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Hong Kong Island
Race Course Fire Memorial
The Race Course Fire Memorial was erected in 1922 to pay respect to those who died in the tragic Race Course Fire which broke out on 26 February 1918 (the second day of the annual "Derby Day" races) at the Racecourse, claiming more than 600 lives of various nationalities. The Memorial, which is situated on the hillside above the present Hong Kong Stadium at So Kon Po, is the only memorial in Hong Kong dedicated to the victims who died in this disastrous fire.
After the calamity, the Tung Wah Hospital was prompt to offer assistance and arranged for labourers to collect the dead bodies. Meanwhile, the then Governor of Hong Kong, Sir Francis Henry May, requested that all the bodies should be buried in the same resting place and a suitable large unoccupied site on the other side of Wong Nai Chung was chosen, in an area known as Coffee Garden. The Tung Wah Hospital, under its Chairman, Tong Yat-chuen, then organized an architectural competition for a permanent and suitable monument to be erected close to the burial site and they eventually selected the design from Ho Sheung, who then worked for the Public Works Department. With the benefit of public donations, construction of the Memorial started in 1922. The Memorial demonstrated the generous and prompt response to such a major disaster relief project from Tung Wah Hospital, the Government as well as the general public in caring the dead, injured and the bereaved families.
The Memorial comprises two Pavilions on the topmost terrace, then the central Memorial Arch on the next lower terrace and finally a pair of Pagodas built on the lowest terrace. Each terrace is paved with granite slabs and includes balustraded parapets and is connected by flights of granite steps. The high front retaining granite wall which supports the lowest terrace adopts the curved traditional shape of a Chinese grave. The whole composition shows great architectural talent, wisely combining both Western classical as well as traditional Chinese architectural elements.
Race Course Fire Memorial was declared a monument in 2015.
So Kon Po, Wan Chai (Plan)
Opening HoursPlease refer to the website of Tung Wah Group of Hospitals for the opening hours of Race Course Fire Memorial.
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