New Kowloon boundary stone, Jat's Incline [????- ] | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

New Kowloon boundary stone, Jat's Incline [????- ]

Current condition: 

Jat's Incline has become one of our regular walks, and I'd noticed it has a marker stone a short distance uphill from the temple. The stone is down at bottom left in this view, and the yellow-coloured rock in the distance is part of the temple.

Ordinance marker stone on Jat's Incline


I've stopped to take a closer look a few times, but never been able to make out the writing:

Ordinance marker stone on Jat's Incline


So last week I went armed with my daughter's box of chalks:

Ordinance marker stone on Jat's Incline


There are three lines of text. I wasn't able to make out anything clear in the top line but the middle name has DINANC clear enough to say it read ORDINANCE.

The bottom line looks like a mix of numbers and letters. You'll see I chalked the number at the right as a 6, but looking at this photo I think the loop is the top of the nine not the bottom of the six. I think I can see the letters in the middle too, so it looks like:

?? 25 SE 9?

I don't remember seeing an ORDINANCE marker stone before - has anyone else seen any examples?

And any guesses about the rest of the text, or what this stone was used for? It could refer to an Ordinance - a law that was passed? Or maybe I've imagined an "I" and it should be "ORDNANCE", connected with mapping the area?

Suggestions welcome!

Photos that show this place


Hi David,

Suggest to bring along a pack of flour with a paint brush on your next visit and sprinkle them onto the words.  Flour are would probably be cleared away by ants or other insects in notime.  One of my friends learning Fung Shui told me they are using this method to 'read' old engravings on stones\graves on site visits.  Might have to bring along some latex gloves for the application as your hands would be a mess if you do it bare handed and could make a bigger mess with your camera.


I google'd how to read old gravestones and it turns out chalk is a bad approach and so is flour:

According to that page I'll have to head up there with some tin foil instead! 

Hi David,

I did not consider the micro-organism's damage to those.  The site also mentioned the matter of shadows and light.  Maybe I will switch on the LED light of my phone next time and see if that is sufficient.  If not, there are other portable LED lighting panels (for photography) which may do the trick.  If that works it would be less troublesome then using aluminium foils.

On the other hand, I believe I have also read some photography tutorials saying using ND filters and a tripod for longer exposture may do the same trick.  


Hi, David.

A closer look of the stone.



26 of 1937

There are letters from the side as well. 

JAT INCLINE ORDINANCE STONE side view, by Herman Chan



Thanks Herman, that is much easier to read. Please can I ask how you made it clearer?

Then the next question is what the ordinance 26 was about. I checked the online copies at, but unfortunately the later sections of the 1937 edition that cover years 1932-37 have been lost. Does anyone know another way to look it up?

I think the stone is dated 26 SE 1937. 

I went to the site with my two sons at night. There was a lamp-post nearby. I thought the smartphone captured better shadow contrast image. In addition, Kevin and Justin used the aluminum foil to do the engraving of the writing as well.

New Territories/New Kowloon boundary stone at JATS INCLINE
New Territories/New Kowloon boundary stone by Herman


The ordinance is the Interpretation Amendment Ordinance 1937. It contains miscellaneous changes to official titles and definitions (the current equivalent is the Interpretation and General Clauses Ordinance, or Cap. 1).

Section 2 of the 1937 ordinance defines 'New Kowloon' by reference to a map marked 'New Kowloon' dated 8 December 1937, signed by the Director of Public Works and countersigned by the Governor, and deposited in the Land Office.

Could it be that the stone is a boundary stone for New Kowloon, with a reference to the ordinance as the authority?

A copy of the ordinance can be found in the Hong Kong Government Gazette, 24 December 1937 on the HKUL Digital Initiatives >> Government Reports site. The Gazette (much more than the Historical Laws site) is the best place to go for ordinances as they were actually enacted.

Hope this helps!

Best wishes,


Thanks Chris, that's a great help, and also good to know for future searches. (Tip for those future searches: Though the summary of entries listed at only mentions ordinance #24, Ordinances passed and assented to:- Sterling Salaries Conversion-No. 24 of 1937, the PDF for that entry shows it actually covers ordinances #24 - 28, and gives the details of each one.)

Back to the marker stone, and a boundary stone for New Kowloon is a very likely explanation. Unfortunately the map mentioned in the ordinance isn't included in the PDF file, but a bit of good luck helped out. I remembered seeing a map of New Kowloon in Empson's Mapping Hong Kong, and dug that out. It's Plate 4-6, and shows a map dated 8th Dec. 1937 that defines the extent of New Kowloon, so it's the missing map.

The map defines the northern boundary of New Kowloon as the 500 feet contour on the hills at the back of Kowloon. Now 500 feet is 152.4 metres, and looking at the location of the marker stone on the map, it is between the 150m and 160m contour lines, so I'll take that as confirmation.

I haven't read any mention of this before, so it's a good find, a Kowloon version of the Victoria City boundary stones on Hong Kong island. Maybe the local council would like to erect one of those Welcome To ... / You Are Now Leaving ... signs here, for New Kowloon!

I wonder if any more still exist? They'd likely have been erected wherever a road crossed the boundary.

Regards, David

New Territories/New Kowloon boundary STONE ENGRAVING FOIL, by Herman
New Territories/New Kowloon boundary stone ENGRAVING, by Herman

Google "Plan of new kowloon"

The tin foil worked well, thanks for posting that.

We walked along there again this morning, and the combination of the lower winter sun, and being a bit earlier in the morning meant the shadows were clearer than our first visit.

New Kowloon boundary stone
New Kowloon boundary stone, by Admin


I can see there's also a "No." at the start of the third line of text, but I'm still not sure what the top line says.

I find the missing puzzle of New Kowloon boundary 

NK NT Boundary.png
NK NT Boundary.png, by Crown Lands & Survey Office


New Kowloon 1937_0.png
New Kowloon 1937_0.png, by Crown Lands & Survey Office

Further evidence of the boundary stone at JAT INCLINE. The NT/NK boundary intersect with the JAT INCLINE approximately at the current location of the granite stone with inscription.



"No. 26 of 1937".

Document of JAT INCLINE naming
Document of JAT INCLINE naming, by Herman
Naming of JAT INCLINE, by Herman


Map of JAT INCLINE, by Herman
Map of JAT INCLINE (2)
Map of JAT INCLINE (2), by Herman


Kowloon street map
{C}{C}{C}Kowloon street map, by Crown Lands & Survey Office{C}{C}{C}

it show a clear cut at  JAT’S INCLINE road, maybe more boundary stone at boundary / road / foot path cutoff point!  

The N.T./N.K. boundary is clearly seen in the Kowloon Street Map.

Accordingly, I have tried to search for possible boundary stone from the accessible footpath, starting from the western bound from Lai Chi Kok, walking uphill towards the N.T./N.K. boundary.

There is a footpath walking uphill from Lung Cheung Road towards Beacon Hill. I notice threre is a granite stone on the side of the footpath, with possbile engraving on it while near the 'boundary'.

??N.T./N.K boundary stone

Coordinates in the Map (Kowloon Street Plan)

Entrance of the footpath: 088 738 

Granite stone: 088 741 

Granite stone along the footpath, towards uphill to Beacon Hill
Granite stone (centre of the photo), by Herman


?? N.T./N.K. boundary stone near Beacon Hill
?? N.T./N.K. boundary stone near Beacon Hill, by Herman



It appears you have located the source of the name change from the original "Jat" to Jat's. It's not clear if the change was deliberate or just a misunderstanding.


James, thank you for the map - lots more possibillities! I'm sure there would have been a stone on the road from Wong Tai Sin up to Shatin Pass. I walk that way quite often, and will keep a look out.

Herman, please could you make a Place (  for the new stone you've found, so we can see it on the map and have a page to gather any more information about it.

Regards, David

JAT Incline NT/NK boundary stone NT surface (b)

JAT Incline NT/NK boundary stone NT surface (b), by Herman

JAT incline NT/NK boundary stone NK surface (a)
JAT incline NT/NK boundary stone NK surface (a), by Herman
JAT incline NT/NK boundary stone NK surface (b) (Inscriptions able to be seen are colored with orange on screen)
JAT incline NT/NK boundary stone NK surface (b), by Herman

Revisited the JAT incline NT/NK boundary stone. The loosened concrete wall on both side of the boundary stone revealed the inscription "NEW XXXXXTORIES" on the expected NT side. The inscription on the NK side revealed "NEW KOW".

JAT Incline NT/NK boundary stone NT surface (a)
JAT Incline NT/NK boundary stone NT surface (a), by Herman