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Hong Kong Island
Victoria Prison Compound (Old Bailey Street, Central)
The Victoria Prison Compound includes some of the earliest colonial buildings constructed of durable materials to have survived in Hong Kong since the mid-19th century.
A prime concern of the British after their possession of Hong Kong Island in 1841 was the establishment of law and order. They first built a stone gaol on an elevated site behind Hollywood Road, but this soon became overcrowded and inadequate. A total reconstruction was launched in 1858 and completed in 1862. Following a British model and built to a half-radial plan, the solid and utilitarian new gaol had three cell blocks, allowing for European and Chinese prisoners to be confined separately, and two diagonal wings. Its internal layout of a central corridor and staircases with cells on either side is typical of British prison design of the time. The east wing (the current D Hall) of the main block, Superintendent’s House and a watchtower (now known as Bauhinia House) survive from this period.
Renovation and expansion of the gaol compound continued between the late 19th and early 20th centuries. After the Second World War it served as a remand prison and later housed Victoria Immigration Centre. The prison began to admit illegal immigrants and Vietnamese boat people in the early 1980s. It was decommissioned in 2006. The former Central Police Station Compound, Central Magistracy and Victoria Prison Compound have been revitalised as “Tai Kwun - Centre for Heritage and Arts” and opened to the public in 2018.
The former Victoria Prison Compound, Central Police Station Compound and Central Magistracy form a group of historic buildings, representing law and order in Hong Kong.
Introduction to the Central Police Station Compound
Victoria Prison Compound
Old Bailey Street, Central (Plan)
Please browse the following website for the opening hours of Tai Kwun:
Hong Kong Station
12 Central (Ferry Piers) - Robinson Road (Circular)
12M Admiralty (Tamar Street) - Park Road (Circular)
40M Admiralty (Central Government Offices) - Wah Fu (North)
New World First Bus
13 Central (City Hall) - Kotewall Road (Mid-levels)
26 Lai Tak Tsuen - Hollywood Road (Circular)
Green Minibus (GMB)
22 Pok Fu Lam Garden - Central (Exchange Square)
22S Pok Fu Lam Garden - Central (Central Ferry Piers)
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