1916 Pinewood Battery Detachment | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong
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1916 Pinewood Battery Detachment

1916 Pinewood Battery Detachment
Authors: 

No other information is given but assumed to be related to Pinewood Battery. 

Date picture taken (may be approximate): 
Monday, January 10, 1916
Connections: 

Comments

Possibly taken in front of the "Caretakers quarters" shown on this plan of the site.

Plan of Pinewood dated 1903.JPG
Plan of Pinewood dated 1903.JPG, by The National Archives UK: WO 78/5362

Looks very likely taken in front of the Caretakers Quarters.

2020 Pinewood Battery - Sketch of Caretakers Quarters
2020 Pinewood Battery - Sketch of Caretakers Quarters, by AFCD

 

I have a series of photos from the collection of John Charles Oswald (1857-1930, a Foochow Tea merchant showing the Pinewood Battery and surrounds befroe it was turned into an AA emplacement in the late 1920s. Definitely the caretakers hut:

View of Mt Davis looking West from Pinewood Battery 1920s
View of Mt Davis looking West from Pinewood Battery 1920s, by Herostratus
Caretakers House Pinewood Battery 1920s
Caretakers House Pinewood Battery 1920s, by Herostratus
Caretakers House Pinewood Battery 02 1920s
Caretakers House Pinewood Battery 02 1920s, by Herostratus
Caretakers House Pinewood Battery Flag Raising 1920s
Caretakers House Pinewood Battery Flag Raising 1920s , by Herostratus
Hatton & Lugard Road From Pinewood Battery 1920s
Hatton & Lugard Road From Pinewood Battery 1920s, by Herostratus
Hatton & Lugard Road From Pinewood Battery 02 1920s
Hatton & Lugard Road From Pinewood Battery 02 1920s, by Herostratus

Great photos. Thanks.

From work I've done with the HKU Lung Fu Shan Environmental Education Centre, I think what these photos are showing (particularly the one of the flag raising) is the period in the site's history when it was leased to the HK Boy Scouts (first Kowloon troop raised in 1910). This early sort-of-Gilwell-Camp is NOT something that the HK Boy Scout's history seems to know about.

SCMP 12 Mar 1923, p.6 and  25 Sept 1924, p.1 – Pinewood Battery gazetted as permanent training site for the Boy Scouts

This seems only to have lasted a year or two - I can find references until 1925, but not thereafter. I have a very fuzzy image that I think may be of the scouts using the site, but I'm unsure (and can never remember how to post the bally things). Certainly by 1929 the scouts' outdoor camp had moved to 'Barker's Bungalow' in Saiwan Bay. In the meantime, however:

SCMP, 12 Aug 1926, p.6 – Report of the Lands Officer for the Year 1925, “Pinewood Battery and High West Reserve and the Sanitarium and Reserve at Magazine Gap were transferred to the Colonial Government and memoranda giving effect to these transactions were prepared and recorded in the Lands Office.” The Report of the Director of Public Works for 1925 indicates the handover was on 28th March 1925.

It is very unclear when the site was returned to the military, but my sense is that it was not until the 1930s.

Stephen D

Information is scant on the use of Pinewood Battery as a scout training camp from 1925.

a) 1923 Hong Kong Boy Scouts' Association Annual Report- China Mail 25 September 1924
"The Pinewood Battery was rented from the Military Authorities for a training camp. While the camp is undeniably useful, the uncertainty of length of tenure has prevented large expenditure in the necessary plant, but on the future appointment of a trained and qualified deputy camp chief to superintend this branch of scout activity we hope to see a great advance made in the use of the ground at our disposal. The place is in frequent use, and is available in all weather, there being ample shelter and storage space."

b) 1924 Saiyingpun School Annual Report - Hong Kong Telegraph 30 December 1924

Mention is made of successful camps being held at Sai Wan, Taipo Market, Telegraph Bay, Pinewood and Tsin ( Tsuen) Wan.

c) 1924 Hong Kong Boy Scouts' Association Annual Report - China Mail 10 January 1925

Mention is made of the cost of upkeeping Pine Woods will not appear again (in the Report) as these had been taken over by the Military Authorities, but the Association would still be allowed to use them