PUBLISHED : Sunday, 15 June, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 15 June, 2003, 12:00am

South China Morning Post photographers have raced to capture Hong Kong's defining moments in the years since the newspaper hit the streets. In this, the publication's centenary year, our researchers are trawling the archives to illustrate a forthcoming book celebrating 100 years of history as seen through the camera lens. Post Magazine provides a preview of some of the most spectacular images.

March 5, 1979: It was a case of 'when in Rome' for Prince Charles during a visit to the gurkhas at the Cassino Lines near San Tin in the northern New Territories. The prince, who was on the third day of an official trip to Hong Kong, sampled his first taste of snake meat while meeting the troops responsible for jungle patrol. He also observed a training exercise conducted by a company of the 2nd King Edward VII's Own Gurkha Rifles near the border with the mainland.

The heir to the British throne's busy schedule included a trip to Yuen Long where he witnessed a staged riot. During the 15-minute mock drama, tomatoes, beer cans and even boots were thrown towards the platform where Prince Charles sat as, above, an RAF helicopter dropped off an 'anti-terrorist' squad to quell the 'violence'.

As the prince prepared to leave Yuen Long, a man holding two posters - one in English, the other in Chinese - tried to attract his attention but was dragged away by police. The man later said he was campaigning for his right to build a house in Tai Po.

The Prince of Wales spoke to locals as he left, pointing to a pack of press photographers who were frantically taking pictures of him. He said to a bystander who was wearing a hat made from a folded newspaper: 'They all think you are wearing their newspaper.'