Three days before Christmas, about 40 secondary school students joined independent legislator Kwok Ka-ki and two fellow Central and Western district councillors to drape blue ribbons on Queen's Pier, symbolising their battle to preserve the pier. Two days later, hundreds braced a chilly wind, lighting white candles and gathering at Edinburgh Place to tell the government to drop plans to pull it down. But their chances of success seem slim, with the battle for the Star Ferry pier lost eight days earlier. The clock tower was pulled down and crushed for reclamation material. But the conservationists are fighting on, forming the Heritage Watch alliance to pressure the government to protect the city's history. Queen's Pier was the site of the welcoming and farewell ceremonies for governors, finishing point for the former cross-harbour swim, the starting point for harbour cruises and a popular location for wedding snaps. Queen's Pier is not the first colonial symbol to be wiped out by the unpopular Central reclamation. Blake Pier was demolished in 1993, and the Tamar Basin was reclaimed in the mid-1990s. Queen's Pier was scheduled to close about the same time as the Star Ferry Pier But its replacement, Central Pier No9, is still under construction. The Civil Engineering and Development Department said it did not have a timetable for its demolition. A protester lights a candle for a Christmas Eve vigil at the construction site next to Queen's Pier.