In 1899, a year after China leased the New Territories to Britain, the people of Kam Tin were putting up resistance to the new colonial authorities. After several skirmishes, the locals took refuge behind the iron gates of Kat Hing Wai Walled Village. The British troops overran the village, dismantled its gates and shipped them back to Britain as booty. In 1924, a member of the Tang clan petitioned the British government to return the gates. As a gesture of goodwill, Governor Stubbs returned it to the village during a ceremony in 1925. Today, a tablet hanging near the main gate of the village gives an account of the incident.
Kat Hing Wai Walled Village
Just outside the town of Yuen Long lies an old walled village, still inhabited by the descendents of those who once built these walls to protect themselves from rival clans, bandits, pirates -- even tigers, who once prowled the area.
Dating back around 500 years to the Ming dynasty (1368-1644), Kat Hing Wai Walled Village is a rectangular-shaped village constructed mostly of blue brick walls. It was first settled by the Tang clan; one of the five biggest clans to take up residence in the New Territories.
The Hakka people living there today still wear their traditional wide-brimmed hats covered with black cloth, and the village is a great glimpse into the intriguing past of these early settlers. While some of the older houses have been replaced with more modern dwellings, the village’s guardhouse towers and moat have survived.
Did you know?
MTR Kam Sheung Road Station, Exit B. Walk to Kam Po Road through subway and then turn to Kam Sheung Road. It takes around 20 minutes from Kam Po Road to Kat Hing Wai.