A LONG-SERVING worker at the Tiger Balm Garden faces losing not only his job but his home following the sale of the once-popular park owned by Sally Aw Sian. Chow Shui-lam, 64 (left), has been working in the garden for 48 years. It is his workplace and his home - he and his family live in a wooden hut inside the park. 'I am shocked to learn the news from newspapers. It will be hard for me to bid farewell to the garden. It has been an important part of Hong Kong for such a long time. It's a landmark of Hong Kong,' he said. 'All Hong Kong people know this place. It's so well-known that even the textbooks for primary schools mention it. 'And now it's going to be demolished. It's so sad. I don't know where I and my family can move to.' The 90,000 square-foot garden in Tai Hang has been sold to Cheung Kong (Holdings), which will turn it into a theme park and housing development. About 15 people, mostly security guards, work in the garden. Mr Chow has been there the longest. He said he was first hired by Ms Aw's late father, Aw Boon-haw, as a gardener at $25 a month. 'I didn't go to school. I was happy to find this job. Mr Aw was so kind to allow me to live here,' he said. Mr Chow lives with his wife and 85-year-old mother. They also sell souvenirs and snacks in the garden, which offers free admission. He said the garden had been popular between the 1950s and '70s, attracting tens of thousands of visitors a day during holidays. 'There were not so many places to visit then. There was no Ocean Park. Many people liked to come here with their families to take pictures and buy souvenirs. 'There were no skyscrapers. From here we could watch over the Victoria Harbour and Tsim Sha Tsui pier. Everybody wanted to see the seven-storey Tiger Pagoda,' Mr Chow said. The garden also attracted both local and overseas TV and movie crews, he said. 'It's a good filming place as the garden features Buddhas, dragons and other Chinese attractons. But people now have other places to go and we have fewer visitors,' he said. Yesterday, workers repainting the Tiger Balm garden said they had heard it would close but no one had told them to stop the refurbishment.