on the new reclamation which will be extended to include Cust Rock. The timing of the removal will depend on a number of factors and is not likely to take place in the immediate future. The decision will, however,



      enable planning of the Kowloon Point district and the Hung Hom reclamation to proceed.

A private firm has commissioned consultants to investigate the construction of a cross-harbour bridge, and Government has agreed to reserve sites for the probable terminal points for a further year until September 1960. The consultants' report is expected to be available sometime before this date. In the mean- time planning of additional cross-harbour ferry services has con- tinued.

       The new central reclamation and the surrender of Military and Naval lands in the central part of the city presents a challenge and a great opportunity. Government announced in November that the Town Planning Board had been instructed to prepare development proposals and the Board's plans, which will require to be published for public comment, will be awaited with interest. The Board in a statement following the Government announce- ment expressed the hope that the public would play its part in the planning of these areas and invited suggestions.

Great interest is shown in the planning and development of the Colony generally by visitors, particularly from other parts of Asia. Every effort is made to keep in touch with planning trends in other Asian countries with similar problems, and during recent years officers of the Planning Division have taken part in a num- ber of conferences on this subject.

Chapter 11: Social Welfare

WORLD Refugee Year which started in July 1959 is now bringing to the notice of many member states of the United Nations the social conditions which have been created in Hong Kong by the influx of about a million people from China. Coupled with this influx has been a high rate of natural increase, with the result that the population, now estimated at about three millions, has almost doubled in ten years and over two million people are packed into the twelve square miles of the twin cities of Victoria and Kowloon on either side of the harbour, where most jobs are to be found. During these ten years the Hong Kong Government, out of its own resources, has spent very large sums, amounting to nearly a third of its total revenue on social services such as low-cost housing, schools, hospitals and clinics, which would now be reasonably adequate if the population had increased at a normal rate and there had been no great volume of immigration. As it is, the grossly overcrowded housing conditions, the shortage of school places, and the difficulty of obtaining full time employment have induced or accentuated a number of serious social evils such as the abandonment of babies, the exploitation of children, juvenile delinquency, prostitution and widespread undernourishment or even destitution; in brief, social conditions are dominated by the struggle for survival. Children are left to fend for themselves in the streets and the business of somehow earning enough to keep alive in a fiercely competitive society means that for the majority there is little energy left for the graces of life or indeed for the development of any community sense in the newer urban areas. Fortunately the traditional Chinese moral code is still a powerful influence, even in families whose only home is a bedspace, though these traditions are now challenged by a variety of fresh influences. The present social problems of Hong Kong have been vividly depicted in photographs in a broadsheet prepared for the World Refugee Year Committee of the Hong Kong Council of Social Service, several hundred thousand copies of which have been dis- tributed to many of the countries taking part in World Refugee



Year. The broadsheet explains that any funds made available to the Hong Kong Government as a result of this world wide appeal will be used to embark on projects which could not otherwise be started for some time. Included in the list of such projects are six community centres and the expansion and improvement of existing facilities for the training of social workers. Already the United States Government has given the funds for the building of the first centre, work on which started in September, and funds for a second one have been promised by the United Kingdom National Committee. The United States Government has also donated con- siderable sums to the Government and to voluntary agencies for several other smaller projects.

These new community centres are designed not only to provide welfare facilities under one roof both for children of all ages and for adults but also to develop a community spirit and civic con- sciousness among the inhabitants of the resettlement estates, most of whom have come from many different parts of China. In this more general purpose should lie their greatest value and impor- tance. In the first centre, at Wong Tai Sin Resettlement Estate, voluntary agencies will run vocational and trade training classes, a family case-work centre, a day nursery and play centre for children between the ages of two and seven, and group work for young persons; while the Social Welfare Department will be re- sponsible for libraries for children and adults, social clubs for the blind and the deaf, a mothers' club, the organization of games and the general administration of the centre, and, in conjunction with the Council of Social Service, for the basic training of social workers.

Hong Kong is fortunate in having a large number of voluntary agencies covering almost the whole field of social work and running nearly all the colony's residential institutions, such as orphanages and homes for the blind and the aged. Most of the agencies are member organizations of the Hong Kong Council of Social Service which not only assists in co-ordinating their work and preventing overlapping but initiates new projects or new societies. During the year the Resettlement Estates Loan and Saving Association was founded and is now doing most valuable work in making loans to families in two of the bigger resettlement estates, who would otherwise be forced to borrow money at



extortionate rates of interest from money lenders, usually members of gangster secret societies. An Employment Assistance Scheme has already found work for several hundred people and a scheme for relief investigation cards to be given to beggars, instead of money, promises to go a long way in helping to solve Hong Kong's perennial beggar problem, now aggravated by the influx of refugees. The Council also operates the Welfare Handicrafts shop which provides a market for the products of refugee craftsmen on the books of welfare agencies. Relations between the Council and the Government are close and cordial and Government officials attend its meetings.

      Advice on social welfare matters is given to the Government by the Social Welfare Advisory Committee, a committee of unofficials under the chairmanship of the Director of Social Welfare. The Chairmen of four of the voluntary organizations, including the Council of Social Service, are ex officio members while the seven other members are selected for their experience and interest in social work. One of the duties of this Committee is to advise on the subventions to be given by the Government to numerous voluntary agencies and on the allocation of flag days, which are limited to twelve a year. During the year two comprehensive reports were made by sub-Committees of the main Committee on the welfare of the deaf and on moral welfare and these will be of great value in shaping future policy. Another sub-Committee is now examining the important question of the types of vocational and trade training which would have the most practical value in present conditions.

The work of the various Sections of the Social Welfare Depart- ment and of the voluntary agencies is described in more detail in succeeding paragraphs under the headings of Infant and Child Welfare, Youth Organizations and Group Work, Probation, Moral Welfare, Care of the Physically and Mentally Handicapped, and Relief and Public Assistance.

Infant and Child Welfare. Child welfare work in Hong Kong may be divided broadly between institutional care, including day care in nurseries or play centres, on the one hand and measures for the protection of children by virtue of the law or for customary or legal adoption on the other hand. Generally speaking, institu- tional and day care is undertaken by voluntary organizations, with



close liaison and in many cases financial support from the Govern- ment through the Social Welfare Department; whereas legal powers for the care and protection of children and adoption questions are the direct concern of the Department. This follows the pattern which runs through social work in other fields.

       The number of children abandoned on the streets was about twenty a month during 1959. These were usually small babies, nearly all girls; the reason was usually economic, combined in some cases with physical or mental defect. Orphans and children whose parents fail to care for them properly are admitted to the twelve children's homes and five babies' homes run by voluntary bodies. These include several institutions supported entirely within Hong Kong and controlled by Buddhist foundations or by boards of prominent citizens of Hong Kong. The largest of these, the Po Leung Kuk, which has been a refuge for children in need for the last eighty years has been reorganized and was giving shelter to 342 children at the end of the year. The other main group com- prises homes run by Christian missionary bodies, both Catholic and Protestant, some of them established for nearly a century. The largest and most modern Home, Children's Garden at Wu Kwai Sha on the shores of Tolo Harbour, was built on the cottage plan by the Christian Children's Fund with a substantial Govern- ment contribution. It housed over 800 children at the end of 1959, and provided a varied education and vocational training. The Homes together shelter about 2,100 children and 500 babies.

The need for day care of children of working mothers, many of them factory employees or unskilled labourers on low rates of pay, has been increasingly recognized; there are now nine nurseries, two creches and two play centres which were caring for some 1,340 children at the end of 1959 as compared with 450 at the end of 1958, and a number of voluntary bodies are planning to open new nurseries in the future. During the year, the Y.W.C.A. opened a roof-top play centre in the Shek Kip Mei Resettlement Estate, the Salvation Army opened a day nursery, medical clinic and voca- tional training centre in the Tai Hang Tung Resettlement Estate, and the Western Women's Welfare Club a day nursery at Bridges Street. Staff training facilities available to the various bodies which run children's homes, day nurseries, etc. were supplemented by a six months elementary child care course run by the Department



in co-operation with voluntary organizations. Over two hundred candidates applied, forty were selected and thirty six passed the final examination, of whom eighteen returned to their former em- ployment and the rest were gradually absorbed in child welfare work.

The Society for the Protection of Children operates five centres at which poor mothers are taught to look after their children properly and are given special food for them; over 5,000 children are regularly cared for at these centres.

The Protection of Women and Juveniles Ordinance, 1951 confers extensive powers for the custody, guardianship and care of children in need of protection on the Director of Social Welfare. Under the Ordinance, girls who are adopted by Chinese custom must be registered with the Department and the Director automatically becomes their guardian; there were 1,705 registrations at the end of 1959. The customary adoption of sons is also recorded if the parents so wish; 1,441 such cases were on record. In addition, the Director has power to declare himself the legal guardian of girls who are in need of care and protection and the Juvenile Courts may make an Order to the same effect in respect of any child or young person. There were 237 statutory wards of the Director by virtue of these provisions at the end of the year, 181 girls made wards by declaration and 56 juveniles (23 girls and 33 boys) made wards by Juvenile Court order. The welfare of many other children is the concern of the Department, either temporarily while their parents are in prison or in hospital or owing to ill treatment or family difficulties; or semi-permanently pending adoption, employ- ment, marriage or majority; many of these are visited in their homes while others are in institutions with which close liaison is maintained. At the end of the year the total including wards was almost 7,700.

The Adoption Ordinance, 1956, which provides for adoption by Order of the Supreme Court is increasingly used; in 1959, 97 Orders were made, while 142 applications were still in process.

The Department has co-operated closely with two voluntary or- ganizations, International Social Service Incorporated and Catholic Relief Services, in arranging for the adoption of children abroad, principally into Chinese families in the United States. In some cases the Director, as legal guardian, was given special authority



by the Supreme Court to consent to adoption overseas through the good offices of one or other of these organizations. By the end of the year 229 children had left Hong Kong for legal adoption into a family abroad and 248 children were waiting to leave. The work of these organizations materially assists in making provision for the increasing number of children without a family or a home.

Youth Organizations and Group Work. The families of many thousands of children in Hong Kong live in slum tenements, often in extremely cramped spaces, or in one room in a Resettlement Estate. In these overcrowded conditions family life becomes a struggle and physical recreation hardly possible, except in the streets. Moreover, there are still many children for whom no places can be found in primary schools. For these children, youth organizations seek to provide recreation, informal education, hand work and group or team competitions, thus giving them a fuller and perhaps more stable background than their homes can provide.

       The Chinese Y.M.C.A. and the Y.W.C.A. provide several thou- sand children and young people with clubs and recreational centres where they can follow their bent in vocational training, handicrafts, and hobbies. The Boys' and Girls' Clubs Association was running 115 clubs with a membership of 4,132 children at the end of the year, while another 83 clubs with 4,981 members were run by affiliated bodies, among them the Youth Welfare Section of the Social Welfare Department, which had 23 clubs with over 600 members.

       The Boy Scouts and Girl Guides Associations now have over 6,000 and 2,000 members respectively and continue to expand. 62 Scouters and Scouts from Hong Kong participated in the 10th World Jamboree held in Manila in July, and the Association was able to welcome many visitors to Hong Kong after the Jamboree, amongst them the then Chief Scout, Lord Rowallan, and the Inter- national Camp Chief, Mr. John Thurman, as well as a number of foreign contingents. The Girl Guides Association obtained a new camp site at Pok Fu Lam which proved an excellent addition to training facilities. The Association had a very successful year in training new and existing Guide leaders. A highly qualified Girl Guide Trainer from the United Kingdom spent a year in the Colony and left, on her departure, a local Training Team of



twelve, two of whom are also Camp Trainers, to continue this important work.

The Holiday Camp at Silvermine Bay on Lantau Island provided a week's holiday by the sea for some 3,500 children from poor families living in squatter areas, crowded tenements and resettle- ment estates. At the Lions-Y.M.C.A. Camp at Junk Bay over 800 poor children enjoyed a ten-day stay with plenty of good, nourish- ing food, and indoor and outdoor recreation. The Y.M.C.A. also ran special week-end camps for over 600 children from less poor families.

Children's libraries continue to be very popular, particularly with those who cannot afford to buy books and cannot get into school. The two libraries run by the Children's Playground Association at the War Memorial Welfare Centre and the Queen Elizabeth II Youth Centre were together used by an average of 650 children daily. The Hong Kong Junior Chamber of Commerce equipped and stocked another library in a resettlement estate during the year, making a total of sixteen since the first library was established in 1951. The Mobile Library van presented by the Chamber to the Department continued to serve children, and some adults, in the New Territories; the van visited fifteen different districts regularly and the number of readers averaged 2,500 a month.

      The need for simple but good hostel accommodation for young people is still acute. Hostels operated by the Salvation Army, the Y.M.C.A. and the Y.W.C.A. enabled nearly 700 young workers to have 'a home away from home'.

      Two experimental recreation centres have been started by the Youth Welfare Section of the Department in resettlement estates, where children who attend bi-sessional schools and are conse- quently free either all the morning or all the afternoon spend two to three hours a day at organized games, film shows, news quiz, discussions, etc.

Youth work in Hong Kong is co-ordinated by the Standing Conference of Youth Organizations, on which the Department and the main organizations in this field are represented; this co- ordinating body also runs the Silvermine Bay Holiday Camp through a Management Committee.

Members of the various organizations working with youth took part in the Youth Rally held at the Hong Kong Stadium on 7th



March on the occasion of the visit of H.R.H. Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Some members of the junior staff of the Department and of the youth organizations were invited to His Royal Highness' reception on board the Royal Yacht on the same day.

      More ground floor accommodation in resettlement estates has been allotted for welfare purposes and work started at Wong Tai Sin towards the end of the year. Two wings were being used for a case-work centre, a nursery, a children's library and for group work with children and adults. Three voluntary organizations as well as the Department participate in this work.

      The Department also inaugurated its first comprehensive 6-month In-Service Training Course on the basic principles of social work. Thirteen members of the Department participated, together with some fifty from other Government Departments who were enrolled either for the whole course or for certain sections.

Probation. The Probation Section of the Department has sixteen Probation Officers, four of whom are in charge of institutions con- cerned with the training of delinquents. The other twelve officers, six of them still under training and three of them women, are attached for Probation duties to the two Magistracies of Hong Kong Island and Kowloon and are available to the New Territories Court sitting alternately at Tai Po and Ping Shan. All are liaison officers to the District Courts and the Supreme Court when re- quired. One officer was sent to the United Kingdom for a three- month visit of observation.

       At the end of the year the total number of persons placed on probation by Court Order was 316, of whom 60 were females and 256 were males; it is interesting to note that 183 were juveniles. Supervision was also exercised over 20 cases (5 female) referred by the Secretariat for Chinese Affairs, the Magistrates, the Police or welfare agencies; these cases receive the same standard of supervi- sion as that given to probationers. Of the total of 271 males under supervision at the end of 1959, 115 were adults; of the 65 females, 38 were adults. The courts are tending to make increased use of probation as an alternative to imprisonment or other sentences, especially in the case of adults. 180 persons ceased to be on proba- tion during the year; of these 22 were charged with new offences. while still on probation and 15 were untraced. The remainder, 80%, satisfactorily completed the period of probation.



Inquiries into the social background of offenders, by which the Courts are assisted in awarding appropriate treatment, were made by the Probation Section in the case of 1,289 males and 462 females of whom 63 males and 9 females were sentenced to deten- tion in institutions run by or associated with the Section; others were referred to welfare centres, clinics, etc. for assistance in rehabilitation or sent for reformative training to one or other of the training centres administered by the Prisons Department. Officers also continued, after inquiry, to supervise selected cases of persons unable immediately to pay their fines, as an alternative to imprisonment.

The two Probation Committees first appointed in 1958 met half yearly to review cases and to advise the Probation Staff. These Committees, one for Hong Kong and one for Kowloon and the New Territories, consist of all the Magistrates in each Magistracy and three Justices of the Peace appointed by the Governor. The Industrial and Reformatory Schools Ordinance was amended and Rules promulgated in September 1959 for the better management of the Approved School, and more particularly for the discharge of inmates on licence.

The Remand Home, which has accommodation for 54 juveniles, was widely used by the Juvenile Courts and the Police for three types of cases; those arrested and awaiting trial, those on remand, and those sentenced to detention for residential training for periods of a few months. 3,632 persons, of whom 446 were girls, were admitted to the Home during the year.

The Castle Peak Boys' Home which was taken over by Govern- ment from the Salvation Army on 1st April 1958, was by the end of the current year running satisfactorily as an Approved School. It accommodates about a hundred delinquent boys between the ages of 10 and 15 committed for two to five years or until they reach 18, for vocational and trade training. The curriculum in- cludes primary education, carpentry, shoe-making and leather- work, tailoring, rattan-weaving, gardening, and pig and poultry keeping. The Kwai Chung Girls' Home can no longer be used for delinquent girls and a training institution, comparable to the Castle Peak Home for boys, is therefore much needed. Plans for this were in hand at the end of the year.

An Experiment in Rehabilitation

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In November, 1959, Government published a White Paper emphasising the horrors of drug addiction; these pictures show how addicts are rehabilitated. At Tai Lam, in the New Territories, a disused contractors' camp has been turned into a model prison where they can start a new life. Most addicts are grateful for their second chance and echo the senti- ments of this one who vowed the day before his release: 'I will never use drugs again.'


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Typical arrivals at Tai Lam Prison (above) have emaciated appearance, show little interest in life. Their work tasks will be graded according to their standard of fitness and those who are too sick to work will be sent to prison hospital (below). About 20 per cent of addicts have tuberculosis on arrival but despite this and other diseases most gain from 12 to 16 lbs. in prison.




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The emphasis is on outdoor work at Tai Lam Prison and addicts have built offices (above), a swimming pool, cut fire breaks on nearby hills and planted 10,000 young trees. There is still much similar work to be done and to get maximum benefit they work stripped to the waist, Only 25 men are employed indoors and they are essential workers such as cooks and tailors (below).


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Cookhouse duty (above) is popular because cooks receive $1.20 a week, as against 80 cents for other workers and 40 cents for hospital patients. Prisoners work from 8 a.m. to 12 noon and from 1 to 4.15 p.m. with a five minute break every hour. As they start to regain their health (below) most show determination to keep off narcotics and the rate of recidivism so far is low.



       There are three non-Government institutions of particular value to the Probation Section. The Hong Kong Sea School, Stanley, which accommodates 300 boys, all of them either orphans or from poor homes, and trains them for a career at sea. After completing their course of two or three years they are able to find immediate employment with shipping companies. The Children's Centre, Kowloon, offers educational and vocational training to some 100 poor children. The Juvenile Care Centre was established on the Island with the express aim of helping to prevent juvenile delin- quency. This Centre provides education and vocational training for over 800 boys and girls who attend daily, a number of them being accepted upon the recommendation of Probation Officers and welfare agencies. These institutions have in some degree filled the place of a Probation Home, in which offenders may be required to reside as a condition of a Probation Order and have also accom- modated a number of potential juvenile delinquents. It is intended to establish a Probation Home when resources permit.

       Moral Welfare. No large city is free from prostitution, but in Hong Kong the problem is aggravated by the conditions of a major seaport. The predominant cause is economic, that is to say, the great difficulty of earning a living.

The law provides extensive sanctions against the exploitation of women, especially young girls; it is the task primarily of the Police to enforce these provisions, and of the Women's and Girls' Section of the Social Welfare Department to seek to rescue the victims of exploitation, so that they may be equipped to earn an honest living and to find a place in society. Efforts are particularly directed towards the younger girls who are discovered in raids on brothels or referred by the Social Hygiene Clinics of the Medical and Health Department, while they are still prepared to welcome advice and training for a normal life.

       At the beginning of the year a branch office was opened in Kowloon, designed to render the advice of the trained case-workers of this Section more readily accessible to those who need it. Staff is now on duty until late at night for the purpose of interviewing girls discovered during raids on brothels and for more effective after-care generally.

The Department is fortunate in being able to entrust young prostitutes, in suitable cases, to the care of the Sisters of the Good



     Shepherd who are specially trained for this rehabilitation work and can accommodate girls who need education and vocational training in a sympathetic environment at Pelletier Hall, an institution which was opened in 1956. During the year the Sisters have increased the capacity of this Home from 128 to 138 and plan to raise it to about 200 in the future. The girls, who are normally under the age of 18 on entry, are educated and taught how to earn a living and run a home of their own. Sixty girls were admitted to the Home during the year and thirty six discharged; most of these secured employment in machine-knitting factories, for which they were trained at the Home.

      The Women's and Girls' Section of the Department also advises and helps unmarried mothers and their children; for them a refuge is provided in the Po Leung Kuk, already mentioned under the heading of Child Welfare, where limited space is set aside for them. During the year sixty four unmarried mothers came to the Department for help and twenty were admitted to the Kuk.

Among other types of cases to which the officers of the Section devote much time and thought in giving advice and counsel are victims of indecent assault, family cases involving incompatibility or some moral difficulty, adolescent girls in need of care and protection or girls who have ceased to be amenable to parental control. Wherever possible, some stable form of work is found for those who seek to earn their living.

      Care of the Physically and Mentally Handicapped. Voluntary and official welfare organizations both strive to provide services for the handicapped. The Special Welfare Services Section of the Department is responsible for the registration of the physically handicapped, the blind and the deaf, and co-operates closely in the planning of rehabilitation facilities; in these the voluntary agencies and the Education, Medical and Health and Labour Departments all play their part in a common effort to help the disabled to live useful lives. The Society for the Relief of Disabled Children cares for fifty four crippled children at its Sandy Bay Children's Sanatorium. The new Hong Kong Society for Rehabili- tation, which sprang from a sub-committee set up in 1957 by the Hong Kong Council of Social Service, intends to provide physio- therapy, limb-fitting and vocational training under medical supervi- sion at a centre to which curable disabled adults will be admitted,



so as to be equipped again for employment. The United States Government has made a generous World Refugee Year gift of US$90,000 for the building of this Centre. At its North Point Camp, the Department provides vocational training and sheltered employment for some 120 homeless and disabled adults including 22 cured leprosy patients discharged from the Hay Ling Chau Leprosarium.

       It has been estimated that the blind persons in Hong Kong might number about 5,000; 1,600 are registered with the Blind Welfare Unit of the Department which also runs five clubs for the blind where simple braille and handicrafts are taught. The Hong Kong Junior Chamber of Commerce again presented coloured walking sticks in 1959 for the use of the blind. Miss T. Williams, who was seconded from the Royal Commonwealth Society for the Blind following the visit to the Colony last year of the Director, Mr. John F. Wilson, O.B.E., arrived in April 1959 as Executive Officer of the Hong Kong Society for the Blind and adviser to the Director of Social Welfare. The local Society's Second Vocational Training Centre is being operated with some assistance from the staff of the Department and a grant from the Kowloon Rotary Club for equipment. 61 blind people are now being trained in brush-making, mat-making, rattan-weaving and machine-sewing in the two centres. The Society plans to set up a sheltered workshop to absorb some of these trainees and to cater eventually for 200 blind. The foundation stone of the new building of the Ebenezer Home and School for the Blind which will take in considerably more than its present number of 100 pupils was laid in September. The Canossa Home for the Blind which has some fifty residents also intends to expand its work. The Music Training Centre for the Blind, which opened in September 1957, now has sixteen pupils.

       A sub-committee on the Welfare of the Deaf, appointed by the Social Welfare Advisory Committee at the end of 1957 to study existing services for the medical care, education and welfare of the deaf, completed its report in April 1959 and its recommendations are being considered. The Hong Kong School for the Deaf, which uses the oral method of instruction, had over a hundred boarders at the end of 1959; the Chinese Overseas School for the Deaf and Dumb, together with its branch school in Kowloon, caters for



ninety five day pupils. The foundation stone of the Victoria Park School for the Deaf, which will cater eventually for 120 deaf children, was laid on 11th December 1959.

Construction of a second home for the aged to be run by the Little Sisters of the Poor has begun at Aberdeen. This, together with the planned extension of the Sin Tin Toa Home for the Aged, a Taoist organization, will enable another 650 old people to receive residential care, in addition to the 1,000 inmates of the six existing homes for the aged. The West China Evangelistic Band Home for the Aged, catering initially for 10 old women, was opened in October 1959.

      There are now over a hundred mentally deficient children in institutions such as North Point Camp, the Po Leung Kuk, and the three hospitals of the Tung Wah Group. Hong Kong still lacks a specialist institution devoted to this problem, but arrangements were made at the end of the year for an expert examination of the facilities needed for care of mental defectives, now the only handicapped group for whom no specific provision exists.

The Mental Health Association organized its first Mental Health week in April 1959 as a prelude to World Mental Health Year 1960. Broadcast talks and film shows were arranged as well as visits to the Child Guidance Clinic at the University of Hong Kong and the Mental Hospital.

Relief and Public Assistance. Increases in the population of the Colony by immigration as well as by natural causes have led to yet heavier pressure on available employment. The retrenchment of staff consequent upon the reduction in the Armed Services' estab- lishments, especially the final closure of the Dockyard towards the end of the year, has not improved the position, although the great majority of those affected have been able, with Government assist- ance, to find other work. Many thousands of families are obliged to depend upon the earnings of irregular and unskilled labour for their livelihood; poorly paid and undernourished, they have no material or physical reserves and remain above the level of destitu- tion only by dint of constant effort. There is here a vast field for relief work.

During the year there was a considerable increase in the amount of outdoor relief provided through the Department. An average of



over 4,500 people received a free cooked meal every day at one of the six departmental welfare centres and some 5,420 shares of dry rations were distributed regularly to about 2,660 families to be cooked at home. The recipients were the physically handicapped, the sick (particularly sufferers from tuberculosis and their families), widows with dependent children, and others who were shown on detailed inquiry to be unable to support themselves, whether tem- porarily or permanently.

      The North Point Relief Camp, the only Government institution with accommodation for the destitute and disabled and their de- pendants, provided limited indoor relief. The average population of the camp was between 350 and 410 and the turnover about 45 per month.

       Voluntary welfare organizations played an important part in the work of public assistance. The Lutheran World Service gave free medical treatment to many needy persons, particularly refugees, supplied some 80,000 people a month with supplementary food- stuffs through eleven centres in the urban area, and gave a number of cash grants. Church World Service and the Catholic Welfare Committee of China both distributed food on a large scale; the former helped to finance a variety of relief projects, while the latter assisted welfare clinics with part of their medical supplies. C.A.R.E. (Co-operative for American Relief to Everywhere, Inc.) financed a number of self-help projects and distributed some 453,000 food parcels.

      The quantity of surplus foodstuffs from the United States which entered Hong Kong during 1959 for distribution locally by these and other organizations amounted to some 22,000 tons; this con- sisted of wheatflour, cornmeal, broken rice, milk powder and beans. Some of these foodstuffs, notably wheatflour, cornmeal and powdered milk, being both comparatively strange to local palates and not very easy to prepare in appetizing form, are of dubious popularity. A number of voluntary bodies, notably Catholic Relief Services, have therefore installed locally made machinery to con- vert these foodstuffs, including a proportion of milk powder, into noodles before distribution. Noodles are almost a staple ingredient in local diets, and as such are widely acceptable. This scheme has proved most successful.



The Hong Kong Family Welfare Society gave advice and assist- ance to over 4,000 families every month. Members of each family are interviewed or visited at home and the Society's trained case- workers help them to find employment, accommodation, medical treatment, etc. and sometimes provide loans or cash grants. The Society of St. Vincent de Paul also provided relief grants, free schooling and medical fees for the needy.

Emergency Relief. Measures for emergency relief were con- tinually required, and the year 1959 proved to be the busiest year since the days of the huge Shek Kip Mei fire in 1953. The exceptionally heavy rains in June alone produced a total registra- tion of over 17,800 victims from landslides, house collapse, etc. both in urban and in rural areas. Besides providing two meals a day, the Social Welfare Department was responsible for the dis- tribution of funds donated by the public through the South China Morning Post, the Hong Kong Tiger Standard, the Tung Wah Hospitals, and other organizations amounting to some $290,000. These funds were distributed to those whose homes were com- pletely destroyed, and to the dependants of those who were killed or seriously injured. A gift of £10,000 ($160,000) was also received from the United Kingdom Government.

      Up to the end of the year, the number of victims registered in 44 fires, 7 house collapses, 25 shipwrecks, 4 floods, 6 landslides and 10 evacuations from dangerous buildings was over 33,856. Cooked meals or dry rations were distributed immediately after each disaster. Among the organizations which played an important part in assisting these victims by providing foodstuffs, used cloth- ing, blankets, or cash grants were Lutheran World Service, Church World Service, Catholic Relief Services, C.A.R.E., the British Red Cross Society, the Salvation Army, the Hong Kong Family Welfare Society and the various Kai Fong Associations.


      For many decades opium-smoking was prevalent in Hong Kong, as elsewhere in the Far East. Opium was first subjected to control by law in Hong Kong in the 1880s, and since about 1910 it has been an object of policy to suppress its smoking altogether. The present Dangerous Drugs Ordinance, enacted in 1936, gives the



force of municipal law to the conventions and agreements adopted by international bodies to control the traffic in narcotics and also empowers the Government to deal with the particular problems that arise in Hong Kong. Since the war, efforts on the part of Government to suppress this vice have resulted in traffickers and addicts turning to an increasing extent from opium to heroin, a drug which is much easier to smuggle, conceal and consume, and which is far more damaging in its effects.

The increasing gravity of this problem caused great concern and in 1957 Government appointed a committee to consider concerted action. In the light of this Committee's recommendations, Govern- ment accepted the need for most vigorous measures, which will take the form of a simultaneous drive against the sources of supply, against traffickers and against addicts. At the same time a campaign was started to enlist the support and co-operation of the public. The Preventive Service and the Police Force have been steadily expanded, and close liaison has been established between the Police and overseas authorities concerned with the suppression of the drug traffic. During the year, a Hong Kong delegation, comprising the Director of Criminal Investigation, an Assistant Director of Commerce and Industry and the Government Chemist, attended the Interpol Seminar on Narcotics in Paris sponsored by the United Nations, and members of the Hong Kong Police Force visited Japan and Bangkok for discussions. Visits were also made to Hong Kong by a member of the Welfare Ministry and officers of the National Police Agency of Japan. Mr. T. C. Green, Assistant Secretary in the Home Office and concurrently United Kingdom representative on the United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs paid a three-week fact-finding visit in October and was consulted on many aspects of the local problem.

In Hong Kong, many addicts employ barbiturates as a base powder during the smoking of heroin. Legislation was therefore enacted in August 1958 to include barbitone, phenobarbitone, and their salts and preparations in the First Schedule of the Dangerous Drugs Ordinance, thereby placing them under stringent import and export controls in the same way as opium, morphine and heroin. Acetic anhydride, a chemical whose importation was formerly controlled on strategic grounds and which is used in the illicit



     manufacture of heroin is now controlled by legislation specifically introduced for the purpose.

      There is a very close connexion between addiction to narcotics on the one hand and crime on the other. The percentage of self- declared drug addicts among prisoners decreased from 78% in January 1958 to 67% in October 1959, but even the lower figure is an alarming one. It is the Government's policy to redeem as many addicts as possible and all addicted prisoners receive special treatment in prisons and in particular in H.M. Prison, Tai Lam, described on page 224, a special institution for the treatment and rehabilitation of convicted addicts. Voluntary treatment centres for drug addicts are also being planned by both the Government and voluntary agencies.

      On 11th November 1959, a White Paper on the Problem of Narcotic Drugs in Hong Kong was laid before Legislative Council, outlining the extent of the problem and the measures already taken to suppress addiction and trafficking, and appealing to the public for support in a sustained campaign. Copies of the White Paper were widely distributed and talks and dramatic plays on the subject were broadcast by Radio Hong Kong. There is already evidence of increasing public awareness of the dangers of drug addiction.

     The Secretary for Chinese Affairs has been entrusted with the co-ordination of general policy in the war against narcotics. To advise him, a Narcotics Advisory Committee was appointed com- posed of the Chinese Unofficial Members of the Executive and Legislative Councils and two of their European colleagues.

Chapter 12: Legislation

DURING the year, forty eight Ordinances and a considerable amount of subsidiary legislation were enacted. The majority of the Ordinances amended the existing law and only notes on the more important legislation are set out below.

Buildings (Amendment) Ordinance. The revision of the Buildings Legislation which commenced with the passing of the Buildings Ordinance, 1955, together with three sets of regulations made thereunder was virtually completed by the enactment of the Buildings (Amendment) Ordinance and a further six sets of regulations. The amending Ordinance considerably revises the principal Ordinance to improve the administrative provisions and extends its scope to cover private streets and access roads, lift and escalator works and drainage works.

Business Registration Ordinance. The Business Regulation Ordinance of 1952 was repealed and replaced by this Ordinance. The main objects of the 1952 Ordinance, namely, to oblige businesses to disclose details of their partners for the information of the Inland Revenue Department and the public and to raise revenue, are preserved. But the annual fee has been reduced from $200 to $25 and certain small or dormant businesses, although still required to register, are no longer required to pay any fee.

Clean Air Ordinance. The Clean Air Ordinance makes provision for the control of smoke (which includes dust and obnoxious vapours) in the Colony. Industry in Hong Kong is expanding and it is to the advantage of the Colony to set up machinery for the control of smoke and other forms of air pollution before the resulting problems become more complex. The smoke control is designed primarily to ensure the safety of aircraft and to protect the public against the general health dangers which can arise from the volume of smoke emitted from crowded industrial or residential areas. This Ordinance is not identical to the United Kingdom Clean Air Act, although the main objects of the two



    measures are the same, because it is designed to meet the particular problems which arise in Hong Kong.

      Colony Armorial Bearings (Protection) Ordinance. Her Majesty the Queen graciously granted and signed under Royal Warrant Armorial Bearings for the Colony. This Ordinance prohibits the unauthorized use of the Colony's Armorial Bearings.

     Estate Duty (Amendment) Ordinance, Chapter III. Prior to the passing of this Ordinance persons with large estates used certain methods which were within the law for the purpose of avoiding or reducing payment of estate duty. This Ordinance amends the principal Ordinance to prevent persons from using such methods to avoid the payment of estate duty. The amending Ordinance brings the Hong Kong legislation into line with the United Kingdom legislation where almost annually the law has been amended for the same purpose. This Ordinance also extends and renders more effective the existing provisions relating to the distribution of estates during lifetime; makes provision for the separate aggregation of certain property passing on death; and makes provision for increased relief in the case of small estates and reduces the scale of charge generally.

Heung Yee Kuk Ordinance. The Heung Yee Kuk has existed for more than thirty years in the New Territories as a non- statutory advisory body and as a forum where leaders of opinion in the New Territories have been able to exchange their views. This Ordinance gives statutory recognition for the first time to the Village Representatives and the Rural Committees of the New Territories and establishes the Heung Yee Kuk as the apex in the representative pyramid. The Ordinance makes provision for the constitution, membership and functions of the Kuk.

Hong Kong Auxiliary Police Force Ordinance. The effect of this Ordinance is that the Hong Kong Police Reserve and the Special Constabulary are amalgamated into a single body, thus giving effect to what had been the position for over a year. The legislation is largely of a consolidatory nature, and removes certain anomalies inherent in the operation of two similar forces under separate legislation.

     Industrial and Reformatory Schools (Amendment) Ordinance. This Ordinance amends the principal Ordinance which deals with



youthful offenders, that is to say, boys and girls between the ages of seven and sixteen. When sentencing an offender the Court no longer orders the offender to a specified period of detention at a reformatory school, but on an order being made the offender will be detained for a minimum period of two years but no longer than five years, or until such time as he reaches the age of eighteen, whichever is the earlier. It is not thought desirable that the Court should fix a definite period of detention because such period can only properly be determined when there has been an opportunity of judging the response to training. An offender who responds to training may be released after two years, whilst anyone above the age of fourteen who is found to be incorrigible may be sent to a training centre or even prison. This Ordinance brings the Hong Kong legislation into line with the United Kingdom legislation and the Training Centres Ordinance.

      Occupiers Liability Ordinance. The United Kingdom Occupiers Liability Act, 1957, which was based on the majority recom- mendations contained in the Third Report of the Law Reform Committee of the United Kingdom, came into force on the 1st January 1958. The Law Reform Committee of Hong Kong recommended that the law should be brought into line with the United Kingdom legislation. After the recommendations of that Committee had been considered the Occupiers Liability Ordinance was enacted. The effect of this Ordinance is to standardize the liability of occupiers of premises to visitors injured as a result. of defects in the condition of these premises so that the duty owed to a licensee is the same as that owed to an invitee.

       Miscellaneous. The codification of the Road Traffic legislation continued with the enactment of the Road Traffic (Roads and Signs) Regulations. The provisions of the Geneva Convention August 12th 1949, for the Relief of the Wounded and Sick in Armies in the Field was applied to Hong Kong.

Chapter 13: The Courts, Police,

Prisons and Records


THE Courts of Hong Kong include the Supreme Court, the District Court, the Magistrates' Courts, the Tenancy Tribunals and the Marine Court.

      The Supreme Court consisted throughout the year of the Chief Justice, one Senior Puisne Judge and two Puisne Judges. The Supreme Court has jurisdiction similar to that of Her Majesty's Courts of Queen's Bench, Common Pleas and Exchequer in England, the judges having the power to hear and determine criminal and civil cases with a jury, and to deliver convicts to gaol. The judges also have jurisdiction in Probate, Divorce, Admiralty and Bankruptcy. The Supreme Court is also a Court of Equity, with jurisdiction similar to that of the Court of Chancery in England, and has the same authority as the Lord High Chancellor of England to appoint and control guardians of infants and their estates, and keepers of persons of unsound mind who are unable to govern themselves and their estates.

The laws of England, as they existed on the 5th April 1843, apply in the Colony save insofar as they are inapplicable to the local circumstances of the Colony or its inhabitants or have been modified by laws passed by the Legislature of the Colony. The civil procedure of the courts was codified by the Code of Civil Procedure, which modified, and in some instances excluded, provi- sions made in the English Rules of Practice. A statement of the laws of Hong Kong will be found in Chapter 25.

      All civil claims above $5,000 are heard in the Court's original jurisdiction, as well as all miscellaneous proceedings concerning questions arising on estates, appointments of trustees, and company


Magistrates hold preliminary inquiries into indictable offences and, if a prima facie case is made out, the accused are committed for trial at the criminal sessions, which are held once a month.



      There is an appeal from the Supreme Court to a Full Court, consisting of two or more judges as directed by the Chief Justice.

      Under the Magistrates Ordinance, any person aggrieved may appeal to a judge from the decision of a magistrate. This form of appeal is heard by a single judge, who may direct that the appeal, or any point in it, be considered by the Full Court.

      During 1959 the appellate jurisdiction once more had a heavy calendar, dealing with 613 criminal appeals and 29 civil appeals. In the original jurisdiction, 604 actions were instituted as against 657 in 1958. In the Miscellaneous Proceedings register, 283 appli- cations were entered as against 210 for 1958.

      In the Criminal Sessions of the Supreme Court, 30 cases were heard involving 46 accused of whom 35 were convicted.

      The District Courts have jurisdiction to hear claims up to a value of $5,000 and a special jurisdiction in Workmen's Compensa- tion. The District Court Judges also have a criminal jurisdiction greater than that of Magistrates, which enables them to try certain cases which would otherwise have to be committed to the Supreme Court Sessions. The number of District Judges was, during the year, increased from four to five. The District Courts, of which there are three on Hong Kong Island and two in Kowloon, were once again fully occupied. The number of actions instituted totalled 4,986, which exceeded the total for 1958 by more than 530 cases and was a new record for any one year since the incep- tion of these Courts in 1953, the previous record total being 4,456 for 1958. In their criminal jurisdiction the District Courts tried 407 persons of whom 326 were convicted; this represents an increase of approximately 5% over the previous year.

      There are Magistrates' Courts on Hong Kong Island, in Kow- loon, and in the New Territories. The courts in Kowloon hear cases from the whole mainland area south of the Kowloon hills. In the New Territories, there are courts in Tai Po and Ping Shan, with one magistrate dividing his time between both places. On Hong Kong Island, apart from the regular Magistrates' Courts, there is a Justices of the Peace Court, composed of two Justices of the Peace sitting together five afternoons a week. One of the Justices is usually a solicitor. During the year seventeen solicitors and forty eight lay Justices served in this Court.



The year was notable for another busy period in the Magistrates' Courts with five functioning on Hong Kong Island, six (including one Evening Court) in Kowloon and one in the New Territories. The table of figures below shows once again that the courts in Kowloon dealt with substantially more cases than the Hong Kong


Statistics of work in the Magistracies are as follows:

Hong Kong Kowloon

New Territories


Total number of summary matters (charges, summonses and applica- tions, etc.) ...

79,822 123,517

5,936 209,275

Total number of defendants (adult

and juvenile)



126,933 7,003 215,409

Total number of defendants con-

victed (adult and juvenile) Total number of adult defendants 76,412 Total number of adult defendants









convicted Total number of juvenile defendants










Total number of juvenile defendants







Total number of Charge Sheets







Total number of summonses issued


44,594 3,145 90,877

In the Tenancy Tribunal, the number of applications made for determination of rent payable, or for approval of agreed rental in excess of the permitted rent, totalled 1,101 as against 1,121 for 1958. The number of exemption cases filed was 855 for 1959, the figures for the past three years being 1,004 for 1956, 1,410 for 1957 and 1,409 for 1958. These applications are brought under the provisions of the Landlord and Tenant Ordinance, under which an applicant, wishing to obtain exemption from the Ordinance in respect of certain buildings, brings proceedings before a tribunal for that purpose. These tribunals consist of a president (who has legal qualifications) and two lay members chosen from a panel appointed by the Chief Justice. During the year no less than 174 of these lay members rendered valuable service on the tribunals. Although the number of these cases filed during the year showed a substantial decrease when compared with previous years, an



analysis reveals that of the total of 855, no less than 654 were filed in the second half of the year, reflecting a revival in building operations in Hong Kong during that period.

      Applications under the Adoption Ordinance totalled 119 as compared to 91 in 1958.

In the Probate Department 544 grants were made during 1959, the figures for the past three years being: 452 in 1956, 478 in 1957 and 579 in 1958.


       The problems of the Police Force are those usually associated with a major sea port and city. They are multiplied, however, by the continuing rapid development of the whole area and increasing density of population. Victoria and Kowloon together now con- stitute the fourth largest city in the Commonwealth. Continuous vigilance, re-deployment of duties and re-assessment of ideas and methods are demanded by the ever-extending network of business houses and commercial undertakings supplying the needs of the Colony, by the expansion of modern and progressive industrializa- tion and by the resettlement of a large section of the community.

       Despite the swift moving changes that occur and which neces- sitate constantly revised methods to deal with specific problems, in Hong Kong, as elsewhere, the Constable on his beat is a familiar part of the daily scene. A great part of his training is devoted to stressing the necessity for co-operation with the public, and this, together with the growth of civic mindedness, has resulted in the Force obtaining increased help from the public in combating crime and maintaining law and order.

      Other methods of police watch and ward, such as radio car patrols, support the man on the beat and are readily available to assist members of the public. In each of the three Districts, Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, and the New Territories and Marine, there are Emergency Units which provide a tactical reserve ready at all times for special operations or to deal speedily with any localized disorder or disaster. These measures were further strengthened by the formation in 1958 of the Police Training Contingent with the dual object of training personnel of all ranks for internal security duties, and at the same time providing reserve units readily avail- able at short notice.



The Colony's importance as an international cross-roads accen- tuates the need for close liaison between the Hong Kong Police and the Police Forces of other countries throughout the world. As part of this close international police relationship, the Hong Kong Police frequently entertain police officers from other countries who come to study methods employed here.

The New Territories, with its widely dispersed rural population and its land frontier with China, imposes special considerations not found in the urban and more densely populated areas of Hong Kong Island and Kowloon. The police in the New Territories have to be much more intimately associated with local community life and problems. In this respect a great deal has been achieved through the use of village penetration patrols which, working on foot, cover areas inaccessible by road. These patrols spend several days in each area living in the villages, giving advice and assist- ance where they can. They also help in escorting mobile teams providing medical and other social services to outlying districts. Good relations are further fostered by the giving of cinema shows and in sporting activities between police and village teams. Close liaison is maintained with the New Territories Administration and the Rural Committees in all matters affecting the life and well- being of the community, thereby ensuring the fullest co-operation and understanding of the many problems involving the residents of the New Territories. Urban-type police work is now necessary in the rapidly developing townships.

     Illegal immigration into the Colony has remained a major problem and the long sparsely populated coastline, with its numerous small coves and beaches, affords points of ingress difficult to control. Some degree of success has been achieved, but there are still those who slip through the net to add further congestion to the already over-populated urban areas. Much of the success achieved has been due to the vigilance of the Marine Police Division on which devolves the responsibility of policing the territorial waters of the Colony and its numerous islands, as well as the enforcement of shipping regulations in the waters of the Port of Victoria, one of the world's busiest harbours.

Chain of Command. The Force is organized under a Colony Headquarters at which there is an Assistant Commissioner respon- sible for general administrative matters concerning the Force. He




the Scenes

with the

J-Hong Kong



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The visitor to Hong Kong quickly forms a high opinion of the Police Force. Most people, whether visitors or residents, normally see the policeman only on his beat or standing on a 'pagoda' directing traffic, but as these pictures show there are many other angles to his work. There is, for example, the communica- tions_network-the radio-equipped patrol cars and the Main Radio Control (shown above) which in 1959 handled more than 9,000 '999' emergency calls.


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At Police Headquarters, an expert photographs a suitcase for fingerprints (above). The photographic section of the Police Identification Bureau, undoubtedly one of the best equipped in the Far East, turns out more than 1,000,000 photographs annually. Nearly a quarter of a million fingerprints are on file in the Bureau (below).





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The Marine Police are equipped with a variety of craft ranging from steam tugs to small harbour launches and the tasks they are called upon to carry out are equally varied. Marine policemen (above) stop and search a junk during routine operation to counter smugglers of contraband and illegal immigrants. Most junk owners are co-operative.

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The C.I.D., with a total strength of almost 600 officers and men, is equipped with the most modern aids available and combines plain-clothes work against the triads or secret societies-with the more usual types of crime detection. Above, bloodstained clothing is examined in the police laboratory, while (below) a ballistics expert studies comparison photographs of bullets.




is assisted by a number of Staff Officers, each responsible for a particular aspect of administration. The three Territorial Police Districts, the Criminal Investigation Department and the Special Branch are commanded by Assistant Commissioners. The Anti- Corruption and Narcotics Branch, the Police Training School, the Police Training Contingent, the Traffic Branch, the Communica- tions and Transport Branch and the Immigration Office are in the charge of Senior Superintendents. The three Territorial Districts each contain a number of Divisions, Sub-Divisional Stations and Posts. Included in the New Territories District is the Marine Division equipped with a fleet of twenty six craft which are fitted with either radiotelephone communication or wireless-telegraph, and equipment for air-to-launch communication; ten are fitted with radar.

The Criminal Investigation Department is generally responsible for the prevention, detection and prosecution of crime, with specialized units at Colony Headquarters and detective units decentralized throughout the three Territorial Districts. The Special Branch is responsible for the prevention and detection of sub- versive activities. The Anti-Corruption and Narcotics Branch is designed as a centralized unit for the better collection and dis- semination of information, and the investigation and prosecution of offences, relating to corrupt practices and narcotics.

The Force has an establishment of 7,630, consisting of 87 Gazetted Officers, 649 Inspectors and 6,894 Rank and File. The actual strength on 31st December 1959, was 86 Gazetted Officers, 581 Inspectors and 6,458 Rank and File. Included in these figures is an establishment of Women Police consisting of 1 Gazetted Officer, 4 Inspectors and 174 Rank and File.

       Auxiliaries. The Hong Kong Auxiliary Police Force consists of two former units known as the Police Reserve and the Special Constabulary which were amalgamated on an administrative basis in September 1957. The two units were legally amalgamated under the provisions of the Hong Kong Auxiliary Police Force Ordinance No. 2 of 1959 which came into operation on 30th January 1959 by proclamation No. 1 of 1959 of the same date.

       The single chain of command resulting in the combination of the two former units has provided for a greater administrative efficiency in training and emergency duties. The officers and men



of the two units have lost none of their enthusiasm through the amalgamation, and because of this the new unified Force has settled down extremely well. The total strength of the Auxiliary Police Force on 31st December stood at 1,859 for all ranks, an increase of 10 over the previous year.

Crime. The peak year for serious crime in Hong Kong was 1954, and since then a gradual reduction has been recorded. 1959 was no exception in respect of preventable offences. Despite a steadily growing population, satisfactory decreases were recorded for all classes of crime other than 'breaking' offences, and the detection rate continued to show considerable improvement. The full statis- tics of serious crime are recorded at Appendix XVIII.

      An important aspect of the preventive action by the police has been the sustained drive against the criminal secret societies, or Triads, members of which are responsible for much of the crime and vice in Hong Kong. This was again illustrated during the month of September when, as a result of a special sweep against Triads preceding the October 1st and 10th celebrations, preventable crime dropped to a new low level.

      Police Supervision of habitual criminals continued to assist in the prevention of crime, although the application has been more selective during the year, resulting in fewer persons under stricter supervision.

      There was little change in the great volume of prosecutions undertaken in respect of non-serious crimes and minor breaches of the many regulations necessary to maintain order in the densely populated urban areas of the Colony.

      The Police continue to be assisted to no small extent by members of the public, and an increased number of criminals were arrested by them throughout the year, in many cases at great personal risk. At ceremonies held at Colony Headquarters during 1959, forty four letters of appreciation and monetary awards were presented by the Commissioner of Police to members of the public for outstanding services to the community.

      Training. All recruits are introduced to the Force through the Police Training School which is situated in a valley at Wong Chuk Hang, Aberdeen, approximately nine miles from the centre of the City of Victoria. The School area covers about fifty acres of land.



The buildings are very austere with the exception of a number of new class rooms and the Recruit Probationary Sub-Inspectors' Quarters which have recently been built. The site offers great possibilities for development and plans are now in preparation for the building of new premises.

Overseas Probationary Sub-Inspectors, who are recruited in the United Kingdom by the Crown Agents and also in the Common- wealth, are required to be single, between the ages of twenty and twenty seven years, not less than five feet and eight inches in height, of good physique and of good general education.

       Local Probationary Sub-Inspectors are selected locally by a Board consisting of the Deputy Commissioner and the Com- mandant, Police Training School. They are required to be between the ages of twenty and twenty five years, not less than five feet six inches in height, of good physique and to have educational qualifications to the standard of the Hong Kong School Certificate.

       Recruit Constables are selected by the Commandant, Police Training School from applicants between eighteen and twenty five years of age. They are required to be not less than five feet five inches in height, of good physique and able to read and write Chinese fluently.

Probationary Sub-Inspectors and recruit Constables on first appointment are posted to the Police Training School where they receive a six months course of instruction. The syllabus covers a wide field and includes law and legal principles, court procedure, police regulations and duties, physical training, first aid and local and general knowledge. Apart from women officers all are addi- tionally required to become proficient in the handling of various weapons and in riot drill. During this period Overseas Officers commence the study of Cantonese, and recruit constables com- mence the study of English. The Marine Police are given special instruction in seamanship, port regulations and signalling.

       At the end of their initial course, Recruit Probationary Sub- Inspectors are required to undergo a further two years of theo- retical and practical training at Divisions, under the supervision of the Force Training Officers.

      During the year forty eight overseas and four local Sub- Inspectors were recruited directly into the Force. Of these overseas



Sub-Inspectors two were recruited in Australia, and one in New Zealand.

      There was a total of 1,871 applicants for the post of Constable and 513 were taken on strength, of whom fifty were Women Constables.

      A certain amount of difficulty is experienced in recruiting suit- able men for appointment as Constable; the principle reason for this being that men with suitable qualifications are able to obtain less exacting work with better remuneration. It is felt, however, that with a general increase in salary, as recommended by the recent Salaries Commission, the recruiting situation will improve.

In addition to initial training the Police Training School provides advanced training for N.C.O.s and Constables, whilst Criminal Investigation and Traffic Courses are also held. These courses are designed to improve the professional knowledge and general efficiency of those attending.

Refresher courses for Probationary Sub-Inspectors and advanced training courses for Inspectors and Gazetted Officers at the School will be introduced during 1960.

      A Rank and File Cadet Course, designed to enable outstanding members of the Rank and File to qualify for accelerated promo- tion was held during the year. Twenty members of the Force were selected to attend this course which consists of six months intensive training on police subjects at Inspectorate level. Special attention is paid to development of initiative and powers of leadership. As from this year all members of the Rank and File before being selected to attend a Cadet Course will be required to undergo and qualify in a six months advanced English Course designed to improve their standard of English.

The Police Training School also provides facilities for the training of the Auxiliary Police. During the year 1,481 members of the Auxiliary Police attended the Annual Training Camp at the School.

      Communications and Transport. This expanding and important branch of the Force is controlled from Colony Headquarters but, in the near future, Radio Control Centres will be established in each of the three Districts. All vehicular transport, training of drivers and all forms of communication including radiotelephony,



wireless telegraphy, teleprinters, telephones, sound recording equipment and radar stations are the responsibility of the branch. A main workshop and two subsidiary workshops are provided for the installation, maintenance and repair of all communications equipment.

      Almost all new equipment approved by the Government for the reorganization of Police communications has been ordered and a considerable quantity has already been installed.

      At present the Force has a total of 590 radio stations arranged to link Headquarters with Districts, Districts with Divisions, and Divisions with Stations, Posts and Launches. There are also direct links with patrol cars and foot patrols equipped with pack sets. Facilities are also provided for direct communication between Districts and two helicopters, and also between Marine Police launches and Service aircraft.

      During the year a helicopter was used to rescue a Police Constable with an injured leg who was lying in a position to which other means of approach would have been extremely difficult.

       During 1959 a total of 14,593 telephone calls necessitating Police action were received at the Control Room, Colony Headquarters. Of that number, 9,982 were received through the '999' Emergency system. Police action taken as a result of these calls resulted in the arrest of 1,357 persons.

       The Force now has a strength of 379 motor vehicles of all kinds. The total mileage run by those vehicles during the year was 4,314,709 and the accident rate was one per every 19,176 miles travelled. This includes many accidents of a very trivial nature.

      Traffic. The traffic problems of Hong Kong are similar to those of any major city, but are accentuated by extraordinary pedestrian density, many pedestrians having little experience of motor traffic. The problem is aggravated by the continued increase in the number of vehicles on roads of inadequate widths and this has led to increased congestion in central areas. The most pressing problem is that of parking, and intensified building development is now producing parking problems in areas where they did not previously exist. To alleviate the situation 300 parking meters were installed



in Central District during the early part of the year. Public opinion was not at first in favour of these meters, but as the novelty wore off they were accepted by the general public as a part of Hong Kong life. The present lack of off-street parking and the consequent increase in police action for offences against parking regulations has resulted in some deterioration in this aspect of relations between the public and the Police; the Police, however, have to enforce traffic regulations in order to keep traffic moving and to promote road safety. The problem, which is common to many large cities, can only be solved by the gradual provision of sufficient off-street parking to absorb the steadily increasing number of vehicles.

During 1959 pedestrian crossings, refuges and guard rails were provided at busy junctions according to programme. The installa- tion of four additional sets of automatic signals during the year brought the total number of light-controlled junctions to 16. Other appropriate signs for the direction of traffic were erected at various places throughout the Colony where they were considered neces- sary for greater safety.

      The visit of His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh in March was a happy occasion when the public, appreciating the special arrangements which were necessary, responded good humouredly and in doing so enabled the control of traffic to be carried out smoothly.

      Education of the public in road safety was undertaken con- tinuously during the year by means of special task forces which were sent to show people on the ground how to use pedestrian crossings and motorists how to observe them. The results were encouraging and contributed materially to road safety and to an improved standard of good manners and courtesy; but there is much yet to be done in this field.

During the year it was decided that traffic constables solely engaged in directing traffic should no longer carry firearms.

Together with a 7.6% increase in the number of registered vehicles there was also a sharp rise in the number of traffic accidents. Fatal accidents rose from 154 in 1958 to 174 in 1959, while accidents involving serious injury increased from 951 to



      1,229 for the same period. Comparative figures for the last four years are:












Serious Injury Slight Injury












4,619 4,421


5,618 6,372

The number of drivers increased by 14,859, bringing the total of licensed drivers up to 104,288.

During the year 26,086 provisional (learner) driving licences were issued, and 22,137 driving tests were conducted.

Immigration Office. The Commissioner of Police is concurrently the Immigration Officer for the Colony. All persons entering the Colony must be in possession of valid travel documents. All aliens are required to have visas, except those passing through on ships or aircraft. Special arrangements cover the entry of Cantonese from Kwangtung Province and these include a quota system. Local residents wishing to visit China may ensure their return outside the quota by using a re-entry permit, valid for twelve months. The number of re-entry permits issued during 1959 was 337,202.

The movement of European refugees from China through Hong Kong continues under the auspices of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. 1,519 of these persons passed through the Colony during the year, bringing the total to 13,972 since 1952. There were 37,627 visas, 4,350 new British passports and 14,223 Certificates of Identity issued during the year. The total recorded movement in and out of Hong Kong during 1959 was 2,224,503.


There are eight institutions administered by the Commissioner of Prisons from headquarters in the centre of the City of Victoria. Stanley, Victoria and Lai Chi Kok are maximum security prisons; Chi Ma Wan and Tai Lam are minimum security prisons; Stanley and Cape Collinson are open Training Centres for boys in the age group 14-21. The eighth institution is the Staff Training School.

Stanley Prison was built in 1937 to hold 1,746 prisoners. It has always been overcrowded but 1959 was the worst year in its history



in this respect; this is mainly due to the increasing impetus of the drive against drugs, and in particular to Police action in Kowloon Walled City. The design and location of Stanley Prison are well fitted to its proper role of a long term prison providing industrial training.

The daily average population was 2,747 (2,635 in 1958).

Victoria Prison is the central Reception and Classification Prison. All prisoners are received here, and spend their first seven to ten days at Victoria so that if they wish to become appellants transfers are unnecessary. After the appeal period they are trans- ferred to the institution most suitable to their needs.

The daily average population was 516 (400 in 1958).

Lai Chi Kok Prison for women is situated on Castle Peak Road leading out from Kowloon to the New Territories. It is now hemmed in by factory development and resettlement areas; its removal to another site is an approved project, and it is intended that the new prison shall be on semi-open lines. The present prison has been made as bright as possible with pleasant colour schemes and flower gardens. The Matron and staff, all locally recruited, are efficient and devoted and the atmosphere is cheerful and progressive.

The daily average population was 176 (144 in 1958).

Chi Ma Wan Prison is situated on the bay of that name on the south coast of the island of Lantau. Very extensive forestry work has been done, and miles of concrete paths and cycle-tracks laid for the benefit of the villagers. This useful and constructive work has gone far to solve the problem of the employment of short- term prisoners, who in so many of the world's penal systems are unemployed and useless in 'local' prisons.

The daily average population was 651 (610 in 1958).

      Tai Lam Prison takes only convicted drug addicts. There is no restriction on admission other than the physical capacity of the prison; prisoners of all age groups and types of offence are received the criterion is the need of the prisoner for treatment. An active programme of rehabilitation is followed, beginning with hospital treatment if necessary and ending usually with the prisoner fit and well working on forestry or other open-air occupations. Much work is done for the benefit of New Territories villages,



and this work for the good of their own people is of inestimable value in setting up the drug addict and increasing his moral and physical resistance to the craving.

The daily average population was 577.

      Stanley Training Centre and Cape Collinson Training Centre can now take up to 300 boys sentenced by the Courts, after a report as to suitability for training, to detention for nine months to three years. The date of release is decided by the Commissioner on the advice of a Discharge Board at each Centre. The Centres have had the very high success rate (not reconvicted) of 78% and 72% respectively over a period of five years.

      The daily average population was: Stanley Training Centre, 140; Cape Collinson Training Centre, 114.

      The Staff Training School has more than justified its year of existence, and it is now hard to see how the Department managed without it. The School gives basic training to all disciplined staff on joining, and provides refresher courses at regular intervals thereafter.

       After-Care. The section of full-time After-Care Officers (to be known in future as Social Welfare Officers) has been increased during the year to provide an after-care service for a proportion of drug addicts discharged from Tai Lam, as well as for all boys released from Training Centres.

      Discharged Prisoners' Aid Society. The Society continued to expand its activities, which are being increasingly directed towards the welfare of discharged short-term prisoners.

      Staff. The staff of the Prisons Department consists of 13 gazetted officers, 686 other ranks, and 166 schoolmasters, after-care officers, trade instructors, clerks, mechanics and others.


      The Registrar General's Department comprises the Land Office, the Registries of Births and Deaths, Marriages, Companies, Trade Marks and Patents, the Offices of the Official Receiver in Bankruptcy and Companies Winding Up, the Official Trustee, the Judicial Trustee and the Official Solicitor in Lunacy.

      Land Office. The principal function of the Land Office is the registration of all instruments affecting land in Hong Kong,



Kowloon and portions of New Kowloon, instruments affecting land in the rest of New Kowloon and the New Territories being registered in one or other of the four District Offices. Although the system of registration under the Land Registration Ordinance is basically one of registration of deeds and not of title, the Land Office Registers do in fact show in a clear and accurate manner the devolution of title to each lot, or section of a lot, and details of all encumbrances affecting it. The result is that, in practice, the system is regarded as virtually equivalent to registration of title. Land tenure is described in Chapters 7 and 10.

      Among the other functions of the Land Office are the issue, renewal, variation and termination of Crown leases of all land registered in the Land Office, the granting of mining leases, and advising the Government generally on matters relating to land.

      The demand for housing, office and factory accommodation has continued unabated and the building industry had another very busy year. In the principal thoroughfares great new buildings were everywhere to be seen springing skywards, while in the side streets, where formerly three or four storeyed buildings ranged in un- relieved monotony, six, eight or ten storey buildings have begun to set the pattern of things to come. All this was reflected in the Land Office statistics for the year. The number of land transactions rose by 8% to the record figure of 19,585, and the grand total of the amounts involved passed the $1,000,000,000 mark, for the first time being at $1,018,069,000 an increase of $38,000,000, or about 4% over the 1958 total. Sums advanced on mortgages of land totalled $332,854,000, an increase of $3,000,000 over the 1958 figure. The average rate of interest declined slightly to about 11% per annum.

Companies. The Companies Registry maintains records of all companies incorporated in Hong Kong, and also of all foreign corporations carrying on business in the Colony. 446 new com- panies were incorporated in 1959, and 42 foreign corporations established places of business. At the end of the year there were 3,625 local companies on the Register and 404 foreign corporations with a place of business in Hong Kong, as compared with 3,251 and 381 respectively in 1958.

The Companies Ordinance (Chapter 32) is based on the Companies Act, 1929, of Great Britain (since replaced by the



Companies Act, 1948). On incorporation in Hong Kong a company pays a registration fee of $100 plus $2 for every $1,000 of nominal share capital. Foreign corporations establishing a place of business in the Colony merely pay $5 fees on filing the documents required by Section 318 of the Ordinance.

       Trade Marks and Patents Registries. The Trade Marks Ordinance, 1954, is based on the Trade Marks Act, 1938, but there are some variations.

During the year 1,367 new trade marks were registered, as against 1,263 in 1958. Registrations are valid for seven years (14 years if registered prior to 1st January 1955), but may be renewed indefinitely for further periods of 14 years. There were 16,253 trade marks on the Register on 31st December 1959.

Hong Kong law does not provide for the original grant of patents, but patents registered in the United Kingdom are registrable under the Registration of United Kingdom Patents Ordinance (Chapter 42). This provides that the grantee of a patent in the United Kingdom may, within five years from the date of issue of the patent, apply to have it registered in Hong Kong. During the year seventy seven patents were so registered.

Bankruptcies and Liquidations. During the year eleven bank- ruptcy petitions were filed, of which one was withdrawn and one dismissed. Receiving Orders were made in eight cases (one being subsequently rescinded), and in the remaining case an Order was made for the administration in bankruptcy of the estate of a deceased debtor. The Official Receiver was appointed Trustee in every case except one in which an outside trustee was appointed, the first such appointment for many years.

There were five petitions for the compulsory winding-up of companies. Two were withdrawn prior to the dates fixed for the hearing, and winding-up orders made in the other three cases. The Official Receiver was subsequently appointed Liquidator in all three cases.

Marriages. All marriages, except non-Christian customary marriages, are governed by the provisions of the Marriage Ordinance (Chapter 181). Under this, it is necessary for a notice of intended marriage to be exhibited at the Registry for fifteen clear days, after which the Registrar issues a certificate which



    enables the marriage to be solemnized at a licensed place of worship, or to take place as a civil marriage before the Registrar. The Governor has the power in special circumstances to grant a licence authorizing a marriage to take place before the expiry of the fifteen-day period, or dispensing with notice altogether.

     Notices of intended marriage are accepted, and civil marriages are performed, both at the main Marriage Registry in the Supreme Court Building in Hong Kong, where there are now two marriage rooms, and at the Kowloon Registry situated in the Hongkong and Shanghai Bank Building, Mong Kok.

     The validity of Chinese customary marriages is not affected by the Marriage Ordinance, and such marriages do not require to be registered. Marriages under the Ordinance have, however, become popular with all classes of the Chinese population, the advantages of having an official certificate of marriage being now more widely appreciated. There has therefore for many years been a steady increase in the yearly total of registered marriages. In order to accelerate and assist this changing trend in public opinion plans have been made for the setting up of additional marriage registries, both in the urban areas and in the New Territories, in 1960 and the next few years.

     The number of marriages registered in 1959 was 9,348, 1,712 more than in 1958. 3,960 marriages were performed at the main Registry, 4,484 at the Kowloon Registry, and the remaining 904 at licensed places of worship.

     Births and Deaths. The registration of births and deaths is compulsory under the Births and Deaths Registration Ordinance (Chapter 174). The General Register Office is situated in the centre of Victoria, and district registries are located where most needed throughout the Colony. In the outlying rural and island areas births are registered by district registrars calling regularly at the District Rural Committee Offices, and deaths are reported to the local police stations.

The year's statistics have revealed one remarkable and wholly unexpected feature: for the first time since the War there has been a decline in the number of births registered, the year's total of 104,579 being 2,045 less than that for 1958. The reasons for this decline are discussed in Chapter 2. In addition, there were 3,334 births registered more than one year after their occurrence,



which compares with 2,332 such cases in 1958. This large number of post-registrations is due to the fact that before the war parents, especially in the New Territories where there were no local regis- tration facilities until 1932, frequently neglected to register the births of their children. There was also no registration of births in Hong Kong during the Japanese occupation. Nowadays the possession of a birth certificate is essential for many purposes, and there has therefore been for many years a constant flow of applications for post-registration. A special mobile team was formed in February 1959 to deal with such applications in the New Territories, and so great has been the number received that two additional teams have been authorized for 1960.

      125,395 birth certificates were issued as against 127,305 in 1958.

       The number of deaths registered declined slightly to 20,250, 304 less than in 1958.

       Adoptions. An Adopted Children Register is maintained at the General Register Office under the Adoption Ordinance, 1956. In 1959 ninety seven adoptions were registered, bringing up to 212 the total number of adoptions registered since the first entry was made on 22nd July 1957.

Chapter 14: Public Utilities and

Public Works


Waterworks. The supply of water to Hong Kong is the responsi- bility of the Public Works Department of the Government.

     In the absence of large rivers or other regular sources of supply, the Colony depends entirely for its fresh water on rainfall. This averages 84.7 inches per year, and falls mostly during the summer when the south-west monsoon blows and there are occasional typhoons. A dry season lasts from October to April inclusive and during these 7 months an average of 18.27 inches of rain falls but, because the ground is so dry at this time, very little of this rain- water finds its way into the reservoirs. The dry season sometimes continues to the end of June and it is consequently necessary to control the average daily consumption during the winter months in order that there may be a reasonable quantity of water in the reservoirs at the end of April as an insurance against delayed rains. The inadequacy of existing resources also makes it necessary to impose some restrictions even during the wet season.

A new reservoir at Tai Lam Chung in the New Territories was completed in 1957, and the Colony now has a total storage capacity of 10,500 million gallons in fourteen reservoirs of which the new one, with a capacity of 4,507 million gallons, is the largest. Nearly all these reservoirs fill completely during a normal wet season. Despite this substantial and very welcome improvement in water supplies, and the construction, now under way, of another new reservoir at Shek Pik on the island of Lantau, described later in this Chapter, the storage, together with the dry-weather yield from streams, will still be insufficient to meet the demands of a rapidly growing population and increasing development. Restrictions on the hours of supply will probably continue to be necessary every dry season for some years to come.



       The Government has been searching vigorously for additional sources of supply, and the most promising solution appears to lie in the construction of additional storage reservoirs at Plover Cove and Hebe Haven. These are tidal estuaries on the north-east coast of the New Territories, and the unconventional proposal is to construct dams across the mouths of the inlets and pump out the sea water. Both of these schemes have been investigated and shown to be feasible. A detailed investigation has now started at Plover Cove, where the feasibility report indicated that a reservoir of 29,000 million gallons capacity could be constructed with a probable yield of 55 million gallons per day. At the same time, the Government is inquiring into the possibility of producing fresh water by the distillation of sea water using nuclear power, and combining the production of potable water with the production of electricity. There is no commercial plant in existence of comparable size to that which would be required in Hong Kong and the cost of such a project would undoubtedly be extremely high.

Only 2,362 million gallons of the maximum possible storage can be held on the Island, and under existing conditions approximately half of the Island's consumption is supplied from the New Terri- tories and conveyed across the harbour in two 21-inch diameter concrete-lined steel submarine pipes. Because the Island is hilly, a large proportion of the water has to be pumped, and in some areas repumped, through a system of numerous pumping stations and service reservoirs.

       In addition to these works, Hong Kong has a system of catch- waters 35 miles in length which will be extended to about 60 miles when the Tai Lam Chung Scheme is completed. These concrete-lined channels run along the mid-levels of hillsides, inter- cepting streams and water courses and conveying their water into the storage reservoirs. The water supply to the Island and the urban areas of Kowloon is filtered and sterilized by chemical treatment, and a high standard of purity is maintained. Practically all water is supplied to consumers through meters at an average cost of eighty cents (one shilling) per 1,000 gallons. Some of the poorer districts are however, provided with water free of charge through standpipes.

       At the beginning of 1959 there was an eight-hour supply each day. These hours of supply remained in force until the closure of



the Tai Lam Chung tunnel for repairs in March, described later, made it necessary to reduce the period of supply to three hours daily. Upon completion of the repairs at the beginning of April, the eight-hour period was restored; and on 24th April was increased to ten daily. June turned out to be the wettest on record, and a twenty-four-hour supply was given on 16th June when a new record consumption of 93.34 million gallons per day was established; the previous highest being 83.9 million gallons on 4th September 1958. This unprecedented demand resulted in some service reservoirs being emptied faster than it was possible to re- fill them, and it was found necessary to restrict the supply during the night to enable the service reservoirs to refill. A very wet summer, when every reservoir overflowed for lengthy periods, enabled a seventeen-and-a-half-hour supply period to be main- tained in most areas from 17th June to 2nd October when the hours were reduced to thirteen daily. In anticipation of a dry October, the hours were again reduced to eight on 11th October; but the complete absence of rainfall during the month made a further cut to four hours a day necessary on 30th October.

The average daily consumption was 59.89 million gallons as against 53.03 last year, an increase of 12.9 per cent. The maximum consumption was 11.3 per cent higher than last year's highest figure.

A section of the delivery tunnel on the Tai Lam Chung Scheme, which had given trouble previously, developed further leakage at the beginning of 1959. Attempts were made to repair the leakage without interfering with supply by drilling and grouting from outside the tunnel, but this was not effective. The tunnel was therefore emptied on 12th March, and supplies were restricted to three hours a day. There followed an intensive period of activity in which internal radial holes were drilled and grouted over the first 400 feet length of the suspect tunnel, and finally a 36-inch diameter steel pipe was laid inside the tunnel to preclude the possibility of further leakage due to cracking of the tunnel lining. This work was completed on 2nd April and the supply hours were increased to eight hours a day on 4th April.

The year's work included a large programme of main laying to enlarge existing services and extend the distribution system. An important factor contributing to the rapid increase in the demand



for water supplies is the expansion of the Colony's Resettlement Estates where mains water is usually provided through standpipes. The number of regular water consumers increases as more estates are constructed because the squatter areas, which the resettlement projects replace, had only very limited regular means of obtaining piped water. To meet the heavy demands for flushing water for these densely populated resettlement estates, attempts were made to find additional water by sinking wells, but without success. In order therefore to conserve mains water, work was commenced on seven separate schemes to provide salt water for flushing at such estates and other private properties in their vicinity. These schemes require the construction of eight service reservoirs, two dams and seven pumping stations; and the laying of approximately 9,000 feet of 15-inch diameter pipe and 55,000 feet of 18-inch diameter pipe. The work is now well in hand; and, when com- pleted, it will be possible to supply about 20 million gallons of salt water a day for flushing and air-conditioning. Fire hydrants are being installed on the salt water mains to improve the available fire fighting facilities. Consideration is also being given to the possibility of extending the existing salt water mains in the Central District of Victoria, and to the construction of three further schemes in areas of concentrated development.

       Work continued on the final phases of the Tai Lam Chung Scheme. Two of the three service reservoirs begun in 1958 were completed and brought into use. Agreement was reached with villagers living in the Yuen Long area, who had objected to the construction of the north group of catchwaters, fearing that they would lose their irrigation water. Contracts were let for the con- struction of a further five miles of catchwater and one mile of tunnels. Work was begun also on a dam at Wong Nei Tun in the hills south of Yuen Long, which will serve as a settlement basin and an impounding reservoir for the supply of irrigation water to the fertile plains below. Approximately half of the total length of catchwater was completed, and only on one section was con- struction not put in hand.

       Work commenced on the Shek Pik Water Supply Scheme which, it is estimated, will cost $220 million. To form this reservoir an earth dam, 2,300 feet long and 176 feet high, is being built at Shek Pik on the south coast of Lantau, where it will impound



5,350 million gallons of water in what is at present a cultivated valley. The residents of the village of Fan Pui, situated on the site of the dam itself, were resettled in a new village constructed in an adjoining valley; and the villagers from Shek Pik, which will be inundated when the reservoir is completed, will be accommo- dated in blocks of flats to be built for them at their request at Tsuen Wan. A system of catchwaters and tunnels will collect the yield from indirect catchment areas extending over the whole of the south and west sides of Lantau Island.

      A contract was let for the construction of approximately 6 miles of main supply tunnels from Shek Pik to a pump house at Pui O, and from there to filtration works overlooking Silvermine Bay, on the south-east coast of Lantau. The filtered water will be delivered to the Island of Hong Kong through two 30-inch diameter steel pipe lines laid in a trench in the seabed, extending from Silvermine Bay on Lantau to Sandy Bay on Hong Kong, a distance of eight miles.

      From Sandy Bay the water will be pumped to two new service reservoirs sited at different levels on the slopes of Mount Davis, the higher having a capacity of 30 million gallons and the lower of 5 million gallons. Water will be led from these reservoirs into the distribution system of the Colony by an extensive series of large trunk mains. It is expected that water will be available from Shek Pik by the winter of 1963.

All the principal market towns in the New Territories obtain water either from main sources or independently from local stream intakes. Supply hours are subject to the same restriction as in the urban areas, and the system of piped water supplies is being extended year by year. A filtered supply was given to the village of San Hui, and good progress was made on a scheme for pro- viding Ping Shan, Yuen Long and Sek Kong with a first class filtered and treated supply of potable water.

      In addition to the shortage of water for domestic purposes, there is also insufficient for agriculture in the New Territories. To remedy this situation and, as mentioned above, to allay the fears of villagers that the construction of new catchwaters for large new reservoirs would divert water that would otherwise flow onto agricultural land, the Government continued the policy of increasing irrigation supplies. A large number of small schemes



consisting of diversion dams and channels for irrigation purposes were completed in 1959; and contracts were let for the construc- tion of a further three dams which between them will impound 130 million gallons of water.

      The deep well drilling programme which had been in progress for the previous two years was completed. The results of the investigations confirmed that no large underground sources of water exist in the New Territories.

      Equipment for the fluoridation of Hong Kong's water supply arrived and a start was made on its installation at the various treatment works sited on Hong Kong Island and the Mainland.

      Electricity. A Commission was appointed in July to inquire into the question of control over the two main electricity supply companies. The Hongkong Electric Company, Limited and China Light and Power Company, Limited. The terms of reference of the Commission were as follows:

'Whereas it appears to Government undesirable that the opera- tions of the electricity supply companies in Hong Kong should remain entirely free from any statutory control; to advise in the light of-

(a) the past record of The Hongkong Electric Co., Ltd. and

China Light & Power Co., Ltd.,

(b) the control now exercised over other public utilities in

Hong Kong, and

(c) any other relevant circumstances, on the form and extent

of the control which Government should impose, and on the method of assessment of any compensation which may become payable in the event of any such control being imposed.'

The Chairman of the Commission was Mr. John Mould, O.B.E., A.M.I.E.E. who recently retired from the Chairmanship of the East Midlands Electricity Board in the United Kingdom, and the other members were Mr. C. J. M. Bennett, F.C.A., a partner in the firm of Barton, Mayhew & Co., and the Hon. Dhun Ruttonjee.

The Commission held a series of public hearings, between 28th September and 17th November 1959 at which a number of organizations and individuals expressed their views. The Chair- man of the Commission returned to the United Kingdom on 23rd



December and at the end of the year the report was under con- sideration by the Government.

     Electricity on the Island is supplied by The Hongkong Electric Co., Ltd. distributing alternating current at 22 KV and 6.6 KV, 3 phase, 50 cycles. Bulk consumers are supplied at 6.6 KV, industrial consumers at 346 volts 3 phase, and domestic consumers at 200 volts single phase. The amount of electricity generated in 1959 was 415,810,940 kilowatt hours, an increase of 10% over the previous year's figure.

The number of consumers at the end of the year was 91,979, an increase of 9.6% over the 1958 figure.

Total sales for 1959 were as follows:


Public Lighting

Bulk Power


Domestic & Commercial Power

102,397,107 kwh.







359,681,824 kwh.

      During the year the peak load reached a figure of 85 MW, an increase of 8.8% over 1958. The steam raising capacity is 1,666 k. lbs./hr. and generating capacity 152.5 MW. The increase in steam raising and generating capacities is the result of the com- missioning of additional plant in 'B' Station.

      All demands for new or increased supplies have been met and a further 10 M.V.A. transformer has been installed in the substation serving Central District. Additional 22 KV cables have been laid to Western District and increased transformer capacity for that area will be installed during 1960. Local substations or transformer rooms increased by twenty nine and in addition five transformer kiosks were erected. The release of the former Naval Dockyard and Barracks will entail the planning of new feeders as soon as the future of the land is known.

     Charges for electricity range from 28 cents a unit to 15.4 cents a unit for lighting, and 12 cents a unit to 11.4 cents a unit for power. These rates are subject to a variable fuel surcharge which, at the end of the year, was 9 per cent. Special rates are quoted for bulk consumers of industrial power.



      In Kowloon and the New Territories, electricity is supplied by China Light & Power Co., Ltd., whose services extend to Lantau and several other outlying islands.

      In 1959, sales were again substantially increased, while the Com- pany's generating capacity and network were further expanded. New connexions included multi-storeyed apartment buildings in the business centre of Kowloon, and factories in Kwun Tong, Castle Peak and Tsuen Wan. Severe electrical storms in the summer taxed the Company's repair facilities, but in all cases service was restored with a minimum of delay.

      The normal electricity supply is alternating current of 50 cycles, at 200 volts for single phase and 346 volts for three-phase. Main transmission over long distances is carried at 33,000 volts, while ordinary distribution is effected at 6,600 volts. The network is made up of underground cables in the urban districts and, to an increasing extent, in rural areas, while the remaining lines consist of overhead wires. The total length of the main system at 30th September 1959 was: 33,000 volts, 160.6 miles; 6,600 volts, 207.23 miles. At the same time, the Company had 203 substations, and 611 transformers totalling 477,400 KVA.

      The Generating Station is situated facing Kowloon Bay at Hok Yuen. During the year, the extensions planned in 1955 were completed, bringing the total capacity to 182,500 kilowatts. The three latest turbines have an output of 30,000 kilowatts each and consume steam at a pressure of 600 lbs. per sq. in., and a temperature of 850°F., while the remaining machines operate at 400 lbs. per sq. in. and 695°F. respectively. All steam is raised in boilers which are at present fired by fuel oil exclusively. Further extensions are planned to deal with the ever rising demand.

      Approximately 646,901,300 units of electricity were generated during the financial year 1958-9 of which 552,046,000 were sold. Total sales in units were as follows:


Public Lighting


Bulk Supply








     At the beginning of the year the Company had 111,613 con- sumers. By the end of the year this had risen to 132,015. 512 new factories were connected to the Company's supply during the year.

Charges for electricity (per unit) during the year were:



Domestic Power


New Territories

29 cents

37 cents

14 cents

14 cents

13 cents

13 cents

     These rates are subject to a variable fuel surcharge, at present 9 per cent. Discounts are granted for large consumption, and special rates quoted for bulk supply.

     The only part of the New Territories to have an independent source of electric light is Cheung Chau, where there has been an electric power station since 1913. Originally a community project, it was later sold to commercial interests and has since changed hands several times. The present owners, the Cheung Chau Electric Co., Ltd., have their offices in Victoria. The basic rate has been reduced during 1959, and from 1st January 1960 the rate will be further reduced to 72 cents a unit for lighting and 32 cents a unit for domestic and commercial power. Special reductions are given to large consumers.

      Gas. The Hong Kong and China Gas Co., Ltd. supplies gas to domestic and industrial consumers on both sides of the Harbour.

     The cross harbour gas mains are now in commission. More than half of the gas used on the Island is now supplied from the mainland and with the completion of the new gas making plant at Ma Tau Kok in the near future the old West Point Works will be closed down and all gas for Hong Kong Island will be made at Ma Tau Kok. Gas-making capacity will be such that the Company can expect to meet increases in demand for some time to come.

Extensions to the distribution system have been made and gas is now available for industrial purposes in the Castle Peak Road area west of Lai Chi Kok. Gas is also available to a point west of the Airport, and it is hoped to extend these mains in due course to serve the Kwun Tong industrial area. Extensions on the Island have been made past the North Point area to the east and to the Queen Mary Hospital to the west.



Appliances and gas equipment can be obtained from or through the Company by purchase, hire purchase, or on a simple rental basis. Technical advice on the commercial and industrial uses of gas is freely available.

       Total quantity of gas sold in 1959 was 734,794,000 cubic feet compared with 712,439,500 cubic feet in 1958. The number of consumers rose from 11,352 to 12,495.

Charges (per meter) are:

On first 10,000 cu. ft. $13.00 per 1,000 cu. ft. On next 15,000 cu. ft. $12.50 per 1,000 cu. ft. On next 25,000 cu. ft. $12.00 per 1,000 cu. ft. Over 50,000 cu. ft. $11.50 per 1,000 cu. ft.

       Tramways. An electric tramway service is operated by Hongkong Tramways Ltd. on Hong Kong Island. The track, the gauge of which is 34 feet, is about 191⁄2 miles in length when calculated on a single track basis. It extends from Kennedy Town to Shau Kei Wan with a branch line encircling the Race Course in Happy Valley. All routes pass through the City of Victoria. The tramcars are of the four-wheeled, double-deck, single-staircase type and are intended for single-ended working, the termini having turning circles. The operating voltage is 500 volts direct current.

       The average daily service of cars run in 1959 was 138. This provided a car every two minutes in each direction on all routes. Through the city area, which is in the centre of the system, the minimum service frequency was a car every 35 seconds in each direction. The number of passengers carried during the year was over 172.5 million while the total mileage run was slightly under 7.5 million.

Fares are charged at a flat rate for any distance over any route (the maximum route length is 63 miles) of 20 cents (3d.) 1st class, and 10 cents (14d.) 3rd class. The Company also issues monthly tickets, and concession fares are given to children, students and Services personnel.

The Peak Tramway, operated by the Peak Tramways Co., Ltd., was opened for traffic in May 1888, and was then known as the Hong Kong High Level Tramway. With a lower terminus situated at the lower portion of Garden Road and a Peak terminus at Victoria Gap, this means of transport has provided, almost



without interruption for over sixty years, a reliable funicular service. Until motor roads were opened in 1924, it was the only means of transport to the Peak. The cars are operated by a modern electric haulage plant and incorporate safety features which make it possible for a car to come to a halt within eight feet on the steepest part of the track. Passengers are carried to and from the Peak at the rate of approximately 1,000 an hour.

Bus Services. On Hong Kong Island bus services are maintained by the China Motor Bus Company, Ltd. which operates a fleet of 244 diesel-engined buses, three minibuses and two sightseeing coaches, all of United Kingdom manufacture. During 1959 the Company's vehicles covered some 10 million miles and carried over 87 million passengers, both figures exceeding those for any previous year. A further forty five buses were on order at the end of the year.

Throughout 1959 the Kowloon Motor Bus Co., (1933) Ltd. operated twenty eight bus routes in Kowloon and ten bus routes in the New Territories. Arrangements were made for three new routes in Kowloon, and a bus service on Lantau Island.

      A number of small buses were converted to dual-purpose vehi- cles for the purpose of operating a goods/passenger service in the New Territories.

Seventy new Daimler double-deck buses were ordered in 1958 and delivery from the United Kingdom commenced in September 1959. The Company's fleet comprises 245 double-deck and 267 single-deck buses.

In 1959, 295 million passengers were carried as compared with 289 million in 1958, and, for the same period, the mileage covered was 24.3 million as against 23.5 million.

Ferries. The 'Star' Ferry Ltd. operates a passenger ferry service across the narrowest part of the Harbour, a distance of approxi- mately one mile, from a point in the centre of Victoria to Tsim Sha Tsui at the southern extremity of the Kowloon peninsula. Eight vessels are in service and operate daily for 19 hours. A three-minute service, taking seven minutes to cross, is maintained during the busy periods of the day, and a regular service until 1.30 a.m. Over 37 million passengers were carried in 152,367



crossings during the year, the average daily load being 101,477


The Hongkong & Yaumati Ferry Co., Ltd. began operations on the 1st January 1924 with eleven small wooden steam-vessels serving three cross-harbour routes. Today, the Company operates a fleet of fifty diesel-engined vessels which maintain six cross- harbour ferry services as well as ferry services to outlying districts in the New Territories.

       The routes inside the Harbour are between Wilmer Street, Jubilee Street, Stewart Road and Tonnochy Road on the Island, and Sham Shui Po, Mong Kok, Jordan Road and Kowloon City on Kowloon peninsula. The Company also operates the sole vehicular ferry service between Jubilee Street and Jordan Road. In 1959, the Company competed successfully for the right to operate the proposed eastern vehicular ferry service between North Point and Kowloon City. In order to ease cross-harbour vehicular traffic congestion until the commencement of this new vehicular ferry service scheduled for 1961, the Company will initiate a temporary vehicular ferry service from Rumsey Street to Jordan Road in early 1960.

During 1959 a record number of 94,605,000 passengers and 1,492,000 vehicles were carried, an increase of 860,000 passengers and 66,620 vehicles over the previous year's figures. The Kowloon City/Wan Chai ferry service again carried an increasing flow of traffic and the number of passengers carried was 6,846,000 com- pared with 5,670,000 in 1958.

Of the ferry services to outlying districts, that to Cheung Chau was well supported throughout the year. During the summer months large numbers of holidaymakers visited Silvermine Bay and Peng Chau and the opening of the first stretch of the Lantau Island circular road attracted parties of motor cyclists to explore new territory. During cooler weather, the Hong Kong to Tai O ferry service via Kap Shui Mun, Castle Peak and Tung Chung carried many pilgrims and hikers for the monasteries of Lantau Island. The Tolo Harbour ferry service which carried 82,000 passengers in 1959 provides a welcome link with the outside world for isolated villages along the shores of Tolo Harbour, and in 1959 the Government completed a pier at Lai Chi Chong which was appreciated by all users. The Government also constructed



a pier at Tsing Yi Island which was a great convenience for passengers who had formerly to be carried by sampans to and from ferries. The new pier added to the popularity of Hong Kong/ Tsing Yi/Tsuen Wan ferry service which carried 773,000 passen- gers in 1959.

New construction consisted of one single-ended steel ferry vessel, the 'Man Ning', and a double-ended steel passenger ferry vessel, the 'Man Kam'. The latter was launched in December and will join the fleet in January 1960. The Company's Tai Kok Tsui Depot with its three slipways carried out continuous maintenance work on the fleet throughout the year.


     Port Works and Development. Further reclamation at Kwun Tong brought the total area of new land to eighty seven acres of which half has been sold for factory sites. Spoil for the reclama- tion was obtained from the neighbouring foothills where the areas levelled provide a further twenty seven acres suitable for residen- tial and community purposes. In October work commenced on 1,300 ft. extension to the sea wall to provide a further fifty acres of new land, and in December the first steps were taken in the construction of a police station to serve the area.

     A sea wall was built in the Yau Ma Tei Typhoon Shelter to permit the extension of Tong Mi Road. Ultimately this road will connect the Jordan Road Vehicular Ferry pier to Tsuen Wan by way of the reclamation at Cheung Sha Wan.

Formation of a site for a new hospital for the Armed Services at King's Park, Kowloon, commenced towards the end of the year. The extension of Nairn Road with dual carriageways to a roundabout at the junction of Gascoigne Road and Chatham Road is associated with the work.

     In the New Territories a typhoon shelter was formed by the construction of three breakwaters between Tsing Yi Island and Nga Ying Chau; four piers for use by the public and by ferry services were built at Tsuen Wan, Tsing Yi Island, Sok Kwu Wan (Lamma Island) and Kei Ling Ha Hoi in Tolo Harbour. A new ferry pier and sea wall at Cheung Chau are also being constructed.



The Consulting Engineers appointed to report on large-scale development schemes submitted eight reports during the year. These were on a road from Tsuen Wan to Tai Po over Lead Mine Pass; a road along the Kowloon Foothills linking Kwun Tong to the Tai Po Road; and on reclamations at Tai Po, Sha Tin, Castle Peak, Junk Bay, Tsuen Wan, and Gin Drinker's Bay. These schemes could provide over 2,600 acres of useful land which is sufficient to accommodate a population of one million persons and associated industry. The Government decided to go ahead with the construction of the Kowloon Foothills Road and reclamation at Gin Drinker's Bay and Tsuen Wan, but to defer the other schemes until substantial progress had been made with the first


       The Materials Testing Laboratory operating under the direction of the Port Works Office of the Public Works Department carried out some 10,000 tests on building materials on behalf of Govern- ment and private architects and contractors.

Buildings. The volume of building by the Public Works Depart- ment exceeded all former levels and it was again necessary to commission private architects to carry out some projects.

       Eight schools were completed, six being standard 24-classroom primary schools, each accommodating 1,080 children per session. The buildings are five storeys high and because of the restricted sites, which are 24,000 square feet or less in area, they incor- porate roof playgrounds as well as play-space at ground level. Experience has shown that these large schools can be administered satisfactorily; and the Director of Education has decided that 30- classroom schools of six storeys for 1,350 children are feasible. Drawings for such schools, to be accommodated on sites of about 22,000 square feet, have been made and site formation for the first of these, at Lo Fu Ngam, is in hand. There are no lifts in these schools, but climbing to the upper floors is reduced by the roof level play areas which enable the upper floor children to enjoy their play periods without descending to ground level. An extension to King's College has been finished, while the extension to Ellis Kadoorie School is nearing completion. Construction has started on additional workshops and laboratories for the Hong Kong Technical College, and working drawings for the new



Northcote Teachers' Training College at Pok Fu Lam, have been finished.

     During his visit to the Colony in March, H.R.H. the Duke of Edinburgh laid the foundation stone of the new Kowloon Hospital which will bear the name of Her Majesty the Queen and which, with its 1,320 beds and many specialist departments, will be amongst the largest and best equipped hospitals in the Common- wealth. Piling for the hospital foundations neared completion while the construction of the large block of sisters' and nurses' quarters were well advanced.

At Kowloon General Hospital a new maternity ward was built and the construction of a new operating theatre and ward block neared completion. In the New Territories the work on Castle Peak Mental Hospital proceeded satisfactorily although this build- ing project, like many others, was hampered by the exceptionally heavy rains experienced during the earlier part of the summer. The buildings are designed to provide accommodation for 1,000 patients and quarters for the medical staff. Construction of the Clinic at Sai Ying Pun neared completion; and work on the Sha Tau Kok Dispensary in the New Territories started.

      The final stage of the Central Government Offices, the West Wing, was completed and occupied by Government Departments. The construction of three new Magistracies is in hand: these buildings when finished, will provide space on the upper floors for more Government offices.

A district Post Office which includes sorting facilities and some staff quarters was built in the New Territories and two branch Post Offices were equipped in Kowloon.

      The new nine-storey building at North Point for the Stores Department was completed early in the year. This provides offices on the top floor with a roof level canteen, furniture workshops in the two lowest floors and storage space served by heavy duty goods lifts in the remaining floors.

     Heavy rains caused a landslip at the site of the former Buxey Lodge Hostel and retarded the erection of sixty flats for Govern- ment servants, but work continued under difficult conditions. A Storm Warning Radar Station for the Royal Observatory was constructed at the top of the Kowloon hills though weather condi- tions again hampered the work.



      At Kai Tak Airport the newly completed Freight Building is now in temporary use as the Terminal Building. Work continued on the phased construction of an aircraft maintenance depot, on a new site within the airport boundaries.

      Good progress has been made on the planning of buildings which require to be reprovisioned before the Murray Barracks area reverts to Government.

After many years of planning and detailed work construction of the new City Hall started. The building will occupy a very fine site on the central waterfront of Victoria City, on land not long reclaimed from the sea. The completed City Hall will con- tain a concert hall to seat 1,540 and capable of adaptation for Chinese opera, a small, fully equipped theatre, a ballroom and a banqueting hall with facilities for Eastern and Western cuisine. A tall block, which forms part of the group, will house a marriage registry, a large lending and reference library, lecture theatres and a small museum and art gallery. The buildings will be air- conditioned throughout.

      The construction of over 800 rank and file quarters at Cheung Sha Wan for the Police Force, including a 24-classroom school and medical clinic, progressed satisfactorily; while on Hong Kong Island a further scheme of sixty inspectorate married quarters made good progress.

The Prisons Department required alterations and additions at Tai Lam Prison, and two houses for the staff of Chi Ma Wan Prison on Lantau Island were finished. A housing scheme at Victoria Prison, which will provide married quarters for sixteen prison officers, forty two warders, and barrack accommodation for forty single warders, is nearing completion.

The Government's programme of Resettlement Housing has accelerated and 9,831 rooms for some 49,000 settlers were finished in estates at Chai Wan, Lo Fu Ngam, Wong Tai Sin, Jordan Valley, Shek Kip Mei and Kwun Tong. Construction is proceed- ing in these and other estates. In November, H.E. the Officer Administering the Government, Mr. Claude Burgess, unveiled a plaque at Wong Tai Sin to commemorate the completion of the 100th Resettlement Housing Block. Work at Chai Wan on Hong Kong Island included the completion of a flatted factory to accom- modate small industries which are displaced when squatter areas



are cleared. Construction of a five-storey Community Centre to serve the Resettlement Estate at Wong Tai Sin, commenced.

Six public latrines and bathhouses were built and a number of others are in varying stages of construction. Innumerable minor works were also completed or are in course of construction, including work on parks and playgrounds, new staff quarters at Government House, some small fire stations, scavenging stores and many others.

      Drainage. Water-borne sewage systems are provided in nearly all built-up areas, including the larger towns in the New Terri- tories. As old buildings are replaced by large new blocks of flats, the flow to the sewers is steadily increasing with the result that many of the older sewers are becoming loaded beyond their de- signed capacity necessitating a steady programme of replacement with larger mains. Major schemes have also been approved for the provision of intercepting sewers to eliminate the need for the numerous sea-wall sewer outfalls and to bring the sewage to selected sites where it will be partially treated and discharged through submarine outfalls into deep water. In several cases pump- houses have been installed to raise the sewage in the intercepting sewers when gravity flow to the new outfalls is impossible. The first main sewerage project, covering the Yau Ma Tei area of the Kowloon peninsula, is now in complete operation, whilst two others, one for the eastern side of the Kowloon peninsula and one for the Wan Chai area, are also in operation, although the screening plant has not yet been installed. A start has also been made on the intercepting sewers required for the southern section of the Kowloon peninsula.

Surface water, draining from the hills through built-up areas, was originally led to the sea through large open channels, known locally as nullahs, which passed down the centre of roads, with bridges at road intersections. These nullahs were frequently ten feet or more wide and almost square in section. With the increase in both vehicular and pedestrian traffic it became essential for such obstructions to be removed. During the last seven years work on this has proceeded steadily, and most nullahs in busy traffic routes have now either been decked or culverted. Extensive culvert



construction has been carried out at resettlement estates, such as Wong Tai Sin, Kwun Tong, Jordan Valley and Chai Wan, to divert existing streamcourses and permit the sites to be prepared for building.

Chapter 15: Communications

THE Colony of Hong Kong owes its existence to its position as a major communications centre on the China Coast. Although in the course of the years the emphasis has partly shifted from purely entrepôt and other commercial activities to the development of local industries, the Colony still depends greatly upon the efficient organization and control of facilities for shipping, aircraft, rail and road transport, postal services and telecommunications.


The Port of Victoria is renowned not only for the beauty of its natural features, but also for its excellent port facilities and handling rate, which are, comparable with those of any other first-class port.

     The Director of Marine is responsible for the administration of the Port. Acting in close co-operation with local commercial interests represented on advisory Port Committees, the Marine Department seeks continuously to stimulate the achievement of ever higher standards in all Port operations.

The Port is well equipped with modern aids to navigation, both in the approaches and within the Harbour area, and all lights have been fully re-established and modernized since the war. At Waglan Island there is a light with a visibility of 21 miles together with a diaphone fog signal; a powerful electric oscillator fog signal is now in use at Tathong Point; and the light installed on Green Island at the western end of the Harbour has a visibility of 16 miles.

     A radio beacon and appropriately spaced radar reflectors mark the main approach to Hong Kong, thus enabling ships to enter at all times. The Harbour itself is well lighted and singularly free from submerged dangers. The eastern entrance can be used by ocean-going vessels with a draught not exceeding 36 feet, whilst the western entrance now provides a depth of 28 feet at low water, the previous depth having been 24 feet. Pilotage is not compulsory



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Looking westward along the 'canyon' of Queen's Road Central from the roof of the 12-storey West Wing of the Central Government Offices (completed June 1959), new buildings tower above office_blocks (right) built only a decade ago. In the middle distance, Shell House (left) and Central Building are rising to 17 storeys.

Overleaf : Night view of Hong Kong Harbour by Paul Tay.

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This 'ladder street', clinging to the precipitous lower slopes of Victoria Peak, is an oasis of calm amid the noise and bustle of the Central

District of Hong Kong Island. Here, traffic will never be a problem.



but is advisable due to large-scale reclamation and harbour-works now in progress.

       There is a Quarantine Examination Anchorage at each entrance, with Port Health launches on duty from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Western Quarantine Anchorage and from 7 a.m. to mid-night at the Eastern Quarantine Anchorage. Radio pratique can be granted in certain cases. This arrangement eliminates unnecessary move- ments within the crowded Harbour. Immigration formalities and such customs inspections as may be necessary are also completed at quarantine anchorages so that passengers are free to go ashore as soon as vessels have reached their final berth.

      Three Signal Stations provide Ship/shore communications. Each station is manned continuously and fitted with modern day-light signal lamps providing coverage for all anchorages within the Harbour and its approaches. In addition, Waglan Lighthouse operates a Signal Station equipped with a radiotelephone which enables the first information of all vessels sighted in the eastern approaches to be passed immediately to the Port Authorities, owners and agents. Radiotelephones are also installed in Marine, Port Health, Police, Preventive Service and Fire Fighting launches. Sets may also be hired commercially with a direct connexion to the land telephone system.

      The internal security of the Harbour and the waters of the Colony is maintained by the Marine Division of the Hong Kong Police which mans and operates a fleet of thirty Police Launches, twenty seven of which are in radiotelephone communication with the Control Room at Police Headquarters.

      The Fire Brigade maintains a modern ocean-going fire float in constant readiness, together with other fire fighting craft suitable for work in the shallower waters of the Colony. A new shallow- draught fire float was recently put into service.

      Regular services are maintained by 18 shipping lines to Europe and the United Kingdom, 20 to the North American continent and 9 to Australia and New Zealand besides lines to Africa and South America, and innumerable lines to Asian ports from Yokohama to Karachi. Moreover the attractive and efficient facilities available for the handling of cargo and passengers in the Port have con- vinced traders that it is economical and generally beneficial to



their interests to use Hong Kong as a warehousing, transhipping and bunkering point.

Safe berths are available to all vessels with draughts of up to 36 feet, at all states of the tide. Commercial wharves can accom- modate vessels up to 750 feet in length and a maximum of 32 feet in draught, and the Government maintains 52 moorings for hire, 25 of which are specially designed to withstand typhoon conditions.

      Cargo-handling compares favourably with the most advanced ports. Efficient modern methods, a plentiful supply of labour, lighterage, road-transport, and experienced staff, capable of under- taking any operation from the stowage of special cargoes to the handling of heavy-lifts and bulk oils, make the Port popular with all connected with shipping. 750,000 measurement tons (mainland) and 230,000 measurement tons (Island) of godown space is equipped for ordinary, refrigerated and dangerous goods storage.

      During 1959 over fifty four thousand seamen were engaged or discharged under supervision of the Mercantile Marine Office.

      Hong Kong is now the world's largest ship-breaking port, the industry having expanded rapidly during recent years. Fifty nine ships were in breakers' hands at the end of the year and the provision of sites had become a problem.

      Ships' bunkers are supplied by three of the major oil companies, whilst coal and fresh water can be supplied at any berth in the Port including the oil-installation wharves. The supply of fresh water is generally restricted in the dry winter months.

       There are eleven cross-harbour ferry services, including one passenger-vehicular service. These services, operating frequent schedules, transported more than 136 million people and 11 million vehicles in 1959. A number of ferry services also operate outside the Harbour area on routes to Aberdeen and the coastal towns or villages of the New Territories. The more important ferry services are described in greater detail in Chapter 14.

      During the year, the Government awarded the franchise for the second vehicular-ferry service running between terminals at the Kowloon City Ferry Concourse and the North Point Sand Depot, to the Hong Kong and Yaumati Ferry Company. The plans for the terminal piers are now almost completed.



      More than 24,000 native-type craft operate in Hong Kong waters and play a large part in the economy of the Colony. They are engaged in various occupations ranging from fishing to the transport of cargo. During the year, in the internal trades, these craft transported more than 870,000 tons of cargo inward and 125,000 outward, whilst in trade with China they imported large quantities of foodstuffs and other commodities; their total external trade for 1959 amounting to 1,387,000 tons inward and 155,000 tons of cargo outward. About 1,500 junks and lighters operate inside Hong Kong Harbour itself, transporting thousands of tons of cargo to and from ocean-going ships. About 3,000 mechanized local craft operate in the waters of the Colony.

The shipyards and marine engineering establishments in the Colony maintained a satisfactory level of both repair and main- tenance work on ships calling at the Port in 1959. Over one hundred new vessels were constructed to the order of locally-based owners and for others overseas in Ceylon, Pakistan, Burma, Malaya, Cambodia, Thailand and Borneo.

      The services of the Ship Surveys staff of the Marine Department and of the resident Surveyors of Lloyd's Register of Shipping, Bureau Veritas, Norske Veritas and the American Bureau of Shipping are in constant demand by the thousands of ships of all nationalities which use the Port. Government Surveyors, apart from ensuring the observance of the International Conventions on Safety of Life at Sea and Load Lines, were fully occupied during 1959 in tonnage computations and checking standards of crew accommodation for the new ships built and the ships applying for registration under the British flag at Hong Kong.

       The Hong Kong Register of Ships includes 400,000 gross tons of shipping, of which 102 are foreign-going steam or motor vessels of over 500 gross tons. The Examination Centre at Hong Kong serves the needs of navigating and engineering officers and crews manning this fleet and, together with the Hong Kong Technical College, gives full facilities for examinations for all Certificates of Competency of Commonwealth validity, and for Certificates in Radar Maintenance and as Radar Observer.

A Port Welfare Committee attends to the welfare of crews of visiting ships by allocating money provided by private donations



and Government grant to organizations devoted to this work. This year the Committee distributed $175,000.

      During the financial year ending 31st March 1959 (figures for 1957-8 are shown in brackets) 9,104 (8,522) ocean-going vessels of 28,200,126 (24,762,199) net tons, 2,795 (2,892) river steamers of 2,721,021 (2,574,326) net tons, and 38,162 (36,958) junks and launches of 2,991,328 (3,036,147) net tons entered and cleared the Port.

A total of 1,127,882 (1,405,406) passengers were embarked and disembarked; of these, 58,679 (67,949) were carried by ocean-going vessels, and 1,069,203 (1,337,457) by river steamers.

Weight tons of cargo discharged and loaded were as follows:

Ocean-going Vessels

River Steamers


Junks and Launches


3,794,281 (3,575,876)


12,553 (16,917)

1,814,109 (1,504,721)




16,416 155,443 (108,029)


      Kowloon is the southern terminal of a railway system extending to Hankow, with connexions to North, East and South-West China. The British Section of the line, which is 22 miles long, is owned by the Hong Kong Government and is operated between Kowloon and Lo Wu on the southern bank of the Sham Chun River, which forms part of the Colony's frontier with China. Through services were formerly operated to Canton and to the North, but since October 1949, when the Chinese People's Government was estab- lished, through passenger services have been suspended. Passen- gers proceeding to and from China change trains at the frontier. Goods traffic in wagon-loads has been passing to and from China without off-loading at the frontier since 1950.

The total revenue for 1959 was $8,076,133. Operating expendi- ture was $3,860,707 leaving a net operating revenue of $4,215,426. The corresponding figures for the previous year were $7,552,218, $3,205,710 and $4,346,508 respectively. The net operating revenue for 1959 is, therefore, $131,082 less than last year. Capital expendi- ture was $681,606.

      Passenger traffic increased by 684,342 compared with 1958, and goods traffic increased by 15,748.58 tons.



      5,189,640 passengers were carried within the territory of Hong Kong, or 86.59% of the total number carried. Passengers to and from the frontier station of Lo Wu numbered 803,397 of whom the majority travelled between Hong Kong and China. At present, passengers passing from British to Chinese territory or vice versa walk the 300 yards separating the two termini.

Statistics for 1959 (with figures for 1958 in brackets) are as follows:

Length of line

   Main points of call Passengers carried

: Main line--22 miles

Total length of line-35 miles

5,993,037 (5,308,695)


New Territories (Hong Kong)



253,862.27 tons (238,113.69)

Passenger miles


78,713,475 miles (65,802,829)

Freight carried


The volume of traffic both on the main roads in rural areas and on the City streets, is rapidly increasing and calls for a con- tinuous programme of construction to carry the heavier loads as well as for constant widening and general improvement. Although the Colony has less than 500 miles of road even if those in the rural areas are included, there are over 40,000 vehicles or approxi- mately 80 vehicles per mile of road; a very high figure. The number of vehicles in relation to the size of the population is low, roughly 1 to 70 persons, compared with 1 to 6.3 in the United Kingdom and 1 to 2.5 in the United States. It seems likely therefore that the density of traffic may well continue to increase rapidly for several years to come, and despite increases in the total length of roads (20 miles were added during the year) it is no small problem to design new roads and improve existing ones to meet the demands of future years without unduly heavy expenditure.

The crowds using the City streets cause such congestion that several streets have been turned into pedestrian ways and in many others parking of cars has been prohibited. The widening of City streets is carried out piecemeal as and when properties are re- developed; land is acquired at its market value and $1 million was provided for this purpose during the year.



Most of the roads are surfaced with concrete or bituminous materials, roads in rural areas included, since unsealed roads are liable to severe damage from the tropical rainstorms which occur during the summer.

      The exceptionally heavy rainstorms in June caused numerous landslides and other damage; Victoria Road which skirts the western shore of the Island was at one point buried under a land- slide of some 10,000 tons of rock and earth and, in the space of two miles, Tai Po Road was washed out in a number of places, with chasms up to 50 yards across and 40 or 50 feet deep. The roads were quickly reopened to traffic but it took many months to repair all the damage done.

New roads built during the year gave access to villages and large areas of land previously approached only by hillside path- ways or, in some cases, by sea. The 23 mile road from Sai Kung to Tai Mong Tsai, which follows the coast and opens up a region of superb scenery in Port Shelter, is an example. The first motor road on the island of Lantau was completed and is already quite busy even though there is no road link or vehicular ferry with Hong Kong and Kowloon.

The Tin Hau Temple Road which traverses the hillside above North Point has given access to many building sites with fine views 'over the eastern portion of the Harbour. The Kowloon Foothills Road, construction of which started during the year, will have a similar effect.

      Road stone and coated macadam for the roads is produced from two Government-operated quarries, one on Hong Kong Island and one in Kowloon.

The improvement and extension of street lighting continued in 1959, and 1,200 new electric lamps were installed, mostly in new locations though some replaced inadequate electric lamps or gas lamps, few of which now remain in Hong Kong.


The number of vehicles registered in the Colony on 31st December 1959 was 41,298. This represented an overall increase of 4,776 over 1958.


Private Cars (including 14 on Lantau Island)


Motor Cycles (including motor scooters and motor- assisted pedal cycles and one on Lantau Island) ...




Goods Vehicles (including four on Lantau Island) Crown Vehicles















Hong Kong now has two multi-storey car parks, situated in the centre of Victoria and operated by the Urban Services Department on behalf of the Urban Council. Both are of three storeys, the top storey being roofless, and together they accommodate 574 cars. The ordinary charge for parking is 50c. for 24 hours but special cheap rates apply in the evenings and at week-ends, whilst monthly passes are available at $40 per month. On the average 12,800 cars are parked in them each month, and an average of 336 monthly passes are issued.

       The commencement of piling work on the site of the City Hall, has drastically reduced the free parking space nearby, and the car parks are now full for short periods each week-day.


      The year 1959 saw the completion of the second stage of the approved Airport Development Plan, which was originally evolved in 1953. The first stage, completed by September 1958, was the provision of a promontory, reclaimed entirely from the waters of Kowloon Bay, some 7,800 feet long and 800 feet wide, which contained a single runway, a parallel taxiway and associated taxiway links. In addition, a temporary Control Tower was built to ensure the efficient operation of air traffic movements on the new runway, and a modern Airport Fire Station was also brought into use. The second stage entailed the extension of the runway at the landward end by 680 feet, the provision of a new aircraft



      terminal apron area designed to accommodate eleven large air- craft, complete with a hydrant refuelling system controlled from a centralized fuel farm, the construction of a new freight building which was converted for use as a temporary terminal building pending the completion of a permanent terminal building in 1961, the installation of airport and approach lighting systems to inter- national standards, the installation of standard instrument landing systems and the installation of certain radio and radar air naviga- tion and approach aids recommended by the International Civil Aviation Organization. The airport is now capable of handling the new jet and prop-jet aircraft, which started flying on the Pacific routes for the first time during this year. The completed runway is 8,350 feet long and 200 feet wide, and cleared areas of 300 feet and 800 feet are provided at the south-east and north-west ends of the runway. The runway, associated parallel taxiways and aircraft terminal apron are stressed to take aircraft weighing up to 400,000 lbs. all-up weight.

The third and final stage of the initial development plan, which entails the provision of a permanent terminal building and asso- ciated ancillary buildings, has been delayed by the necessity to redesign the proposed passenger and baggage checking channels and is now expected to be completed about the middle of 1961. Hong Kong Airport lies at the base of the Kowloon peninsula and its new runway extends into Kowloon Bay. The airport is suitable for both land and sea operations, although at the moment there is no operational requirement for an alighting base for civil flying-boats. The airport hours of operation were extended from fourteen to eighteen per day in the middle of the year and will be extended to twenty four when the necessary skilled staff can be recruited. The Director of Civil Aviation and a small number of specialist officers, who supervise all aspects of civil aviation and co-ordinate plans for its development in the Colony, are respon- sible for the administration and operation of the Airport. Of the total staff of 353 officers in the Civil Aviation Department, 326 are locally recruited; and training facilities are made available in both Hong Kong and the United Kingdom to enable all technical personnel to gain further knowledge and experience.

The Civil Aviation Department possesses staff and equipment for the usual administrative and operational services such as Air



      Traffic Control, Telecommunications, Air/Sea Rescue, Fire and Crash, Aeronautical Information, Aircraft Registration and Air- worthiness and, in conjunction with the Royal Observatory, also provides an Aeronautical Meteorological Information Service. Messrs. Cable & Wireless (Far East) Ltd. are responsible for the technical maintenance of the Colony's aeradio services.

       The Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Co., Ltd. provides aero- nautical engineering facilities in the form of aircraft and engine maintenance, repairs and overhaul. The Far East Flying Training School provides primary flying training as well as training in Aeronautical Engineering and Electronics. Early in the year the Government decided that, in view of the heavy capital cost of the reprovisioning of the Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Company's facilities, forced upon the Company by the airport development plan and by certain town planning requirements, Government would finance the establishment of a modern aircraft maintenance depot, the Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Co., Ltd. being given a tenancy of the area and buildings against repayment of rent and capital expenditure over a number of years.

The cost of constructing the new airport is being borne by local funds assisted by an interest-free loan of £3,000,000 from the United Kingdom Government. The cost is now estimated to be at least $140,000,000 (£8,750,000). The Consulting Engineers, Messrs. Scott & Wilson, Kirkpatrick & Partners, working under the general direction of the Director of Public Works supervise all phases of the constructional planning and work at the airport, and the Director of Civil Aviation co-ordinates operational requirements. An Airport Progress Committee under the Chairmanship of the Deputy Financial Secretary (Economic) reviews overall planning and expenditure as necessary.

All air services to Hong Kong Airport are on international routes. Nineteen airlines, including two locally based airlines, operate air services connecting Hong Kong with the principal world air routes at a frequency of 184 flights to and from Hong Kong a week. Charter operations increased considerably during 1959, particularly in the transport of ships' crews between Hong Kong and Europe; there were 292 such flights during the year. Notable features of the year's operations were the introduction by Cathay Pacific Airways of the prop-jet Lockheed Electra aircraft



on their regional routes; the introduction by B.O.A.C. of the pure- jet Comet IV on the London-Hong Kong route; and the introduc- tion by Pan American World Airways of the pure-jet Boeing 707 on round the world services.

Details of traffic for the year are:

Passenger Aircraft










1,358,912 kilos.

3,057,650 kilos.

476,478 kilos.

675,126 kilos.


Postal Services. The year 1959 saw new records established yet again in the volume of traffic handled and revenue collected.

      The opening of new offices at Mong Kok and Kowloon City in October afforded much-needed relief to the Kowloon Post Office at Tsim Sha Tsui but shortage of counter space at the General Post Office continued to cause difficulties. A new office was also opened in October at Shek Wu Hui in the New Territories and is already transacting considerable business. The Air Mail Centre at Kai Tak had not yet been completed at the end of the year, but will be in service soon. This Centre will enable the public to derive maximum benefit from the noteworthy reductions in transit times which have been achieved by jet aircraft operating out of Hong Kong to all important points.

Parcel post routings were continuously revised in order to make the best possible use of increased shipping opportunities. Direct despatching arrangements increased from 95 to 112 as a result. Air parcel arrangements were extended towards the end of the year so that most countries could be served. Direct services increased to 39.

The Kowloon-Canton railway carried about 100,000 bags of mail in transit between China and countries overseas, approxi- mately the same as in 1958. An appreciable increase however took place in mail for China originating in Hong Kong, which, by December, was running at a rate of nearly 40,000 bags yearly.

       At the end of the year, surface letter mails were arriving from 72 different places compared with 69 in 1958 and air mails from



96 compared with 90. The number of places from which parcel mails were received increased to 36 by air and 65 by sea.

       650 tons of mail were handed to air lines for transportation during the year. Of this figure, no less than 300 tons originated in Hong Kong.

       All records for Christmas postings both local and for oversea destinations were shattered; more than a million items being post- ed on two separate days during the ten-day period preceding Christmas. The aggregate postings during that period exceeding six and half million articles.

The value of remittance business was $10,742,796 against $10,609,527 in 1958, a much less spectacular increase than that reported last year.

       Revenue receipts, which totalled $39,918,201, advanced by more than $6,000,000. Receipt stamps to a value of $4,222,595 and Wireless Licences at $2,074,631 also showed substantial increases.

       Radio Licensing. The Wireless Division of the Post Office is responsible for the issue of all types of radio licences, including those for amateur wireless stations and radio dealers. The number of broadcast receiving licences in force on 31st December was 94,900 as against 71,631 on 31st December 1958. This represents an increase of 32.5%. 1,034 other licences were also issued as against 865 in 1958.

         This division conducts examinations for the Postmaster Gen- eral's Certificate for proficiency in Wireless Telegraphy, and car- ries out the survey and inspection of wireless apparatus on both ships and aircraft. In addition, examinations are carried out on behalf of the Marine Department for the Ministry of Transport's Radar Maintenance Certificates. Another function is the enforce- ment of the regulations made under the International Telecom- munication Convention (Atlantic City, 1947) and the Hong Kong Telecommunication Ordinance (Chapter 106).

       The Wireless Division maintains a close liaison with the Hong Kong Communications Board and its Frequency Assignment Committee on all matters affecting the Colony's internal and external telecommunications.

      Stamp Competition. The Government announced in February 1958 that a new issue of stamps of all denominations would be



made in 1962, together with a special commemorative issue to mark the centenary of the first Hong Kong stamp in 1862. A competition was organized during 1958 and at the end of that year 214 designs had been received from 48 entries in six coun- tries. The result of the competition was announced in May. Prizes were awarded for designs sent in from many parts of the world, but the most successful entrant was a local artist who won no less than seven prizes. Winning designs were displayed to the public in the offices of the Hong Kong Tourist Association.

In October the Government announced that the new issues would be printed by Messrs. Harrison and Sons Ltd. of London using the photogravure process.

Work on the designs for the new stamps is still continuing.


      Cable & Wireless Ltd. are responsible for all telegraph services between Hong Kong and overseas, for telegraph and radiotele- phone services with ships at sea, and for a VHF Harborphone service with ships anchored in Hong Kong Harbour. They also provide a service for internal telegrams throughout the Colony, and are responsible for the technical maintenance of the Govern- ment broadcasting, aeradio and meteorological radio services, and for the VHF communications of Government departments. In conjunction with the Hong Kong Telephone Company Cable & Wireless Ltd. maintain a Radiotelephone service with most countries. In addition they provide circuits for leasing to airlines and other large business concerns.

     The Company operates nineteen high speed wireless telegraph circuits working with all the major centres of the Far East and with Europe. It also operates three modern-type duplex submarine cables, connected to the Company's world wide network of 142,500 miles of submarine cable. During 1959 a new wireless telegraph circuit was opened to Sydney.

      The Radiotelephone service continued to expand during 1959, a service to Karachi being opened and the hours of schedules to some countries being extended. Additional relay services were also provided.



An international Telex service was opened during 1959 with connexions to Japan, Australia, Canada, Singapore, Malaya, Manila, the United Kingdom and several European countries. Connexions to other countries are being planned. A local Printer- gram service for the acceptance and delivery of telegrams by teleprinter is maintained and a Deskfax facsimile service for the same purpose is available for use by hotels.

A phototelegram service is available to several countries. Estimated traffic figures for the year 1959 (with 1958 figures in brackets) are as follows:

Telegrams Transmitted



Telegrams Delivered



Telegrams in Transit



Radiotelephone--inward calls





Radiotelephone-outward calls





Press Broadcasts

45,000,000 (43,000,000



Meteorological Broadcasts





Harborphone calls with ships in




Telex-outward calls (June/Dec.)


Telex-inward calls (June/Dec.)



       The Colony's internal telephone service is provided by the Hong Kong Telephone Company, Ltd. a public company operating under a franchise from the Hong Kong Government. Radio-telephone service is available to most parts of the world in co-operation with Cable & Wireless Limited.

The system is fully automatic and service is provided from seven major exchanges and a number of satellite exchanges. Two new major exchanges with a combined ultimate capacity of 32,000 lines were brought into service in Kowloon during 1959.

The Company's system now comprises some 68,000 direct ex- change lines and 26,500 extensions, making an approximate total of 94,500 stations. Demand for service continues to grow and



planning for additional exchanges to meet this demand is con- tinuous.

Despite increasing costs, telephone rentals remain unaltered and are possibly the lowest in the world. Rentals are charged on a 'flat rate' basis at $300 per annum for a business line and $225 per annum for a residential line, for which the subscriber may make as many local calls as he wishes.


The Royal Observatory is the sole source of weather information in Hong Kong. The Central Forecast Office at the Observatory provides forecasts for the general public, shipping and the Armed Forces, and supplies analyzed weather charts by facsimile to the Aviation Forecast Office at the airport. In addition to its mete- orological duties, the Observatory operates a seismological station and a time service.

One of the Royal Observatory's most important functions is to give warning of tropical storms. Whenever a tropical depression, tropical storm or typhoon is located within the region bounded by the latitudes 10° and 30° North, and the longitudes 105° and 125° East, six-hourly and often three-hourly bulletins are issued. These include information on the storm's intensity and the position and movement of its centre. Frequent and reliable reports by ships and storm reconnaissances by aircraft help to locate storms accurately. When the Colony itself is threatened, the local storm warning system is brought into use, and warnings are widely distributed by means of visual signals, telephone, radio and Rediffusion.

Details of the year's weather are given in Chapter 22.


     Hong Kong extended its International Geophysical Year activi- ties by taking part in the 'International Geophysical Co-operation 1959'. A programme of increased upper air measurements, both radio-sonde and radar wind ascents, was carried out during World Meteorological Intervals and on Regular World Days.

     Research was undertaken on a variety of problems, mainly in applied meteorology. The most important of these was a study of



the problem of the siting of a nuclear reactor. This investigation is continuing, and field tests are being planned for next year. The following papers were published during the year:

"Tropical Cyclones in the Western Pacific and China Sea Area' 'The Effect of Meteorological Conditions on Tide Height at

Hong Kong

'Results of the Experimental Radiosonde Ascents Made at

Hong Kong During the Solar Eclipse, April 19th 1958'.

Chapter 16: Press, Publishing, Broadcasting,

Films and Tourism


     HONG KONG has a large and active press. At the end of 1959, 187 periodicals and publications of all kinds were listed by the Registrar of Newspapers. Not all of these were daily newspapers, and newspapers proper, including weekly ones, accounted for only forty nine of the total registered, the remainder being, mainly magazines of different kinds. A list of some of the leading publica- tions is at Appendix XXI.

The vast majority of these newspapers and periodicals are published in the Chinese language. There are only a dozen English- language publications in both categories.

      The extent of readership is unknown. Unofficial estimates put the total circulation of Chinese-language newspapers (morning and afternoon) in the region of half a million copies a day. Since audited circulations and certified net sale figures are unknown, this estimate must be taken with reserve.

Eighteen of the Colony's newspapers are members of the News- paper Society of Hong Kong and may be regarded as the principal newspapers of the Colony. Among Chinese morning newspapers, recognized leaders are the Wah Kiu Yat Po (Overseas Chinese Daily News), Sing Tao Jih Pao and Kung Sheung Yat Po (In- dustrial & Commercial Daily), all of which maintain a good balance between foreign and local news and are, generally speak- ing, non-partisan politically. All three also publish afternoon editions. A popular non-political daily which has no afternoon edition is the Sing Pao. Orthodox Chinese communist policies are voiced in the Ta Kung Pao, Wen Wei Pao and New Evening Post, whilst the Hong Kong Times speaks for the Nationalist regime in Taiwan. Other Chinese newspapers which are members of the Newspaper Society are the New Life Evening Post and Hung Look Daily News, as well as the bilingual Daily Commodity Quotations.


      Only two morning newspapers are published in the English language the South China Morning Post and the Hong Kong Tiger Standard (the latter owned by Sing Poh Amalgamated Ltd., publishers of Sing Tao Jih Pao and Sing Tao Man Pao). The South China Morning Post Ltd. also publishes the afternoon newspaper China Mail (the oldest daily newspaper in the Colony) and the weekly Sunday Post-Herald.

      During recent years the Hong Kong press has displayed con- siderable stability; while there have been few failures there have been equally few new ventures started.

      As with daily newspapers, the leading publications in the maga- zine field are all Chinese. Despite educational developments and a steady increase in the number of Chinese who are completely literate in both English and Chinese, it would seem that the majority of the people of Hong Kong prefer to read in their native language. Since 1946 there have been several attempts to start new English-language magazines, but the majority of these failed to secure a circulation sufficient to warrant continued publication. Of major magazines in the English language, only the weekly Far Eastern Economic Review and the bi-monthly Hong Kong and Far East Builder-both of which are specialist in their appeal and command circulations outside the Colony-have survived for any number of years.

       Four international news agencies maintain full-scale bureaux in Hong Kong, and it is indicative of the attention paid to world news by the local press that the majority of leading newspapers subscribe to at least three, if not all four, of the services provided. The agencies are the Agence France Presse, Associated Press of America, Reuter (in association with the Australian Associated Press) and United Press International. Offices are also maintained in Hong Kong by the independent Pan-Asia Newspaper Alliance, the New China News Agency (official agency of the Chinese Government), the Central News Agency of the Taiwan administra- tion, the Antara News Agency of Indonesia and the Japanese agencies, Jiji Press and Kyodo News Service. There are also a number of small local agencies serving the vernacular newspapers and two or three correspondents (either staff or part-time repre- sentatives) for other overseas agencies in the Colony. Broadcasting and television systems-particularly those of the North American



continent-are also well represented. The Time and Life magazine organization, the New York Times and Newsweek magazine also maintain bureaux in Hong Kong.

The number of editors, correspondents, broadcasters and televi- sion units visiting the Colony continues to increase year by year.


     Hong Kong has a flourishing printing industry. In face of keen foreign competition, particularly from Japan, it has succeeded in capturing and retaining valuable contracts with many major publishers, and in supplying its own local needs as well as those of South-East Asia.

During the year under review, a slight decrease in the number of titles registered with Secretary for Chinese Affairs was offset by the volume of each order, and the standing of the works them- selves. Most noticeable during recent years has been the gradual expansion in the volume of textbooks printed for both local and foreign use. This year over 20% of all the books registered fell into this category, and the ever increasing demand for this type of book is quietly ousting works which are of a propaganda nature.


        The title of the former Government Public Relations Office was changed during the year to Government Information Services. The change coincided with a decision to enlarge the scope of the department's work in supplying to press and broadcasting stations information about the activities, policies and achievements of Government as a whole and in handling the press relations of individual departments. Simultaneously, the department moved into larger and better-equipped accommodation in the new West Wing of the Central Government Offices.

Apart from its published output and regular daily contact with local newspapers and the foreign press corps, the department's staff are active in assisting and providing local contacts for visiting correspondents, broadcasters, and film units. All news for broad- casting whether by Radio Hong Kong, by the new Commercial Radio Station or by Rediffusion's sound and television networks-


is now issued in bulletins compiled by the Government Informa- tion Services.

      The decision to enlarge the scope of the department's work accelerated the expansion of Government's general publicity pro- gramme during 1959. A new studio, with dark rooms, and a valuable quantity of cinematograph and photographic equipment was brought into use.

Although the primary concern of the Information Services Department is to publicize the affairs of the Hong Kong Govern- ment, the department does everything it can to promote knowledge of United Kingdom and Commonwealth affairs, and maximum use is made of material supplied by the Central Office of Information in London.

       Press Division. The most important function of the Press Room is the compilation of a Daily Information Bulletin containing official and Government news items. This is distributed in separate Chinese and English editions to all local newspapers, foreign news agencies and correspondents, averaging now between four and five thousand items a year. United Kingdom and Commonwealth news is carried in the London Press Service prepared by the Overseas Press Service Division of the Central Office of Information, from which items are selected and edited for distribution to the local


       In addition to the provision of written material, the staff of the Press Section deal with individual inquiries from newspapermen. Such inquiries have greatly increased in recent years and the many and various requirements of visiting correspondents, broadcasters and television and film units have added considerably to this section's work.

       Press photographs and other illustrations for press use are also handled by the Press Room. These include both United Kingdom and Commonwealth photographs supplied through the Central Office of Information and local photographs, which are now usually taken by the department's own photographers. Simplified plans, sketch maps and scale drawings, suitable for press reproduction are prepared in the Publicity Division to amplify and explain the text of various releases and are distributed as required.

       The department's system of distribution of material to the press is made available to the Public Relations Officers of the Armed



    Forces stationed in the Colony and to the British Council Repre- sentative, with all of whom the department works in close liaison.

The Radio News Section, now separate from the Press Room, prepares and edits radio bulletins covering both world and domes- tic news in Chinese and English for broadcasting by the various Hong Kong stations. News is gathered from news agencies and from Government and other local sources.

The Press Division's services necessitate an almost round-the- clock operation, and Night Duty Officers are available from 10 p.m. every night, including week-ends and public holidays.

      Publicity Division. The output of Government publicity showed further expansion. The production of photographs increased about three-fold, due to improved equipment and accommodation, and the photographic library was reorganized and largely restocked, especially with colour pictures. It was possible in consequence to widen considerably the choice of material for use in government publications and to meet requests for photographs from newspaper and magazine editors abroad.

With extra staff a big increase in the output of illustrated fea- tures was achieved during the latter half of the year. Major projects included a folding wallsheet on the refugee problem for use over- seas, particularly by voluntary bodies, in connexion with World Refugee Year; an illustrated White Paper on, and a publicity campaign against, the problem of narcotic drugs (described more fully in Chapter 11); and the commissioning of an information film on Hong Kong for commercial distribution.

The division gives regular assistance to other departments of Government, such as the Commerce and Industry Department which issues a monthly Trade Bulletin and an annual Commerce, In- dustry and Finance Directory, and the Urban Services and Medical and Health Departments in their public health campaigns. 'Miss Ping On', who exhorts the public against anti-social habits through the medium of posters which are changed every month has been joined on the bill-boards by the 'White-Throat Ghost', who urges parents to have their children inoculated against diphtheria. Con- siderable design-work was also put into social education displays at a number of departmental exhibitions.

Preliminary steps were taken to increase channels for the dis- tribution of Hong Kong publicity overseas, and as in previous


years the flow into Hong Kong of United Kingdom and Com- monwealth information from the Central Office of Information continued. The department supplies the Rediffusion Television network with a British Television Newsreel every week and usually one other documentary dealing with various aspects of British life. The departmental film library recorded just under 2,000 borrow- ings of films for non-commercial showings by clubs, schools and other institutions, representing a total audience of 627,000.


1959 saw two significant developments in sound broadcasting. In August, the Hong Kong Commercial Broadcasting Company Limited inaugurated commercial services in English and Chinese, and in November, the Government announced that with effect from the introduction of VHF/FM transmissions in the spring of 1960, the English Service of Radio Hong Kong would expand to 16 hours daily.

By the summer of 1960, the Colony will therefore have two all- day broadcasting services in both English and Chinese, the com- mercial services being broadcast on medium wave, and the public services being broadcast on medium wave and FM.

The increased variety of radio listening available and promised coincided with a remarkable increase in the number of radio licences. At the end of 1958 there were 71,631, at the end of 1959,- 94,900, an increase of 23,269 or 32.5% compared with an increase of 7,145 or 9.02% in 1958

Radio Hong Kong, now a separate Government department, was established in 1928 and is one of the oldest Colonial radio stations in the world. Its Chinese Service, using the Cantonese, Kuoyu, Chiuchow and Hakka languages, is broadcast on 640 Kc/s and 7940 Kc/s, and its English Service, which also has regular pro- grammes in French and Portuguese, broadcasts on 860 Kc/s.

The studio centre is in Mercury House, the Far East Head- quarters of Cable and Wireless Limited, who are responsible for all the Station's technical operations. The expansion of Radio Hong Kong's services has resulted in extreme pressure on the accommodation available, and in order to make better use of this



    accommodation, all offices were completely reconstructed at the end of the year.

The department is directed by the Controller of Broadcasting, with Senior Programme Assistants in charge of each programme service. Staff Programme Assistants are responsible for the writing, compilation and production of the bulk of all programmes. The Chinese Service also has staff announcers whilst the English Service announcers are part-time contributors. Staff announcers will be employed when the English Service is expanded in 1960.

      Both Chinese and English services use large numbers of con- tributors, writers, musicians, producers, actors and speakers.

      1959 was marked by a continued increase in the number of locally produced programmes of all kinds on both services, and it was also a year of big projects, which made very heavy demands on both programme and technical staff.

     Among these were the visit of H.R.H. the Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, the visit of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, the Arts Festival, the Macau Grand Prix, the British General Election and many new outside broadcasts.

     Some of these projects particularly the visit of the Duke of Edinburgh, affected both programme services jointly. The greatest possible broadcast coverage was given to the Royal visit, and from the moment commentators on the lighthouse at Waglan Island and on the Royal Navy escorts brought the first news of his arrival in the Royal Yacht until the same commentators described Britannia slipping out to sea two days later, every major event was covered. Every available outside broadcast team was in action constantly for two days, and in order to set up equipment at out- side points the broadcasters' working day began at about 6 a.m. and ended at midnight.

The Hong Kong Festival of the Arts is now an established annual event. In previous years Radio Hong Kong's principal role in the Festival was that of publicist and commentator, its own artistic contributions being limited to plays. In 1959 Radio Hong Kong emerged as a principal contributor in its own right, and its efforts were recognized by the award of the Liang Yu Society's prize for the best Chinese music concerts in the Festival. The prize was awarded for the three public concerts of Chinese classical


     music which were produced by Radio Hong Kong staff, each concert reflecting a different aspect of the Chinese musical reper- toire. Contemporary instrumental music by a newly formed thirty- piece orchestra was followed by a concert of works for chorus and voices and a performance of instrumental music and opera from Northern China. Two Festival plays were also broadcast in Chinese but the major dramatic performance was a new adaptation for radio of 'Hamlet', which was in rehearsal for several months and used some of the best of Hong Kong's amateur dramatic talent.

Another great radio occasion for the English service was the visit of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, whose single per- formance at the Lee Theatre was broadcast by arrangement with the orchestra and the Hong Kong Music Society. Orchestras of this stature draw capacity audiences in Hong Kong and all seats were booked several weeks before the concert. Technically the broadcast was a difficult one; never before had there been an opportunity to work with an orchestra of this calibre or size, and since no rehearsal for balancing purposes was possible the placing of the single condenser microphone had to be worked out the- oretically. The result however was a triumph for the engineers.

      The Macau Grand Prix has been covered each year since it began, but not until 1959 was it possible, by combining the re- sources of Radio Hong Kong, Rediffusion and the Hong Kong Commercial Broadcasting Company, to give listeners a running commentary of the race around its entire circuit of four miles. A comprehensive system of commentary points and a lines net- work was established, which enabled any commentator to be brought in at a moment's notice by the producer in the grandstand. The main coverage of the weekend's racing was in English, but Radio Hong Kong's Chinese commentators recorded eyewitness accounts which were broadcast as half-hour features on each of the two days. The transmitter and studio facilities of Radio Vila Verde were again most generously made available.

      The United Kingdom General Election was given extensive coverage by the English Service, which set up an Election opera- tions room to provide up to the minute results using both the B.B.C. and Reuters as sources of news.

Another major highlight of the year was the broadcasting of a series of six illustrated talks in English on the history of Chinese



music by Professor Yau Sing Nun. These programmes traced the history of music in China back to 3,000 B.C., and they sub- sequently became Radio Hong Kong's biggest programme export of the year, being broadcast by over thirty stations in America, as well as in Trinidad and Jamaica.

      The Chinese service increased the number of live plays, music programmes, variety shows and outside broadcasts during the year and collaborated with a number of outside agencies and other Government departments. Working with the Boys' and Girls' Clubs Association the Chinese service began a daily programme for children in Resettlement Estate children's clubs in January, and the Association itself contributed programmes to the series which were recorded in its own studio in the Youth Leader's Training Centre in Wan Chai set up with the advice of Radio Hong Kong. A trial programme for fishermen went on the air in November as a counterpart to the weekly programmes for farmers and a new weather service for fishermen in all the principal fishing grounds was in preparation at the end of the year.

To assist the Government's campaign against narcotics the Chinese service produced a series of plays with themes stressing the disastrous effects of drug addiction. Road Safety quiz contests were held in schools with the co-operation of the Education Department and Police. Broadcasting contributed to the campaign for city and home cleanliness centred around 'Miss Ping On', and in addition to the regular broadcasts by the Air Doctor, special health talks were broadcast from time to time.

Both Protestant and Roman Catholic churches broadcast reli- gious services each Sunday, and broadcast appeals and special concerts for charities raised considerable sums of money.


Co-operation with other broadcasting organizations strengthened, the B.B.C. supplying weekly feature programmes in Cantonese on general aspects of life in Britain and the Common- wealth, and the experiences of a Hong Kong student in Britain.

      Transcriptions of various Radio Hong Kong programmes were supplied to Radio Australia, Radio Sarawak and Radio Sabah in North Borneo.

     Chinese students in Canada recorded messages to their families at Christmas and these were made available by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.


      The English service has a more complicated role to play than the Chinese service. Whilst it has to cater for the relatively small European and American population, it has also to bear in mind the very large number of Chinese listeners who use it not only for entertainment, but as a source of information and Western culture. The Chinese audience far outnumbers the non-Chinese, but within the limits of a single channel the English service endeavours to provide for both.

       Serious music, talks, features and drama occupy a considerable amount of time, but great stress is also laid on reflecting all aspects of life in the Colony through outside broadcasts, news magazines and documentary programmes. The service suffered an acute staff shortage during the second half of the year which delayed a planned increase of this type of programme. This staff shortage will be remedied at the beginning of 1960, and it is then hoped to provide daily instead of weekly news magazines and to provide a regular series of documentary programmes about Hong Kong.

The B.B.C. Transcription Service provides a wide range of high quality programmes of which considerable use is made and the transcription services of other broadcasting organizations, notably Radio Canada and Radio Australia, also provide valuable material.

       Full use is made of the artistic talent available in Hong Kong, in plays, recitals and variety shows. A successful experiment in the latter field was the production of a series of six programmes entitled 'Radio Clubhouse' early in the year in which Hong Kong's leading bands and singers took part, before an audience of teenagers.

Subjects for documentary programmes written in Hong Kong were shipbreaking, the police and service units.

Towards the end of the year a weekly science magazine was produced which dealt with scientific topics ranging from space research to synthetic music.

Among outstanding talks were the Reith Lectures by the Director of Jodrell Bank, Professor A. C. B. Lovell, and a talk on his memoirs by Viscount Montgomery.

Children's programmes were completely reorganized during the year, and the new daily children's programme aroused consider- able interest amongst both children and parents.



     To help publicize Hong Kong at the Vienna Trade Fair, a fifteen-minute documentary on the Colony was produced by Radio Hong Kong in Austrian and broadcast by the Austrian broad- casting networks.

     Facilities were provided throughout the year to correspondents of many overseas radio organizations stationed in or visiting the Colony, and Radio Hong Kong contributed to the Light Pro- gramme, the North Region of the Home Service and the General Overseas Service of the B.B.C. on several occasions.

An unusual facility was provided to the Columbia Broadcasting System, which used a large studio on four occasions for the filming of the Hong Kong part of "The Small World', a television pro- gramme in which prominent personalities in different parts of the world are linked by radio telephone for a discussion of world events. Taking part in the programmes filmed in Radio Hong Kong were U Nu, former Prime Minister of Burma, and the author Han Su-Yin.

     Many other prominent men and women broadcast for Radio Hong Kong during the year, including Stirling Moss, Dr. Charles Hill, Sylvia Syms, Margot Fonteyn, Cyd Charisse, Terence Rattigan, Gladys Aylward, the Rt. Hon. Richard Casey, Lord Rowallan, Ilka Chase, Quentin Reynolds, Tennessee Williams and W. Somerset Maugham.

Towards the end of the year, work began on the building of the new FM transmitting station at Mount Gough on Hong Kong Island. By the end of December, most of the equipment for the station had been delivered, the transmitter building itself was nearing completion and the aerial mast was about to be erected.

Steady progress was made in modernizing and improving all types of studio and outside broadcast equipment. In particular, the main drama and music studio underwent considerable improve- ment, with a new control console being installed, together with a wide range of microphones including very high quality con- denser microphones and a variety of tape and disk playback equipment.

     Outside broadcast amplifiers and mixers, at present of an obsolescent design, are being replaced by miniaturised audio mixers using transistors; another advance in the outside broadcast


field was the construction of a parabolic reflector for use with a sound effects microphone, which enables distant sounds to be picked up with great clarity.

Other technical improvements included the installation of con- trol desks for announcers in continuity studios, replacement of obsolescent equipment in recording channels, construction of tape/ disk playback units for programme compilation and modifications to outside broadcast vans. An average of thirty eight outside broadcasts and sixty four outside recordings a month were made.


       On the 26th August 1959, the Officer Administering the Govern- ment, Mr. C. B. Burgess, officially opened Commercial Radio, Hong Kong, operated by the Hong Kong Commercial Broadcasting Company Limited.

The new station, including its studios, transmitters and antenna, is situated at Lai Chi Kok in Kowloon and broadcasts on two frequencies on the medium wave band, 1530 Kc/s. and 1050 Kc/s., for the English and Cantonese transmissions respectively, from 7 a.m. to midnight daily.

Two 1 KW transmitters are used and their signals are radiated through a single antenna, 175 feet in height, by the use of a diplexer. The studio building is of a bungalow type and in it are housed five studios, two programme departments, the transmitters, record library, workshop and the staff common-room. The staff at present numbers 70.

        Commercial airtime is sold either by the hour, the half hour, or the quarter hour; spot announcements of ten seconds to sixty seconds duration are also sold. The rates run from HK$5.50 per hour for 'A' time on the Chinese programme to HK$10 for one ten-second announcement on the English programme. At the end of the year, the station had 137 sponsors covering 150 products from toothpaste to refrigerators and had received 38,559 letters in the last four months of the year alone.

       English Programme. The English Programme is under the direc- tion of a Programme Director assisted by five programme assistants with eighteen staff members and two contract artists as well as contributors from the local European community. Seven of the



programme production staff are British, two are Canadian and one is American.

     Programmes of special interest included a relay of the 1959 Macau Grand Prix, done jointly with Radio Hong Kong and Rediffusion, a relay of Her Majesty the Queen's Christmas message and a special recording of a carol service from St. John's Cathedral sung by a Chinese choir of sixty voices. A special programme, 'Come Fly with Me', described a trip to the west coast of America by one of the contract artists. 'Christmas Around the World', a Christmas-day programme, was composed of Christmas music from different countries with greetings from members of the Consular Corps to all the people in Hong Kong on behalf of their communities. Transcribed programmes included "Theatre Time with Somerset Maugham', 'Les Miserables', 'Carter Brown Mystery Theatre', 'Alias the Baron', from Australia. 'Radio Canada 1959 Drama Series' gave a short description of Canada and her people as seen by a traveller, this feature being made available through the courtesy of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Local productions included 'Around the Cracker Barrel', a humorous programme of cowboy music produced by the staff, and "The Bing Crosby Story' produced by the Programme Director. Other pro- grammes were produced by local contributors.

Chinese Programme. The Chinese programme is headed by a Programme Director with four programme- assistants and one con- tract artist, and has more than sixty contributors. During recent months twenty nine radio plays, thirty Chinese-operas, une opera relayed from a theatre, forty nine sports programmes, thirty-eight interviews, eighteen stories told by individual story-tellers and thirty three serial dramatized plays were broadcast by the station. 105 spot announcements were made on behalf of local charities as well as 447 spot announcements for the Government and one radio play on 'Fire Prevention'. On December 9th a charity broadcast from the Prince's Theatre on behalf of the Tung Wah Group of hospitals raised $120,000 for the erection of a new wing to a hospi- tal, a record amount for a fund raising campaign by a local broad- casting organization.


Sound Relay. Rediffusion (H.K.) Ltd. provides a popular wired broadcast service throughout the Colony, extending to practically


     all urban areas and to many outlying villages on the Island and in the New Territories. At present the system embraces more than 1,400,000 yards of main trunk network and approximately 3,500,000 yards of subscribers' installation cabling. Distribution is from thirteen sub-stations, feeding 26 kiosks from which 175 feeders radiate to approximately 59,000 Rediffusion loudspeakers.

       On 29th May Rediffusion moved to the new Rediffusion House building on Gloucester Road and now operates from the most modern studios in the Far East. The new building was officially opened by His Excellency the Governor, Sir Robert Black. The new Rediffusion House contains three television studios and five audio studios, all air-conditioned, from which three simultaneous sound programmes are originated daily from 7 a.m. to midnight, two networks (Gold & Silver) being in Chinese and one (Blue) in English.

Approximately 16% of Rediffusion programmes are commer- cially sponsored. The Chinese programme offers music, news, drama, talks, sports, commentaries, women's features, children's shows, comedy, story-telling and theatre relays in Cantonese, Mandarin, Swatow, Hakka, Shanghai and other dialects. The English service features continuous daily broadcasts of musical entertainment, plays, studio presentations, news, B.B.C. and other relays, sports events, stock-market news, features for women and children, and many other presentations. Chinese broadcasts raised more than $300,000 for needy families at the Chinese New Year. Rediffusion employs 475 local staff of whom 98% are Chinese, in addition to a great many musicians, soloists, story-tellers and dramatic artists.

       Rental for a loudspeaker is $10 per month, and subscribers have a constant choice of the three programmes which, together, involve the origination of 51 hours of programmes each day.

Rediffusion, which commenced thirty two years ago in the United Kingdom, operates in many parts of the Commonwealth and the Hong Kong company, locally controlled, is part of this world-wide organization.

      Television. Rediffusion (H.K.) Ltd. opened the first television service in any British Colony in May 1957, and the service has been growing in popularity and quality of service since that date.



At the end of 1959 a total of more than 4,000 subscribers had

been reached.

Equipment includes the latest Pye telecine-camera chains with double channels for both 16 mm. and 35 mm. films and a full complement of studio and control equipment. All Chinese films carry English captions and vice versa.

Programmes are produced in air-conditioned studios, and these include many 'live' presentations such as Cantonese operas, dance orchestras, night-club acts, children's features, and interviews. The most popular filmed television shows have been imported from the United Kingdom and America for local transmission, and six full-length feature films are televised each week. Rediffusion tele- vision programmes provide approximately forty hours of wired television weekly, and some of the television periods are com- mercially sponsored. Outside broadcasts include many sports and special events, and a local and international newsreel is provided each evening. Personalities who appeared on Hong Kong television in 1959 included Richard Mason, Virginia Kellogg, Brigitte de Beaufond, Peter Cooper, Maurice Claire, William A. Hyman, Hugh Perceval, Jean Negulesco, Joan Manning, Basil Smallpiece, King Merritt, Ilka Chase and many others.

More than 97% of the television staff are locally-trained Chinese. The rental fee is $55 per month, including receiving unit and all maintenance. For subscribers who own their own television sets, adapted to receive Rediffusion programmes, the monthly rental is $25.


      The Hong Kong film industry maintains a high rate of output of films in Chinese. There are eight major producing studios, as well as a large number of small production companies which rent studio space as they require it. Two hundred and forty six locally- produced feature films were submitted to the Panel of Film Censors which approves all films before local exhibition; 72 of them had sound-tracks in Mandarin, 171 in Cantonese and three were in other Chinese dialects. Hong Kong companies are known to have financed a number of films produced in part in Taiwan, Singapore and Japan.


The nature and size of the market available to these films presents a financial problem. China does not import Hong Kong films, and so, apart from local audiences, Hong Kong productions are shown mainly to overseas Chinese in South-East Asia and in Taiwan; occasionally they are exported for exhibition to Chinese audiences in the United States. The demand of overseas Chinese cinema audiences for films on Chinese themes told in their own language is insatiable, but the market is not large enough to guarantee an economic return unless production costs are kept at a minimum; in consequence the aim of Hong Kong production is generally quantity rather than quality. Hong Kong nevertheless again made a good showing at the Sixth Film Festival of the Federation of Motion Picture Producers in Asia, held at Kuala Lumpur in May. The 'Golden Gong', which is the award for the best picture, was given to 'The Kingdom and the Beauty' (Shaws), which also won the second prize for direction. 'Her Tender Heart' (Motion Picture & General Investment) won awards for the best acting (Miss Yu Ming) and the best editing. Awards for the best music and the best black-and-white photography went to two other films made by the same companies.

Three overseas feature films were shot partly in Hong Kong by Italian, Indian and Philippine companies. The shooting of 'Ferry to Hong Kong' (Rank) was completed early in the year, and as the year ended work on 'The World of Suzie Wong' (Paramount) began, with William Holden and France Nuyen in the lead. Hong Kong has been the setting for several documentaries for television services in the United Kingdom, the United States, Germany and Italy. Scenes were also shot by a United Nations photographer for use in connexion with World Refugee Year, whilst another United Nations representative made a large number of still photo- graphs for library and reference use by UNESCO.

The cinema is a popular form of entertainment in Hong Kong, and although one or two theatres closed during the year, some of them are being rebuilt, and other new ones were opened. There are now 65 in all (68,415 seats) of which 26 are on the Island (29,414), 27 in Kowloon (31,083) and 12 in the New Territories (7,918). Most buildings are modern and air-conditioned, and nearly all are now equipped to show wide-screen films. Next to Chinese films made in Hong Kong, films from the United States



predominate in the cinemas. Records of the Panel of Film Censors show that 193 American films were submitted for censorship during 1959, 63 British and 161 from all other countries including France, Germany, Italy, India, Japan, Philippines, Korea, South America, Taiwan, Russia and China.


      Tourism continued to develop satisfactorily during 1959. In 1958 a total of 103,055 visitors (excluding overseas Chinese but in- cluding those from the British Commonwealth) falling within the accepted international definition of 'tourists' visited Hong Kong, but this figure had already been surpassed in the first ten months of 1959, and the final figure for the year, 138,561, was an increase of 34 per cent over 1958.

      The Hong Kong Tourist Association was established by Ordinance in 1957 and started to operate early in 1958. The Association works through a Board of Management appointed by the Governor and composed of nine members representing various branches of the tourist industry and of Government, and including an Executive Director. The Government subvention to the Asso- ciation increased from HK$600,000 for the financial year 1958-9 to HK$1,000,000 for the financial year ending in March 1960.

      The Association has initiated an advertising programme to pro- ject Hong Kong and its attractions abroad; posters and brochures describing the scenery and many amenities of Hong Kong have been widely distributed. A 35-mm travel film in colour was made in 1959 and released for world-wide distribution, and a 16-mm colour documentary film was completed for showing to television viewers in the U.S.A. and eventually in Europe and elsewhere.

In addition, during 1959 the Association appointed an official guide book, issued twice each month, and a monthly news bulletin, The Hong Kong Travel Bulletin, which were distributed both locally and abroad.

      As a first step towards co-ordinating the activities of the tourist industry, in accordance with its terms of reference under the Ordin- ance, the Association began to enrol members and associate members late in 1958. At the end of 1959 membership was about 200, including airlines, shipping companies, travel and tourist


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At his shop in Lower Lascar. Row (popularly known as Cat Street) an old Chinese craftsman fashions lanterns little different from those which fascinated the first European voyagers to the East. They are made of paper, silk or gauze and decorated with butterflies, fishes, lobsters, wizards and a host of legendary figures from Chinese mythology. Ornate 'palace' lanterns are decorated with silk tassels and fringes.

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paper, cotton and paint are the ingredients used by more than a hundred handicraft workers-mainly of refugee origin--to make charmingly lifelike toy birds. More than 3,000 dozen are exported each month to the United States, Australia, West Germany and other European countries.

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Chinese temples play an important part in the lives of many Hong Kong people and quite frequently the three religions of China are found under one roof, Buddhist and Taoist deities standing close to Confucian ancestral tablets. Craftsman above works on temple image, watched over by giant carved Buddha.

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A beauty among (papier mache) beasts is this Chinese girl at a mask-making shop at North Point, Hong Kong. The shop produces about 100 hand-made masks a day and they are used in Chinese opera as well as for a variety of decorative purposes. In opera, masks of a certain colour are used to denote the character of the wearer green for wickedness, red for righteousness and blue for pride.


agencies, hotels, shops and restaurants (Associate Members). Subscribing members are bound by the rules of the Association, and it is hoped that by gradually enlarging the membership body future development of the tourist trade will continue on a sound and healthy basis. A further step in this direction is the training and registration of guides.

       The Association maintains two information offices, one on the Star Ferry concourse in Hong Kong and one in the Peninsula Hotel arcade in Kowloon, to provide guidance and information to tourists. The Association co-operates actively with international organizations for the promotion of tourism and is a member of the International Union of Official Travel Organizations, the Pacific Area Travel Association, the British Travel & Holidays Association and the American Society of Travel Agents. During 1959 the Executive Director attended the IUOTO conference in Manila.

       Lack of first class hotels is still a problem facing tourist pro- motion in Hong Kong. With the general adoption by airlines of large-capacity jet aircraft, the number of visitors attracted to the Colony by its scenery and shopping facilities will increase year by year. At present about 2,400 hotel rooms are available for tourists, but only a comparatively small number of these can be classified as first class. Three new hotels, with a total of 970 rooms, were building at the end of 1959 with several others in prospect.

Chapter 17: Local Forces and

Civil Defence Services

THE Colony's Auxiliary Defence Services comprise the Royal Hong Kong Defence Force, the Auxiliary Police and the Essential Services Corps. The Auxiliary Police, which was created during 1957 by a merger of the Hong Kong Police Reserve and the Special Constabulary, is dealt with in Chapter 13. The Essential Services Corps, although legally an entity, is split for administrative and practical purposes into four autonomous Services: the Units of the Essential Services Corps proper, the Civil Aid Services, the Auxiliary Fire Service and the Auxiliary Medical Service.

All these services, which consist partly of volunteers and partly of persons enrolled since the introduction in 1951 of compulsory service for locally resident citizens of the United Kingdom and Colonies, are financed from funds voted annually by the Legislative Council. Service in the auxiliary defence units is in many cases a considerable commitment not only to the individual concerned but also to his employer, and it is fortunate indeed that on the whole employers are most co-operative in releasing members of their staff for these duties, even at considerable inconvenience.

Except for small administrative and training staffs, the Auxiliary Services are manned entirely by citizens of the Colony who lead or attend training classes and exercises in the evenings or at the week-ends, and in the case of certain services attend more extended training at annual camps lasting up to fifteen days.

     Training obligations vary from service to service. The greatest commitment is in those units where members must attend every year at least sixty instructional parades of one hour's duration, six full days' training and fifteen days' training at camp. The commit- ment is scaled down elsewhere to the particular requirement of the unit in question. An allowance designed to cover out-of-pocket expenses is granted for attendance at instructional parades, while for a full day's training and for attending camp, officers and



members receive a higher daily rate of pay and, where meals cannot be provided, a ration allowance.

The Royal Hong Kong Defence Force. The main units of the Royal Hong Kong Defence Force are the Hong Kong Royal Naval Reserve, the Hong Kong Regiment and the Hong Kong Auxiliary Air Force. The Hong Kong Royal Naval Reserve, which in keeping with its United Kingdom counterpart dropped the word 'Volunteer' from its title on 1st January 1959, mans and operates two Inshore Minesweepers. These vessels, which are on loan from the Admiralty but operated and maintained at Government expense, were com- missioned into service with the Reserve on 21st June 1959.

       In addition to the Hong Kong Regiment with the strength and equipment of an infantry battalion but with a lower establishment, the Army element of the Royal Hong Kong Defence Force consists of a number of Force Headquarters Units, which include a Light Troop (4.2 inch mortars), a Reconnaissance Unit, a Home Guard and other specialized formations.

      The Hong Kong Auxiliary Air Force is equipped with Auster aircraft and two Westland Widgeon helicopters.

       There are also three Women's Services: the Hong Kong Women's Naval Reserve, the Hong Kong Women's Auxiliary Army Corps and the Hong Kong Women's Auxiliary Air Force.

      The Officers of the Royal Hong Kong Defence Force are found amongst its members, but there is in addition a small permanent staff of Regular officers and non-commissioned officers attached for training purposes.

       Volunteer Service in Hong Kong began with the formation on 30th May 1854 of the Hong Kong Volunteers. In 1878 they were renamed the Hong Kong Volunteer Corps and in 1917 the Hong Kong Defence Corps. In 1920 the title was again changed to the Hong Kong Volunteer Defence Corps.

       The Corps was mobilized, about 1,400 strong, to meet the Japanese attack on the Colony on 8th December 1941 and fought with the Regular Forces against overwhelming odds until ordered to surrender on 25th December 1941. In 1956 their action was vividly recalled when part of the old Colours of the Corps, which had been buried in December 1941 to avoid capture by the Japanese, was discovered by workmen excavating a building site



on Garden Road. The officers who had buried the Colours had subsequently died in captivity, leaving no record of where the Colours could be found. The remnants of the old Colours were paraded on the Annual Review of the Defence Force in March 1958 and were afterwards laid up in St. John's Cathedral.

For their gallantry in battle and subsequent escapes from Japanese prison-camps in Hong Kong, decorations were conferred upon fifteen members of the Corps; eighteen members were men- tioned in despatches.

      After the war the Corps was reconstituted on 1st March 1949 as the Hong Kong Defence Force. Two years later, the title 'Royal' was awarded to the Force by His late Majesty King George VI in recognition of the part played by its forerunner in the defence of Hong Kong.

      In March 1957 the award of the Battle Honour 'Hong Kong' by Her Majesty the Queen to the Royal Hong Kong Defence Force was announced. The Honour, which was awarded in recog- nition of the part played by the Hong Kong Volunteer Defence Corps in the defence of Hong Kong in 1941, is now emblazoned on the Regimental Colour.

      The Essential Services Corps proper consists of a number of units, each responsible for maintaining an essential service such as the supply of electricity, water, communications, etc. Each unit is staffed primarily by those already employed in such service augmented as necessary by others. Since in an emergency most members would continue to perform duties in which they are already expert, the Corps requires less training than the Defence Force. The Corps is now several thousands strong. Training during the year has been devoted mainly to driving instruction and revolver practice.

      The Auxiliary Fire Service, an autonomous unit of the Essential Services Corps, is designed to augment the Fire Brigade when necessary. It is a well trained, keen and efficient body some hundreds strong, which is regularly called upon to assist the Fire Brigade in fighting serious fires. Members of this unit man and operate their own appliances.

The Auxiliary Medical Service is organized to provide first aid and hospital treatment for the population of the Colony in an



emergency. It is built up around the Medical and Health Depart- ment, the St. John Ambulance Brigade and other members of the medical and nursing professions. In addition, many people with no previous training in nursing and first aid have been enrolled and trained to act as auxiliary nurses in hospitals or as first aid workers in the field. The unit is now several thousands strong. During 1959 training classes have been attended with keenness and valuable practical experience has been obtained by many members attending week-end training in the casualty ward at Queen Mary Hospital.

      The Civil Aid Services are responsible for all civil defence functions not covered by the other emergency services, and com- prise a Wardens' Service, a Rescue Service, a Communications Unit, and other command and administrative units. The service, several thousands strong, has not increased in numbers during 1959, but members, of whom the vast majority are volunteers, are markedly keen.

       Joint Exercises, in which the Civil Aid Services and the Auxiliary Medical Service co-operate, and which were started in 1958 to replace the Colony-wide annual civil defence exercise, have increased in scope and importance during the year.

      Over 1,000 members were mobilized during the rainstorm in mid-June 1959 and provided considerable assistance to the Police and Fire Brigade in dealing with landslides, house collapses and flooded areas.

Chapter 18: Research

THE University of Hong Kong continued and extended its research programmes in 1959.

      Current projects in the Department of History include work on the preparation of a collection of documents illustrating the History of Hong Kong; on the history of the New Territories; on problems of communication between the English East India Company and Chinese officials at Canton in the early nineteenth century; on the history of Chinese relations with Yunnan during the T'ang period and the ethnic problems connected with the state of Nanchao; and on aspects of the history of South-East Asia since 1870.

      In the Department of Education the research project into the employment of and community needs for university graduates was completed during the year. Research into other problems of higher education has continued, with emphasis on the study of Hong Kong's Commonwealth and international relations. Psychological and social research has been combined, mainly through case studies provided by the Child Guidance Centre. It is apparent that problems in these fields have much in common with similar problems in other communities, but research is evolving towards understanding of special local deviations and typical patterns, and a thorough investigation into Chinese personality development is under way. Results have been published through the University and the commercial press, and through international conferences. The department plans the establishment of educational research on a wider basis.

Research in the Department of Economics and Political Science was mainly in three fields, Hong Kong, China and the Far East.

A study of The Economic Growth of Hong Kong was published by Oxford University Press under the auspices of the Royal Institute of International Affairs; the structure of Government salaries in relation to living costs over the last 10 years was analyzed at the request of the Government's Salaries Commission;



a survey of student life, a study of method and practice of con- struction of the retail price index in Hong Kong, and a survey of the Colony's toy industry were completed. Research in progress includes social accounts, international trade, housing and labour problems in Hong Kong.

Studies of industrialization in China, foreign trade, communes and family life, educational changes, current bibliography and chronology, and a selection of documents, have been prepared for publication in Vol. III of Contemporary China. Other publications include a monograph on Government Acquisition of Agricultural Output in Mainland China, a study of China's Industrial Growth 1953-57 and a Dictionary of Simplified Chinese. A study has been undertaken of the social and economic conditions of rural Taiwan in 1952-58 in collaboration with the National University of Taiwan, and sponsored by the Joint Commission on Rural Reconstruction.

      Research projects on Far Eastern subjects generally have included the economic development of Asia and the Far East, foreign trade patterns of Ceylon and the Philippines, the economic role of middlemen and co-operatives in Indo-Pacific Fisheries, central banking in South and East Asia, the economic history of Japan, and public administration in Far Eastern countries. Most of the results of these projects have been published. Preparatory work has been undertaken for the forthcoming Asian Conference of the International Association for Research in Income and Wealth to be held at the University in 1960.

      Research in the Department of Modern Languages has included the study of vernaculars arising from contact between the West and Asian countries. An analysis of the Spanish Creole dialects of the Philippines has already been published and a survey of the Portuguese Creole dialect of Hong Kong is in progress. Work has also been done, and is continuing, on the Portuguese Creole dialect of Macau. Some possible affinities between the Creole dialects of the Old World and those of the new, together with various problems involving race and speech, are being investigated. A study of words borrowed from other languages has been completed. Some of the results of this work have been made public through International Congresses and the appropriate learned



journals. The Department has also collaborated in the preparation of a history of Portuguese teaching in Hong Kong.

In the Department of English, phonetic and semantic studies have continued, and a translation of 'Emily Bronte: esperance spirituelle et creation poetique' by Jacques Blondel is in progress. Other work has included an edition of The Friend by S. T. Coleridge, an Anthology of Elizabethan Poetry, partly for use by first-year University students, and work on 'English Usage'. Two other anthologies were being made: one of less familiar English sonnets, the other of rare lyrics of the 17th century.

The Department of Philosophy has continued research into the psychological problems created by bilingualism. Experiments on the perception of complex forms in young Chinese children have been initiated, and the Chinese reading test has been finalized.

      Investigation of the intellectual and physical capabilities of the male undergraduate population has been continued in conjunction by the University Health Officer, the Departments of Anatomy and Philosophy, and the Director of Physical Education.

      Members of the Department of Chinese and of the Institute of Oriental Studies have continued their research work in various directions; some has already been published and some is still in the press. Publications include Buddhist Rock Sculptures of the T'ang Dynasty, Hong Kong and its External Communications before 1842, A New Study of P'u Shou-k'eng (an Arabian merchant in the Sung Dynasty), and Oracle Bone Diviners of the Shang-Yin Period. Articles on Overseas Collections of Oracle Bones; on a Bronze Vessel of the Shang Dynasty; on a collection of Yuan and Ming Plays preserved in a library in Spain; on differences between Ming Dynasty blue-and-white porcelain of the Yung-10 and Hsuan-te periods, will appear in Volume IV of the Journal of Oriental Studies. In the Institute of Oriental Studies, work has continued on a general history of the Tai-P'ing T'ien-kuo, a book on the actor Mei Lan Fang has been published, and two volumes of Chronological Tables of Chinese History are about to come off the press.

In the Department of Extra-Mural Studies there has been research into the rise of new literatures in English, French, and Spanish in the Afro-Caribbean area, and several publications in



this field have appeared. A study of the literary origins of Chinese idioms is now complete and awaits publication in both Chinese and English.

      In the Department of Zoology, research has been pursued in neurology, entomology, morphology, and fisheries; the neurological programme is financially supported by the U. S. Public Health Service. In fisheries, the research vessel Cape St. Mary (239 tons), built under the Colonial Development and Welfare Scheme in 1951, has been acquired during the year as a gift from Britain and preparations have been undertaken for her operation by the Fisheries Research Unit from early 1960. The vessel will be able to pursue a more extensive offshore programme than was possible with her smaller predecessor, the Alister Hardy, which has been transferred to work with the Government's Fisheries Division. A number of papers on the various projects being carried out by the Unit are in press for the third issue of the Hong Kong University Fisheries Journal due for publication early in 1960.

The Department of Mathematics has two distinct fields of interest: pure mathematics and applied statistics. In the former, current research activity has centred mainly on linear connexions on differentiable manifolds and isoclinic n-planes in Euclidean 2n-space. In applied statistics, research work has included the computations of a series of index numbers showing the unit value and quantum of external trade of Hong Kong.

       In the Department of Chemistry new discoveries continue to be made in Hong Kong plant-product Chemistry, and concerning the mechanisms of chemical reactions, and these have been published or are awaiting publication in British learned journals. Plant- product research receives financial support from outside sources.

Research in the Department of Physiology during 1959 has included studies on various aspects of metabolism as affected by environmental temperature; the relationship of physiological char- acteristics to climatic preferences; metabolic effects of vitamin E; and studies of narcotic addiction in Hong Kong and its treatment.

In the Department of Civil Engineering experiments have been carried out on the behaviour of pre-stressed concrete in a two- storey, three-bay frame, on the behaviour of composite steel and concrete structures, and on the buckling of built-up steel girders.



On the theoretical side a method of analysis of indeterminate structures has been investigated, as have problems in stress- distribution treated by conformal transformation. Analyses were made for local engineering and architectural firms of tall buildings and foundation problems.

The Department of Architecture is carrying out an investigation into the design of low-cost housing in Hong Kong conditions and has obtained results of considerable interest.

Chapter 19: Religion

     THE Anglican Diocese of Hong Kong, which includes Macau, covers twelve recognized parish churches and six mission chapels. In three of these, worship is conducted in English, and in the remainder in Chinese. St. John's Cathedral, originally established in 1842, was established as a Cathedral Church by Letters Patent from Queen Victoria in 1850.

       In January 1959, Bishop R. O. Hall returned from furlough in England where he attended the Lambeth Conference of 1958. In April, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Geoffrey Fisher, and Mrs. Fisher visited the Colony. This was the first time an Arch- bishop of Canterbury ever visited Hong Kong. In May, the first Conference of Chinese Anglican Clergy for South-East Asia was held in Hong Kong and thirty four Chinese clergy from five different dioceses in South-East Asia participated. Dean F. S. Temple left for England in June to become the Senior Chaplain to the Archbishop of Canterbury. The Rev. J. C. L. Wong of the Church of the Good Shepherd, Kowloon, was appointed Assistant Bishop of Borneo in July.

       Church and school extensions during the year have been marked by the almost complete rebuilding of the Diocesan Girls' School and St. Paul's Co-Educational College, and the opening of the new Kei Shun School at the Wong Tai Sin Resettlement Area.

The English-speaking Free Churches are represented by the Methodists, whose Church is on the Island; by two Union Churches, one on the Island and one in Kowloon; by the Emmanuel Church and the Alliance Church in Kowloon; and by the Baptist Church on the Island and Chapel in Kowloon. The London Missionary Society, whose chief representative arrived in Hong Kong within a year of the Colony's cession to Great Britain, plays a prominent part in education and medicine, and runs the Nethersole Hospital, one of the Colony's foremost medical institutions,



     The growth in the size and vigour of the Chinese-speaking Churches, so marked in recent years, has continued. Official, comprehensive statistics are not available but a private survey on January 1st 1959, showed that there are more than 250 Churches with a membership of over 70,000 (excluding children under 12). This constitutes an increase of 10% each year since 1956. During the year 1959, the Church of Christ in China laid the cornerstone for the new Morrison Memorial Centre with the Rev. M. O. Janes, General Secretary of the London Missionary Society of Great Britain, officiating; the Lutheran Church dedicated a new Church building at Yuen Long; the Baptists broke ground at the site where their new College and Hospital will be built; and the Methodists began two new schools. These are indicative of the large number of new projects developed by the Protestant Churches. In addition to the major denominations there is a large number of smaller groups whose total Christian work is not inconsiderable.

Co-operation among the Protestant Churches continued during 1959 in the Chinese Christian Churches' Union and in the Hong Kong Christian Council. This latter body sent two delegates to the Inaugural Assembly of the East Asia Christian Conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaya, and sponsored the Annual Prayer for Church Unity and a public meeting on the occasion of the visit of Dr. E. T. Dahlberg, President of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A. The interdenominational Chung Chi College is playing an important role in the development of a second University which was approved in principle by Govern- ment during the year. Other co-operative ventures include the Study Centre on Chinese Religion, the Council on Christian Literature for Overseas Chinese, the Audio-Visual Evangelism Committee, and the Student Christian Centre.

Outside observers are always impressed by the very diverse projects that are being undertaken by the Protestant Churches in the fields of welfare, refugee relief and rehabilitation. Co- ordination of these efforts through continuous consultation in the Hong Kong Christian Welfare and Relief Council, with a mem- bership of twenty four Churches and Christian agencies, prevents overlapping. Self-help projects have been given priority and, with



the beginning of World Refugee Year, a strong emphasis is being placed on vocational training. Church World Service, Lutheran World Relief, the Y.M.C.A., the Y.W.C.A., the Salvation Army and the College Student Work Projects Committee, together with many denominational committees, are carrying on a wide variety of welfare and relief work. The World Council of Churches' office resettled over 1,300 non-Chinese refugees from China in a new life in other countries all over the world.

The Roman Catholic Church in Hong Kong was established by Papal decree on April 22nd 1841 as an ecclesiastical Prefecture with Monsignore Theodore Joset as its first Prefect Apostolic. Prior to this formal establishment, Roman Catholic missionaries from Macau came to the island to attend to the spiritual needs of the residents, particularly the many Catholics among the British soldiers.

The first Roman Catholic Church in Hong Kong stood 'between the Powder Magazine and the Barracks', a spot which is now the intersection of Wellington Street and Pottinger Street.

On November 17th 1867 the Prefecture Apostolic of Hong Kong was entrusted to the Pontifical Foreign Mission Institute, whose first Missionaries arrived in the Colony on April 9th 1858. Sixteen years later, on November 17th 1874 a Papal decree raised the status of the Prefecture of Hong Kong to an Apostolic Vicariate and Monsignor Timoleon Raimondi, until then Prefect Apostolic, was consecrated a Bishop and appointed first Vicar Apostolic of Hong Kong.

The late Pope Pius XII, on April 11th 1946, raised the Vicariate of Hong Kong to the status of a Diocese and Bishop Henry Valtorta, the fourth Vicar Apostolic, became the first Diocesan Bishop of Hong Kong. Since 1951 Bishop Lawrence Bianchi, P.I.M.E., D.D., has been the Ordinary of the Diocese of Hong Kong.

The territory of the Diocese includes, besides the Crown Colony of Hong Kong, the Districts of Hoi Fung, Po On and Wai Yeung, on the mainland of China.

The Roman Catholic Church has thirty two parishes in the Colony, of which twenty two are in the urban areas of the island and Kowloon and ten in the rural districts of the New Territories.



Besides the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception on Hong Kong Island, which was erected in 1888, there are sixty four Roman Catholic Churches and public chapels.

     The Roman Catholic population, according to the census taken on June 30th 1959, numbers 146,464; there are in addition 12,780 Catechumens. There are 299 priests, 106 religious Brothers and 609 religious Sisters in the Colony. Of the priests 54 are secular priests. The 14 Religious Orders and Congregations in Hong Kong represent 25 nationalities. At present there are 58 members of the Pontifical Foreign Mission Institute in Hong Kong.

     The Sisters working in Hong Kong belong to 20 Congregations and 260 of the Sisters are Chinese.

The Church in the Colony has 152 schools with a total enrol- ment of 74,665 pupils. Of the schools, 23 are Kindergartens, 73 Primary Schools, 27 Secondary Schools, 5 Industrial or Profes- sional Schools and 24 Night Schools.

The Church's charitable work is directed by the Diocesan Catholic Charities Bureau, Hong Kong Catholic Social Welfare Conference, 15-18 Connaught Road Central. The religious and lay organizations grouped in the Conference operate, 5 hospitals with 458 beds, 21 Clinics and Dispensaries in which during the past year 472,805 cases were treated, 7 Welfare Centres, 2 creches, 5 orphanages, 2 Homes for the Aged, a Home for the Blind, a Home for wayward girls, and 50 Relief Distribution Centres. The Hong Kong Catholic Social Welfare Conference is a member of the Hong Kong Council of Social Service. The American Catholic Relief Services, National Catholic Welfare Conference who have their Hong Kong Office in Man Yee Building, are likewise mem- bers of the Council of Social Service.

The Church has a Public Relations Office, situated in the Catholic Centre, 15-18 Connaught Road Central. The Press of the Diocese of Hong Kong publishes two weekly newspapers, the Kung Kao Po in Chinese and the Sunday Examiner in English.

Among other Diocesan Organizations are the Catholic Truth Society, which publishes Chinese Catholic Literature, The Pon- tifical Society for the Propagation of the Faith, an organization to assist missionary activities, the Apostleship of the Sea which ministers to the spiritual needs of seamen, the Diocesan Church



       and School Extension Commission and the Diocesan Council for the Lay Apostolate, in which the various lay organizations are grouped. Among organizations providing social amenities are The Catholic Club of Hong Kong, 15-18 Connaught Road Central, the Chinese Catholic Club in Kaiming Building and the Little Flower Club in Kowloon. The central organization of the Church's cultural and social activities is the Catholic Centre, 15-18 Con- naught Road Central, where an Information Bureau is available to the public.

      Many of the principal Roman Catholic Mission Orders and Congregations have their Far-Eastern administrative headquarters in the Colony.

There is a small Russian Orthodox congregation, divided into adherents who recognize the present Patriarch of Moscow and others who do not. The former have their own Church, founded in 1934. The latter, who have inter-communion with the Anglican Church, hold their services in St. Andrew's Church Hall, Kow- loon, and are known as the Orthodox Church.

       There are comparatively small groups of Chinese Muslims and non-Chinese Muslims, mostly Pakistanis and Indians. The first mosque was built in 1850 on the present mosque site in Shelley Street; the existing construction dates from 1915. A second mosque was built in 1896 in Nathan Road, Kowloon, but in 1902 was transferred to the care of the military authorities for use by Indian troops.

       The Parsees were among the foreign communities which arrived with the British in 1841. In 1829 they had established a prayer- house and cemetery in Macau, and in 1852 they established their first cemetery in Hong Kong, in Happy Valley. In 1874 they established a prayer-hall in Elgin Street, which was moved in 1931 to a new site on Leighton Road. There is no Fire Temple or Tower of Silence.

The Jews, of whom there is a small community in the Colony, were also established in Macau prior to the foundation of Hong Kong, where they were among the earliest residents. Their cemetery, on the slopes of Happy Valley, was founded in 1855, and their religious services were originally held in premises rented in the Peel Street-Staunton Street area of the central district of



    Victoria. The present synagogue, built in 1901, is the gift of the late Sir Jacob Sassoon.

The first Hindu temple in Hong Kong was built in 1953 and is situated in Happy Valley. There has been since 1902 a Sikh temple in Queen's Road East which has served the needs not only of the Sikh community, but of many of those Hindus from Sind and the Punjab who have been to some extent influenced by Guru Nanak's teachings.

Buddhism maintains a strong-hold amongst the older Chinese and is very far from dying out amongst the younger generation. Religious studies are conducted in a large number of monasteries and nunneries and in hermitages built in secluded places where a dozen or more inmates may reside and devote themselves to quiet meditation. Because of the accessibility of Sha Tin and Tsuen Wan, hermitages in these places are popular with people living in the urban areas. The better known monasteries are, however, situated in more remote parts of the Territories which are generally scenically pleasing. Thus the Po Lin monastery at Ngong Ping, Lantau, is reputed to have the best view of the sunrise and is well patronized at week-ends and holidays. Other monasteries which attract both devotees and sightseers include those known as Castle Peak, Ling Wan, Tung Po To, Sai Lam and Fung Ying Sin Kwun which are all in the New Territories. Sutras are also expounded under the auspices of various Buddhist associations in the urban area.

Sarira, relics left after the cremation of noted high priests, or living Buddhas, are treasured by Buddhists and are, as a result, distributed to the close followers of the priest. They are usually kept in specially built pagodas within the compound of a monas- tery. During the year under review one such pagoda was built in Castle Peak and another in Tsuen Wan although the places of death of the two priests were not in Hong Kong.

In 1958 the Tung Wah Hospitals revived the ancient and solemn ceremony of Autumn Sacrifice at the Man Mo Temple in Hollywood Road and in the same year the Hong Kong Buddhist Association held a Memorial Service for the dead on Remem- brance Day at the Tung Lin Kok Yuen for the first time. These ceremonies were held again in 1959 and the Government was officially represented.



      Chinese temples play an important role in the life of many of the people of Hong Kong. Temples are usually named in honour of one particular God though in many temples several deities are worshipped. Statues of Kwun Yam, the Buddhist Goddess of Mercy, may thus be found standing next to the shrines of local Taoist dignitaries such as Wong Tai Sin and Tam Kung. As Confucian ancestral tablets will often be found in another part of the building, the three religions of China are frequently all accommodated under the one roof. Perhaps the oldest, and cer- tainly one of the most popular, of the Hong Kong temples is that dedicated to Tin Hau, the Queen of Heaven, at Causeway Bay. Tin Hau is the guardian of fishermen and temples in her honour are found near the entrances of most fishing harbours. The Man Mo Temple in Hollywood Road which is dedicated to the Gods of literacy and martial valour is equally famous and is under the control of the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals. All Chinese temples in Hong Kong, apart from those which are specifically exempted, must be registered with the Secretary for Chinese Affairs. Whatever revenue is obtained from these temples is placed under the control of the Chinese Temples Committee, whose first obligation is to ensure that the temples are kept in a proper state of repair. Any surplus is transferred to the General Chinese Charities Fund, which distributes it to charitable organiza- tions in accordance with their need.

In the New Territories, where a traditional clan organization has been preserved to a much greater extent than in the urban areas, many villages have an ancestral hall where the ancestral tablets of the clan are kept and venerated. In such villages the inhabitants often all belong to the same clan and the hall is the centre of both the religious and secular organization of the village. Such buildings do not fall under the control of the Secretary for Chinese Affairs.

       The greatest festival of the Chinese Calendar is the Lunar New Year, which is welcomed in Hong Kong in the traditional manner with a deafening barrage of firecrackers, for the free discharge of which general permission is granted for two days. The traditional customs of exchanging gifts and visiting relatives and friends are also widely observed. Other festivals observed by the population as a whole are the Ching Ming Festival in the Spring, when visits



are paid to the graves of the family ancestors, Chung Yeung in the ninth moon, when large crowds flock to the Victoria Peak and other high points in memory of a Chinese family many centuries ago who escaped death by fleeing to the top of a mountain, and the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival, the occasion for the sale and consumption of quantities of moon-cakes. Certain other festivals are celebrated by particular sections of the community. Fisherfolk pay especial and colourful attention to the birthday of their patron saint, Tin Hau, at her temples; the fifth day of the fifth moon is the occasion for the traditional Dragon-Boat races; and the Chiu Chow community celebrate the Yu Lan Tsit, or Festival of the Dead, with elaborate Buddhist ceremonies and theatrical per- formances.

Chapter 20: The Arts

1959 has been an active year and local groups, particularly during the Hong Kong Festival of the Arts in October and November, have provided some notable performances of different kinds. The outstanding event of the year was unquestionably the visit of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra under its conductor Herbert von Karajan. The Orchestra was, unfortunately, able to give only one performance during its brief visit; but the enthusiasm with which it was greeted shows that Hong Kong audiences do not lack musical appreciation and will wish to have many more such visits. On the completion in the next two years of the City Hall, with its specially designed concert hall, it is hoped to persuade more first- ranking orchestras to include Hong Kong in their tours.

      Both European and Chinese companies staged a number of successful dramatic productions. The Stage Club followed "The Devil's Disciple' and 'Tobias and the Angel' with Jean-Paul Sartre's 'Crime Passionel'. Shortly afterwards, Peter Ustinov's 'Romanoff and Juliet' drew the largest audiences of the year. As a contribution to the Festival, the Stage Club put on 'Ring Round the Moon', Christopher Fry's adaptation of Anouilh's 'L'Invitation au Chateau', one performance being staged in Kowloon in the new Keswick Hall of the Technical College. The Garrison Players pro- duced 'Plaintiff in a Pretty Hat' by Hugh and Margaret Williams, Thornton Wilder's "The Skin Of Our Teeth' and Jean Giraudoux' 'Amphitryon 38'. The latter company also produced three radio plays over Radio Hong Kong and supplied many actors for a film produced by the Hong Kong Tourist Association. The Chinese companies, The Chinese Drama Group of the Sino-British Club, The Hong Kong Players, and The Society of Dramatic Arts produced "The Life, Love and Death of Li Po', 'Emperor Ch'in The First', and, 'The Warriors of the Yang Family'.

The Hong Kong Schools' Music Association, the Oratorio Society, the Philharmonic Society, the Hong Kong Singers, the Crescendo Choral Society and the Music Society, in addition to



professional artists introduced by local impresarios, gave a wide variety of concerts, recitals and stage productions. Of particular note amongst these were the production of Purcell's 'Dido and Aeneas' by the Diocesan Girls' School and 'The Mikado' by the Hong Kong Singers. A number of musical celebrities including Rudolph Firkusny and Jan Peerce visited Hong Kong. The well- known concert pianist, Annarosa Taddei is a resident of the Colony. An unusual feature of the Festival of the Arts 1959 was a series of concerts of contemporary Chinese music sponsored by Radio Hong Kong. The Chinese Classical Music Group and many professional Cantonese and Peking opera groups have also been active. Visitors of note during the year were the Little Orchestra of New York and the Vienna Boys' Choir.

The Colony has always exhibited a lively interest in the visual arts and there are several active groups and clubs, the most prominent being the Hong Kong Art Club, the Hong Kong Chinese Art Club, the Photographic Society, the Chinese Cultural Group, the Hong Kong Artists, and the Chinese Calligraphers and Painters Association. Local artists have held several exhibitions at St. John's Cathedral Hall, the Reading Room of the British Council, the Loke Yew Hall of Hong Kong University and the Festival Centre whose venue this year was the East Wing of the Star Ferry Pier. Outstanding occasions were an exhibition sponsored by the Shell Company called "The Artist's View of an Industry', a dis- play of pictures from the collection of the late Sir Robert Ho Tung, (described in more detail below), an exhibition of etchings, aquatints and lithographs by Keith Ronald Armour, A.R.C.A., and a display of Modern and Traditional Art at The Festival Visual Arts Centre.

The British Council plays a significant part in the artistic and cultural life of the Colony and this year was able to expand its activities by removing its administrative offices out of the Gloucester Building Library to release more space for the Reading Room and for lectures and exhibitions. In Kowloon the new Centre in Nathan Road rapidly attracted a large membership, particularly of young people. Weekly lectures on varied subjects alternated between the two libraries. Weekly film shows proved popular in Kowloon and documentary and feature films were shown at



Fanling, Tsuen Wan and at many schools in the New Territories as well as on the Island. The Council also started a programme of rehearsed play-readings in Kowloon and arranged frequent exhibi- tions, including one of British Books, in both Centres. Students returning from Britain and broadcasting received particular atten- tion. Shortened versions of the weekly lectures in English and Cantonese went out over Radio Hong Kong and other Council programmes included the annual Introduction Courses for students going to Britain and talks and features for general audiences. The British Council awarded two scholarships for post-graduate study and four for research in the teaching of English as a Foreign Language besides acting as agents for the selection of Fellows of the Sino-British Fellowship Trust and participating with the Hong Kong Government in arranging programmes of a cultural nature for four Government Merit Visitors.

       Radio Hong Kong and Rediffusion both made notable contribu- tions to the Arts in 1959. During the Festival Radio Hong Kong produced 'Hamlet' and 'The Wise and The Foolish' by Cicely Finn and Joan O'Connor and Rediffusion two plays in Cantonese and Mandarin. Further details of Radio Hong Kong and Rediffusion's performances during the year are to be found in Chapter 16.

       In his foreword to the handbook of the Fifth Hong Kong Festival of the Arts, 1959, His Excellency the Governor, Sir Robert Black, said that the Festival had come to be an annual event largely because of the energy and enthusiasm of a few people who believed that the Colony should not neglect culture in its preoccupation with material progress, and he commented on the heartening degree of public interest and support for their efforts. The Festival of the Arts has in fact become a focus of public support for music, drama and art in Hong Kong. There has been discussion during the year of the formation of a standing Arts Council and it is possible that the Festival may before long find a permanent home in the new City Hall, which is described in Chapter 14. If these ideas materialize and the groups, which have been the subject of this brief resume, can carry into 1960 the same enthusiasm that they have shown during this year they may well succeed, in the not too distant future, in establishing a firm



position for the Arts in Hong Kong, a place which has, too often in the past (and somewhat unfairly), been described as a cultural desert.


      During 1959 the Government continued to add to its collection of pictures illustrating life in Hong Kong, Macau and the China Coast area during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, although at a reduced rate. It seems probable that there will be a continuing decline in this activity as the collection becomes more compre- hensive.

      One important oil painting by George Chinnery, depicting members of a well-known Macau family of the late nineteenth century, and a number of prints of incidents closely connected with the Colony's early years were purchased.

      The Ho Tung Collection of eighty four paintings was exhibited in St. John's Cathedral Hall from 21st to 31st January 1959, and attracted considerable interest. Over 13,000 visitors were recorded during the course of the exhibition which was the subject of a broadcast by Radio Hong Kong as well as being prominently featured in the Colony's press. The collection, which is now in storage, will eventually be displayed in the City Hall.

      The Government is advised on the purchase of modern paintings by a committee set up in 1958. Three pictures of local interest were acquired on the Committee's advice and a further important acquisition was a portrait of Sir Alexander Grantham, Governor of the Colony from 1947 to 1957. This portrait was commis- sioned at the suggestion of the Committee to commemorate Sir Alexander's long and successful term of office. It was painted by James Gunn, R.A. and was exhibited at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition before being shipped to Hong Kong. The picture was exhibited in Hong Kong during December 1959 and will be hung in Government House until it can be transferred to its permanent home in the City Hall.

      No further purchases of rare books were made for the City Hall Library and with the appointment of a City Hall Librarian in October 1959, this aspect of the Government collections will now become part of the process of establishing a comprehensive Library.



The Colonial Secretariat Library is expanding steadily, additions being mostly Government publications, books written specifically about Hong Kong including publications by local authors, refer- ence books on such subjects as Public Administration, Sociology, Economics and Political Science and standard works on the history of the Commonwealth and of the countries of South-East Asia.

       An extensive re-binding programme is in progress. This is expected to be completed during January, 1960 and will do much to preserve the life of the older volumes.

Chapter 21: Sport and Recreation

     READERS of the 1958 Report will recall that Hong Kong sent a large contingent to the Third Asian Games in Tokyo and also sent a team to compete in the Sixth Empire Games at Cardiff. There was no major event of this nature in 1959, and local sports organizations were able to prepare for the XVII Olympiad which will take place in Rome in 1960. The latest information is that there will be local entries in shooting, swimming and weight lifting events.

Most field sports take place during the winter months when the weather is comparatively cool and dry; and winter is the racing season also. During the summer the emphasis is on aquatic sports such as swimming, water skiing and boating.

Athletics clubs had full programmes throughout the year and made serious efforts to increase the popularity of their particular activities. The Hong Kong Badminton Association celebrated its twenty fifth anniversary during the year, and a local team took part in the competitions for the Asian Zone of the Uber Cup in Malaya. Mr. Hashim Khan, one of the world's leading squash players, played several exhibition matches during a visit to the Colony. Lawn tennis standards are rising and local interest in the game was stimulated by the visit of such top-ranking international players as Ham Richardson, Alex Olmedo, Budge Patty and Barry Mackay who were invited to the Colony by the local Association.

The Services provide the main support for boxing in the Colony, although the Amateur Boxing Association encourages civilian par- ticipation and is arousing growing interest. Several clubs conduct classes in fencing and exhibitions were given by visiting fencers from Japan.

Though there was no particularly outstanding event during the year, both Association and Rugby football clubs played off fixtures in the course of annual league and shield tournaments and the former sent many teams to play matches abroad besides receiving visiting teams from Asia and Europe. Miniball has the advantage



that it does not require a large ground and is widely played wher- ever there is sufficient space.

       Rifle shooting is popular and the local Bisley was well attended. The New Territories provide a limited amount of shooting at wild fowl and small game.

The Motor Sports Club of Hong Kong organized rallies, driving tests, hill climbs, sprints and slaloms which drew record entries. The Club was well represented at the Macau Grand Prix, which was won by a member of the Club. Cycling as a sport is hampered by a comparative lack of suitable roads, but both road and track competitions have been held.

The Hong Kong Amateur Swimming Association held its first Marathon competition in November over a four-mile course in Plover Cove in the New Territories. The annual Cross Harbour Race, which was seen by television viewers in nineteen different countries, attracted over four hundred entries and a new record time of 22 minutes 37.5 seconds for the 1,600-yard course was set up in the ladies section. Yachting as a sport continues to flourish and the smaller boats race at most week-ends. The cruis- ing section, which is continually strengthened by the construction of new craft, took part in off-shore races during the winter season. A number of residents have built Chinese craft of the small junk type and races were organized during the year, mostly in the Aberdeen area.

Cambodia, Miri-Belait, Penang, Rangoon, Saigon and Singapore sent teams to take part in a rowing regatta in November. Earlier in the year a visiting Oxford crew rowed in Hong Kong after a tour of Japan. Water-skiing and underwater swimming are more popular than ever in the bays and inlets with which the Colony abounds.

The South China Morning Post Cup attracted several of the world's leading golfers and gave local players an opportunity to see competitions of a high standard. Star visitors included Kel Nagle and Angel Miguel.

The annual Walkathon, sponsored by the Standard-Sing Tao newspaper group, over a 43 mile course round the Island, was held in July at the height of the hot season; 460 starters, both



men and women, took part in the race and thousands of spectators lined the route in the urban areas.

There are two men's softball leagues and one ladies league: apart from league fixtures games are played against teams from visiting U.S. Naval ships. Weight lifting enthusiasts, though rela- tively few in number, are beginning to produce impressive results in the lighter categories. Table tennis is popular and there are many local players of high calibre.

     Lawn bowls has been played in Hong Kong for over fifty years and several clubs compete in league matches during the summer. A new competition, the 'Champion of Champions', was played for the first time and should help to raise the already high local standards even further.

     Club and Services sides engaged in hockey tournaments and also exchanged visits with the Macau Club.

In the course of a remarkably good season for cricket, Hong Kong welcomed teams from Malaya and Bangkok and the last wicket stand which enabled Malaya to win their match against Hong Kong will long be remembered.

The Second Festival of Sport took place in February and March. There were two indoor festivals, one in the Queen Elizabeth Youth Centre in Kowloon and the other in the War Memorial Centre on the Island, while an outdoor festival was held in the Hong Kong Stadium. The Amateur Sports Federation and Olym- pic Committee of Hong Kong presented a varied and interesting programme of archery, athletics, badminton, basketball, cycling, fencing, hockey, judo, miniball, softball, table tennis, volleyball, weight-lifting, gymnastics and a mass physical training demon- stration.


     The management of parks, playgrounds and other similar amenities is one of the responsibilities of the Urban Council, working through the Urban Services Department. These amenities include the fine beaches on the south side of the Island, as well as the walks and look-outs on the hills above the Harbour. Apart from developing these natural attractions. the Urban Council de- votes much attention to providing playgrounds and gardens and



to carrying out other small projects designed to improve the appearance of the city.

During the main bathing season, from the beginning of April to the end of October, thousands from the city patronize the more popular beaches which are patrolled by seventy one fully-trained life-guards of the Urban Services Department. Urban Services staff also clean and regulate beaches while at three of the main ones a contractor provides changing-tents for hire. On certain other beaches the public can rent sites for beach huts for five years or build huts themselves which are allocated annually by ballot. At the large beaches, at some of which there are also cafes or hotels of varying standards, the provision of refreshments is put out to tender.

       The need for more bathing beaches makes itself continually felt, and three new ones and an extension to another were brought into use during the year.

There is also a number of popular beaches in the New Territories which come under the administration of the District Commissioner, New Territories. On five of these beaches private contractors provide beach tents, changing-rooms and other facili- ties. There is a total of one hundred and fourteen beach huts in the New Territories which are balloted for annually. A cadre of forty fully-trained life-guards was on duty at these beaches during the summer months.

The shortage of land in the built-up areas has meant that the development of parks and playgrounds can only take place in keen competition with other forms of development. Before the war playgrounds were few; after the war these were, at best, dusty and uneven pieces of land or, at worst, soon covered by the ubiquitous squatters. Despite these difficulties, old playgrounds have been rehabilitated and new ones laid out, varying in size from Victoria Park, occupying fifty three acres of land reclaimed from a former typhoon shelter, to small children's playgrounds. Development continues, and apart from the large parks and formal playgrounds, a great deal has been done to improve the appearance of the city by the tidying-up and laying-out of small derelict roadside areas. During the year thirty eight new areas covering fourteen acres were opened up or laid out.



      There are now 163 acres of parks, public playgrounds and rest gardens (including the Botanic Gardens and Victoria Park) which provide 4 tennis courts and 8 association football, 5 miniature football, 2 hockey, one rugby football, and 3 cricket grounds, all grass covered, together with 9 all-weather tennis courts, 29 basketball, 4 volleyball and 16 miniature football grounds on hard surfacing. Of the 65 public playgrounds and rest gardens, 21 have provision for ball games.

      The Victoria Park Swimming Pool, built to Olympic standards from funds donated by the Hong Kong Jockey Club, was opened in 1957. The main purpose of the pool is to cater for the under- privileged members of the community, especially children, and this is reflected in the low admission fees (30 cents for children, 50 cents for adults). There are also special reduced rates for organized groups of school-children using the pool (5 cents for children over 14 years and 3 cents for children under 14 years). In addition large numbers of children sponsored by welfare and other agencies are admitted free. 123,293 children and 165,364 adults used the pool during 1959 and many galas and competitions were also held there.

      The Gardens Section of the Urban Services Department carries out or supervises all gardening development and maintenance in public recreation areas, the grounds of most Government schools, hospitals, offices and quarters, and the grassed areas at the Airport, covering in all some 542 acres. Ornamental trees, shrubs, and other plants are grown in five nurseries which can produce several thousand potted plants for decorative purposes on official occa- sions.

      The Section contains a botanical branch responsible for the care of, and additions to, the collection of over 28,000 specimens in the Colonial Herbarium. As well as maintaining this collection, started by Richard Brinsley Hinds in 1841, the branch also keeps in touch with institutions abroad and deals with phyto-sanitary control of live plants and plant produce leaving the Colony.

      The Gardens Section is also in charge of the Li Cheng Uk Tomb, which is believed to belong to the Later Han (A.D. 25-200) or the Six Dynasties (200-589) period. This tomb was discovered in 1955 by workmen levelling a low mound on a building site in Kowloon. The contents of the tomb are displayed in a small



museum adjoining the tomb, which is itself entered through the museum. An illustrated handbook of the tomb in English and Chinese is available to visitors 23,183 of whom visited the tomb and museum during the year.

Chapter 22: Geography and Climate

THE Colony of Hong Kong, which consists of a number of islands and a portion of mainland on the S.E. coast of China, adjoining Kwangtung Province and situated immediately E. of the Pearl River estuary, lies between 22°9′ and 22°37′ N. and 113°52′ and 114°30′ E. The capital city, Victoria, on Hong Kong Island, is 91 miles S.E. of Canton and 40 miles E. of the Portuguese Colony of Macau.

     A new Military Survey map which was published in 1957 has been used to re-compute both the total land area of the Colony and its component parts. Some of the figures given in this Chapter are, therefore, different from those used in previous reports, which were based on less accurate data.

The total land area of the Colony is now calculated to be 3981 square miles, made up as follows:

(a) Hong Kong Island (29 sq. miles), including Green Island, Ap Lei Chau, and other immediately adjacent islets. Victoria, on the north side of the island, has a population of approximately 1,000,000. Two important fishing towns, Shau Kei Wan and Aberdeen, and a number of villages, such as Stanley and Shek O, which have developed into popular residential areas, are also situated on the Island. (b) Kowloon (34 sq. miles) and Stonecutters Island (4 sq. mile). The northern limit of the ceded territory of Kowloon is Boundary Street. Kowloon and New Kowloon (the urban zone north of Boundary Street) have an estimated popula- tion of more than 1,000,000.

(c) The New Territories (land area 365 sq. miles), leased from China for 99 years from 1st July 1898. The leased area consists of a substantial mainland section north of Kowloon, and 235 islands and islets adjacent to it and in the vicinity of Hong Kong Island. It also includes the waters of Deep Bay and Mirs Bay. The total population of the New Territories, excluding New Kowloon, is probably



   in the region of 360,000, but as in the case of the rest of the Colony, these estimates, including those given below for certain centres of population, are approximate only. The principal centres of population in the New Territories are Tsuen Wan, with a population of 80,000; Cheung Chau, with 25,000 land-based inhabitants and approximately 7,000 people anchored there for the greater part of the year; Yuen Long, 20,000; Tai O, with 12,600 land-based inhabit- ants and about 2,000 boat dwellers; Shek Wu Hui, 4,800; Tai Po, with 9,000 land-based inhabitants and about 4,000 boat dwellers; Luen Wo Market, 2,900; Peng Chau (Southern District), 4,500; Castle Peak (including Old Town, New Town and Sam Shing Hui), 4,400 with approximately 2,000 floating population; and Sai Kung, 3,000, excluding floating population.

Hong Kong Island is 11 miles long from east to west and varies in width from 2 to 5 miles. It rises steeply from the northern shore to a range of treeless hills of volcanic rock, of which the highest point is Victoria Peak (1,805 ft.) near the western end. Between these hills and the harbour lies the city of Victoria. The old part of the urban areas runs up steep hillside for hundreds of yards, in narrow stepped streets and terraces; but more modern parts of the town stand chiefly on a strip of reclaimed land, averaging 200-400 yards in width, which extends 9 miles along the north shore of the Island.

Between the Island and the mainland lies the Port of Victoria, often described, with San Francisco and Rio de Janeiro, as one of the three most perfect natural harbours in the world. Its area is 16 sq. miles, varying in width from 1 to 3 miles. Ocean-going ships generally use the eastern deep-water entrance, known as Lei Yue Mun, which is between 500 and 900 yards wide. On the western side, the natural entrances to the harbour are wider but shallower, On this side a group of islands, which include Tsing Yi, Lantau and Lamma, provide effective shelter. The importance of Hong Kong has hitherto depended on this harbour, and on its favourable position at the mouth of the most important river system in South China, within easy reach of Canton, South China's largest city.



The ceded territory of Kowloon originally consisted of a number of low, dry foothills running southward from the Kowloon hills in a V-shaped peninsula 2 miles long and nowhere more than 2 miles wide. Here and there on the peninsula were a few small Chinese villages. Most of the foothills have now been levelled, and the rock and soil thus cut away have been used to extend the land by reclamation from the sea. The town of Kowloon now covers the entire peninsula and stretches without interruption northward into the New Territories, the boundary of which is noticeable only from the name of Boundary Street, which marks it. Further on, the Kowloon hills set a final limit to this northward urban expansion, but around the sides of the harbour, westward toward Lai Chi Kok and eastward to Ngau Tau Kok, Kowloon is extending its urban arms to embrace several rural areas with villages established there for hundreds of years. Kowloon contains the Colony's main industrial area, one of the two principal com- mercial dockyards, the largest wharves for ocean-going ships and, in the area known as Kowloon Tong, a large residential suburb. At the extreme southern tip of the peninsula, known as Tsim Sha Tsui, is the terminus of the Kowloon-Canton Railway, which passes from Kowloon under the Kowloon hills and through the New Territories to Canton.

      A large part of the New Territories, both islands and mainland, is mountainous and barren. The highest point, situated approxi- mately in the centre of the mainland, is Tai Mo Shan (3,140 ft.). The second and third highest points are both on Lantau Island: Lantau Peak, or Fung Wong Shan (3,061 ft.), which is the western of the two, and Sunset Peak (2,857 ft.). The fourth highest point is Ma On Shan on the mainland (2,300 ft.). The north-western slopes of Tai Mo Shan descend to the Colony's largest area of cultivable land, in the centre of which is the important market town of Yuen Long. Further out the land extends to marshes and oyster-beds on the verge of Deep Bay.

       The eastern half of the New Territories mainland consists of irregular mountain masses deeply indented by arms of the sea and narrow valleys. Villages are in general only found where there is flat watered land, in valleys or on small plateaux. Much of the upper land in the areas nearest to Kowloon has been eroded, one of the unfortunate results of the Japanese occupation, when



tremendous numbers of trees were cut for firewood. At the end of the war virtually the only woods that still remained were those preserved in the neighbourhood of villages for geomantic reasons.

       The 235 islands of the New Territories include many that are waterless and uninhabited. Productive land is even scarcer than on the mainland. The principal cultivated areas are on Lantau, Lamma and Ma Wan, where water supplies are good. Apart from Lantau, which is nearly double the size of Hong Kong Island, most of the islands are small. They range in character from the thickly-populated Cheung Chau, with its large fishing community, soya and preserved fruit factories, and junk-building yards, to places like the Ninepins, which are no more than granite rock, used seasonally, and by day only, by fishermen drying fish or repairing nets.


       Although the Colony lies just within the tropics, it enjoys a variety of weather from season to season which is unusual for tropical regions. This is mainly due to Hong Kong's geographical position on the south-east coast of the Asiatic continent, with the consequent profound effect of the monsoons. The winter monsoon normally first sets in during September and is predomi- nant from October to mid-March, although it can occur as late as May. Early winter is a most pleasant time of year, when the weather is generally dry and sunny. After the New Year the sky is more often clouded, though rainfall remains slight; dull overcast days with a chilly wind are frequent. Coastal fogs occur from time to time in early spring during breaks in the monsoon, when warm south-easterly winds may temporarily displace the cool north- easterlies.

The summer is the rainy season, three-quarters of the average annual rainfall of 84.76 inches occurring during the period May to September. The summer monsoon is not so persistent as the north-east monsoon of winter, and, although it can occur from mid-April to September, it is only predominant from early June to early August. The weather during the summer is continuously hot and humid, and often cloudy and showery with occasional thunderstorms.



     The mean monthly temperature ranges from 59°F in February to 82°F in July, the average for the year being 72°F. The tempera- ture very rarely rises above 95°F in summer, or falls below 40°F in winter. The mean relative humidity exceeds 80% from the end of February to the beginning of September, but it has fallen as low as 10% in January. The average daily duration of sunshine ranges from three hours in March to seven hours in October.

     Records since 1884 show that Hong Kong can expect to experience gales due to tropical storms in the months May to November. They occur about once a year on the average and are most likely in July, August or September. Spells of bad weather, with strong winds and heavy rain normally occur several times each year owing to the passage of storms at varying distances from the Colony, but it is only rarely that the centre of a typhoon passes sufficiently close to produce winds of hurricane force.


     Comparison of the weather for 1959 with records going back to 1884 indicate that the year was one of the hottest and wettest experienced.

     The mean annual temperature of 73.4°F has been equalled on three previous occasions but never exceeded. The total annual rainfall 2797.4 mm. (110.13 in.) was 644.6 mm. (25.38 in.) above average and was the fourth highest on records, due mainly to an exceptionally wet June.

January was a dry month and a relative humidity of 10%, the lowest ever recorded at the Royal Observatory, occurred on the 16th following a surge of cold air from the north. A new record maximum temperature for the month of 80.4°F was established on the 29th. There followed the wettest February on record, with only two days on which no rain occurred. The accumulated rainfall for the year rose above the normal value on February 20th and remained above until the end of the year. The month was also warm, with a maximum of 81.2°F; the second highest on record for February.

     A dry and sunny March was followed by a wet April with occasional violent thunderstorms. In May there was a reversion to dry and sunny weather.



June 1959 was the wettest on record and the second wettest of all months since 1884. Almost 80% of the month's rain fell in the four days from the 12th to 15th when 724.6 mm. (28.53 in.) were recorded. This caused considerable damage to property and some loss of life.

There was above average rainfall during the rest of the summer which otherwise followed the normal pattern of hot and humid weather. The last three months of the year were all very dry and sunny. On November 19th the temperature rose to 89.2°F and broke the record for the November maximum.

      During the year ten typhoons and nine less intense tropical storms were reported within the area for which the Royal Obser- vatory is responsible for issuing non-local warnings. Only two of these necessitated the hoisting of local storm signals in the Colony. The first was Tropical Storm 'Wilda' for which No. 1 Local Storm Signal was hoisted, and the second was Tropical Storm 'Nora' which gave strong gusty winds heralded by the No. 3 Signal. The total duration of the local warnings was 37 hours. The Strong Monsoon Signal was displayed eleven times for a total duration of 133 hours.


Hong Kong Island and the New Territories consist of numerous rugged and irregular islands with deeply dissected peninsulas. A general picture of the area is that of an upland terrain which has been invaded by the sea.

      The uplands and mountains are eroded remnants of rock formations, in which relative resistance of rock and structure through differential erosion are clearly recorded. As the region lies within the northern limits of the tropics, frosts even on Tai Mo Shan are of the rarest occurrence, and hence weathering depends almost completely upon the chemical action of the atmosphere aided by the alternation of wet and dry seasons. Erosion is likewise due to water action which is at a maximum during the torrential rains of the summer monsoon. Again denuda- tion is aided by the excessive wind velocities of the typhoons and to a much lesser extent by the gentler breezes of the dry winter monsoon from Central China. Because of the destruction of forest growth and vegetation wrought by the agricultural population by



sickle and grass fires, the soil and rock mantle are left unprotected except by their own cohesion. In consequence of this, bare rock surfaces and loose boulders occur commonly on the higher surfaces and steeper slopes. Intensive efforts have been made to limit and control erosion by rigid regulations and systematic reafforestation. The laterite-type product of decay is locally such, however, as to provide an impervious mantle for the underlying rock. In colour and composition the products of weathering accurately reflect their rock origin. Although frost action is absent, mechanical disintegra- tion due to hydration, carbonation and temperature changes has resulted in the formation of gravel and boulders over the surfaces of some rock types. The net result of the erosion cycle is that of an upland system with rocky mountain peaks and well-defined ridges giving an impression of partly matured topography. In some areas the topography shows that adjustment to rock structure and resistance to weathering and erosion are very complete. This is evidenced particularly in the general anticlinal structure of the valleys. The Tolo Channel is a notable example. The relative resistance of the different rock formations to weathering is illustrated as follows. The highest peaks and the most prominent mountain ranges are all composed of Tai Mo Shan porphyry and the Repulse Bay volcanics. They tend to form smoother peaks than the Hong Kong granite which generally occurs at lower elevations with well-etched peaks and sharp ridge lines. The Tolo Channel sediments generally weather into lowlands and valleys except for the Pat Sin conglomerate which forms peaks and ridges along the crests of the Pat Sin mountain chain.

Unlike the hills the plains are all alluvial and formed by deposition. Benches marking old sea beaches up to 400 feet or more above sea level indicate the deep submergence of the whole region within recent geological times. Progressive uplift has brought about marked changes on the shore-line. Submerged weathered rock surfaces overlain by peat and bog deposits drilled through in the harbour of Hong Kong indicate that the former shore-line was at least 100 feet (16 fathoms) lower than now.

During the period of submergence, valley heads were gradually filled with sediment and this has been redistributed from higher to lower levels as elevation continued. The paddy fields along the lower reaches of the rivers, and the large semi-submerged



plain around Yuen Long are alluvial deposits brought down by the local streams. Marine shells have been dug up fifteen feet below the alluvial deposits at the brickyards on the Sheung Shui plain.

The alluvial origin of the plains is thus clear, and it is also evident that these plains are yearly growing seaward due to the deposition of the sediment brought down by the streams. It is interesting to note that an elevation of the land by 100 feet would restore the strand line approximately to the 16 fathom line and make all Hong Kong and the New Territories an integral part of the mainland. Thus across wide alluvial plains the Pearl River would develop several distributaries to the sea. There would possibly be a small channel flowing between Hong Kong and Lantau Island eastwards and a larger one passing close to the western end of Lantau Island in a south-easterly direction.

Note: The Geology section of this Chapter is reproduced from The Geology of Hong Kong by S. G. Davis.

Chapter 23: Fauna and Flora


Mammals. Wild mammals are seldom seen, although the species on record are both varied and interesting. Due largely to an immense expansion of the human population in recent times, some of these mammalian species have unfortunately become scarce, rare, or even non-existent in Hong Kong. The fact that several of them (e.g. civets, wild cats, porcupines, and deer) are of considerable value locally as food is also not conducive to an increase in their numbers.

      Of the cat family, both the South China Tiger and the Leopard have occasionally entered the Colony from Chinese territory. Such visits are now extremely rare and although there was a report in January of this year that two young Chinese women gathering firewood near Tai Po had come upon a tiger asleep, there were no subsequent reports of it. A leopard was seen in the New Territories as recently as 1957. The one other member of the cat family on record is the Chinese Leopard Cat, spotted and about the size of a Domestic Cat, which is still resident in restricted numbers in certain less populated areas.

      The Dhole or Indian Wild Dog and the South China Red Fox are both included in the Colony's fauna, though the present status of each is unknown and it seems that neither have been seen for some years. Monkeys still occur in small numbers, but have very localized distribution, both on Hong Kong Island and in the New Territories. Although all of these may be the descendants of released or escaped specimens, it is possible that those on Hong Kong Island are indigenous Rhesus Monkeys, a species which less than a hundred years ago was found on most of the small islands about Hong Kong. Another interesting mammal, seldom seen due to its secretive and largely nocturnal habits, is the primitive Chinese Pangolin or Scaly Ant-eater. Other indigenous mammals are the Chinese Ferret-Badger, which is probably widely distributed



      in suitable localities and certainly occurs in The Peak district, and the rarely seen Eastern Chinese Otter. Civets are represented in Hong Kong by three species, the Large Chinese Civet, the Rasse or Small Indian Civet, and the Masked Palm Civet. A close relative of the civets is the Crab-eating Mongoose, of which there appears to be only a single record for the Colony and that some years ago.

       Reeves' Muntjac (Barking Deer) inhabits various hilly wooded localities. On Hong Kong Island, on account of its shyness and nocturnal habits, this attractive little deer may seem to be much less numerous than is actually the case. In the New Territories, on the other hand, where it is hunted, it has now become very scarce. The Wild Boar, which is hunted both for sport and because of the destruction it causes to crops, is now extremely scarce and the present status of this animal in several parts of its former range is unknown.

The Chinese Porcupine, the Colony's largest rodent, is found in parts of Hong Kong Island and the New Territories. Small mammals include the House Shrew, various rodents, and several species of bats. Among the rodents there is the Smaller Bandicoot Rat which, in spite of its name, is the largest rat found in the Colony; it is entirely 'wild' (non-domestic) in habits and sometimes causes considerable damage to crops. Very little is known of the bats, which are represented by both insectivorous and frugivorous species.

       Cetaceans occurring within or near Hong Kong territorial waters include the Common Rorqual or Finback Whale (a single record -during 1955), the Black Finless Porpoise, and the Common Dolphin.

       Birds. There is much to interest ornithologists and bird watchers in Hong Kong. Including published and unpublished records, well over three hundred species of birds are known to have occurred in the Colony, and new records are being added each year. A great deal more work is necessary, however, particularly with regard to breeding and feeding habits, various other aspects of ecology, and migration. The avifauna of Hong Kong includes both palaearctic and oriental species, some of the families represented being those containing the crows, babblers, bulbuls, thrushes, redstarts, flycatchers, minivets, drongos, warblers, starlings, weavers, finches,



buntings, swallows, wagtails, cuckoos, kingfishers, owls, eagles, pigeons, rails, gulls, terns, plovers, sandpipers, herons, ducks and grebes, to mention only those represented by several species.

Founded in late 1957, The Hong Kong Bird Watching Society is very active and published an interesting report of its activities during 1958. In 1959 over 230 species and races were recorded, including five additions to the Colony list. These were the Slaty-backed Gull, Rufous Woodpecker, La Touche's Sunbird, Crimson-legged Crake and Red-footed Falcon. The total number of species believed to have bred in the Colony is now 64, three of which were recorded for the first time during 1959: the Great Egret, La Touche's Sunbird, and the Red-flanked Bluetail, the last being a winter visitor which normally migrates to Siberia to breed. The White-bellied Sea Eagle, two or three pairs of which are resident, was observed to have bred successfully for the first time for many years.

Reptiles and Amphibians. These are also well represented in Hong Kong, especially by snakes, lizards and frogs. Others include various terrapins and turtles, the Common Indian Toad, and the Chinese Newt. Among the Colony's snakes those most commonly encountered are harmless and death from snake-bite is extremely rare. Excluding certain rear-fanged species not dangerous to man, the venomous land snakes which occur are the Banded Krait, the Many-banded Krait, Macclelland's Coral Snake, the Indian or Chinese Cobra, the Hamadryad (King Cobra), and the White- lipped Pit Viper (Bamboo Snake). All of the several sea snakes known to occur within or near the Colony's territorial waters are venomous, but fortunately it is not the nature of these reptiles to attack bathers.

      Butterflies and Moths. One hundred and seventy nine species of butterflies, belonging to nine families, have been recorded for the Colony in a check list published in 1953. The number of moths is far greater but no comprehensive list of local species has ever been published. The attractive and predominantly tropical butterflies known popularly as 'swallow-tails' are conspicuous by a number of species. The magnificent Atlas Moth, (photograph opposite) with a wing-span from about seven to nine inches, is fairly common. Another very fine insect, also fairly common here, is the Moon Moth; this has a wing-span of about four to

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Pictured above is a female Atlas Moth (Attacus atlas) resting on the food

plant (Schefflera octophylla) of the larva of this species. These magnificent

insects, which are fairly common in Hong Kong, are among the largest moths

in the world, the females frequently having a wing-span of about nine inches.

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South China Morning Post, Ltd.

On October 26th, 1959, to celebrate the completion of the hundredth multi- storey resettlement block situated on the Wong Tai Sin estate, Mr. C. B. Burgess, C.M.G., O.B.E., in his capacity as Officer Administering the Govern- ment, unveiled a plaque commemorating this landmark in Government's programme for the resettlement of squatters. 'But', said Mr. Burgess, 'I see no alternative to a 101st, to 150th, to a 200th block-and, if that is to be achieved, enthusiasm and resolution must not be allowed to flag in any quarter.'



      six inches, has swallow-tailed wings, and is mostly soft silvery green in colour.

Local Societies and Exhibits. There are two local societies con- cerned with the Colony's fauna. One is The Hong Kong Natural History Society whose objects are to facilitate and encourage the study of natural history, particularly in Hong Kong; the other is The Hong Kong Bird Watching Society whose main objects are to facilitate and encourage the study of the birds of Hong Kong. The mammal enclosures and aviaries in the Botanic Gardens contain some of the species of mammals and birds among the Colony's fauna, besides certain other non-indigenous species.

        Protection of Fauna. The Wild Birds and Wild Mammals Protection Ordinance, 1954, affords legal protection to all wild birds other than game birds, for which there are close seasons, and vermin. It also protects three of the rarer mammals and pro- vides a close season for deer. There are seven wild life sanctuaries, one of which is the whole of Hong Kong Island. Honorary game wardens assist in the enforcement of the Ordinance,

       During the year the Ordinance was amended to provide for the appointment of paid game wardens on the staff of the Director of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry who became the licensing authority for the issue of game licences. The greatest threat to the wild life of Hong Kong probably lies in the continued prevalence of trapping and netting, particularly of birds, and the destruction of the habitats of both birds and mammals by building development and public works schemes.


It is not possible to make any true distinction between the trees of Hong Kong and those of the adjacent southern part of Kwangtung Province. Among the principal trees found in the Colony are pine, Chinese Banyan and camphor, to which, since the area came under British administration, have been added a large number of others, of which the most commonly seen are Casuarina, Eucalyptus and Flamboyant.

The principal locally-grown fruits include laichee, lungngan, wong pei, loquat, pomelo, tangerine, banana, papaya, pineapple, custard-apple, guava and Chinese varieties of plum and pear. Of



these, papaya, pineapple, custard-apple and guava were originally introduced from South America by the Portuguese some time after the foundation of Macau. The tangerine, native to South China, was introduced to the West in the seventeenth century by the Portuguese, who transplanted it to Tangier, then under their control.

The flora of Hong Kong Island has been fully, though not completely, described in Flora Hongkongensis, by G. B. Bentham, published in 1861, and in the descriptive Flora of Kwangtung and Hong Kong by S. T. Dunn and W. J. Tutcher, published in 1912. Less comprehensive works include a small book, remarkable for its excellent drawings, by L. Gibbs, entitled Common Hong Kong Ferns; an illustrated but unfinished series The Flowering Plants of Hong Kong by A. H. Crook; Plants of Lan Tau Island by F. A. McClure, which appeared in the Lingnan University Science Bulletin series for 1931; and numerous papers published in The Hong Kong Naturalist. Since the War, three official publications, in the series 'Food and Flowers', have appeared, giving, amongst other information, articles on some of the more conspicuous wild plants of the Colony.

The flora of the Colony is tropical, but this is about the northern limit of tropical flora. The alternation between hot humid summers and cool dry winters results in a dormant period for tropical plants during winter. These conditions promote the de- velopment of large flowers borne at definite seasons of the year. The consequence is that a genus represented in Hong Kong and also in equatorial countries produces here a greater wealth of flowers of large size.

      There is considerable diversity of flowering shrubs and trees, including Magnolia, Michelia, Rhodoleia, Illicium and Tutcheria. Six species of Rhododendron grow wild; there are also a wild Gordonia and wild roses. The heather family is represented by a pink-belled Enkianthus, flowering at the time of the Chinese. New Year. A Litsea also blooms at this time.

      Bauhinia blakeana, named after a former Governor, Sir Henry Blake, and discovered by the Fathers of the Missions Etrangeres at Pok Fu Lam, is among the finest of the Bauhinia genus



      anywhere in the world. Its origin is unknown; it is a sterile hybrid, never producing seed.

A new and distinct species of Camellia was discovered in 1955 and named Camellia granthamiana. Hybridizing has been carried out by the Gardens Division of the Urban Services Department, to cross this new species with C. hongkongensis.

Fruit-bearing herbs including several wild hollies, Melodinus, Strychnos, wild kamquat, Gardenia, Maesa, Mussaenda ("the Buddha's Lamp'), Dichroa, several species of Callicarpa, Dianella in the lily family, Raphiolepis (the so-called Hong Kong haw- thorn), wild jasmine and wild persimmon.

Among fruits that are either poisonous or useful for medicine are Strophanthus, Strychnos, Gelsemium and Cerbera, abundant near the sea. Edible fruit includes a wild jack-fruit, Artocarpus, rose-myrtle fruits and wild bananas. Several species of persimmon are wild, but their fruits are too astringent to be eaten raw.

There are numerous plants which closely resemble their European relatives. Old Man's Beard, the common Clematis of the English hedgerow, has five close relatives here. There are four wild violets, but, like the English dog violet, they are scentless. English honeysuckle has five relatives; their Cantonese name is 'Kam ngan fa' (gold and silver flower), given because of their change in colour with age from white to yellow.

There is a fine wild Iris, further south than any other true Iris, and a wild lily growing on some hillsides, with individual flowers sometimes seven inches long. By the sea a wild Crinum is found, and also Belamcanda, in the Iris family.

In damp ravines may be found Chirita, several begonias, a fragrant-leaved rush, stag's horn mosses, numerous orchids, giant aroids, tree-ferns and countless kinds of smaller ferns, including maidenhair and the local Royal ferns. On hillsides, English bracken, a cosmopolitan plant, grows together with the so-called Hong Kong bracken, Gleichenia, and a fragrant-leaved myrtle called Baeckea.

Two species recorded for the first time are Stuartia villosa and Ormosia indurata. Both are small trees confined to Kwangtung Province. The former belongs to the tea family and has been recently found in a wooded ravine on the south-eastern slope



of Tai Mo Shan, New Territories. The other species, bearing red seeds of the pea family, occurs on Hong Kong Island at the upper end of the Aberdeen Road.

The Colonial Herbarium, which provided the foundation for the work of Dunn and Tutcher's 'Flora of Kwangtung and Hong Kong', has been added to considerably since their time. At present over 28,000 specimens are preserved.

The Hong Kong Horticultural Society fosters interest in flora and horticultural work in Hong Kong.

Chapter 24: History


      THE earliest traces of human settlement in the region are at Shek Pik, on the south coast of Lantau Island, and on the beach known as Hung Shing Yeh, on the west coast of Lamma Island. From the rock carvings, pottery and implements discovered there, it is clear that in prehistoric times the islands were occupied, at least seasonally, by people whose trade connexions stretched from the Yangtse basin as far south as Indonesia. Little is known of the region before it adopted Chinese culture. Chinese histories refer to the early inhabitants as Maan, implying barbarian, and provide few details about them.

      Kwangtung was first brought under the suzerainty of China between 221 and 214 B.C., but it was many hundreds of years before there was any degree of Chinese migration into the province.* Remote and dangerous, its islands providing ideal hiding places for sea-robbers and bandits, this particular region was no place for civilized settlement.

       Southward Chinese migration on a large scale began to affect Kwangtung during the Sung dynasty (960-1279). Little is known of the early relations between Chinese and Maan which must have resulted from this movement, but it is clear that by this time the Maan had already adopted Chinese culture and names. Chinese settlement in the New Territories is continuous from the beginning of the thirteenth century.

       For a few months during 1278 the last emperor of the Southern Sung, Ti Ping, in flight from the invading Mongols, made his capital at Kowloon, and a small hill crowned with prominent boulders was held sacred to his memory, until 1943, when the

* The tomb at Li Cheng Uk, whose discovery is described in the 1955 Annual Report, is the most striking surviving example of early Chinese settlement in the area.



Japanese demolished it as a safety measure for the airport.* The last battle between the Sung and the Mongols was probably fought in the New Territories in 1279, not far from Tsuen Wan; and, after the Sung defeat, large numbers of the Court and nobility are said to have escaped across to Lantau Island, where some of them settled, their descendants surviving to this day.

       In the earliest maritime connexions between China and the West the shipping was principally Arab, the traders including Indians, Persians and Jews, all of whom, from the seventh century onwards, formed a considerable foreign community in Canton. When, at the beginning of the sixteenth century, the Portuguese discovered the sea route from Europe to India, they quickly put an end to Arab trade with the Far East. In 1513 Jorge Alvares, the first European ever to command a sea voyage to China, reached the Pearl River in a chartered Burmese junk; and in 1517 the first Portuguese ships arrived, with the aim of opening regular trade with China.

Their first attempts were unsuccessful, and it was not until 1557, partly in recognition of the help they had given the Chinese in the local suppression of piracy, that the Portuguese gained the settlement which was their aim, and established themselves at Macau.

From then onwards, through many vicissitudes, and against the main current of authoritative Chinese opinion, which was not interested in foreign trade, Macau provided the only reliable point of contact between China and the West. English contacts with Macau date from about 1600, the first English ship actually calling there in 1635 under charter to the Portuguese. Between 1601 and 1627 the Dutch made repeated attempts to capture Macau, but without success.

Regular seasonal British trade with China dates from 1700, and, although Amoy and other ports farther up the coast were visited from time to time, the bulk of the trade was with Canton, the ships weighing for dues and clearing at Taipa, just south of Macau, but being allowed up-river as far as Whampoa, 13 miles

* A memorial stone bearing the characters Sung Wong Toi, which formerly surmounted the hill, has now been erected in a small public park adjoining its original site.



from the city of Canton, for discharging and loading. A strictly limited number of Europeans connected with the trade were, under security paid by their Chinese business associates, allowed to reside in Canton during the trade season only, being obliged by the Chinese authorities to leave the country as soon as they had completed the year's business. Only certain Chinese merchants were permitted to trade with the Europeans, and they conducted their affairs as a monopoly guild, fixing prices arbitrarily and without regard for real market values.

      As, throughout the eighteenth century, the volume of trade between China and the West continued to grow, until it reached large proportions, the various restrictions imposed on it by the Chinese Government became, in European eyes, steadily less real- istic and less endurable. Although the French, Dutch, Spaniards, Danes and Swedes also traded with Canton, the volume of British trade by 1763 was more than double that of all the others together. It was the British who, having the largest stake in the trade, were the most critical of the Chinese restrictions.

In 1793 Lord Macartney was sent as Ambassador to Peking in an attempt either to improve trading conditions at Canton and Macau, or else to acquire from the Chinese Government some small island or minor port where Europeans would be able to reside permanently, trade with whatever Chinese merchants wished to deal with them, and be subject to their own laws while residing at the port.

These requests were unconditionally refused. A second embassy, sent in 1816, was even more of a failure, the Ambassador, Lord Amherst, being ordered to leave Peking without being presented to the Emperor.

Hitherto British merchants operating privately in the China trade had been under restraints imposed on them by the East India Company, which, from Calcutta, licensed private British shipping on the China route and, at Canton, saw to it that all British subjects obeyed the Chinese regulations. In 1813, however, the Company's monopoly of trade with India was abolished. Although the Company still in theory licensed traders to China, this lessen- ing of its power made it easier for unauthorized private traders to find a foothold at Canton and Macau. The number of British



traders increased, with little or no restraint on their activities. Finally, in 1833 the Company's China monopoly was abolished.

      To replace the Company, the British Government in 1834 appointed Lord Napier as Chief Superintendent of British Trade in China. His instructions were to negotiate with the Viceroy at Canton to obtain permission for Europeans to reside there per- manently and to remove restrictions on trade. Napier having entered Canton without the required permit from the Chinese authorities, the Viceroy refused to have anything to do with him. After a few weeks of impasse, during which Napier became seriously ill, he retreated to Macau, under Chinese escort, and died there ten days later.

Meanwhile, informed Chinese opinion was becoming seriously concerned about the activities of British and American traders, in particular about their trade in opium, the popularity of which as a narcotic was rising rapidly amongst smokers in China. In re- sponse to a number of petitions from senior members of the Chinese civil service, the Emperor Tao Kuang in 1838 appointed Lin Tse-hsü as Imperial High Commissioner, with orders to stamp out the opium trade.

Having surrounded the European buildings at Canton with troops and armed junks, and cut off supplies of food and water, Lin demanded the surrender, for destruction, of all the opium in the European warehouses, after which every trader must sign a bond promising on pain of death never to bring any more to China. Americans and others surrendered their opium and signed the bonds.

      By this time Captain Charles Elliot, R.N., was the Superin- tendent of British Trade. In response to Lin's demand, Elliot ordered his countrymen to surrender their opium, and received their grudging obedience; but he refused to allow anyone to sign a bond. He finally won his point with Lin, and at the end of a siege lasting more than six weeks the British were allowed to leave unmolested for Macau.

      Interest in the China trade had been steadily growing in Great Britain, and news of the siege at Canton, when it eventually reached London, aroused public opinion to demand that the Government take measures to safeguard British lives and property



in China. Relations between Elliot and Lin deteriorated, the Commissioner reiterating his demand for the signature of bonds. After the Portuguese Governor of Macau had warned Elliot that he could no longer be responsible for the safety of any British family remaining there, the entire British community led by Elliot removed to Hong Kong. The Chinese, who were erecting fortifica- tions on Kowloon peninsula, attempted to prevent local supplies of food reaching the shipping assembled in the harbour. Finally, after several incidents in and around Hong Kong waters and the breakdown of all negotiations between Elliot and Lin, hostilities broke out in November 1839.

      The arrival, in June 1840, of a powerful British expeditionary force, without engaging in any operations of military significance, reopened the door to discussion. Elliot, as plenipotentiary, de- manded, according to his instructions, either the cession of an island to the British Crown or a treaty allowing British traders the rights normally enjoyed by foreigners in civilized countries. To the anger and shame of his own countrymen, Kishen, the Manchu negotiator, offered the island of Hong Kong; and, to the ridicule and contempt of his own countrymen, Elliot accepted it. On 20th January 1841 the preliminaries of a Sino-British Treaty were announced, and, without more ado, on the 26th, the island was formally occupied without any resistance on the part of the few Chinese inhabitants, who were in any case by now familiar with British ships anchoring in their waters.


The acquisition by the Crown of a barren island rock was ridiculed not only by British merchants in China but also in London. Elliot was dismissed for his ineptitude in dealing with the Chinese, and was replaced by Sir Henry Pottinger, who reached the coast in August 1841.

      In the face of public hostility, particularly in Canton, to Kishen's proposal to cede Hong Kong to the British, the Emperor declined further negotiation, and war was resumed. But Pottinger had not been on the China coast for more than a few months before he realized that, whatever the London view might be, Elliot's decision to accept the cession of Hong Kong was a wise



one: and when, in August 1842, British troops were on the point of assaulting Nanking and the Emperor at last sued for peace, Pottinger made it an article of the Treaty which was then promptly concluded that Hong Kong should be ceded to the British Crown 'to be governed by such laws as Her Majesty the Queen of Great Britain etc. may see fit to direct'. In June 1843 the new Colony was officially named Hong Kong, and the name 'Victoria' was conferred upon the settlement growing up on the northern side of the island.

      Like Singapore before it, Hong Kong from the start was declared a free port; and its subsequent growth and greatness as a commercial city have been due to this fundamental policy, which welcomes anyone who comes in peace, obeys the laws, and pays a few very moderate taxes.

The history of Hong Kong is in some ways no more than a chronicle of rising and falling trends of trade and population, fluctuating due chiefly to events taking place outside Hong Kong itself, particularly in China. Internally, the history is one of gradual material and social improvement, the expansion of the city by cutting into rock and by reclamation of land from the sea, the building of more reservoirs to provide for a mainly expanding population, and the provision of schools, hospitals and other forms of public service.

      Hong Kong's first years as a Colony were almost chaotic. In 1841 alone the new Chinese market quarter was burnt down twice, and nearly every roof on the island came off twice in typhoons. A mysterious disease, known as the Hong Kong fever but now believed to be malaria, decimated the population; and in 1843 the health situation was so bad that the Governor and everyone who could afford to do so took temporary refuge in Macau.

Confidence did not begin to grow until 1844, from which year the real development of the Colony as we know it to-day began. At the first census the population of the island did not exceed 3,650 villagers and fishermen, living in some twenty villages and hamlets, with about 2,000 fishermen living afloat. Chinese labourers, encouraged by prospects of work, began to come to the Colony, and by April 1844 the population reached 19,000.



       From 1845 the first monthly mail service between Hong Kong and Europe was started. The increased security obtained for traders of all nationalities by the Treaty of Nanking, and, in particular, the comparative ease of acquiring land for offices, warehouses and homes in Hong Kong and the treaty ports, attracted to the Far East a greater number of European traders than ever before; leading to a tremendous increase in commerce. This expansion was felt principally in Shanghai, which was commercially better situated than Hong Kong. Compared with Shanghai's astonishing development as a western city, Hong Kong's early growth was unspectacular.

       Shortly after its foundation, a great wave of emigration of Chinese labourers took place, mainly to the Straits Settlements, Thailand and Java; the bulk of the emigrants travelling in European and American ships. Hong Kong was the chief port of emigration. Later, when news went round of the opening up of goldfields in California, there was a rush of Chinese to 'Kam Shan' (the Golden Mountains), which has ever since remained the vernacular name of San Francisco. When gold was discovered in Australia, not long afterwards, thousands more rushed to 'San Kam Shan' (New Golden Mountains), which has become the vernacular name for Sydney. In the year 1852 alone over 30,000 Chinese emigrants passed through Hong Kong. The problems of housing such vast numbers, and preventing abuses arising in connexion with migration, presented severe problems to the Government of the day.

In 1850 the series of revolts known generally as the Taiping Rebellion broke out in Kwangsi Province, and gradually spread throughout Southern China. This was the first instance where unsettled conditions on the mainland have brought to Hong Kong thousands of Chinese refugees of every social class and occupation. By 1855 the population was estimated at 72,000 and by 1861, with the Taipings still not defeated, it had risen to 120,000. The constantly recurring situation in which the Colony, almost without warning, has had to provide accommodation, food, water and other facilities for thousands of new arrivals-people with no local attachments and whose period of stay may be no more than a few years, perhaps even months-has presented successive



Governors of Hong Kong with problems that are unique and of exceptional difficulty. The word 'squatter' can be found in Government correspondence from the first year of the Colony's existence.


By the Convention of Peking, 1860, which concluded the Second Anglo-Chinese War, Kowloon peninsula up to present-day Boundary Street was ceded to the Crown and became part of the Colony, together with Stonecutters Island.

Permanent quarters were established in Kowloon for part of the garrison. This development was followed by the construction of new docks, more extensive than could be attempted on the Victoria waterfront, and which were the beginning of Kowloon's development as the Colony's second city. The pioneers in residen- tial development in Kowloon were the Portuguese, followed by the Parsees, from about 1870 onwards.

By the Convention of Peking, 1898, at the conclusion of the third period of hostilities between China and the Western Powers, the Colony was again extended, acquiring under a 99-year lease a substantial stretch of mainland north of Kowloon, and a group of islands in the immediate vicinity of Hong Kong. The leased area became known as the New Territories.

The initial British occupation, which took place in 1899, met with some ill-organized armed opposition in the Tai Po and Yuen Long areas, but the confidence of the people was quickly established. Sir Henry Blake (Governor 1898-1904) personally identified himself with every aspect of the life of the Colony's new rural population, obtaining improved seed and types of livestock for them; and the relations between the Government and the people of the New Territories have ever since been distinguished by the closest confidence and goodwill. Malaria was widespread, and plague of frequent occurrence. Extensive health measures were introduced to combat these diseases, the success of the measures being reflected in a subsequent steady rise in population.

In the first decade of this century rail connexion between Kowloon and Canton was established, involving the construction



of a long tunnel under the Kowloon hills, and providing Tai Po and other New Territories villages with easy access to Hong Kong. A circular road was constructed linking the chief population areas in the mainland part of the New Territories.


Until Chinese in large numbers started taking western education, there was little Chinese participation in government, western firms or banks, or in any western institutions. European and Chinese commerce pursued their own courses, largely independent of each other, occasionally linked by the precarious medium of pidgin English.

The special needs of the Chinese population received early consideration. In 1845 a Board of Education was established, and the Registrar General was made responsible to the Colonial Secretary for all questions relating to the Chinese. Throughout the century this aspect of his duties grew in importance, until in 1913 a separate department had to be created-the Secretariat for Chinese Affairs.

Missionary schools, Catholic and Protestant, were the earliest educational foundations, soon followed by government schools. Most of them were conducted, as far as was practicable, on western lines. As soon as Chinese students started graduating from these schools, their rise to influence, in what had hitherto been a European-dominated community, was assured.

       Western education led to the adoption of a considerable amount of western business method. The scale of Chinese business enlarged, until by the end of the century there were Chinese shipping lines, banks, insurance companies, department stores, theatres, wharves, warehouses and factories. As the trend continued, Chinese citizens were drawn more and more into consultation with the Government on a wide range of matters. There have been Chinese members of the Legislative Council since 1880, and of the Executive Council since 1926.

A demand for higher education naturally developed, and in 1887 the Hong Kong College of Medicine was founded, the prime movers in this enterprise being Dr. Patrick Manson and Dr. James Cantlie. One of the first students to graduate from the College,



in 1892, was Sun Yat-sen, later to become the founder of the Chinese Republic.

      In 1908 the College expanded into the University of Hong Kong. This development was made possible by the munificence of a Parsee citizen, Sir Hormusjee Mody, who presented the entire cost of the new University's main buildings. With Government support, and the aid of subsequent benefactors, the University has steadily developed traditions suited to its unique position as an English-speaking University in surroundings overwhelmingly Chinese. Its academic standards have remained high, particularly in medicine, and it has, from its earliest years, attracted students of many nationalities from South and South-East Asia as well as from Hong Kong.

The area available on Hong Kong Island for urban building was originally no more than a narrow strip of comparatively level ground along the foreshore. The original waterfront of Victoria ran, with a moderate foreshore, approximately along the line of Queen's Road. Hillside construction began in Stanley Street and Wellington Street, once a fashionable neighbourhood. As the nineteenth century proceeded, the tiers of houses rose gradually up the sides of the rock, fashion rising as well.

Reclamation of land from the sea began in the Colony's earliest days. By 1851 the waterfront had reached what is today Des Voeux Road Central, and was thereafter extended, in the face of much opposition from the principal commercial houses with foreshore sites, till it reached Connaught Road Central in 1904. This expansion, however, failed to keep pace with the increasing population. By 1870 the central part of Victoria, chiefly occupied by Chinese, was seriously overcrowded and insanitary. This was one of the factors that led the European community to climb even higher and develop the summits of the Peak as a residen- tial area, a movement hastened from 1888 onwards, when Peak and city were linked by funicular railway.

A sanitary commissioner, Osbert Chadwick, was finally appointed in 1882 to advise the Government; and, as a result of his report, a Sanitary Board was set up. Its measures to improve the noisome state of the city were, however, at first ineffective. The administration was labouring on one side with financial difficulties, and on the other with the negative attitude



adopted by the leaders of the Chinese community and the deep- seated distrust shown by members of the public in any measures which might be taken as interfering with their homes and ways of living. Almost every year at the end of the century there were outbreaks of plague, which, thanks to a Japanese research worker in Hong Kong, were finally identified as being carried by rats. After this discovery, regular house-cleansing was carried out by sanitary squads (against considerable public opposition) and measures were effectively taken to restrict the spread of plague. Outbreaks, however, continued on a diminishing scale until about 1927, when, for reasons unknown, occurrences of this particular disease lessened significantly in all parts of the world.

       The Sanitary Board continued in existence until 1936 when its functions were broadened and entrusted to an Urban Council, with official, appointed and elected members.

       Reclamation meanwhile continued steadily. Between 1921-9 ninety acres were reclaimed north of Johnston Road, allowing for a large planned extension of the Chinese quarter of Wan Chai, now one of the most densely populated urban districts in the world.

The principle that, in a place with such totally inadequate natural water supply as Hong Kong, it was a Government respon- sibility to provide reservoirs was first laid down by Sir Hercules Robinson (Governor 1859-65). What followed may be described as a century-long race between water capacity and population. The Pok Fu Lam Reservoir was no sooner completed (1863) than it had to be extended, and the same occurred after the completion of Tai Tam Reservoir in 1883. Extensions continued in these two areas, the largest work, Tai Tam Tuk Dam, being completed in 1917.

       The lease of the New Territories provided a much needed opportunity to increase the water supply of Kowloon, which had hitherto been dependent on two wells situated near Yau Ma Tei. A new reservoir system high up in the Kowloon hills was started in 1902 and completed in 1910, extensions to it being made between 1922-5.

       From 1930 water was conveyed to Hong Kong from the slopes of Tai Mo Shan, the highest mountain in the New Territories; but even so supplies remained inadequate and in 1935-6 the same



area was further developed by the construction of the Jubilee Reservoir, the largest yet built in the Colony.

The Colony's earliest hospitals were run by missionary bodies, as indeed are a number at the present time. The first Government hospital was the Civil Hospital, founded in 1859. Part of its large old-fashioned buildings is still in use, and on the remainder of the original site there stands today the spacious and modern Tsan Yuk Maternity Hospital, opened in 1955. The Kowloon Hospital was opened in 1925, and the Queen Mary Hospital, one of the largest and most up-to-date in Asia, in 1937. The provision of adequate medical and health facilities at times of refugee influx has been one of Hong Kong's major problems, surmounted only by the combined efforts of the Government and unofficial organi- zations.

      The need to safeguard fishing junks and other small craft from destruction by typhoons was met by the construction of large typhoon shelters on both sides of the harbour. One of the main functions of the Royal Observatory, founded in Kowloon in 1883, was to give reliable forecasts of the approach of typhoons, a function which increased in importance with the development of air transport, which in Hong Kong may be said to date from the laying-out of Kai Tak Airport in 1932.


      In 1911 the Manchu dynasty fell, and was replaced by a Republic, guided by Sun Yat-sen, whose political thinking had been deeply influenced by his contacts with British institutions and ways of thought while a student in Hong Kong. During the events leading to the overthrow of the dynasty many refugees sought sanctuary in Hong Kong, using the Colony's Chinese news- papers as a vehicle for conveying their ideas into China.

      Following the establishment of the Republic came a long period of unrest in China. Once again large numbers of refugees, mainly from the southern provinces, made their way to the Colony. Their arrival coinciding with a commercial boom which occurred during the First World War, many of them made their permanent home in Hong Kong, and identified themselves with local affairs. Among the refugees were a number of Buddhists who, from this time



onwards, began to develop the lonely upper hills of Lantau Island with their monastic retreats.

The anti-foreign movement which marked the rise of the Kuomintang to power in China in 1922 was reflected in Hong Kong by marked social unrest. A seamen's strike occurred in that year, and in 1925-6 there was a serious general strike, plainly engineered from Canton. Sir Cecil Clementi (Governor 1925-30), by negotiation with the Canton authorities, not only settled the dispute, but laid the foundations of a good neighbour policy with Canton, which from then on brought considerable benefit on both sides of the frontier. At the same time, the leaders of all com- munities resident in Hong Kong became increasingly aware of their social responsibilities towards less privileged sections of the population. From this awareness developed the strong interest in social welfare which has become one of the most marked features of the Colony's life.

       Japanese plans for political aggrandizement in the Far East became apparent when Japan presented her Twenty-One Demands to China in 1917. These were followed by intense economic expan- sion. In 1931 Japan invaded and occupied Manchuria, and in 1937 began a general invasion of China. As the Japanese armies pressed southwards towards Canton, which was taken in 1938, Hong Kong experienced the greatest influx of refugees it had yet seen. It is estimated that about 100,000 entered in 1937, 500,000 in 1938, and 150,000 in 1939, bringing the total population to about 1,600,000. At the height of the influx there were thought to be over half-a- million people sleeping in the streets.

       In the earliest days of the Sino-Japanese War it was possible for valuable supplies to reach China through the Colony, but, after the fall of Canton, movement of such supplies was severely restricted. When war broke out in Europe, in September 1939, the position of the Colony became precarious. On 8th December 1941, the same day as the attack on Pearl Harbour, powerful units of the Japanese Army supported by the Japanese Air Force based on Canton invaded the Colony from the mainland. The first attempt to land on Hong Kong Island was repulsed on the night of 15th- 16th December, but a second attempt, on the 18th-19th night, could not be held. After several days of severe fighting, in which



many thousands of Commonwealth troops lost their lives, the Colony was surrendered to the Japanese on Christmas Day.

All members of the fighting services, which included the Hong Kong Volunteer Defence Corps, were interned as prisoners-of-war. Many were subsequently sent to Japan to work in mines and docks. The majority of British-born civilians were interned in a civilian camp at Stanley. Those who remained free experienced throughout the Japanese occupation a steady deterioration of con- ditions. Trade was at a standstill, currency steadily losing value, and in neighbouring Kwangtung a food shortage culminated in 1944-5 in famine conditions. Large numbers of civilians moved over to Macau, the Portuguese Colony hospitably opening its doors to them. Toward the latter part of the occupation the Japanese, unable to obtain food for the existing population, organized mass deportations from Hong Kong.

      In the face of increasing oppression the fundamental loyalty of the population to the Allied cause was not in doubt. Parts of the New Territories remained in the hands of Chinese guerrillas throughout the war in spite of vigorous punitive measures taken against them. Allied personnel escaping or evading capture were assured of assistance from the rural population.

As soon as news of the Japanese surrender was received, a pro- visional government was established under the Colonial Secretary, Mr., now Sir, Franklin Gimson, assisted by civil servants released from prison camps and by leading citizens of all races. These officers maintained the essential form of Government until 30th August 1945, when powerful units of the British Pacific Fleet reached the Colony.


      A brief period of military administration was followed by the formal re-establishment of civil government in May 1946. From the moment of liberation Hong Kong made an astonishing re- covery. In August 1945 it was estimated that the population had been reduced to about 600,000. Eighteen months later at least 1,000,000 people had returned, and the population was still rising. At the close of 1947, so far as it is possible to estimate, Hong Kong held about 1,800,000 people, with once again an acute housing problem and water shortage.



       As, during 1948-9, the forces of the National Government of China began to retreat and disintegrate, a refugee influx surpassing all others took place, the refugees being in many cases well-to-do merchants and their families from Shanghai and other commercial centres. The highest point was reached in April 1950, when it was estimated that the Colony held about 2,360,000.

       The Central People's Government was installed on 1st October 1949 and during the latter part of 1950. With the promise of more settled conditions in China, and with the departure of many of the wealthier refugees to Taiwan, South America and other distant places of refuge, the Colony's population fell for the first time since the war until by the end of 1950 it was thought to be around 2,060,000. Since then, however, due partly to the arrival of more refugees from China but principally to a high rate of natural increase, there has been another steady rise, bringing the population to the estimated figure of 2,919,000 at the end of 1959.

Intense and unprecedented development has accompanied this growth of population. One of the most striking features of the post-war years has been the steadily increasing part which the Government has begun to play, directly or indirectly, in the provi- sion of housing and other forms of social services for the poorer sections of the community. For a detailed account of developments in this field the reader is referred to Chapters 1 and 10. New low-cost housing schemes, of the conventional type or by way of multi-storied resettlement estates, have called for a heavy invest- ment of public funds. New schools, colleges, clinics, hospitals and other essential facilities have been provided-as quickly as physical resources and the training of staff will permit---on a scale unprecedented in the Colony's history. Yet, despite the sub- stantial progress already made and the many new projects already being contemplated, the demand continues and is still far from being satisfied.

Private building on a wide scale has transformed and modern- ized much of the urban areas and the more accessible parts of the New Territories. Particularly in Kowloon and Tsuen Wan, industrialists have opened large modern factories producing a wide range of goods for export throughout the world. To meet the demand for more land for industry and housing, the Government has continued to carry out many new reclamations



     principally in the central district, Causeway Bay and at various points on the northern shores of the harbour, whilst the investiga- tion of the potentialities of new areas for development is con- stantly in hand. Reservoir capacity also has been doubled and is being further enlarged.

      The spectacular growth of new factories and workshops and the Colony's need to keep pace with world-wide advances in production, management and marketing techniques have been accompanied by ever higher standards of factory inspection, new labour legislation, and constantly increasing official concern with trade promotion, and technical and vocational training.

The Government has embarked on a large-scale reconstruction of the Colony's road network. More rigorous traffic controls have been introduced in face of enlarged public transport services and the increase in number, and in size, of private cars in daily use. The railway has changed from steam to diesel-electric traction. A new airport capable of meeting the needs of modern aircraft has been very largely completed and is already operating. Airline passengers, many of them tourists from overseas, have in turn created a demand for more and better hotel accommodation, and for sightseeing and shopping facilities.

Postal and telecommunication services have set new records in the traffic handled. Broadcasting, wired and wireless, and wired television have developed as an essential part of the Colony's entertainment industry. Parks, playgrounds and well-supervised bathing beaches are only a few of the outdoor amenities which the public at large enjoy.

      Despite this response to the challenge of over-population and the refugee influx, the Colony's ordinary life could not have run so smoothly had it not been for the constant vigilance and efficiency of the security forces. The Kowloon riots of 1956, which constituted the most serious of the few outbreaks of violence in the post-war years, were quickly ended; and the lessons learnt on that occasion put to good use in plans for the further expansion and modernization of the Police Force and the other agencies concerned with the preservation of law and order.

An increased, and ever increasing, tempo is apparent in every aspect of Hong Kong's daily life, but it is the growth of local



industry which came into being to replace the traditional entrepôt trade of the Colony, which has been the most significant feature, after population growth, in the Colony's history in the post-war years.

        As a result of the outbreak of war in Korea in June 1950, controls were progressively introduced over the export of strategic materials, beginning with petroleum and its derivatives in July of that year. As far as North Korea itself was concerned, a complete embargo on trade of any kind with that country was introduced on 8th July. In December the United States Government placed an embargo on goods destined for Hong Kong. This seriously affected supplies of raw materials essential for much of local industry, and led, for a time, to a serious disruption of the Colony's manufactures, with the threat of widespread unemploy- ment. Fortunately, this embargo was modified by the introduction of a system of controls, which ensured supplies of these materials for legitimate use in the Colony.

       In June 1951, as a result of the United Nations Resolution of 18th May 1951, a complete embargo on the export of strategic materials to China was imposed by the Hong Kong Government. This was at the time a crippling blow to local commerce and the volume of trade in that year fell by over one million tons compared with the figure for the preceding year. During 1952 the United States Government introduced controls over imports of Chinese- type merchandise from Hong Kong, and even now commodities of this kind are admitted into the United States only under strict procedures designed to ensure that they are of non-Communist origin. The entrepôt trade with China, once the Colony's mainstay, has been reduced to a trickle. Recent reductions in the scope of strategic controls have done something to improve the situation, but it is China's own economic and commercial policies which are now the limiting factor and for the foreseeable future it is upon its industry that the Colony must rely for its survival.

Chapter 25: Constitution and Administration


THE principal features of the constitution are prescribed in Letters Patent, which provide for a Governor, an Executive Council, and a Legislative Council. Royal Instructions to the Governor, supple- mented by further Instructions from the Sovereign conveyed by the Secretary of State for the Colonies, prescribe the membership of the Executive and Legislative Councils.

The Executive Council, which is presided over by the Governor, consists of five ex-officio and seven nominated members. The ex- officio members are the Commander, British Forces, the Colonial Secretary, the Attorney General, the Secretary for Chinese Affairs, and the Financial Secretary. There is one nominated official member. The six unofficials at present include three Chinese members and one Portuguese member.

The main function of the Executive Council is to advise the Governor, who must consult its members on all important matters. The responsibility for deciding questions which come before the Council, and for taking action, rests with the Governor, who is required to report his reasons fully to the Secretary of State if he acts in opposition to the advice given by members. The Governor in Council (i.e. Executive Council) is also given power, under numerous ordinances, to make subsidiary legislation by way of rules, regulations and orders. A further function of the Council is to consider appeals and petitions under certain ordinances.

The same five ex-officio members of the Executive Council serve also on the Legislative Council, of which the Governor is the President. In addition, there are four other official members and eight unofficial members nominated by the Governor. These at present include five Chinese members and one Indian member.

The laws of the Colony are enacted by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Legislative Council, which controls finance and expenditure through its Standing Finance Committee,



on which all the unofficial members sit. Procedure in the Legisla- tive Council is based on that of the House of Commons.

      The membership of the Executive and Legislative Councils is given in Appendix XIX.


      The Principles of Common Law and Equity and the Statutes of England as they existed in that country on 5th April 1843, except where inapplicable to local circumstances, form the basis of the legal system of Hong Kong. They have been extended and modified by the application to the Colony of certain subsequent enactments and by Hong Kong Ordinances, of which a new edition, revised in 1950, was published in 1951. The courts of the Colony are described in Chapter 13.


       Under the general direction of the Colonial Secretary, the administrative functions of the Government are discharged by some thirty departments, all the officers of which are members of the Civil Service. A list of these departments is given in Appendix V.

       The Colonial Secretariat, under the general administrative control of the Deputy Colonial Secretary, co-ordinates the work of departments, and makes, or transmits from the Governor or Colonial Secretary, all general policy decisions. The Secretariat consists of four divisions dealing with general administration, finance, defence and government personnel. The Financial Secre- tary is responsible for financial and economic policy; the Defence Secretary advises on defence, co-ordinates the work of the local forces, described in Chapter 17, and acts as the main channel of communication between the Government and Her Majesty's Armed Forces stationed in the Colony. The Secretariat includes a Political Adviser, seconded from the Foreign Office.

The Government's principal legal adviser is the Attorney General, who is the head of the Legal Department and is also responsible for drafting legislation and for instituting and con- ducting public prosecutions. The establishment of the department includes the Solicitor General, three Principal Crown Counsel, four Senior Crown Counsel and nine Crown Counsel.



      The Secretary for Chinese Affairs is the Governor's principal adviser on all matters connected with the Chinese population. He is also specifically charged with the responsibility of maintaining direct channels of communication between the Government and all levels of Chinese society in urban Hong Kong. In addition, with the assistance of his department, the Secretariat for Chinese Affairs, he discharges a number of statutory duties including the Chairmanship of certain Boards and Committees which are for the most part Chinese in composition, administration of the District Watch Force and Tenancy Inquiry Bureaux, and a variety of licensing and registration duties. Other traditional responsibili- ties include those of arbitration in domestic or tenancy disputes, and the provision of his good offices should there be any major misunderstanding between another department and some section of the Chinese public on other than purely professional or technical matters. He also has the important responsibility for providing direct liaison with villagers in semi-rural areas on Hong Kong Island and in New Kowloon. The Secretary for Chinese Affairs is in addition responsible for the co-ordination of the policy in accordance with which the executive departments (the Police Force, and the Preventive Service, etc.) work in their war against drug trafficking and drug addiction and in the rehabilitation of addicts.

      The Social Welfare Department has six sections responsible for Child Welfare, Youth Group Work, the Welfare of Women and Girls, Special Welfare Services for the physically and mentally handicapped, Relief and Public Assistance, and Probation Work, including Probation Institutions.

Under the Financial Secretary, the accounting operations of the Government are managed and supervised by the Accountant General, who is in charge of the Treasury. All public accounts of the Government, including accounts of special funds and depart- mental accounts, are subject to audit and inspection by the Audit Department under a Director. The Director of Audit reports annually on the accounts to the Director General of the Overseas Audit Service and to the Colonial Secretary, and a copy of his report, together with the Governor's comments, is laid before the Legislature and transmitted to the Secretary of State. The Rating and Valuation Department, under a Commissioner, is concerned with assessments for rates and other matters connected with the



rent and value of real property. The Inland Revenue Department, headed by the Commissioner of Inland Revenue, administers the collection of the internal revenue of the Colony which includes Earnings and Profits Tax, Stamp Duties, Estate Duty, Entertain- ment Tax, Dance Halls Tax, Bets and Sweeps Tax, and Business Registration Fees. The Commerce and Industry Department, under a Director, is responsible for industrial and trade development, the collection of revenue from import and excise duties, the activities of the Preventive Service, certificates of origin, trade licensing, Government bulk purchases of firewood and certain foodstuffs, control over stocks of reserve commodities, and the production of trade statistics and any other statistics required by other depart- ments of the Government. The department also administers the London and Tokyo offices of the Hong Kong Government. (The work of these departments is described in Chapters 4 and 6).

The Public Works Department, under a Director, consists of nine sub-departments, dealing with waterworks, Crown lands and surveys, the administration of the Buildings Ordinance, electrical and mechanical works (including Government motor transport), architecture (Government buildings), development, port works, drainage and roads. The Director of Public Works is also respon- sible for town planning. (See also Chapters 10, 14 and 15).

The Urban Council, constituted under the Urban Council Ordinance, consists of five ex-officio members, namely the Chair- men (who is at the same time the Director of the Urban Services Department), the Assistant Director of Health Services (Vice- Chairman), the Director of Public Works, the Secretary for Chinese Affairs, and the Director of Social Welfare; and sixteen ordinary members, of whom eight are elected and eight appointed by the Governor. The Commissioner for Resettlement sits as a temporary additional ex-officio member. The term of office of ordinary members is four years. The Council meets monthly to transact formal business, but most of its business is dealt with by eighteen select committees, which meet at frequent intervals.

The Council carries out its responsibilities through the Urban Services and Resettlement Departments. The Urban Services Department, whose work is separately described in Chapters 9 and 21, operates the basic sanitary services in the urban area and has a variety of duties in the field of public health, such as the



supervision of food premises and hawkers, the operation of the city's slaughterhouses, and pest control measures. In addition, the department controls and staffs the parks, playgrounds and bathing beaches. The management of the multi-storey car parks in the centre of the city is also a responsibility of the Council, as will be the new City Hall when it is built. The Resettlement Department is responsible for the clearance and resettlement of squatters, the administration of the resettlement estates and areas, and the pre- vention of new squatting either on vacant land or on the rooftops of buildings, (See also Chapter 10).

The composition of the Housing Authority and the work of the Housing Division of the Urban Services Department which is responsible, under the immediate charge of a Commissioner, for routine administration and execution of the Authority's decisions, are described in Chapter 10.

The Commissioner of Police, who is concurrently the Immigra- tion Officer, is responsible for the internal security of the Colony. The Police Force and the Prisons Department, also under a Commissioner, are described in Chapter 13. The Medical and Health Department is described in Chapter 9; the Education Department in Chapter 8; and the Labour Department, under a Commissioner who is concurrently Commissioner of Mines, in Chapter 3.

      Reference to the Registrar General's Department will be found in Chapter 13, and to the Marine, Railway and Civil Aviation Departments, the Post Office and the Royal Observatory in Chapter 15. The Information Services Department and Radio Hong Kong are described in Chapter 16. Chapter 7 describes the work of the Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Department, and the Co-operative Development Department.

The Fire Brigade, which is under the control of a Chief Officer, provides fire protection throughout the urban areas, for the main districts of the New Territories, and for shipping in the harbour. Additional fire stations are now under construction to increase fire cover for the Colony. The Brigade comprises 886 officers and other ranks, with 60 mobile fire appliances, 3 fire boats and 20 ambulances.

The Stores Department, under a Controller, buys and distributes Government stores, manufactures and repairs all furniture for



offices and quarters, and administers the Government monopoly of sand. The Printing Department, under the Government Printer, is responsible for all Government publications, most of which are produced entirely in the department itself. The Quartering Authority deals with accommodation for civil servants and Government departments.

New Territories Administration. The New Territories are divided into four administrative districts: Yuen Long in the north-west; Tai Po in the north-east; Tsuen Wan, which includes the industrial town of Tsuen Wan, the islands of Tsing Yi and Ma Wan and part of north-east Lantau; and the Southern district which includes the rest of Lantau, all the remaining islands and the southern part of the Sai Kung peninsula. Each of the four districts is administered by a District Officer. The District Office for Yuen Long is at Ping Shan and that for Tai Po is at Tai Po Market. The Tsuen Wan District Office, which formerly shared accom- modation with the Southern District Office in Kowloon, was set up in temporary accommodation in Tsuen Wan in September 1959. The District Commissioner, with an office in Kowloon and head- quarters staff under a Deputy District Commissioner, co-ordinates the overall administration of the New Territories. There is also a Resident Magistrate, who is a legal officer, for the New Territories.

      The District Officer is concerned with every aspect of govern- ment activity in his district. His responsibilities include the holding of land and small debt courts, and arbitration in all kinds of village and personal disputes, including family and matrimonial cases. He controls the utilization and sale of Crown land; he registers documents and deeds relating to private land; and all building plans require to be passed by him. He assesses and collects stamp duty, and issues licences for various types of licensed premises. He has an allocation of funds from the New Territories local public works vote, which pays for materials to assist villagers to improve irrigation and water supplies, to build paths and small bridges and to carry out a variety of other minor works to improve the amenities of the villages.

District Officers have the assistance of Rural Committees, elected by and from village representatives, and exercising various advisory functions. These Committees have already proved their usefulness as mouth-pieces of public opinion, in the arbitration of



clan and family disputes, and generally as a bridge between the Administration and the people. The New Territories is divided into twenty seven Rural Committee areas of which twenty five have formally established Rural Committees. The Chairman and Vice-Chairmen of all the Rural Committees are ex-officio members of the Heung Yee Kuk.

      Heung Yee Kuk may be translated into English as Rural Consultative Council. This organization has since 1926 constituted a forum where leaders of New Territories opinion have gathered and from which the Government has sought advice.

During recent years internal dissension in the Kuk led to the breakdown of its constitution and in August 1958 the Government was forced to withdraw recognition of its representative status. In December 1959 the Heung Yee Kuk Ordinance (please also see Chapter 12) was passed establishing a new constitution for the Kuk. Preparations for the first elections under these new arrange- ments were being made at the end of the year.


Appointments and promotions to the majority of pensionable posts in the Public Service are made on the advice of the Public Services Commission, a statutory non-Government body established in 1950 with the object of improving the standard of efficiency of officers and of putting into effect the Government's policy of giving preference in appointment, wherever possible, to well-qualified local candidates whose roots are in the Colony.

Monthly paid offices in the Public Service are divided into five classes. Classes I and II include those offices normally held by administrative or professional officers, or offices of similar status. Class III offices are held by more junior officers (including the Clerical Service) with an initial salary of more than $360 p.m. Class IV is for disciplined staff below the rank of Police Sub- Inspector (or equivalent rank in other departments). Class V includes non-pensionable officers with initial salaries of $360 p.m. or less. There is also a number of daily paid officers, who may qualify after varying periods of service for transfer to monthly pay. In 1960 all daily rated staff who are permanently employed will be



transferred to monthly rates, and daily rates of pay will then be confined to purely casual workers.

       The Public Service has more than doubled during the last ten years, the establishment on 1st April 1959 being 45,546 compared with 17,554 on 1st April 1949. The estimated expenditure on salaries for the financial year 1959-60 was $244.5 million, which represents 35.3% of the total estimated expenditure for the year (excluding expenditure from the Development Fund) of $693 million.

One of the most noteworthy developments in the Public Service since the war has been the large increase in the number of local officers in the more senior posts (Classes I and II), mainly as a result of greater local recruitment to senior administrative and professional appointments in the Education, Medical and Health and Public Works Departments. In 1950 there were 54 local officers and 448 overseas officers in these classes; on 1st January 1959 there were 452 local officers and 744 overseas officers. The proportion of local officers in Classes I and II has thus risen from 10.75% to 37.79% in nine years. The increase in the number of overseas officers has been due principally to the need to keep pace with the ever-increasing development of the Colony, which cannot be delayed until local training schemes in the University and elsewhere are able to produce enough graduates to meet all the demands of the Public Service as well as those of private enterprise. There are also 635 overseas and 9,538 locally appointed officers in Class III, making a grand total of 1,379 overseas officers and 9,990 local officers in three classes.

Salary Structure. Broadly speaking, the post-war structure of the Public Service, including its salary scales and general conditions of service, has been based upon the Report of the 1947 Salaries Commission. One of the Commission's recommendations led to the formation of a Conditions of Service Committee which met during 1948-50 to resolve anomalies arising out of the Commis- sion's Report and which in turn was replaced by the Public Services Commission itself. The Lo Committee on cost of living allowances also supplemented the 1947 Commission's Report by devising a system of variable cost of living allowances to replace the temporary system proposed by the Commission. In 1951 the



Government consolidated a proportion of the cost of living allow- ance into basic salary. In 1952 a new system for the calculation of basic monthly salaries over $200 was introduced, which, by substantially increasing those allowances, to some extent restored the situation existing before the 1951 consolidation. In 1953 the second post-war Salaries Commission was appointed, and pre- sented its Report in 1954. Since the Government was unable for a variety of reasons to accept the Commission's recommendations as they stood, Mr. P. C. M. Sedgwick was then appointed to devise a modified scheme of salaries revision into which those of the Commission's recommendations which were otherwise acceptable could be fitted. The Revised Salaries Scheme, as it is known, came into effect in 1955. The Sedgwick Report had purposely left sub- stantially unaltered the salaries for professional, administrative and superscale posts, and in 1956 Mr. W. D. Godsall, C.M.G., conducted a review of these salaries, his conclusions forming the keystone for the new salaries structure derived from the 1953 Salaries Commission's Report.

During 1959 a fresh Commission was appointed, under the Chairmanship of Mr. J. W. Platt, to consider and submit recom- mendations for the revision of the salaries and all other emolu- ments of all public officers in Hong Kong. The Commission's Report, which has now been accepted, recommended the incor- poration of the cost of living allowances into basic salary for all officers except minor staff, the abolition of expatriation pay and its replacement by a system of incremental credit for overseas officers, and increases in salary for most officers.

Training. A 'Report on Training of Government Servants 1952 - 1958' was published in March 1959 which indicated that a con- siderable amount of training was taking place both within the Colony and overseas.

Local training schemes, mostly for new recruits, have continued and several new schemes have been inaugurated. Such training is given to air traffic control officers, revenue officers and inspectors, launch coxswains, nurses, health visitors, police and prisons officers, social welfare workers, etc. In most cases the department concerned has provided the training staff, but occasionally outside lecturers have been invited. Use has also been made of the facilities of the Technical College. Overseas officers are encouraged and



sometimes obliged to become proficient in Chinese by grant of allowances and bonuses. Language examinations are conducted by the Board of Examiners, and a scheme is now afoot to improve teaching methods and administration so that more expatriate officers may reach a higher standard of proficiency. Apprenticeship schemes are run by the Public Works and Printing Departments, and the Kowloon-Canton Railway, and a large scale scheme for the training of teachers is organized by the Education Department. Sixty seven local officers were sent overseas during 1959 on courses of instruction to obtain qualifications ranging from F.R.C.S. to the 'meat and other foods certificate' of the Royal Society of Health, or simply to broaden their experience. In addi- tion 58 overseas officers attended courses while on vacation leave, to familiarize themselves with the latest developments in their professions or to acquire further specialized experience. The cost of overseas training is in the region of $1,100,000.

       In accordance with the advice of the Salaries Commission, a central training unit will be formed within the Establishment Branch to prosecute training more vigorously and in particular to organize training schemes for administrative, executive and clerical officers.

The Government also takes the fullest possible advantage of the seminars, study tours and other forms of training provided by the United Nations and its specialized agencies under both the United Nations Expanded Programme of Technical Assistance and the regular technical assistance programmes of individual agencies. During 1959 local participants, including both government officers and non-officials, attended such seminars as Judicial and Other Remedies against the Illegal Exercise or Abuse of Administrative Authority (Ceylon), under the auspices of the United Nations; a Food and Agricultural Organization seminar on Food Technology (Mysore); an Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East Training Centre in Trade Promotion (Tokyo) and an Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East Study Tour for Geologists and Mining Engineers in the United States of America and Canada; a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization Workshop for Administrators of Vocational and Technical Education in South East Asia (Tokyo) and seminars on Dental Health (Adelaide), Veterinary Public Health (Tokyo)



and Education and Training of Sanitation Personnel (Tokyo), all organized by the World Health Organization. The World Health Organization granted fellowships for the study of Dental Nursing (Penang) and Malaria Eradication (Manila); the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization granted fellow- ships for Regional Training Courses in Marine Sciences (South Vietnam) and Fundamental Education Study in Denmark, the United Kingdom and Canada. Visits were paid to Hong Kong during the year by officials of various United Nations organiza- tions for discussions with Government Departments and to observe the Colony's social and economic development.

Chapter 26: Weights and Measures

      THE weights and measures used in the Colony consist of the standards in use in the United Kingdom, and the following Chinese weights and measures, given with their equivalents in avoirdupois :

1 fan (candareen)

1 ts'in (mace)

1 leung (tael)

.0133 ounces

.133 ounces

1.33 ounces

1 kan (catty=16 taels)

= 1.33


1 tam (picul=100 catties) = 133.33


1.19 cwts.


0.0595 tons

1 ch'ek (foot)

Statutory equivalent 14ğ

inches. The ch'ek is

divided into 10 ts'un

(inches), and each

ts'un into ten fan, or tenths.

      In practice the equivalent length of a ch'ek varies, according to the trade in which it is used, from 14 inches to 11 inches, the commonest equivalent being 14.14 inches.

Chapter 27: Reading List

FOR an extensive bibliography on Hong Kong the reader is directed to the 1954 edition of the Hong Kong Annual Report.

Although there is a considerable amount of published material dealing with Hong Kong, not much of it is obtainable other than in research libraries. The following are the more recent publica- tions likely to be available to the general reader:

CARRINGTON, C. E.: The British Overseas, Cambridge, 1950. COLLINS, Sir Charles: Public Administration in Hong Kong,

Royal Institute of International Affairs, London, 1952.

DAVIS, S. G.: Hong Kong in its Geographical Setting, Collins,

London, 1949.

DONNISON, F. S. V.: British Military Administration in the Far East, History of the Second World War Series, H.M. Stationery Office, London, 1956. [Other volumes in this series are also relevant].

ENDACOTT, G. B.: A History of Hong Kong, Oxford, 1958. GREENBERG, Michael: British Trade and the Opening of

China, 1800-1842, Cambridge, 1951.

INGRAMS, Harold: Hong Kong, Corona Library, H.M.

Stationery Office, London, 1952.

MILLS, Lennox A.: British Rule in Eastern Asia, Oxford,


SAYER, G. R.: Hong Kong, Birth, Adolescence and Coming

of Age, Oxford, 1937.

SZCZEPANIK E. F.: The Economic Growth of Hong Kong,

Oxford University Press, 1958.

     A list of the more important Government publications issued during 1959 is at Appendix XX.



Appendix I

(Chapter 4: Public Finance and Taxation)

Colonial Development and Welfare


        Details of locally administered Grants made by the United Kingdom Government towards schemes in progress during 1959.

Scheme No.

Title of Scheme

Research Scheme


Estimated Expenditure

up to 31.12.59



R 943

Research on the Toxemia of Pregnancy


by Hong





Development Schemes

D 2341

Site development for low-cost housing,

Healthy Village



D 2487

Construction of Pathology Institute,

Hong Kong University (administered

by University) ..



D 2539

Development schemes in the New




D 2594

Aeronautical Telecommunications



D 2990

Site development for low-cost housing,

So Uk ..





Notes: (1) Colonial Development and Welfare Scheme share of estimated expenditure varies

with the items comprising this scheme as follows:

Item 1. Road on South Lantau

2. Six feeder roads



42% of 138,582



45% 152,559 =


3. Piers in the New Territories



26,840 -


4. Irrigation schemes



119,960 = 101,966

5. Survey party


4,557 =



(2) Colonial Development and Welfare Scheme share (80%) of estimated expenditure. (3) Colonial Development and Welfare Scheme share (75%) of estimated expenditure.



Appendix II A

(Chapter 3: Occupations, Wages and Labour Organization)

Industrial Undertakings and Persons Employed in Main Industrial Groups








U.N. Standard Industrial Classification Number







≈ 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2

Metal Mining

Clay Pits & Quarrying

Non-metallic Mining

Food Manufacture


Tobacco Manufacture


Industrial Undertakings

Persons Employed

1957 1958 1959


















322 360 362

30 29












1,534 1,244

Manufacture of Textiles *

651 680 691


Footwear & Weaving Apparel *

277 680


Manufacture of Wood & Cork


185 177

42,338 52,936

14,054 28,233 47,926

2,306 2,720 2,782

Manufacture of Furniture




960 2,543 3,067

Paper & Paper Products







Printing & Publishing








Leather & Leather Products








Rubber Products









Chemicals & Chemical Products *




2,719 3,288



Products of Petroleum & Coal






Non-metallic Mineral Products




1,902 2,112



Basic Metal Industries *


66 72


Metal Products *


Manufacture of Machinery

470 575 578

213 280 282


Electrical Apparatus *




1,417 2,289 2,350

24,367 24,342 26,473

3,712 4,291 4,305

2,417 2,822 3,147


Transport & Transport

Equipment *


Miscellaneous Manufacturing

Industries *








14,540 12,906



8,304 13,517









Electricity & Gas





1,827 1,466


Wholesale and Retail Trade








Transport (Baling & Packing)








Storage & Warehousing





796 2,973


Cable & Wireless & Telephones





1,072 1,099


Motion Picture Industry






Laundry & Dry Cleaning

126 200 199


1,773 2,379 2,431


Total ..

3,373 4,906 5,023

153,033 179,997 217,367

* Similar figures for selected industries in these groups are given in Appendix IIB.


Appendix IIB

Industrial Undertakings and Persons Employed in selected Industries in certain of the

Main Industrial Groups


U.N. Standard Industrial Classification


Industrial Undertakings

Persons Employed


1957 1958 1959





Manufacture of Textiles

Cotton Spinning


Wool Spinning


Cotton Weaving





Knitting Mills



























Cordage, rope & twine









Footwear, Wearing Apparel &

made-up Textile Goods

Footwear except rubber footwear





1,845 1,468

Wearing apparel except footwear





25,602 44,606

Made-up textile goods except

wearing apparel





786 1,852


Chemicals & Chemical Products
























Paints & lacquers



Basic Metal Industries

Rolling mills









Metal Products (except Machinery)

Tin cans














Vacuum flasks





















Hurricane lamps







Hand torch cases







Pressure stoves & lanterns

(No 21





Wrist watch bands

separate 58 57







Electrical Apparatus


Hand torch bulbs

Torch batteries

Transport & Transport Equipment

Shipbuilding & repairing


Motor buses

Aircraft repair



Artificial pearls


Bakelite ware Plastic ware Plastic flowers

Fountain pens



29 34 34













10,733 10,049






1,517 1,492 1,507











131 296

(No 11 separate





















1,462 4,460














(Chapter 4: Public

Statement of Assets and


Finance and Taxation)

Liabilities as at 31st March 1959



Colonial Development and Welfare Schemes

Contributions towards Building Projects

Development Loan Fund

Control of Publications

Government Servants










At Bank: (Treasury)


(Other Government




In Hand: (Treasury)


(Other Government





With Crown Agents (£151.10.7)


Joint Consolidated Fund (£650,000.0.0)







Motor Vehicles Insurance Third Party


Other Administrations


Public Works Department-Private Works Account


Settlement with H.M.G.



Water Deposits






Colonial Development and Welfare Schemes





Other Administrations







Balance as at 1st April 1958


Add Surplus from 1st April 1958 to 31st March 1959



Add Appreciation on Investments








Federation of Malaya 44% Stock 1964/74 (M$4,325,000)

Federation of Malaya 4% Stock 1965/75 (M$5,525,250)

Hong Kong Government 34% Dollar Loan 1940

Sterling Investments (£29,985,213.6.0)







This statement does not include: Government holds 16,290 shares at a nominal and 980 shares at a nominal value of 500 There is a contingent liability of $1,712,572.45 There is an amount of $159,067.38 due from

Scheme D. 2539.

value of $100 per share in Associated Properties Limited YEN per share in Helm Brothers Ltd. (Yokohama).

in respect of the $ Note Security Fund. Colonial Development and Welfare Funds in respect of




Appendix IV

(Chapter 4: Public Finance and Taxation)














1. Duties

2. Rates

105,722,731 108,850,000 111,378,306 110,400,000

65,159,092 70,070,000 74,604,110 79,010,000

3. Internal Revenue

184,892,242 164,000,000 194,780,904 187,200,000

4. Fines, Forfeitures and Licences

20,826,097 19,255,200 21,933,064 20,258,500

5. Fees of Court or Office

6. Water Revenue

44,890,165 65,344,200 80,322,774 73,705,800

12,583,521 14,711,500 14,215,894 14,863,000

7. Post Office

8. Kowloon-Canton Railway ..

9. Revenue from Interest, Lands,

Rents, etc...

10. Miscellaneous Receipts

42,453,784 47,325,200 49,715,497 50,103,900


29,787,572 31,219,000 34,629,035 34,350,000



7,320,987 6,535,000

543,827,609 527,675,100 588,900,571 576,426,200

11. Land Sales

26,244,377 16,005,000 30,920,067 17,525,000


Colonial Development and Welfare






13. Loans from United Kingdom


Total Revenue

12,800,000 8,650,900 8,322,131 5,824,000

584,185,188 554,054,300 629,336,662 600,632,500

* Miscellaneous Receipts incorporated in Subhead 5.


Appendix V

(Chapter 4: Public Finance and Taxation)















1. H.E. The Governor's Establishment





2. Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry






3. Audit Department





4. Civil Aviation Department



3,959,754 4,645,200

5. Colonial Secretariat and




3,195,307 4,004,900

6. Commerce and Industry




5,522,265 6,705,300

7. Co-operative Development






8. Defence:

A-R.H.K.D.F. Headquarters

       and Hong Kong Regiment B-Hong Kong Royal Naval










C-Hong Kong Auxiliary Air






D-Essential Services Corps





E-Auxiliary Fire Service





F-Auxiliary Medical Service





G-Civil Aid Services





H--Registration of Persons Office





I-Directorate of Manpower





J-Miscellaneous Measures





9. Education Department






Fire Brigade





11. Inland Revenue Department



3,511,139 3,644,000

12. Judiciary



2,946,973 3,429,700

13. Kowloon-Canton Railway





14. Labour Department:

A-Labour Division





B-Mines Division






Legal Department






16. Marine Department

17. Medical and Health Department

18. Miscellaneous Services

19. New Territories Administration

20. Pensions


Police Force:

A-Hong Kong Police B-Hong Kong Police


1,642,478 2,178,700 2,372,428 5,074,700

15,399,376 15,231,000 15,173,952 15,783,000

43,004,884 57,355,900 48,584,483 58,118,200

1,267,299 1,528,300 1,369,237 1,411,700





34,864,883 43,427,300 39,792,228


12,800,509 11,520,000 39,185,324




Appendix V- Contd.











Post Office

23. Printing Department

24. Prisons Department


18,734,483 19,452,700

2,339,554 2,585,900




20,172,258 21,101,000


2,778,790 3,242,900


7,926,302 9,122,100


Public Debt




3,248,590 3,025,610

26. Information Services Department





27. Public Services Commission



Public Works Department








29. Public Works Recurrent


Public Works Non-Recurrent

31. Quartering Office

32. Radio Hong Kong

33. Rating and Valuation Department


30,562,816 29,977,000 29,092,211 30,970,000

117,717,594 186,750,000 142,701,934 181,822,300

2,627,955 2,886,100 3,716,154 3,138,600

1,971,496 2,139,600 2,224,458 2,662,700




34. Registrar General's Department





35. Registry of Trade Unions ..






Resettlement Department





37. Royal Observatory



1,829,541 2,028,500

38. Secretariat for Chinese Affairs:

A-Secretariat for Chinese






B-District Watch Force





39. Social Welfare Department


3,286,600 3,604,786



Stores Department


9,967,100 Cr. 469,135


41. Subventions










42. Treasury:


Custodian of Property


Urban Services Department and

Urban Council:

A-Head Office and Sanitary



B-Gardens Division

C-Housing Division

1,916,027 389,157

22,174,100 2,532,700 944,500

21,361,489 1,954,628


552,362 1,159,800

530,044,149 644,875,810

587,500,600 691,198,510

44. Colonial Development and Welfare Schemes

2,635,068 3,245,900




648,121,710 589,958,367 693,043,210


Appendix VI

(Chapter 5: Currency and Banking)

Authorized Foreign Exchange Banks

Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation

Chartered Bank

Mercantile Bank Ltd.

Thos. Cook & Son Ltd.

First National City Bank of New York

American Express Co. Inc.

Banque de l'Indo-Chine

Banque Belge Pour l'Etranger (Extreme-Orient)

Nederlandsche Handel-Maatschappij N. V. (Netherlands Trading Society)

Nationale Handelsbank N. V.

Bank of East Asia Ltd.

Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation Ltd.

Bank of Communications

Bank of China Ltd.

Bank of Canton Ltd.

Shanghai Commercial Bank Ltd.

China and South Sea Bank Ltd.

Kincheng Banking Corporation

Bank of Tokyo Ltd.

United Commercial Bank Ltd.

Bank of Korea

Indian Overseas Bank Ltd.

Sze Hai Tong Bank Ltd.

China State Bank Ltd.

Hongkong & Swatow Commercial Bank Ltd.

Sin Hua Trust, Savings & Commercial Bank Ltd.

National Commercial Bank Ltd.

Nanyang Commercial Bank Ltd.

Bangkok Bank Ltd.

United Chinese Bank Ltd.

Banque Nationale pour le Commerce et l'Industrie

Chekiang First Bank of Commerce (Hong Kong) Ltd. Deutsch-Asiatische Bank

Wing On Bank Ltd.

Kwangtung Provincial Bank Ltd. (partially authorized) Hong Kong Chinese Bank Ltd.

Overseas Trust Bank, Ltd.

Bank of America

Chung Khiaw Bank, Ltd.

Chiyu Banking Corporation, Ltd.

Kwong On Bank, Ltd.

Overseas Union Bank, Ltd.




Appendix VII

(Chapter 6: Industry and Trade)

Direction of Trade-Imports

The principal countries from which goods were imported into Hong Kong are shown below, with total values for the past three years:















United Kingdom
















German Federal Republic (Western)






112,769,089 133,166,470














126,248,493 *



Formosa (Taiwan)








East Africa: Tanganyika






South Africa




Other Countries




























305,471,296 417,497,546

5,149,454,917 4,593,733,632


Appendix VIII

(Chapter 6: Industry and Trade)

Direction of Trade- Total Exports

       The principal markets for the Colony's total exports during the past three years were as follows:











United Kingdom
























German Federal Republic (Western)
















Formosa (Taiwan)












South Korea












U.S. Oceania












South Africa




New Zealand
















South Vietnam








North Vietnam

Other Countries



30,485,166 473,805,696








Appendix IX

(Chapter 6: Industry and Trade)

Direction of Trade-Exports and Re-exports


        The principal markets for the Colony's exports and re-exports during 1959 were as follows:




1959 HKS






United Kingdom















Federal Republic









Formosa (Taiwan)




South Korea










East Africa, British










South Africa


United Kingdom


U.S. Oceania














North Borneo




North Vietnam






New Zealand




U.S. Oceania


Persian Gulf Sheikdoms


French Equatorial and West







South Vietnam


Belgian Congo


Other Countries


Other Countries









(Chapter 6: Industry

Composition of Trade Classified by Sections

Trade Classification:


and Trade)


and Divisions of the Standard International 1957, 1958 and 1959




1957 HK$



1959 HKS

1957 HKS


Live animals, chiefly for food

Meat and meat preparations Dairy products, eggs and honey

Fish and fish preparations

Cereals and cereal preparations

Fruits and vegetables

1958 HK$

1939 HK$


1959 HKS


1959 HKS












































Sugar and sugar preparations














Coffee, tea, cocoa, spices and manufactures thereof




Feeding stuffs for animals (not including unmilled cereals) Miscellaneous food preparations





















341,648,380 374,313,334


519,521 22,411,235





Beverages and Tobacco


Tobacco and tobacco manufactures

32,529,540 74,050,554

106,580,094 101,794,175





















Crude materials, inedible, except fuels

Hides, skins and fur skins, undressed

Oil-seeds, oil nuts and oil kernels

Crude rubber, including synthetic and reclaimed Wood, lumber and cork

































Pulp and waste paper









Textile fibres and waste









Crude fertilizers and crude




petroleum and precious stones









Metalliferous ores and metal scrap





Animal and vegetable crude materials, inedible, n.e.s.





41,378,764 116,284,525







706,660,199 538,577,766







Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials

Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials

212,823,478 194,212,416




212,823,478 194,212,416










Animal and vegetable oils and fats

Animal and vegetable oils (not essential oils), fats, greases

and derivatives


















Chemical elements and compounds

Mineral tar and crude chemicals from coal, petroleum and

natural gas ..











Dyeing, tanning and colouring materials



611,865 60,316,970

149,573 49,231,516

16,282 47,554,751

19,105 51,493,049

Medicinal and pharmaceutical products







1,876 16,528,962 13,278,318




Essential oils and perfume materials; toilet, polishing and

cleansing preparations









Fertilizers, manufactured








Explosives and miscellaneous chemical materials and products










233,320,708 181,218,448











Composition of Trade Classified by Sections Trade Classification:


and Divisions of the Standard International 1957, 1958 and 1959







1959 HK$

1957 HKS

1958 HK$

1959 HK$



1959 HK$

Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material


Leather, leather manufactures, n.e.s. and dressed furs Rubber manufactures, n.e.s.

















Wood and cork manufactures (excluding furniture)









Paper, paperboard and manufactures thereof









Textile yarn, fabrics, made-up articles and related products




Non-metallic mineral manufactures, n.e.s.




752,199,404 666,417,506 578,063,155








Silver, platinum, gems and jewellery

Base metals

Manufactures of metals


331,669,197 199,936,622




















122,853,271 130,012,252 134,309,218

1,115,737,755 986,907,295 917,518,993





Machinery and transport equipment

Machinery other than electric

Electric machinery, apparatus and appliances

Transport equipment





























125,813,293 134,134,515



Miscellaneous manufactured articles

Prefabricated buildings; sanitary, plumbing, heating and

lighting fixtures and fittings









Furniture and fixtures









Travel goods, handbags and similar articles













438,785,278 525,114,151













Professional, scientific and controlling instruments; photo-

graphic and optical goods; watches and clocks Miscellaneous manufactured articles, n.e.s.

238,226,038 160,178,348















208,206,488 294,776,639



980,139,171 1,380,542,940 1,299,378,370


Postal packages

Postal packages











Miscellaneous transaction and commodities, n.e.s.

Live animals, not for food





Gold and specie





403,532,724 257,874,824

5,552,987,641 4,851,608,456












408,320,048 262,020,504

3,424,592,274 3,250,822,216 3,595.041,717















* Not recorded separately in 1957.



Appendix XI

(Chapter 7: Primary Production and Marketing)

Co-operative Societies


Type of Society



Loan *




share capital












Fishermen's Credit and Housing







6,958 65,147



19,879 273,660



175 22,850





Credit and


10 10,000




Thrift and



938 8,775


348,275 290,017 21,808








Pig Raising ..


1,607 59,315



3,758 19,716



Thrift &






154,357 75,025 4,608



2,868 286,800 | 16,785,735†







Fish Pond





Credit and







8,539 11,536

Better Living.




Total.. 257 14,183 445,944 | 18,928,209 2,394,254

440,146 352,530

* Including repayments of loans issued during previous years.

† Direct Government Loans.


Appendix XII

(Chapter 8: Education)

Overseas Examinations organized by the Education Department

Name of Examination

London University Degree Examinations

London General Certificate of Education Examination


No. of Candidates Entered







London Chamber of Commerce Examinations ..



Institute of Book-Keeper's Examinations

Pitman's Shorthand Examinations

Association of Certified & Corporate Accountants








Association of International Accountants Examinations



Institute of Chartered Secretaries Examination ..



Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers Examination



Institute of Fire Engineers Examination ..



British Institute of Management Examination

Law Society's Examinations, London








Appendix XIII

(Chapter 8: Education)

Hong Kong Students pursuing Higher Studies in the United Kingdom in September 1959


Architecture (a) .




Engineering (b)


Chartered Accountancy


No. of Students














General Certificate of Education


Industrial Administration




Public Administration








Social Science



Nursing (c)


Librarianship Social Welfare









Other Courses (d)




      (a)-included Civic Design, Surveying, Building and Town Planning. (b)-included Soil Mechanics, Ship Navigation, Naval Architecture, Shipbuilding, Structural


(c)-included Mental Nursing, Physiotherapy, Radiography and Radiotherapy.

(d) included Art, Interior Decoration, Interior Design, Beauty Culture, Agriculture, Estate

Management, Dress Design, Domestic Science, Printing, Pharmacy & Optics.


Appendix XIV

(Chapter 9: Public Health)

Infectious Diseases Notified

Cases and Deaths 1958 and 1959




Yearly Total



1958 1959 1958 1959 1958


1958 1959

Amoebic dysentery..

253 234







Bacillary dysentery








234 210















1,551❘ 2,081


6 1,555 2,087



Enteric fever

(Typhoid and


814 988


















769 694













Puerperal fever























105 244



Rabies (Human)



Scarlet fever












13,451 14,261

Typhus (Urban)



41 13,485 14,302 | 2,302 | 2,178







Whooping cough

196 104


6 197





18,712 20,022 160 219 18,872 20,241 2,762 | 2,589

         The above table omits the six quarantinable diseases-i.e. cholera, smallpox, plague, epidemic louse borne typhus, yellow fever and relapsing fever-no case of any of which was reported during the year.



Appendix XV

(Chapter 9: Public Health)

Number of Hospital Beds in Hong Kong-1959


Number of Hospital Beds


A. Hospitals

Queen Mary



Castle Peak

Sai Ying Pun

Tsan Yuk

Lai Chi Kok

Eastern Maternity

Wan Chai Social Hygiene

St. John

Stanley Prison

Lai Chi Kok Female Prison

B. Dispensaries


Hung Hom

Hong Kong Jockey Club Clinic, Tai Po

Yuen Long

Sha Tau Kok

Ho Tung

Sai Kung

Tai O

San Hui

Sha Tin Maternity Home

Silver Mine Bay Maternity Home

Maurine Grantham Health Centre North Lamma Clinic

Peng Chau


*Tung Wah

Tung Wah Eastern

+Kwong Wah

Alice Ho Miu Ling Nethersole

     H.K. Anti-T.B. Association Ruttonjee Sanatorium Grantham

Pok Oi

Hei Ling Chau Leprosarium

Haven of Hope Tuberculosis Sanatorium

Sandy Bay Convalescent Home


Hong Kong Sanatorium and Hospital Precious Blood

St. Teresa's

St. Francis

St. Paul's

Hong Kong Central

Ling Yuet Sin Infants'

Matilda and War Memorial

Canaan Convalescent Home












































ཎྞཝིཛིཔུནིརཱྀཡ༤ ཉྷི ༀ།སྟྲ།

* Including 86 T.B. beds in Infirmary, Sandy Bay.

† Including 125 beds (i.e. 40 Med. & 85 Surg.) in Infirmary at Kwong Wah Hospital.

‡ Including 43 beds used for either medical or surgical cases.


Appendix XVI

(Chapter 9: Public Health)

Registered Medical Personnel


Registered Medical Practitioners (excluding Government Personnel)


Provisionally registered Medical Practitioners


Government Medical Officers


Registered Dentists (excluding Government Dental Surgeons and Service



Government Dental Surgeons


Service Dentists


Registered Pharmacists (excluding Government Pharmacists)


Government Pharmacists


Registered Nurses (excluding Government Nurses)


Government Nurses


Registered Dressers (excluding Government Dressers)


Government Dressers


Registered Midwives (excluding Government Midwives) Government Midwives



Appendix XVII

(Chapter 9: Public Health)

Students or Probationers in Training

as at 31st December 1959

Length of






3rd year



No. who successfully completed


during year

Probationer Radiographic Assistant

Probationer Assistant Physiotherapist

Student Dispenser ..


Student Laboratory Assistant


Student Medical Laboratory Technician



Student Male Nurse



Student Nurse




















Student Male Nurse (Psychiatry) (a)

Student Nurse (Psychiatry)


Student Midwives (Registered Nurses)


Student Midwives



Student Health Visitor


Tuberculosis Visitor

Assistant Almoner .







The Course of training for Radiographics is designed to prepare them for the examinations for membership of the Society of Radiographers, and that of Health Visitors to enable them to obtain the certificate of the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health.

Remarks: (a) There are 12 student male nurses (Psychiatry) including 2 Registered Nurses

H.K. training in U.K.

(b) There are 7 student nurses (Psychiatry) training in U.K.



Appendix XVIII

(Chapter 13: The Courts, Police, Prisons and Records) Return of Serious Crime for the Year 1959


No. of No. of





No. of Persons Charged

or Summonsed

16 years 17 years

& under & over

Class 1-Offences against the Person

1. Murder

2. Murder-Attempted

3. Infanticide

4. Manslaughter

5. Serious Assaults

6. Throwing Corrosive Fluids






















Abominable Offences


Gross Indecency



Indecent Assault on a Male








Indecent Assault on a Female




| | 3+ - a





Other Serious Offences on

Women and Girls




14. Kidnapping


15. Criminal Intimidation



16. Bigamy



17. Incest

° 12-1


18. All Other Serious Offences

against the Person




Total Serious Offences against

the Person





Class 2-Breaking Offences

19. Sacrilege




20. Burglary






21. Housebreaking





22. Housebreaking with intent





23. Shop and Store Breaking





24. Office Breaking





25. Other Breakings





26. Breakings-all attempted




Total Breaking Offences






Appendix XVIII-Contd.

Return of Serious Crime for the Year 1959


No. of No. of






No. of Persons Charged

or Summonsed 16 years 17 years

& under & over

Class 3-Larceny Offences

27. Robbery with Firearms




28. Robbery with Other Offensive






29. Robbery with Aggravation





30. Robbery




31. Assault with intent to rob





32. Demanding Money, etc. with






33. Larceny from Person (Snatching)





34. Larceny from Person (Pickpocket)





35. Larceny from Dwelling ..





36. Larceny from Ship and Wharf|





37. Larceny from Vehicle





38. Larceny of Bicycle





39. Misc. Simple Larceny











Total Larcenies





Class 4-Offences Involving Fraud

41. Embezzlement





42. Larceny by Servant





43. Larceny by Bailee





44. Larceny by Trick





45. Obtaining by False Pretences





46. Fraudulent Conversion ..





47. Obtaining Credit by Fraud 48. Forgery





49. Obtaining by means of Forgery






50. Possession of Forged Documents,|

Notes, Dies, etc.


51. Uttering Forged Documents, etc. 52. Counterfeiting Offences ..

Other Frauds and Cheats

Total Frauds






















Appendix XVIII-Contd.

Return of Serious Crime for the Year 1959


No. of No. of





No. of Persons Charged

or Summonsed

17 years

16 years

& under

& over

Class 5-Other Serious Offences

54. Arson


Malicious Damage

56. Threatening Letters other than


57. Conspiracies









58. Offering Bribes to Police





59. Offering Bribes to Others









60. Soliciting or Receiving Bribes by





61. Soliciting or Receiving Bribes by





62. All Other Serious Offences not






Total Other Offences





Total of Classes 1 to 5





Percentage of Crime Detected in Classes 1 to 5 = 66.15%.

Class 6-Offences Discovered

following arrest

63. Membership of an Unlawful






64. Possession of Arms and/or


65. Unlawful Possession










66. Possession of Housebreaking





67. Possession of Instrument fit for

Unlawful Purpose





68. Found on Enclosed Premises





69. Loitering with intent to commit

a Felony





70. Other Serious Offences




Total Class 6 Offences





Grand Total of all Serious Crime





Percentage of Crime Detected in all Classes




Appendix XIX

(Chapter 25: Constitution and Administration) Executive and Legislative Councils Executive Council

Type of appointment

Names of members

on 1.1.59

Changes in composition during the year




(Presided over by the Governor)


His Excellency the Commander

British Forces,

Lieutenant-General Sir Edric

Montague BASTYAN, K.B.E., C.B.

The Honourable the Colonial


Mr. Claude Bramall BURGESS,

C.M.G., O.B.E.

The Honourable the Attorney


Mr. Arthur RIDEHALGH, Q.C. The Honourable the Secretary

for Chinese Affairs,

Mr. John Crichton McDOUALL The Honourable the Financial


Mr. Arthur Grenfell CLARKE,


Nominated The Honourable Douglas James




Smyth CROZIER, C.M.G., (Director of Education)


The Honourable

Sir Tsun Nin CHAU, C.B.E.

The Honourable

Sir Man Kam Lo, C.B.E.

Dr. the Honourable

CHAU Sik Nin, C.B.E.

Mr. Edmund Brinsley Teesdale,

M.C., acted as

Colonial Secretary during the absence of Mr. BURGESS from 27.1.59 to 24.7.59 and also when Mr. BURGESS assumed the office of O.A.G. from 4.8.59 to 1.12.59.

Mr. Arthur HooTON, Q.C., acted as Attorney General from 25.5.59.

Mr. Patrick Cardinall Mason SEDGWICK acted as Secretary for Chinese Affairs from 11.7.59.

Succeeded by Mr. Lo Man Wai, C.B.E. on 28.5.59. Mr. Kwok Chan, O.B.E., appointed provi- sionally during the absence of Mr. Lo from 28.5.59 to 14.7.59. Died on 7.3.59. Mr. NGAN Shing- Kwan, O.B.E., appointed to fill the vacancy on 28.5.59.



Appendix XIX-Contd.

Executive Council

Type of appointment

Names of members

on 1.1.59

Changes in composition during the year



Nominated The Honourable




The Honourable

Michael William TURNER, C.B.E.

The Honourable

Charles Edward Michael TERRY, C.B.E.

Succeeded by Dr. Alberto Maria RODRIGUES, M.B.E., E.D. on 28.5.59.

Mr. Hugh David MacEwen BARTON, M.B.E., appointed provisionally during the absence of Mr. TURNER from 20.5.59 to 9.10.59.

Type of appointment



Legislative Council

Names of members

on 1.1.59

Changes in composition during the year


His Excellency the Governor, Sir Robert Brown BLACK,

K.C.M.G., O.B.E.

Mr. C. B. BURGESS, C.M.G., O.B.E., assumed the office of O.A.G. during the absence of the Governor from 4.8.59 to 1.12.59.


His Excellency the Commander

British Forces,

Lieutenant-General Sir Edric

Montague BASTYAN, K.B.E., C.B.

The Honourable the Colonial


Mr. Claude Bramall BURGESS,

C.M.G., O.B.E.

The Honourable the Attorney


Mr. Arthur RIDEHALGH, Q.C.

Mr. Edmund Brinsley TEESDALE, M.C., acted as Colonial Secretary during the absence of Mr. BURGESS from 27.1.59 to 24.7.59 and also when Mr. BURGESS assumed the office of O.A.G. from 4.8.59 to 1.12.59. Mr. Arthur HOOTON, Q.C., acted as Attorney General from 25.5.59.

Type of appointment


Appendix XIX-Contd.

Legislative Council

Names of members

on 1.1.59

Changes in composition during the year






The Honourable the Secretary

for Chinese Affairs,

  Mr. John Crichton McDOUALL The Honourable the Financial


Mr. Arthur Grenfell CLARKE,


Nominated The Honourable Patrick









Cardinall Mason SEDGWICK, (Commissioner of Labour)

The Honourable Allan INGLIS, (Director of Public Works)

Dr. the Honourable David

James Masterton MACKENZIE,

C.M.G., O.B.E.,

(Director of Medical and

Health Services)

The Honourable Colin George


(Director of Urban Services)


Dr. the Honourable

CHAU Sik Nin, C.B.E.

The Honourable

Charles Edward Michael TERRY, C.B.E.

The Honourable

Lo Man Wai, C.B.E.

The Honourable

NGAN Shing-Kwan, O.B.E.

The Honourable

Kwok Chan, O.B.E.

Dr. the Honourable


Alberto Maria RODRIGUES, M.B.E., E.D.

John Douglas CLAGUE,

The Honourable

C.B.E., M.C., T.D.

Mr. Patrick Cardinall Mason SEDGWICK acted as Secretary for Chinese Affairs from 11.7.59.




KINGHORN appointed provi- sionally in the place of Mr. SEDGWICK from 16.7.59.

Succeeded by Mr. Dhun Jehangir

RUTTONJEE, O.B.E. on 1.7.59. Succeeded by Mr. FUNG Ping

Fan, O.B.E. on 1.7.59.

Succeeded by Mr. Richard Charles LEE, O.B.E. on 1.7.59.

Succeeded by Mr. KWAN Cho

Yiu, O.B.E. on 1.7.59.

The Honourable

Hugh David MacEwen


Note: The style and decorations of members are given as on 1.1.60.



Appendix XX

(Chapter 27: Reading List)

Official Publications

       The Government Printer issues quarterly catalogues of all available official publications. These may be obtained from the Government Printer, Java Road, North Point, Hong Kong, or from the Government Publications Bureau, General Post Office, Hong Kong.

The following are the more important official publications issued during 1959:

Ordinances of Hong Kong, 1958 Regulations of Hong Kong, 1958

Hong Kong Annual Report, 1958

Annual Departmental Reports, 1958-59

Grantham Scholarships Fund Committee Report, 1958

Hong Kong Hansard Reports, 1958

Public Works Sub-Committee of Finance Committee Report, 1958-59 Estimates, 1959-60

Hong Kong Law Reports and District Court Law Reports, 1959, Part I Hong Kong Law Reports and District Court Law Reports, 1959, Part II Hong Kong Government Staff List, 1959

Hong Kong General Clerical Service List, 1959

The Problem of Narcotic Drugs in Hong Kong

Hong Kong Commerce, Industry, Finance Directory, 1959

(for Commerce and Industry Department)

Jury List, 1959

Meteorological Results, 1957, Part I

School Certificate Examination Papers, 1959

Hong Kong Import and Export Classification List, 1959

Town Planning Maps and Charts

Advisory Committee Report on the Proposed Federation of Industries,

December, 1958

Salaries Commission Report, 1959 (out of print)

The Italian Renaissance-A Handbook for Teachers and Students

Venomous Snakes in Hong Kong

Weather Services for Shipping, 1959

Astronomical Tables for Hong Kong, 1960

Issued Weekly:

Hong Kong Government Gazette

Issued Monthly:

Trade Statistics, Imports and Exports and Re-exports

Issued Monthly (by Commerce and Industry Department) :

Trade Bulletin


Appendix XXI

(Chapter 16: Press, Publishing, Broadcasting, Films and Tourism) Some Leading Newspapers and Magazines


South China Morning Post Hong Kong Tiger Standard

China Mail

Daily Commodity Quotations


Daily (Morning Papers)

Wah Kiu Yat Po

Sing Tao Jih Pao

Kung Sheung Yat Po

Hong Kong Shih Pao (Hong Kong Times)

      Sing Pao Ta Kung Pao

Wen Wei Pao

Tsun Wan Yat Po

Chiu Yin Po

Sin Sang Yat Po

Hong Kong Sheung Po



Sunday Post-Herald

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Every 2 Months

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Hong Kong Daily News

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Abattoirs, New, 160.

Accidents, 132, 222, 223.

Industrial, 45, 153, 154.

Accountant General, 56, 344.

Administration, Government, 343-348.

Adoption, 196, 197, 229.

Adult Education, 125-127.

Afghanistan, 76.

      After-care, Prisoners', 225. Aged, Homes for, 204.

Agriculture, 28, 48-50, 82-85, 87, 88,


Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry

       Department, 48, 83, 86, 89, 93, 97. Aircraft Engineering, 68, 69, 257. Airport, New, 53, 68, 245, 255-258.


      'Alistair Hardy', The, 89, 289. Aluminiumware, 62, 66. Amateur Sports Federation and Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, 306.

America, Central and South, 30. America, United States of, 20, 21,

30, 49, 69-72, 74, 75, 78, 81, 92, 102, 193, 196, 203, 280.

Anglican Church, 291.

Animal Diseases, 96, 97.

      Animal Industries, 87, 88, 94-97. Apprentices, 48.

Approved Schools, 200.

Archbishop of Canterbury, 291. Armed Forces, 28, 38.

Armorial Bearings, Forword, 210. Arts, The, 127, 128, 299-302.

Asian Games, 304.

Assets and Liabilities, 51, 53, 54,

360, 361.

Attorney General, 343.

Audit, Director of, 344.

Australia, 30, 69, 73, 81, 102, 156,


Australian Tariff Board, 75. Austria, 81.

Auxiliary Civil Defence Services,

        282-285. Aviation, 255-258.

Banking, 59-61, 365.

Bankruptcies and Liquidations, 212,


Bathing and Beaches, 306, 307. Beer, 54.

Belgium, 73, 75, 81.

Bennett, Mr. C. J. M., 235. Bets and Sweeps Taxes, 58. Bibiography, 354.

Birds, 319, 320.

Births and Deaths, 24, 133, 225,

228, 229.

Blind, Care of, 203.

Blood Banks, 155. Boat Dwellers, 27.

Borneo, North, 30, 251. Botanic Gardens, 308.

Boy Scouts and Cubs, 118, 197. Boys' and Girls' Clubs Association,

118, 197, 272.

Brazil, 81.

Bridge, Cross-Harbour, 191. British-

Broadcasting Corporation,


Council, 118, 300, 301. Red Cross, 20, 117, 206. Subjects, 24.

Broadcasting, Commercial, 269,

275, 276.

Broadcasting Government, 269-275.

Brunei, 30.

Buddhists, 146, 147, 195, 296,

336, 337.


Authority, 186, 187.

Co-operative Societies, 9, 109,

111, 175, 186.

Covenants, 166.

Government, 243-246.

Ordinance, 209.

Private, 186, 339, 340.

Burma, 73, 76, 81.

Bus Services, 240.

Business Registration, 58, 209. Butterflies and Moths, 320, 321.

Cable & Wireless, Ltd., 260, 261. Canada, 30, 67, 69, 73, 77, 81, 261. Canossa Home for the Blind, 203. Cantonese, 25, 26, 223.

Cape Collinson Training Centre,

223, 225.

'Cape St. Mary', 89, 289.



C.A.R.E. Inc., 105, 110, 205, 206. Car Parks, Multi-storey, 255. Castle Peak Boys' Home, 200. Catholic Relief Services, 196, 200,


Catholic Welfare Committee of

China, 205.

Cattle, 95, 96.

Cement, 68.

Census, 11, 23, 24, 132.

     Certificates of Origin, 77-79. Ceylon, 73.

Chartered Bank, 59.

Cheung Chau Electric Co., Ltd., 238. Chi Ma Wan Prison, 223, 224. Child Welfare, 194-199. Children's Centre, Kowloon, 201. Children's Garden, 195. Children's Playground Association,

118, 198.

China, 67, 69-72, 78, 98, 104, 105, 192, 193, 216, 223, 252, 253, 258, 287, 328, 329, 336, 337, 339, 340. China Dyeing Works, 39, 40. China Light & Power Co., Ltd.,

237, 238.

     China Motor Bus Co., Ltd., 46, 240. Chinese Affairs, Secretary for, 208,


Chinese Colleges' Joint Council, 116. Chinese General Chamber of

Commerce, 77.

Chinese Manufacturers' Association,

35, 77, 78.

Cholera, 132.

Christian Children's Fund, 195. Church World Service, 205, 206, 293. Churches, Anglican and

     Non-Anglican, 291-295. Cinemas, 279, 280.

City Hall, New, 245, 299, 302, 346. Civil-

Aid Services, 282, 285.

Aviation, 255-258.

Defence Services, 282-285.

Service, 343-352.

Clean Air Ordinance, 42, 209.

Climate, 313, 314.

Clinics, 7, 8, 13, 14, 129, 130, 134,


Collective Agreements in Industry, 41. Colonial Development and Welfare,

8, 12, 54, 85, 86, 92, 177, 178, 357, 364.

Colonial Secretary, 343.

Commerce and Industry Department,

       32, 75-78, 80, 345. Commerce, Industry and Finance

Directory, 76.

Common Market Countries, 75. Commonwealth Preference, 78, 80. Communicable Diseases, 133-135,


Communications, 248-263.

Community Centres, 18, 21, 193,


Companies Registry, 226, 227. Confucianism, 297.

Conservancy, 162, 163. Constitution, 342, 343.

Consular Corps, 81. Co-operative Development

Department, 89, 106-108.

Co-operative Societies, 9, 107-111,


Cordage, Rope and Twine, 68. Cost of Living, 33, 34. Cotton Textiles, 29, 65. Courts, 212-215.

Credit and Consumers' Societies, 111. Crime, 218, 378-380.

Crops, 91, 92.

Crown Leases, 82, 83, 165, 167, 226. Currency and Banking, 59-61.

Dance Halls Tax, 58.

Deaf and Dumb, Overseas Chinese

School for the, 203, 204.

Deaf, Hong Kong School for the,

203, 204.

Death Rate, 24, 133, 228, 229. Defence Force, Royal Hong Kong,


Dental Service, 155, 156. Dermatitis, 31, 44, 154. Dermatology, 137, 138.

Development Loan Fund, 53, 360. Diphtheria, 133, 140, 141. Disabled, Care of, 20, 202-205. Disabled Children, Society for the

Relief of, 20.

Discharged Prisoners' Aid Society,


Diseases, Communicable, 133-142,


Dispensaries, 145-147, 376. District Courts, 47, 212, 213. District Health Work, 157-159. Dockyard, H.M., 28, 38, 39, 64, 80,


Dockyards, Civilian, 63, 64. Dollar, Hong Kong, 59. Drainage, 246, 247.

Drama, 127, 128, 299, 300.

Driving Licences, 223. Ducks and Geese, 96.

Duke of Edinburgh, Foreword, 13,

144, 199, 244.


Dutiable Commodities Legislation,


Duties, Import and Excise, 54, 55. Dysentery, 142.

Earnings and Profits Tax, 52, 53,


Ebenezer Blind Home, 203.

E.C.A.F.E., 77.

Education, 7, 8, 11-13, 19, 105, 106,


Adult, 125-127.

Electric Torches, Batteries and

Bulbs, 62, 66.

Electricity, 235-238.

Electricity Commission, 235, 236. Embargoes on Trade with China,

3, 14, 341.

Emergency Relief, 206.

Empire Games, 304.

Employment, 28-33.

Advisory Committee, 38. Bill, 41.

Conditions of, 31-34, 45, 46. Liaison Office, 38, 39. Enamelware, 29, 62, 66, 75. Enteric Fever, 141, 142. Entertainment Tax, 58.

Essential Services Corps, 282, 284. Estate Duty, 58, 210. European Common Market and

Free Trade Area, 75.

       Evening Institutes, 115, 117, 125. Evening School of Higher Chinese

        Studies, 125, 126. Examinations, 122, 123, 373. Exchange Control, 60, 61. Exchange Fund, 60.

Excise Duties, 54, 55.

Executive Council, 342, 343, 381,


Expenditure, Government, 4-6, 8, 10,

12-14, 118, 119, 130, 131, 363, 364.

Exports, 69-76, 366, 367.

Factories and Industrial Under-

takings, 28-30.

Factory Registration and Inspection,


Fang Brothers Company, Limited,


Fauna, 318-321.

Protection of, 321.

Ferries, 240-242, 250.

Ferry Piers, New, 241, 242.

'Ferry to Hong Kong', 279.

Festival of the Arts, 270, 271, 299,

301, 302.


Film Censorship, 278, 280. Film Industry, 278-280.

Finance Committee, Standing,

342, 343.

Financial Control, 51.

Financial Secretary, 51, 343, 344. Fire Brigade, 249, 346. Fish-

Fry, 98, 99.

Marine, 97, 98.

Marketing Organization, 87, 90,

103, 105, 107, 110.

Ponds, 98, 111.

Fisherfolk, Training and Education

of, 105, 106.

Fisheries, 89, 97-99.

Advisory Committee, 86, 89. Research Unit, 89, 289.

Fishermen, Loans to, 90.

Fishermen's Credit and Marketing

Society, 110.

Fishermen's Thrift and Loan Societies,


Flora, 321-324.

Food Inspection, 159.

Foodstuffs and Beverages, 67. Footwear, 62, 67, 75.

Foreign Assets Control Regulations

(U.S.), 78.

Foreign Exchange Banks, 61, 365. Forestry, 84, 86, 90, 91, 99-102. France, 30, 75, 81.

Free Churches, 291, 292.

Free Trade Area, European, 75. Fruit, 67, 92, 321, 322. Fukien, 24.

Furniture, wooden, 68.

Game Licences, 321.

Gardens Section, Urban Services

Department, 308, 309.

Gas, 238, 239.

General Health, 132, 133.

Geography of Hong Kong, 310-313.

Geology of Hong Kong, 315-317. Germany, Western, 73, 77, 81. Ghana, 76.

Gin Drinker's Bay, 63.

Ginger, 67, 92.

Girl Guides and Brownies, 118, 197. Gloves, 62, 66, 75.


Administration, 343-352.

(Art) Collections, 302, 303. Information Services, 266-269.

Greece, 76, 81.

Green, Mr. A. W. T., 127.

Green, Mr. T. C., 207.

Gregory, Professor W. D., 77.


Hakka, 25, 26.

Hats, felt, 66.

Hawkers, 160, 161.


Health, General, 132, 133.

Health Education, 140, 151, 154.

Inspectors, 149.

Services, 13, 14, 149-156. Visitors, 148, 152.

Heavy Industries, 63, 64. Herbarium, Colonial, 308, 324. Heung Yee Kuk, 210, 348. Higher Education, 120-123. Higher Studies Overseas, 122, 374. Hindus, 296.

History of Hong Kong, 325-341. Ho Tung Collection, 302.

Ho Tung Technical School, 124. Hoklo, 26.

Hong Kong and China Gas Co.,

Ltd., 238, 239.

Hong Kong and Kowloon Trades

Union Council, 36.

Hongkong and Shanghai Banking

Corporation, 59.

Hong Kong and Whampoa Dock

Co., Ltd., 48.

Hongkong and Yaumati Ferry Co.,

Ltd., 241, 242, 250. Hong Kong Anti-Tuberculosis

Association, 134, 144, 145. Hong Kong Christian Council, 292. Hong Kong Council of Social

Service, 21, 118, 192-194, 202. Hong Kong Dental Society, 156. Hong Kong Economic Housing

Society, 175.

Hongkong Electric Co., Ltd., 46,

236. -

Hong Kong Family Welfare

Society, 206.

Hong Kong Federation of Trade

Unions, 36.

Hong Kong General Chamber of

Commerce, 75, 77, 125. Hong Kong Government Office,

London, 80, 345.

Hong Kong House, London, 122. Hong Kong Housing Society, 8,

174, 175.

Hong Kong Island, 310, 311.

Hong Kong Jockey Club, 131, 145,


Hong Kong Junior Chamber of

Commerce, 198, 203.

Hong Kong Model Housing

Society, 175.

Hong Kong Sea School, 201. Hong Kong Settlers Housing

Corporation, 9, 175.

Hong Kong Society for the Blind,


Hong Kong Society for the

Protection of Children, 196. Hong Kong Society for

Rehabilitation, 45, 202. Hong Kong Spinners Ltd., 46. Hong Kong Students' Unit,

London, 122.

Hong Kong Teachers' Association,


Hong Kong Technical College, 12,

37, 48.

Hong Kong Telephone Co., Ltd.,

46, 260-262.

Hong Kong Textile Negotiating

Committee, 74.

Hong Kong Tourist Association,

118, 280, 281.

Hongkong Tramways Ltd., 46, 239. Hong Kong Travel Bulletin, 280. Hong Kong, University of, 12, 47,

83, 89, 117-121, 131, 286-290, 334. Hong Yat Pang, Mr., 127. Hospitals, 13, 14, 129, 130, 142-148,

244, 336, 376.

Hotels, 281.

Housing, 5-11, 170-189.

Authority, 8, 176-179, 346. Commissioner for, 176, 346. Division, 176, 346. Society, 8.

Special Committee on, 9, 171,


Staff and Workers, 175. Survey, 172, 173.

Immigration, 223.

Import and Excise Duties, 54, 55. Imports, 69-76, 366.

Income Tax, 56-58. India, 74, 81.

Indian Chamber of Commerce, 78. Indonesia, 30, 69, 70, 72, 73, 81. Industrial-

Accidents, 45, 129, 154. Development, 28, 62, 63. Health, 42-45, 129, 153, 154. Relations, 34, 36-41, 47. Safety, 34.

Training, 47, 48.

Undertakings, 28, 29, 358. Welfare, 45, 46.

Industry, 29, 32, 62-69, 340, 341.

Infant and Child Welfare, 194-197. Infectious Diseases, 133-142, 375. Influenza, 132.

Information Services Department,

35, 118, 269.


Inland Lots, 34. Inland Revenue Department, 345.

Ordinance, 56, 57. Insecticides, Poisoning from, 43. Interest Tax, 57.

Internal Revenue, 56-58. International Geophysical Year,

262, 263.

International Labour Conventions,


International Social Service, Inc.,


Irrigation, 84, 92, 93. Italy, 81.

Japan, 64, 69, 70, 72, 81, 207. Jews, 295, 296.

Joint Consultation in Industry, 37. Joseph Trust Fund, 108. Judiciary, 343.

Junks, Mechanization of, 89, 90. Juvenile Care Centre, 201. Juvenile Delinquency, 199-201.

Kadoorie Agricultural Aid Associa-

tion, 85, 88, 93-96.

Kadoorie Agricultural Aid Loan

Fund, 86, 96.

Kaifongs, 117, 146, 206.

Kai Tak Airport, 53, 68, 245,

255-258, 336.

Kearns, Mr. H., 74, 75. Kenya, 75.

Korea, North, 78, 341. South, 70, 81.

Kowloon, 310, 312.

Kowloon-Canton Railway, 48, 190,

252, 253, 258.

Kowloon Hospital, 143, 144, 244. Kowloon Motor Bus Co. (1933)

        Ltd., 240. Kuoyü, 25.

Kwai Chung Girls' Home, 200. Kwun Tong, 29, 34, 45, 63, 85, 161,

167, 174, 242.


Advisory Board, 34. Department, 28, 34, 35, 41, 45,

47, 129.

Disputes and Stoppages, 37-41. Inspection, 34, 35, 340. Legislation, 29, 32, 34, 41, 42. Organization, 36, 37.

Skilled, Semi-skilled, Unskilled,

30, 31.

Lai Chi Kok Prison, 223, 224.


Land, 165-170, 310. Area, 310, 311. Auctions, 166. Court, 82.

Office (Registrar General),

225, 226. Military, 191.

Policy, 82, 83, 166, 167.

Sales and Transactions, 29, 53,

167, 168.

Survey, 169, 170.

Tenure, 82, 83, 165.

Utilization, 83-86.

Value and Development, 166,

168, 169.

Law and Order, 212-223.

Law Courts, 212-214.

Leases, Crown, 82, 166, 167, 226. Leather and Travel Goods, 68. Legislation, 41, 42, 119, 209-211, 343. Legislative Council, 51, 342, 343,

382, 383.

Lepers, Mission to, 137. Leprosy, 130, 136, 137.

Li Cheng Uk Tomb, 308, 309. Libraries, 118, 302, 303. Life-Guards, 307.

Lighthouses, 248.

Light Industries, 62-69.

Lions Club of Hong Kong, 198. Liquidations, 212, 227. Liquor, 54.

Little Sisters of the Poor, 204. Loans from United Kingdom, 53,

54, 257, 357.

Loans, Government Dollar, 53. Local Armed Forces, 282-284. London Missionary Society, 291. London Office, Hong Kong Govern-

ment, 80.

Low-cost Housing (other than

Resettlement), 9, 10, 167. Lutheran World Service, 205, 206,


Macau, 67, 70, 73, 287, 326-328,


Grand Prix, 271, 305. Magazines, 264, 265, 385. Magistracies, 213, 214, 244. Magistrates Courts, 212-214. Malaria, 132, 138-140.

Malaya, 67, 69-71, 251, 261. Mammals, 318, 319.

Man-days, Loss of by Strikes, 37, 38. Marden, Mr. C. E., 77.

Marine Communications, 248-252. Marine Department, 48, 251. Marine Police, 215, 216, 249.


Marketing, 102-108.


Marketing Advisory Board, 106. Markets, Urban, 160, 161. Marriage Registry, 227, 228. Maternal and Child Health, 151-153,


Maternity Homes and Hospitals,

143, 144, 146, 151, 376.

Measles, 132, 142.

Measures and Weights, 353.

Medical and Health Department, 7,


Medical-Personnel, 377.

Services, 13, 14, 129, 130. Training, 377.

Medicines (Proprietary), 54, 55. Mental Health, 143, 204.

Mental Health Association of Hong

       Kong, 118, 204. Mercantile Bank, 59, 60. Metal Products, 66, 67. Meteorology, 262, 362. Methyl Alcohol, 54, 55. Midwifery Services, 148. Migration, 30, 49. Milk, 96.

Mines Department, 34, 111-113. Mining, 111-113.

Minor (Labour) Disputes, 37, 38. Mission Hospitals, 144.

Moral Welfare, 201, 202. Mosquitoes, 138-140.

Mould, Mr. John, O.B.E., A.M.I.E.E.,


Music, 127, 299, 300.

Music Training Centre, 203. Muslims, 295.

Narcotics, 80, 206-208, 268, 272.

Natural Increase, 3, 24.

Naval Dockyard, (see under

Dockyard, H.M.).

Netherlands, 73, 75, 81.

New Territories, 310.

Administration, 85, 129, 347.

Beaches, 307.

Geography, 312, 313.

Geology, 315-317.

Health Services, 163, 164.

Housing, 187-189.

Land Tenure, and Utilization,


Occupations, 48-50.

Population, 25-27.

   Public Health, 129, 163, 164. Rates, 56.

Scavenging, 163, 164.

Water Supply, 234, 235.

New Zealand, 69, 77. Newspapers, 264, 265, 385. Nightsoil, Maturation of, 107,


North Point Relief Camp, 203,


Nursing Homes, 143.

Occupational Diseases, 42-46, 129. Occupations, 28, 29, 48-50. Oil, Hydrocarbon, 54, 55.

Ophthalmia Neonatorum, 375. Ophthalmic Service, 130.

Overseas Representation, 80, 81.

Overtime, 32.

Oyster-beds and Fish Ponds, 98, 99.

Paints, 62, 67.

Pakistan, 70, 74, 76, 81, 251.

Parks and Playgrounds, 306-309. Parsees, 295.

Patents, 227.

Peak Tramway, 239, 240. Pearls, 98.

Pest Control, 162. Philippines, 81. Photography, 300.

Physical Education, 128.

Picture Collection, Government, 302. Pigeons, 96.

Pig-Raising, 94, 95, 109.

Plasticware, 29, 62, 68.

Po Leung Kuk, 118, 195, 202. Police, 215-223, 346.

Auxiliaries, 210, 217, 218, 220,

282. Buildings, 245.

Communications and Transport,

220, 221.

Supervision, 218.

Training, 215, 218-220.

Poliomyelitis, 140, 141.

Population, 3, 23-27, 133, 338, 339.

Port, 248-252.

Committee, 34, 248.

Health, 149, 150.

Welfare Committee, 251, 252. Works, 242, 243.

Portuguese, 24, 81. Post Office, 258, 259.

Post-secondary Education, 12, 121.

Potatoes, Sweet, 91, 92.

Poultry, 96.

Prawns, Marketing of, 105.

Press, 264-266, 385.

Preventive Service, 79, 80, 207,


Primary Production, 86-113.

Printing Department, 48, 347. Prisons, 223-225, 245, 346. Probation, 199-201.

Professional Teachers' Training

Board, 117.

Profits Tax, 57, 58.

Property Tax, 57. Prostitution, 201, 202. Protestant Churches, 292, 293. Public-

Assistance, 204-206. Debt, 53, 364.

Finance and Taxation, 51-58. Health, 129-164.

Latrines and Bathhouses, 161,

162, 246.

Relations Office, (see Information

Services Department). Service, 348-352.

Services Commission, 348, 349. Utilities, 230-242. Works, 242-247.

          Works Department, 10, 48, 345. Publications, Official, 384. Publishing, 266, 385.

Quarantine, 249.

Quarries, 254.

Quartering Authority, 347.

Queen Elizabeth Hospital, New, 13,

144, 244.

Queen Mary Hospital, 143, 144,


Radio-activity, Precautions against,

44, 153.

Radio Hong Kong, 46, 269-275,


Radio Licensing, 259, 269. Railway, (see Kowloon-Canton


Rainfall, 230, 313, 314.

Rates, 55, 56.

Rating and Valuation Department,

56, 344, 345.

Rattanware, 62, 68.

Reading List, 354.

Reclamations, 10, 29, 334, 335.

Records (Registrar General), 225-229.

Recreation and Sport, 304-309.

Rediffusion, 276-278, 301.

Re-exports, 69-73, 367.

Refugees, 1-22, 223.

Registered and Recorded Factories,

28, 42.

Registrar General's Department,


Registration, Business, 209.

Registry of Trade Unions, 34-36.


Rehabilitation Centre, 20.

Relief & Public Assistance, 204-206. Religion, 291-298.

Remand Home, 200. Rent Controls, 179, 180. Reptiles, 320. Research, 286-290. Reservoirs, 230-234, 335.

Plover Cove, 5, 231. Shek Pik, 4, 233, 234.

Tại Lam Chung, 4, 230-232. Resettlement, 6-9, 21, 22, 180-185. Cottage Areas, 6, 182, 183. Department, 345, 346. Estates, 6-18, 115, 181, 182,

184, 245, 246.

Estates Loan & Savings

Associations, 193, 194. Multi-storey Factories, 182,

183, 245.

Population, 6, 7, 181, 183,


Retail Price Index, 32, 33. Revenue and Expenditure, 51-54,

362, 363.

Rice, 72, 91, 94.

Road Traffic, 211, 221-223, 340. Roads, 243, 253, 254, 340. Rolling Mills, 64.

Roman Catholic Church, 293-295. Rope-making, 68.

Rotary Clubs, 118.

Royal Hong Kong Defence Force,


Royal Observatory, 244, 262, 314,


Rural Committees, 163, 348. Rural Development Committee, 85,


Ruttonjee, Hon. Dhun, O.B.E., J.P.,

77, 235.

St. John Ambulance Association &

Brigade, 45, 154, 156, 285. Salaried Workers' Thrift and Loan

Societies, 111.

Salaries Commission, 31, 286,


Salaries Tax, 57.

Salesian Technical Schools, 124,


Salt Fish, 104, 105.

Salt-water Mains, 233.

Salvation Army, 46, 195, 198, 206,


Sanitary Services, 149, 150, 156-164. Sarawak, 30.

Scavenging, 162, 163.

Scholarships and Bursaries, 117, 121.





Building Programme, 11, 12,

114, 115, 243, 244, 291. Certificate Examinations, 122,

123, 373.

Government, 11, 12, 115. Grant, 115, 116.

   Health Service, 152, 153. Junior Secondary, 19. Music Festival, 127.

No. of Schools and Pupils, 11,

12, 114.

Post-secondary, 12, 121. Primary, 11-13, 18, 19, 115,


Private, 114-117. Secondary, 12, 115. Special, 117.

Subsidized, 115, 116.

Shanghai, 50.

Shek Kip Mei Fire, 1, 5, 181,


     Shek Pik, 4, 63, 230, 233, 234. Shipbreaking, 64, 250.

Shipbuilding and Repairing, 29,

62-64, 251.

Shipping, 64, 249-252. Silicosis, 43, 154.

Silvermine Bay Holiday Camp, 198, Sin Tin Toa, 204. Singapore, 156, 261.

Sisters of the Good Shepherd, 201,


Slaughterhouses, 159, 160. Smallpox, 132.


Hygiene, 201.

Welfare, 192-208.

Welfare Advisory Committee,

194, 203.

Welfare Department, 18, 118,

193, 344.

Society for the Protection of

Children, 196.

Society for Rehabilitation, 45, 202. Society for the Relief of Disabled

Children, 202.

Soil Survey, 85.

      South China Textile Ltd., 40. Special Afternoon Classes, 117. Special Classes Centre, 122. Sport and Recreation, 304-309. Squatters, 1, 180-185. Staff training, Government, 48,


Stamp Competition, 259, 260. Stamp Duty, 58.

Standing Conference of Youth

Organizations, 198.

Stanley Prison, 223, 224.

'Star' Ferry Co., Ltd., 46, 240, 241. Statistics, 23, 79, 132, 133, 345. Statistics, Trade, 368-371. Sterling Area, 59, 60.

Stores Department, 48, 244, 346, 347. Street-Lighting, 254. Strikes, 37-41. Sugar Refining, 67. Sung Wong Toi, 326. Supervisory Training, 47. Supreme Court, 212, 213. Survey, Land, 83, 84. Sweden, 73, 76, 81. Swimming Pools, 308. Switzerland, 81.

Table Waters, 54, 55.

Tai Lam Chung, 4, 63, 230, 232,

233, 235.

Tai Lam Prison, 208, 223-225. Taikoo Dockyard and Engineering

Co., Ltd., 46, 48.

Taikoo Sugar Refining Co., Ltd., 46. Taiwan (Formosa), 70. Tanka, 27.

Tariffs, 75.

Taxation, 51-58.

Tea, 92.

Teacher Training, 115, 117. Teachers' Association, 37. Technical-

College, Hong Kong, 12, 37, 48,

123, 124.

Education, 34, 123-125.

Education, Standing Committee

on, 48.

Telecommunications, 260, 261,


Telegraph and Radiotelephone

Services, 260, 261. Telephones, 261, 262. Television, 277, 278. Temples, 297, 298.

Tenancy Inquiry Bureaux, 180,


Tenancy Tribunals, 180, 212, 214,


Textiles, 29, 64-66, 69, 72-76, 79. Textiles, voluntary agreement to

limit, 73, 74.

Thailand, 30, 69, 70, 72, 73, 76, 81,


Thomson Memorial Boys' Hostel, 46. Timber, 72, 102.

Tobacco, 54, 55, 67.

Toilet Preparations, 54, 55. Tourism, 280, 281.

Town Planning, 189-191.



Trade, 69-79.

and Industry Advisory

Committee, 76.

Bulletin, 76.

Commissioners, 81.

Control, 79, 341.

Fairs and Exhibitions, 77.

Marks and Patents Registries,

225, 227.

     Missions, 76, 77. Promotion, 76, 77.

Representation, 81.

Trade Unions, 35-37.

Education, 37.

Legislation, 35, 42.

Traffic, 221-223, 340.

Traffic Accidents, 132, 222, 223.

Training, 47, 147, 350-352.

Training Centres, Stanley and Cape

Collinson, 223, 225.

Tramways, 239.

Tregear, Dr. T. R., 83.

Triads, 218.

Tuberculosis, 19, 129, 132-135.

Tung Wah Group of Hospitals, 118,

130, 144, 146, 206, 296.

Uganda, 75.

Unemployment and Under-

employment, 30.

United Kingdom, 49, 51, 53, 61, 67, 69-71, 73, 74, 76, 78, 79, 81, 159, 193, 206, 257, 261.

United Kingdom Cotton Board, 74,


United Nations, 1, 351, 352. United States of America, (see

        under America, United States of). University of Hong Kong, (see

        under Hong Kong, University of). University Research, 286-290. Urban---

Buildidngs, 185-187.

     Council, 129, 156, 157, 345. Population, 24, 25. Services, 156-163, 306-309. Services Department, 129,

306-309, 345.

Vacuum Flasks and Jugs, 62, 66. Vegetable-

Production, 91-94.

Marketing Organization, 106-108. Marketing Societies, 106-110. Vehicles, 254, 255.

Vehicular-ferries, 250.

Venereal Diseases, 130, 135, 136.

VHF/FM Broadcasting, 269, 274. Victoria-

Park, 307.

Port of, 248-252, 311.

Prison, 223, 224.

Technical School, 124.

Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, 271,


Vietnam, 81.

Vocational Training, 34, 48, 203.

Voluntary Education and Welfare,

117, 118.

Wages, 31, 32.

Walkfast Leather Shoe Works,

Limited, 41.

Water Supply, 4, 5, 230-235 (see

also under Reservoirs). Weather, Year's, 314, 315. Weights and Measures, 353. West, Indies, 49.

Wilson, Mr. John F., 203.

Women and Juveniles, Welfare of,


Wood and Rattanware, 68. Working Hours, 29, 32, 33. Workmen's Compensation, 35, 46,

47, 129.

'World of Suzie Wong', 279. World Refugee Year, 1-22, 192,

193, 203, 268, 293.

Y.M.C.A., 118, 197, 198, 293. Y.W.C.A., 46, 118, 195, 197, 198,


Youth Organizations, 197-199.

Printed and Published by the Acting Government Printer, at the Government Press, Java Road Hong Kong, February 1960


23% -










Pearl River (Chu Kong)









(East River)








































1000-1500 FT.




113 E

Drawn by C.L.S.O. P.W.D. 1957.



Rivers & Streams



300-1000 FT

0-300 FT

Crown Copyright Reserved


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