赤柱「八間屋」── 璞玉般的另類文物徑

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本網 ( 赤柱龍舟 ) 特稿 last update 16/3/2002 更正

  1. 掌故

  赤柱「八間屋」,偶有稱八間村,本區居民一般簡稱之為「八間」,乃位於赤柱灣東側,背靠黃麻角道。遊人走到赤柱大街最南端,要向左轉入,走(東南)五十步即見。乃面向無名小沙灘,自成一角的,一排八間連成一體,外形統一的尖頂瓦面小屋群。她在赤柱已隱伏了大半個世紀。

  據說1931年港英政府要加強海岸防衛而在赤柱黃麻角山上收地建軍營(即赤柱炮台),需給予山上八戶農家賠償,因而在山下海邊現址興建了八間高只一層的小屋予以安置,還附帶毋須繳付差餉和物業稅等優惠作利誘。

2. 特色

整列建築以紅磚疊砌而成,尖頂瓦面,木門及木窗框則統一地漆上綠色,型格一致,古色古香,別具一格。再加上門前幾棵同屬佳品的古老風水樹的護蔭和沙灘海浪的襯托,漫不經意地營造出一股憩靜清怡的氛圍,亦具令人發思古幽情之妙。

  不過,除梁炳華博士著《南區風物誌》(南區區議會出版,1996)一書外,旅遊資料絕少提及此景點;即使是香港旅遊發展局,也要到2000年末,因為要推動本區旅遊,要發掘新景點,才在路標上加上「八間」一項〔註一〕,及在今美利樓地層之遊客專用互動電視系統內略作簡介而矣。2001年南區星報亦首次引述,雖粗略,亦算圖片精警。

3. 今貌

  當年八戶中以羅姓及另一姓為主,經過70年光景,不但人面全非,且屋頂瓦片已多被英泥覆蓋,不復舊貌,但幸好仍保留原來的統一的灰色和坑紋。台階牆腳裝潢漸有參差。窗則已全改為鋁框,增添了半點時代感,亦暴露了文物欠缺保護的危機。幸而整體外觀尚算完整,仍不失引人入勝之美態,樸實清秀。

雖然此乃私人住宅,不可入內打擾,但門前休憩處及沙灘卻是公眾設施。曾經養在深閨人未識,現在婷婷玉立,可算是香港旅遊界新發現。[註二] 璞玉終被賞識,但筆者認為,不宜彫琢之。任何太著績的修葺都會帶來庸俗,亦加速損毀文物的整體味道和歷史價值。

 

4. 周邊景點──八間小型文物徑考察教材舉例

香港開埠初期,赤柱之「村屋」有三處主要聚落,(一)八間附近地方曾被稱為「南約」。( 二 )西約,即已(90年代中)被清拆的西環仔,現美利樓以西至舂坎角巴士總站對下一帶海岸,後擴大到馬坑甲、乙兩村;( 三 ) 北約,即大潭村及今巴士總站側之遊樂休憩處(約在1970年代中清拆)〔註三〕。大潭村近航海學校之繆氏祠堂至今仍保存原好。

  滄海桑田,現今只有八間一帶的「南約」保存了大半個世紀前風貌,其他已不復存在,就連南約之名也已湮沒。故遊赤柱,八間及其周邊景點是現成的親子文物考察教材。赤柱雖未有正式的文物徑,但顯然民間自創八間小型文物徑也未嘗不可。以下推薦少許考察課題供看官參考:

 

1. 八間側有小型船廠,現仍修理及改裝木船(漁船或中式遊艇),營運了近百年。此廠當年選址於此,與香港發展史有何關係?

2. 距八間南五十步之遙,在山邊木屋處有一口井仍保持原好,居民仍偶有使用。何年發掘?已廢棄小型英式抽水機械仍放原位,何年居民改用自來水?該井選址與黃麻角山的水文有何關係?與赤柱的早期開發有何關係 ?

3. 山邊木屋存在了多久?與香港房屋發展史有何關係?與開埠初期,赤柱之「村屋」三處主要聚落有何關係 ?

4 . 八間屋頂的瓦面及窗框,何年更換成今天的模樣?為何?如果文物不保護,會有什麼後果?

5.八間與赤柱大街南端之間的污水泵房(原址前身為化糞池),與渠務署"港島南之污水收集整體計劃",及建於黃麻角山腰之全亞洲最大之山洞式污水處理廠有何關係?

6. 八間西鄰海角石岬上的水僊古廟(見另文)及對岸之北帝廟,與早年漁民生活有何關係?

 

撰文 / 圖片 侯志輝• 2002/3/12

(版權所有)

 


The Eight-Unit Housing

- mini heritage tour unexplored

( except ) Lying at the southern end of Stanley Main Street are eight connected small houses of special style . As they are joined together as one whole construction, local villagers call them the "Baat Gaan" (Cantonese, meaning eight units). Some people may call it the Pak Kan "Village". It is said that in the 1930's when the government was planning to stregthen coastal defence by building the barracks at Stanley [ the so called Stanley Fort ], farmers at the Wong Ma Kok Hill were compensated and resettled at these specially built houses. The uniform red-brick walls, tiled gable roofs, as well as the green wooden doors and windows, all add up for thier consistent old village genre; The bonus of the shade the protection of the several old Fung Shui trees in front, plus the gentle sea breeze, provides additional special flavour to the charm of such specialty rarely found in Hong Kong today...

Thing changes with time. Nowadays most of the ownership has changed hands, or the houses leased out,...most roof tiles have been covered with cement since its last major repair and the window frames changed to alumium, and the feet of the walls at the doorsteps are showing slight discrepancies. Fortunatedly nowadays we can still enjoy the amazing scene and atmosphere at the site, but there may be signs to remind the public that without a comprehensive protection scheme, our heritage may be defaced gradually ...

Ony very recently has the site been identified and promoted in tourist information published by the HK Tourism Board, e.g. since year 2000 road signs and tourist maps are set by the HKTB at the Stanley Area (note 1) and the interactive TV programme at the ground floor of the recontructed Murray House also include Pak Kan as one of the " Key Attractions ".

Adjacent to the Pak Kan, less than a hundred steps away are several other pieces of low key heritage waiting for you to explore. We may combine them and construct our own mini heritage walk for studies and/ or a family day exploration. Here are some of our recommendations:

1. the nearly hundred-year old dock that still functioning to repair fishing boats and Chinese style please boats; what is it related to the development of Hongkong ?

2. merely fifty steps away, there is a public well. locals still take water from it occationally for watering plants and washing. The abandoned british style water pump may give you a hint of its age. How is it relate to the hydrology and water line of the Hill and, development of early Stanley.

3. The squatter area next to it is the only old settlement of similar style left in the whole Stanley. It is actually one of the 3 early settlements of Chek Chu.

4. constructed on a seaside rock neighbouring the Pat Kan is the small Shui Tsein Temple ( read separate page ) built in the 18 century dedicated to the water deity.

(research/ photo/ translation: Edwin Hou 2002)
copyright

註 :

[ 一] 時至今天,政府當局仍未在此地點門前豎立任何匾額向遊人簡介如此有特色、有大半個世紀歷史 (雖未過百年)之本土建築,殊令人失望,亦令人懷疑本港的旅遊、文物保護及公民教育政策的視野與熱誠如何。而分別由康樂及文化事務處與南區區議會在「八間屋」門外空地掛出之標示,均稱之為"新八間休憩處"。 到底「新」個什麼?是否指休憩處新?英文直接音譯 " Sun Pat Kan Sitting-out Area" 更不知所謂。香港旅遊局2000年起在赤柱多處豎立的路標,最初曾照抄襲此「新八間」的錯誤名稱,是否不求甚解,以致以訛傳訛?考。幸得區內人士投訴才得以更正,現赤柱市集之旅客路標均標示為「八間」。

[ 二 ] 到2002年3月,本網頁被迫成為了全港首個及唯一正式介紹「赤柱八間屋」掌故的網頁。 [ 本頁最先張貼日期: 2002/3/7 ]

[ 三 ] 參考「赤柱馬坑村清拆前紀念特刊」(199312月)香港小童群益會赤柱兒童會賢雅集編印。


Foot-note :

1. To date , it is disappointing to note that there is still not any visitor info boards at this site to introduce such stylish relics with a history of nearly 3 quarters of a century (though a century may be argued as the benchmark). It leads the public to doubt the vision and enthusism of the government to promote tourism, heritage protection and civic education. It is even more funny to note that the sign boards hung up by the Leisure & Cultural Services Dept as well as the Southern District Council both rediculously label the area in front as the "Sun Pak Kan Sitting-out Area". Sun is the phonetic translation for the word "New". New for what ? Is it because merely the sitting-out area is newly renovated ? Tourist sign posts erected in 2000 by the HK Tourism Board, scattered around Stanley, once named the site rediculously as "Sun Pak Kan". Is the origin for such mystery generates from the Sitting-out Area signs, and people just blindly copy without consulting the locals ? Who knows ? It is lucky that the mistake was rectified after complaints from Stanley residents.

2. In March 2002, our web site is forced to become the only and first internet resources to research on the heritage of the Pak Kan area.

[ first post up 2002/3/7 ]


上圖由
水僊廟前之石岡拍攝,左方為船 廠及渠務署污水泵房(前身為化糞池)外牆
image taken from the reef in front of the
Shui Tsein Temple,
left side shows the century old dock and new
sewage pumping station
dusk 2000/3/7 黃昏

 

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