Slice of Life
Compiled by Sandra Lowe
The Kowloon Cricket Club was at risk of losing its grounds to the Hongkong garrison, said a report on August 12. A special club meeting was called and members were not happy: 'We stay where we are.' Club members hoped for another 10 years' possession since their tenure had been renewed every year over 20 years. 'That prospect, however, had now been discounted by the chaos in China and sending out here of a large Defence Force. [Club president R.E. Lindsell] thought they could take it for granted that the Hongkong garrison would include more than two infantry battalions and that there was every chance of Gun Club hill being occupied by white troops in the near future, in which event the KCC ground would almost certainly be ... allotted to the military [next year].' A Mr L. Jack 'thought it a great shame that a club with 400 and 500 members should be placed in such a position'. He said there was plenty of ground along the railway that could be used for the garrison. Members agreed to ask the government to grant a five-year tenure of the present clubhouse and grounds, and failing that a five-year tenure at the original site at King's Park.
A report on the Shipping News pages on August 16 said the SS Hai Hong, a vessel that plied the route between Hong Kong and Manila, arrived at Manila after 'a series of wandering in the sea'. The Hai Hong left the port of Keelung, Formosa, on July 10 bound for Cebu and all was well until July 20 when the ship was 130 miles off the Catanduanes Islands - that was when a 'fierce storm suddenly sprung up'. 'In the battle against the elements, control was lost of the helm. To make matters worse the winds ripped the foresails, leaving the Hai Hong at the mercy of the waves ... The vessel rolled about and more than once nearly capsized.' The distance between Keeling and Manila is 700 nautical miles, usually a four-day trip, but the Hai Hong took 28 days.
In a letter to the editor, Mr T. H. King, director of the criminal investigation department, hoped to get help from the public: 'The Police hold possession of one $5 denomination bank note of a European bank. On the back of the note are written in English manuscript the following words - 'butter, milk, sugar, oranges, cigarettes, Jeyes Fluid, by order, L. T. Ch...' The writing is in black ink; the signature is indefinite. I desire to communicate with any person ... of having recently handled this note.'
The late Mrs Mackay was murdered on August 6 and was last seen near the Wing On Company on August 5 or 6. 'Police are working hard to find the dagger which the murderers used in the recent Chai Wan Road murder. Twenty coolies have been engaged to cut down the long grass in the vicinity of the spot where the murder is believed to have been committed ... A powder puff believed ... to have belonged to the deceased lady was found,' the letter said. Rose Mackay was stabbed and killed during an armed highway robbery. She was the wife of Mr C. Mackay, timekeeper at the Taikoo Dockyard. Two coolies, Kam Shun and Cheng Tsang, were jointly charged in the Central Police Court with her murder.
In an editorial on August 12, the Post advocated film's worth in history and saw, even 82 years ago, the need to keep a record of what Hongkong looked like for future generations. The controversy concerned the introduction of a quota system in Britain requiring cinemas to show a certain number of British films.
'Art is art and must stand upon its own merits: thus far we have not been impressed with the average British product ... However, we ask where Hongkong stands on this Imperial scheme. We do not aspire to establish a local Hollywood, but we do think it time that more use was made of the cinema ... Hongkong figures occasionally in the newsreels, but so far as we know we do not employ the cinema for historical purposes. We should,' the editorial said. 'Even now the Colony would like to see what the Colony looked like 10 years ago, and 10 years hence sentiment will be keener because of the many likely changes.'