Old building important to local community

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 31 December, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 31 December, 1997, 12:00am

I and the association of which I am chairman are trying to preserve an old British-made former fire station in Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui (next to the YMCA).

I noted in the Hong Kong Government Gazette, No 2676, November 24, that the building is to be demolished, because the Highways Department is digging an underground footpath next to it. The department claims that the building must be demolished in order for the digging to go ahead.

The two-floor building, which was constructed in the 1930s, is in good condition. It is a load brick building of British design and is used as an activity and exhibition centre for artists.

It has been used for the past 15 years for Chinese painting and calligraphy courses during weekdays. Most Sundays, we have a gathering of artists with exhibitions of their work.

The activity centre is also home to the Yau Tsim Children's Choir which often performs for members of the district's elderly community.

Our association is the present tenant. This is a non-profit-making organisation, funded by the district board and Provisional Urban Council. Its aim is to promote culture in Hong Kong. The last date for appeal is January 25.

We appeal to the Government to think again about demolishing this very important building. It is of historical importance and gives the local community a sense of belonging.

HOMER YU Chairman Yau Tsim Culture and Arts Association of Hong Kong