Henry Tom Brooks, Chief Officer, HK Fire Brigade 1922-1937 | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

Henry Tom Brooks, Chief Officer, HK Fire Brigade 1922-1937

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Henry Tom Brooks, Chief Officer, HK Fire Brigade 1922-1937

In 1922 Henry Tom Brooks was appointed to the position of Superintendent of the Hong Kong Fire Brigade. His task was to modernize the fire service in Hong Kong which was considerably out of date. By the time he retired, as Chief Fire Officer, he had established two main fire stations and eleven sub-stations in the Colony. One of his initial achievements was to provide training facilities for the fire-fighters.

 When Henry arrived in HK with his wife Emily, son Roland, and daugher Doris, he was iniitially stationed at Kowloon Fire Station. The family moved to the Hong Kong Central Fire Station on its completion in 1926. 

On 18 July 1925 a landslip occurred at Po Hing Fong - destroying many houses and causing 73 deaths. For his exceptional courage in rescuing victims Henry was awarded the Venerable Order of St John of Jerusalem Medal.

Henry retired from the Fire Service and returned to England in 1937 with Emily. His farewell function at the CFS received front page coverage in the South China Morning Post. Henry died in Exmouth, Devon, in 1940.

The Epilogue of the book "The Great Fire of Hong Kong" by Adam Nebbs, published 2010 in Hong Kong, records the achievements of Henry T Brooks In Hong Kong.

 Suziepie

 

 

Date picture taken (may be approximate): 
Monday, January 1, 1923
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