Friday, October 16, 2009
S'pore's 1st Airshow 1911 !., Clifford Pier opening 1933.
Here are two very old photos of early Singapore. They are from the Straits Times edition of 16 December 1988..kept in my home archives.
The first photo captured the very first air show in Singapore back in March 1911. The plane in the picture was a Bristol Box-Kite biplane piloted by Mr Joseph Christiaens. You can see the profile of the pilot against the sky. He took off from the Race Course ( Farrer Park today ).
Anyone remembers the building in the background.? The roof and that bell-shaped tower looks rather familiar to me. I am quite familiar with the Farrer Park of the 60's onwards. It is no longer there today, of course.
The seniors and oldies of my generation would surely be familiar with Clifford Pier. That was the main pier from which you board the boats from. There were other boarding places for the smaller crafts and tongkangs like Telok Ayer Basin. But Clifford Pier would be like today's WTC.
This rare photo showed the day it was declared open on June 3 1933...in a ceremony filled with pomp and pageantry. The pier was named after Sir Hugh Clifford, Governor of Singapore from 1927 - 1929.
It was built to replace Johnston Pier, also located there.
My first ever visit there was as a small kid in the 50's. I remember my father brought me there and I was totally mesmerised by all that I heard and saw. Such a pity that my poor father never owned a camera in his life..otherwise I would love to recapture the days of my childhood through pictures. I cannot now recall clearly why we were there. But I can remember the places he had brought me to...as I treasure those precious memories in the absence of photos.