Service Reservoir at Bishop Hill [1904- ]

Submitted by pyktsang on Tue, 12/29/2020 - 17:23
Current condition
Date completed

I am interested in any information about the aqueduct.

Year built, Architect, Usage, any similar aqueducts in other parts of the world etc.


Photos that show this Place


This structure is possibly the service reservoir referred to as part of the general Kowloon Reservoir scheme, on - however I'm not familiar with the site and further confirmation is needed:

"(viii) The Service Reservoir is built on the summit of a hill to the north of Kowloon Tong Village. lt is circular in plan with a top diameter of 155’ 0” and depth of 20' 0". The bottom and circumferential wall are of cement concrete and the roof of cement concrete vaulting supported on brick arches and stone piers. The capacity of the reservoir' is 2,183,000 gallons and its top water level is 255’ above Ordnance Datum."


Happily, it looks set to be protected, in a very quick turnaround by the authorities:…

It's remarkable that the site was virtually unknown and does not seem to have had any protected status at all under heritage legislation. The above article says "the AMO would also study whether four other water service reservoirs at the Peak, Yau Ma Tei, Mount Gough and Albany Road are historically or conservationally significant", so there may be similar structures to this one.

@pyktsang, I've changed the page to be a Place so we can see its location, and also updated the title. (An aqueduct is a channel carrying water, like the one underneath Bowen Road.)

@LizB, this is the same structure as the one you've found mentioned in the PWD report from 1910. If you look at the 1920 map, you can see the same circular shape, and location north of Kowloon Tong Village, that are described in the report.

Construction began in 1903, as described in item 50.iii of the PWD's annual report for that year:

(iii.) Service Reservoir near Kowloon Tong.—A contract for this work was entered into with Mr. Tung Shing in February. The reservoir is sunk almost entirely below ground level and is constructed principally of cement concrete with granite pillars and brick arches to support the concrete vaulting which forms the roof. It is circular in form and has a capacity of 2 million gallons. About half the brick arches already mentioned were completed by the end of the year.

The following year's report (item 86.ii) says it was completed on 10th of August 1904:

(ii.) Service Reservoir near Kowloon-tong.—The contract date for the completion of this work was 30th June. A bonus was offered for earlier completion with a view to making use of the reservoir during the summer rains, the offer however did not produce the desired result and the work was not completed till 10th August.

The reservoir is circular, 150 feet in diameter and 20 feet deep, it has a capacity of 2 million gallons, top water level is 255 feet above Ordnance Datum.

It is now being used in connection with the supply to Kowloon.

In connection with this work a meter-house was built near the Tai Po Road and the Venturi Meter fixed there to measure the whole supply to the Peninsula.

I've set the completion date above.

Hi all,

Just browsed the "Metro Cinema" topic within, the reservoir was mentioned in a Kowloon map 1956.

It is a hot topic in HK now, see whether any other information related to this special reservoir could be found.


Topic link:

Map link:…




Last week I joined a guided tour of the reservoir.

We entered through the hole in the roof that was created when the demolition started.

Service Reservoir at Bishop Hill


There are several piles of rubble from the columns and roof sections that were destroyed.

Service Reservoir at Bishop Hill


The dark wall in the background is a later, circular concrete wall built inside the original wall to reduce the capacity of the reservoir.

Service Reservoir at Bishop Hill


It is an impressive space, and well worth a visit.

Service Reservoir at Bishop Hill


Service Reservoir at Bishop Hill



I went along on a group tour organised by the Royal Asiatic Society. (They arrange regular talks and visits related to Hong Kong's history, art, and culture.) We were lucky to have Mr Gordon Ho as the docent leading our group. He was a lively speaker, with lots of stories to tell about the reservoir and how it fits in to Hong Kong's history. (Gordon is part of the HoHoGo Experience group that runs a variety of tours - they'd be worth contacting if you're visiting or living here, and you'd you'd like to arrange a tour for your organisation.)

The Water Supplies Department have also arranged a self-guided tour of the reservoir for individuals. Note that although it is free you have to book, and the tickets all go very quickly.