1929 Buildings on the Peak

Wed, 11/29/2023 - 00:58

Circa 1929. See comments below.

Date picture taken


This photo has some very interesting details. Thanks for posting.

Going anti-clockwise from the bottom left corner.

  1. The Falls/Ho Tung Gardens – The original building “The Falls” has gone, replaced by the new building, which initially retained its predecessors name but was later renamed “Ho Tung Gardens”. The roof is on, but it’s still surrounded by scaffolding, suggesting it’s in the late stages of construction. Building started in 1928 and was completed in 1929 according to the PWD annual reports. A worker is standing on what looks like a giant ball on top of the tower. I expected this to have been the basis of a spherical dome, but all the photos I’ve seen of the finished tower show it topped by a multi-sided, probably hexagonal, roof. Could an initial dome have been replaced later by a multi-sided roof? The photo must have been taken in 1928 or 1929 if the new building was really under construction, not a later renovation.
  2. Stokes Bungalow with its tennis court. Right of 1.
  3. Donnottar. Above and to right of 2.
  4. Des Voeux Villas (DVV). Above 3. This was a large site occupied by a number of buildings, two of which are visible. Easiest to see is the block containing DVV 3 & 4, breaking the ridgeline at the right edge of the pic. More difficult to make out is the building containing DVV 1 & 2. They’re immediately left of, lower than, and very close to DVV 3 & 4. Under full-zoom we can see the front and the nearest end of the building. It appears to be in ruins. I think we’re looking at the damage caused by the typhoon of 20th August 1927, which was described thus;

“The most serious incident recorded in the Peak District, where the full force of the hurricane was felt, was at Mount Kellett, where a large portion of the front wall of Des Voeux Villas, No165, collapsed the whole width of the veranda. Fortunately there were no casualties...The adjoining house, No164…also suffered extensive damage to the roof and walls.…the wall on the side of the house…completely collapsed…the place was entirely uninhabitable…the roof gave in and the water poured through causing a lot of damage”. (HK Tel, 22 Aug 1927, Page 11. Note, No.’s 164 & 165 were the respective Peak addresses of DVV 1 & 2. No.165 or DVV 2 is nearest the camera)

  1. Kellett House, the very dark building, left of 4. It was probably constructed sometime between 1 Jan 1924 (does not appear in Peak Renumbering Exercise) and late 1925/early 1926 (listed in Peak & Ladies Directories).
  2. Kenlis – roughly in the centre of the Mount Kellett massif. It still has its pitched roof, which a former resident said was replaced by a flat one after being damaged by a typhoon in 1937.
  3. Eredine – the large triangle shape showing above Mount Kellett’s ridgeline, to the left and higher than 6.
  4. Kellett Manor – the small triangle shape lower down the ridgeline than 7.
  5. Erewhon – directly below 8. Definitely completed by early 1927, but probably completed in 1924 or 1925.
  6. Matilda Hospital at the very left edge of the photo.