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Proposals invited for buildings under Batch V of historic building revitalisation scheme (with photo/video)

The Development Bureau today (November 24) announced the names of the four historic buildings comprising Batch V of the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme, and invited revitalisation proposals from non-profit-making organisations (NPOs).

The four historic buildings are Roberts Block, Old Victoria Barracks in Central; Luen Wo Market in Fanling; the Former Lau Fau Shan Police Station in Yuen Long; and Watervale House, Former Gordon Hard Camp in Tuen Mun.

Roberts Block, Old Victoria Barracks, is a Grade 1 historic building and was constructed in the early 1900s. It was originally used as an army married quarters. From 1986 to 2013 it was used as a rehabilitation hostel for psychiatric patients.

Luen Wo Market, built in 1951, is a Grade 3 historic building. It was the largest built market in the New Territories at that time and sold daily necessities such as vegetables and fish.

The Former Lau Fau Shan Police Station is a Grade 3 historic building and was built in 1962. It was an outpost and operational base of the Hong Kong Police Force to keep watch on illegal immigrants.

Watervale House, Former Gordon Hard Camp, built in 1933, is a Grade 2 historic building. It was originally a private residence. In 1959, the British War Department purchased the building and used it as a British officers' mess in Gordon Hard Camp.

The Secretary for Development, Mr Paul Chan, said at a press conference that the Revitalisation Scheme aims to preserve government-owned historic buildings and put them into innovative use as well as promote active public participation in conservation of historic buildings and create job opportunities.

"One of the key selection criteria in the Revitalisation Scheme is public access to and enjoyment of historic buildings. We encourage applicants to open the whole or part of the historic building to the public for their appreciation, on the premise that the social enterprise operation therein is not affected," Mr Chan said.

The 15 projects selected under the first four batches of the Revitalisation Scheme are at different stages of development and eight projects have commenced operation. These are, under Batch I, the Former North Kowloon Magistracy, the Old Tai O Police Station, Lui Seng Chun, Fong Yuen Study Hall, Mei Ho House and the Former Lai Chi Kok Hospital and, under Batch II, the Old Tai Po Police Station and the Stone Houses. Among the projects in operation, four have received UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation. They are the Former North Kowloon Magistracy, which was revitalised as the Hong Kong Campus of the Savannah College of Art and Design; the Old Tai O Police Station, which was revitalised as the Tai O Heritage Hotel; Mei Ho House, which was revitalised as YHA Mei Ho House Youth Hostel; and the Old Tai Po Police Station, which was revitalised as the Green Hub for sustainable living.

Looking ahead, the Development Bureau anticipates that the revitalisation works of three projects will be completed in 2017, and another four are expected to be completed between 2018 and 2019.

The four historic buildings under Batch V of the Revitalisation Scheme will be open with guided tours from December 13 to 16, 2016 for interested NPOs. A workshop will be held on January 9, 2017, for those interested to learn more about application procedures and assessment criteria for project proposals.

The application guide, the application form, the resource kits comprising the historical background of the four buildings and conservation guidelines, as well as other related information, can be obtained from the Commissioner for Heritage's Office of the Development Bureau on 19/F, West Wing, Central Government Offices, 2 Tim Mei Avenue, Tamar, Hong Kong, or downloaded at heritage.gov.hk. The deadline for submission of applications is noon on March 23, 2017. 
 

The Secretary for Development, Mr Paul Chan (centre), announced details of Batch V of the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme at a press conference today (November 24). The Commissioner for Heritage, Mr Jose Yam (left), and the Executive Secretary of the Antiquities and Monuments Office, Ms Susanna Siu (right), were also present..

Audio / Video:

Press conference on Batch V of Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme

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Ends/Thursday, November 24, 2016
Issued at HKT 17:15

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