Bizarre statues along Wilson Trail Stage 3 - 十八王才公 /五桂山 / 五鬼山 [????-2017] | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

Bizarre statues along Wilson Trail Stage 3 - 十八王才公 /五桂山 / 五鬼山 [????-2017]

Current condition: 
Demolished / No longer exists
Date Place demolished: 
c.2017-04-01 (Month, Day are approximate)

One of the highlights along Stage 3 of the Wilson Trail  has always been the collection of bizarre concrete statues along the section of the path leading downhill through a forested area, heading towards the villages before Po Lam Road.

Except, when we walked there today the statues have all been cleared away!

Has anyone heard when and why they were cleared?

(I think that's the right Chinese name for the location. I copied it off Google maps, but please correct me if I've got it wrong.)

Photos that show this place

Comments

Hi David,

I believe that hill is call Ng Kwai Shan (五桂山).  But I am more fond of their previous iteration of 五鬼山, being pronounced in Cantonese more or less the same as the afore mentioned romanization, with only a tonal different of the middle sylable. 

五鬼山 literally means the mount of five ghosts.  The Government snobbery for just being themselves, deem it is not good enough to use the local pagan name and tried to improve it.  It become 五桂山.  桂 being a kind of plant which I don't know its proper name in English.

Many local names over the city had similarily been amended this way over the past few decades.

Thanks & Best Regards,

T

Hi T,

Thanks for the extra info about the area. I've added those two versions of the name to the Place's title.

Do you recognise "十八王才公" as a name for the site too? It turns up in search results for the area.

Whoever cleared the area did a very thorough job. Here's the view along the small path that leads off to the right from the Wilson Trail as you walk down the steps. It used to be the main area for the statues, but no sign at all now:

Site of concrete statues
Site of concrete statues, by Admin

 

At the end of the path I think there used to be a shrine, but that has been cleared away too:

Site of concrete statues
Site of concrete statues, by Admin

 

Back on the Wilson Trail, there were several large statues (I remember a turtle) at the side of the trail in that area. The only remnant is this small frog, that for some reason was not removed:

Last of the old statues
Last of the old statues, by Admin

 

Does anyone have any photos of how it used to look that they can share with us? 

I had a feeling these would be gone sooner or later, they were beginning to crumble by the time I took these photos back in 2014. There was a HK Standard article on the chap who built them a while back but I have lost it and I'm not sure the archive is accessible any more. However, someone *cough* did do a copy paste onto an expat forum a few years ago and you can see it here

In the meantime here is a selection of the pictures.

Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues, by Philk
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues, by Philk

 

Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues, by Philk
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues, by Philk
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues, by Philk
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues, by Philk
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues, by Philk
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues, by Philk
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues
Wilson Trail Stage 3 Statues, by Philk

Thanks Phil, good to see they are as odd as I remembered!

I was very sad to discover these had been (very efficiently) cleared earlier this year - they were a feature of a hike I have done many times with friends over the years, although they had been somewhat in decline since Mr Lee's death. I can narrow down the date of their demolition a bit: I know that they were still there (with no sign of their impending doom) on 24 February 2017, but that they were gone on 12 May 2017.

I have 20+ photos taken there on 9 July 2009 which I would be happy to upload if you wish - it would be about 30MB in total, which I guess isn't a big deal these days?
 

"Yes please" to the 2009 photos. Here's how to upload a photo: https://gwulo.com/node/2076