Monday, July 20, 2009


Not often as I said we get the opportunity to stop in Ipoh. Given the opportunity, it is creditable what the city can offer you in terms of heritage buildings. Pictures below capture buildings near the program site and imagine what the other parts of the city can give us. Sadly many buildings are left without proper care and attention much less earning the curiosity and full admiration as they should be. Whereas in other cities of the world such richness would be admired and crowd pullers.

Participants of the workshop giving their attentions to the paper presenters.

Two interior pictures of the 'General Post Office'. One with the participants viewing a wall which requires plastering as per method approved. Participants had their sessions of applying the lime and mixtures . On the right is the double storey section which definitely requires intensive works. It will be great to see the result when the conservation and renovation are completed. Observe the solid iron beam as supporters

Staircases amongst others which had been painted multiple times and part of the renovation work is to clean and arrive at the original base.

Two well-known buildings. One in blue is the F.M.S building , a 'famous waterhole' during the hayday of the rubber and tin boom period. Now left vacant though it was a restaurant several years back known for its delicious 'currypuffs'. Next, seen through the goal post on the Ipoh Padang is the St Micheal School.

HSBC building is one of Ipoh's heritage building and used as the Japanese Military HQ during the war years.

IF you have never known what an 'Ipoh' tree looks like, go no farther because right in front of the Ipoh Railway Station you will see it growing in its full majesty. In the background is the former General Post Office, part of which has been renovated and is now the Ipoh Town Hall. Another notable building is the Chartered Bank of Ipoh.

Saturday, July 18, 2009


On going conservation works at the former General Post Office Ipoh
Participants had the opportunity to visit the site and observe works on site as well as to dirty their hands at applying the lime plastering.

LEARNING actually does not come free. It never did. From schooling to colleges and universities you pay to acquire knowledge and skills. Of course in between you do absorb additional through self reading and experiences. Still we are put through workshops, seminars and conferences to update less stagnation set in. I am in Ipoh this weekend and fortunately able to brush on some practical skills especially in the field of conservation. Fortunate only since the Mrs. has registered for the workshop's session organized by Jabatan Warisan Negara I am able to sit in for some of the talks and discussion gratis.

A short break after the talk given by one of the speakers.

The famous Ipoh Railway Station. It is pleasant to see it in its present standing.

It is known that for centuries LIME was used undisturbed until an invention in early 1880s changed the face of our architecture and engineering feats as well as our rural and urban landscapes. Lime saw its diminishing strength. Yet some of the great monuments of the ancient worlds got its permanent strength and grip from lime. However current conservation of our built heritage and a re-look at the architectural and engineering qualities helped in a big way to put it in the LIMELIGHT again. Now that older prominent and classic buildings get to be restored and preserved along international guidelines, experienced and knowledge based professionals and contractors need to be trained. UNESCO's recognition of Malacca and Penang heritage surely vouched for Badan Warisan Negara strong backing towards more buildings to be restored and preserved in our country. Buildings in tin- riched Perak , especially in Ipoh now get extra focus.

While the participants got hitched to their sessions and practical assignments, I had a good opportunity to tour some small corner of Ipoh. Mind you, since the North-South Highway existed, Ipoh becomes a by-pass and whatever exists here got unknown to the ordinary persons. I was awarded with several photo-shots which otherwise would not even be in my lens view during the short walking tour just around the former General Post Office which is a part of the Ipoh Town Hall built in 1914 currently undergoing restoration works.

There is a great need for us, young and old to realize the richness and valuable heritage around us less they get discarded, unrecognized and perhaps torn down for reason of modernity, disused, unkempt and uncared. Badan Warisan Negara recognized the varied building materials used and specifically addressed itself towards timber, lime and roof-tiles as specific areas of focus. This second edition of its workshop found me as a keen listener and learning certainly goes on.

OCBC being one of the many banks in Ipoh that occupy historical sites and heritage buildings.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


Di tebing Sungai Anak Bukit kini terdiri satu kompleks pentadbiran kerajaan persekutuan. Bukan saja mengindahkan kawasan sekitar sebaliknya mendorong ramai pelawat ke sini nanti. Alangkah baiknya sekiranya mereka dapat mengenali sejarah asal tempat ini nanti.

ISNIN 13 JULAI 2009 Pekan Anak Bukit berwajah baru dan bukan itu saja namanya juga bertukar menjadi Bandar Muadzam Shah. Semua ini wujud dengan terbinanya satu kompleks pentadbiran lapan kilometer dari Bandar Alor Star. Dengan menelan belanja RM 270 juta ia seharusnya menjanjikan perkhidmatan yang bertaraf 'First Class' sesuai dengan bangunan dan kemudahan yang bertaraf sama. Itu juga merupakan harapan YAB Perdana Menteri Malaysia semasa berucap di majlis perasmian. Pekan lama Anak Bukit yang satu masa dahulu sibuk kerana wujudnya satu kompleks kilang padi yang terbesar di utara serta sebuah stesyen kereta api berhampirannya kini nampaknya menerima nafas baru. Di tapak seluas 16.1 hektar kini terbina bangunan pentadbiran baru dan sebuah stesyen keretapi juga akan wujud semula di bandar ini. Kesibukan tentu sekali akan dirasai oleh penduduk disini yang dahulunya biasa dengan ketenteraman. Malah Lapangan Terbang Muadzam Shah 2 kilometer sahaja dari bandar pentadbiran ini. Kita lihat nanti apa pula akan menyusul dengan perkembangan ini. Kampong-kampong sekitarnya diharap mendapat manfaat dan jesteru itu 'putrajaya' kecil ini menjadi unsur perkembangan dan kemajuan daerah kecil ini.

KBDYMM Sultan Kedah hadir dan merasmikan kompleks ini. Turut hadir KBDYMM Sultanah Kedah, YAB Perdana Menteri Malaysia dan Isteri serta YAB Menteri Besar Kedah dan Isteri.

Doa dilafazkan dan hadirin mengaminkannya semoga kakitangan yang bertugas di sini nanti memberi perkhidmatan yang bertaraf tinggi atau kelas satu sesuai dengan infrastruktar yang ada.

Pemandangan di waktu pagi sebelum majlis perasmian satu binaan yang merupakan 'pokok star' sempena nama bandaraya Alor Star.

Kali ini nampaknya 'tua dan dara' menjadi penyambut tetamu . Mereka menunggu ketibaan VVIP dengan sirih junjungnya.

ABOVE ARE some of the photos shot at the opening ceremony of the new Federal Government Administrative Complex at Bandar Muadzam Shah 8 kilometres north of Alor Star town. I had to be here for the purpose of continuing the story of this historic site which was once a large rice milling complex. It existed even before the Second World War and had served the country for distributing rice to all parts of the country in time of sparse resources and especially during the war years. A railway line and a small station close by helped in the distribution. It looks like the place has come alive again only the services are different though both supply products. Even a new railway station is being built here. With pictures of the previous buildings and locations and added with the new it could be a conclusive story. Living a stone's throw away, it becomes more necessary for me to document its growth and be here on this historic day. Surely history happened right in front of us and yet we often miss to observe it.

Lukisan konsep sebelum terbinanya Kompleks Pentadbiran Bandar Muadzam Shah. Disebelah kanan kelihatan bangunan Hasil dan Bangunan Persekekutuan. Lebuhraya Darulaman merentasi kompleks ini . Upacara perasmian telah diadakan pada tapak kosong berwarna kuning diantara dua buah bangunan di sebelah kiri lebuhraya