Methodist Sailors and Soldiers' Home [1929-????] | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

Methodist Sailors and Soldiers' Home [1929-????]

Current condition: 
Demolished / No longer exists
Date Place completed: 
1929-01-30

This stood on the corner of Anton Street and Hennessy Road. It replaced an earlier building that stood on the corner of Arsenal Street and Praya East, which was demolished when Hennessy Road was built.

Photos that show this place

Comments

The group of photos from 1972 are courtesy of Dave Davies. He writes:

I lived in Hong Kong with my family from November 1971 until May 1974.

I lived in Wanchai from November 1971 until September 1972.  I had a 2 storey apartment in the Soldiers and Sailors Home (22 Hennessy Road).

The Vicar/Warden that ran the Soldiers and Sailors home had a 2 storey apartment inside the S&S which he didn’t use as he had a house half way up the peak. He helped to subsidise his house by renting out the apartment.  The flat had a balcony overlooking Hennessy Road which is shown on some of my Hong Kong photos.  I also remember that it had a huge fireplace in the dining room which is also shown on my photos.

Sadly this building has now been demolished and replaced with a Skyscraper.

My wife & I lived in HK Aug 1963 to Aug 1966. The Rev. C.S. "Henry" Clarke was Minister of the Methodist Church & also superintendent of the S & S. He arived in 1963 a month or so before we did. We were good friends of the Clarke's. They did live at the S & S for the first year or so then moved to the mission apartments half way up the Peak. Also living there were Rev. Frank Evison, Chairman of the District (like a Bishop) for the Methodist Church and Rev. Stanley Vincent who was Secretary of the British & Foreign Bible Society.

Rev. Clarke was also Free Church Chaplain to the Royal Navy. After church on Sunday a group of us would meet at the S & S for lunch and then take any visiting servicemen out for a drive to the beach and show them the sights of HK. Over the years we entertained many of them in our home. Late afternoon we would all gather at the Clarke's for tea before going to the evening service.

We have many good memories of our time in HK.

Best wishes,

Herb

The following excerpt comes from a booklet produced in 2013 to celebrate the 120th anniversary of the Methodist international Church. Revd Dr G Howard Mellor has kindly sent me a soft copy of the booklet and permission to include excerpts here. 

The new S&S home ((ie this building)) was completed in 1927 [Update, 5 Jan 2015: it was completed in 1929, see below] at 22 Hennessey Road with a new manse for the minister at 75 Ventris Road. The Minster of the English Methodist Church also served the S&S Home right through until the 1990s.

The ministers of MIC used the S&S Home as a base for their offices, whilst living in one of 6 flats built by the MMS at 51 Barker Road. It seems they held services in the mornings with Sunday School, had Sunday Lunch at the S&S Home and held afternoon fellowship groups with a Sunday evening service at the Home.

There were three very significant ministers during this time, Joseph Sandbach, Edgar Hopkins and Cyril Clarke. They developed the work and encouraged community involvement.

You can click here to download the complete booklet.

Thanks to Axel, who notes that the correct name is:

 "The Sailors and Soldiers' Home", not the other way round.

You can see the name if you zoom in on this photo, which confirms Axel's version:

Wanchai 1976

Regards, David

 

China Mail 30 January 1929

The Wesleyan Sailors' and Soldiers' Home was opened by Governor Clementi on 30 January 1929.

That suggests the 1927 completion date given in the church's booklet above is wrong. A check through the PWD annual reports finds these mentions of the building:

  • 1927: "Building for the Sailors' and Soldiers' Home in I.L. 2616, Praya East" is shown in point 34 under the "In course of erection" heading.
  • 1928: It is in point 33 this year, under the same heading but with the note: "nearing completion".
  • 1929: It is in point 40, listed under "Works completed".

I've updated the completion date on this page from 1927 to 1929, and also sent a message to the church.

Thanks David.  That’s cleared things up nicely. Andrew