Old Kai Tak

Mon, 09/22/2014 - 19:20

Photo courtesy of Greg Fripp: "Old kai tak (before the advanced long runway)".

Date picture taken


Submitted by
Peter Yee (not verified)
Thu, 07/26/2007 - 11:08

Your photo taken at the Kai Tak Airport shows Good Hope Anglo-Chinese School on the background part way up the foot hill. The school, which I attended and always hold dear, was at that time the only building in the area. Before I left HK for Canada, I took the city bus one last time and when the bus travelled by the airport, I could see the cross on the school front lighted up on that completely dark hillside (it was at night). It was a sight I always treasure. Now, other high-rises have blocked its view from the foothill.
Thank you for posting this photo.
Peter Yee

Hello Peter, Thanks for taking the time to write. We're always interested to learn more about Hong Kong as it used to be, so if you have any memories or photographs of Hong Kong you'd like to share, we'd be happy to give them a home here.

Regards, MrB

Thank you Mr. B. Photos of HK I have almost nil, but memory a plentiful.
Bus fare was 10~20 cents and a student's bus-pass was about five dollars which has four tiny circles on each day for the conductor to punch a hole on each ride. A good wonton soup at street vendors was 30 cents. Bok-Choy cost 10 cents a "gun" (Chinese pound). Things were very cheap then, but then so were wages. I saw workers pressing small boulders under their feet, then using long-handle hammer to crush it into smaller pieces. I always warried about them losing their toes.
A train ride from Shatin to Monk-Gok cost 50 cents, and I always went to the very back of the train to watch the light of the tunnel getting smaller and smaller until it disappear at which time we would come out on the Kowloon (still farming) side.
The fire in the shanty town (west of Boundary Street by the railroad) in 1953(?) generated big black smokes rising to sky high. Torrential rain would turn Boundary Street into a muddy fast-flowing river at knee-deep for us kids.
Though now into my 60s, I still miss the little simple things: kite-flying where you mind and soul get closer to nature, lighting up fire-crackers (at one time we could play for 3 days during New Year and again Jan 7), and playing marbles on sandy ground. Wearing only a pair of Japanese slippers, us kids would climb Lion Rock to Shatin and take the train home. To this day, smoke gets in my eyes when I see pictures of Amah Rock on the Internet.
Such is my memory of HK. May I extend my sincere wish to her people for a joyous, healthy and prosperous for years to come.

Hi Peter,

Fascinating - thanks again for sharing. I'm interested to gather any memories of Hong Kong's wartime air raid shelters. I realise they were built before you were born, but wondered if you heard any stories of them when you were growing up, or whether they were places boys would play in at that time?

Regular contributor Moddsey has sent in some photos in response to your message:

and also recommends the photographs of Fan Ho would be interesting to you.

Regards, MrB

MrB: Thank you and the other contributors; the pictures of the Kowloon bus tickets and Shek Kip Mei recall my days there some 50 years ago. I am sorry to disappoint you that air raid shelters in Hong Kong were before my time. I was a toddler at the time when my family moved from Canton to Hong Kong, a few years after the war.
I shall have continuing interest in your web page and, perhaps, opportunities may arise in some other way where I can contribute.