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Hong Kong Island

The Exterior of May Hall, The University of Hong Kong

May Hall was opened on 1 January 1915 as the third student residential hall under the direct management of The University of Hong Kong. It was named after Sir Francis Henry May, the second Chancellor of The University of Hong Kong and the 15th Governor of Hong Kong.

During the Second World War, May Hall served as the main residence for staff and students. On New Year's Day 1942, a University congregation was held in May Hall and wartime degrees were granted to fourteen medical students who took their final examinations at the time of the Japanese attack. In June 1966, a prolonged period of torrential rain caused a massive landslide on the slope adjacent to Eliot Hall and May Hall which led to an immediate evacuation of the two halls and necessitated extensive repairs. Two wardens' quarters at the east end of Eliot Hall and May Hall had to be demolished. The university took this opportunity to combine Lugard Hall, Eliot Hall and May Hall into one large residential unit named Old Halls, which was opened in 1969. It consisted of three wings, namely Lugard Wing, Eliot Wing and May Wing. May Wing reverted to its old name May Hall when Lugard Wing was demolished in 1992.

Like Eliot Hall, May Hall was designed by local Hong Kong Architects, Denison, Ram and Gibbs. It is a three-storey red-brick building with facades featuring a rich variety of architectural elements, including curved pediments over the entrance doorways, rusticated columns, Doric capitals, window sills, cornices, Chinese-style ceramic grilles, and balconies with balustrades. The pitched and double-tiled Chinese roofs are a local adaptation reflecting a fusion of architectural styles.

The Exterior of May Hall, The University of Hong Kong was declared a monument in 2018.

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