4, Dorset Crescent [????-2012] | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

4, Dorset Crescent [????-2012]

Current condition: 
Demolished / No longer exists
Date Place demolished: 

Demolition date is a guess, but Phil notes it was sold in 2011 and has been knocked down since (UPDATE: It was demolished shortly before Easter 2012 - see comments below). He's also posted some photos of how it used to look.

Photos that show this place


Hi David

The guy who sent me the extra pictures (Henry-On-The-Hill) mentioned to me that the house came down just before Easter this year.

Does anyone have any idea as to how Kowloon Tong was constructed - I mean in terms of different phases? It seems that some houses would have gone up between 1922 - 1925, and then of course many would have gone up after the project was rescued by the Govt (post 1925 up to 1930?). I was just wondering which roads and houses were in the initial phase.

The reason I ask is that 4 Dorset Crescent could easily have been one of the first or one of the last to be built - making a potential gap of nearly 10 years in the age?

Either way, big shame it was knocked down.



Thanks Phil, I've updated the date.

I'm not sure about the order it was developed. Aerial photos would be one approach to see how it grew. You might also get updates on progress in the PWD's Annual Reports for those years. Or you could look up a sample of Lots to get their history - I see plate 4-5 in Mapping Hong Kong gives all the lot numbers for Kowloon Tong.

Regards, David

Hi David - I'm not sure that the available Govt's aerial photos go back much beyond the 1960's? But good call about the lot numbers I'll give that a go.

One thing I did notice is that the company that did the development: the Kowloon Tong and New Territories Development Company Ltd, was wound down in 1932, so I'm pretty sure this would be the upper limit of the house build dates.


Phil - How did you get on with your research? I've always presumed that development went North from Boundary Street and that the earliest houses would be in that area making Dorset Cresent part of the later development (1925-30), but I could very well be wrong. One clue lies in the fact that some of the older houses in the Northern part of the development are clearly not of the standard balconied villa type (I'm thinking of the house on the corner of Waterloo and York which has a 30s moderne extension - pic here: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=356093491144405&set=oa.1015124303...)

I did find some references in old LEGCO debates from 1929, discussing monies owed to the Govt that the lease holders paid a 1/6 deposit on the houses so it's possible that development was a bit more piecemeal i.e houses were built as plots were sold.

I've done some digging around in the HKPRO online and it looks like Dorset Crescent was developed in the second phase (1925-1930). Our old house at 16 Dorset Crescent (NKIL 925) seems to date to c. 1929, judging from a purchase agreement dated 12/06/1929. Our house wasn't the original house when we lived there 1975-1987, it was a late 40s /early 50s rebuild in a weird sort of Chinese brutalist moderne unlike the usual 30s art deco moderne that you still see examples of in KTGE, but our neighbours at 18 and 14 were exactly like no 4. It's a great shame no. 4 was pulled down since it would have been one of the few examples of the orginal houses that hadn't been messed with or extended.

Hi Nick. Sorry to say that I haven't even begun to follow it up yet. But what you mention about south to north makes sense given that the foundation stone lies at the area closer to Boundary St. I wonder how much the design did change. The remaining examples seem to be fairly similar but with the balconies filled in - but these could always be later modifications, it's hard to tell. Anyway, it's an interesting topic. Thanks for the info. phil

From what I can gather by looking through minutes of Town Planning Board (Metro Planning Committee) meetings, the development application for a temporary kindergarten to be built on these adjoining blocks seems to have stalled in early 2013. The developers requested a deferral of the planning decision several times and seem to have been given an ultimatum by the Committee, after which they must have decided not to continue, because I can't find any further references to the application. I suspect they put the brakes on the project after the Board rejected a couple of other applications for kindergarten/school buildings nearby  at around the same time,  due to traffic congestion issues. Anyone who has been in Kowloon Tong at school pickup time would be well aware of this problem! If someone out there has any more info on this application, I would be interested to know of it. Thanks.