Han Chin Pet Soo is open! Book now at www.ipohworld.org/reservation
Han Chin Pet Soo is open! Book now at www.ipohworld.org/reservation

January 2011

From the Perak Flying Club Album!

By |2011-01-28T10:47:33+08:00January 28th, 2011|Categories: Identify Photographs, ipoh, Memories, People|Tags: , , , |

Here we have another picture from Robin Tan’s collection. He is seen here (in red) with some friends at the Ipoh Airport. In the background is the Jetfox 97, and on the extreme left is part of the airport’s control tower. As stated in the caption, Tony (white shirt, with shades) used to airdrop payrolls in the 60s (ref. to our previous blog post).

From the smiles on their faces, it must have been a great reunion 🙂

A Tribute to the Late Dato’ K. K. Lim

By |2011-01-27T07:50:56+08:00January 27th, 2011|Categories: ipoh, People|Tags: , , , |

It was with great sadness that I heard of the passing of Dato’ K. K. Lim on Thursday last as he has been a great friend and supporter to me over the previous 7-years or more. A tough businessman with a stern exterior, he had a heart of gold when it came to those, often forgotten, elements of a quality life, education, music, dance, drama, art and heritage. It was therefore that without any fanfare or unnecessary publicity, he unfailingly supported them all financially for many years. He was the silent philanthropist who cared about these things and did everything he could to bring culture and quality education to Ipoh, a town often described as a cultural desert. His departure from this world will leave a gap in many people’s lives, including my own.

Personally I have to thank him for supporting the ipohWorld project, based in Tenby Schools, Ipoh. Without his encouragement and sound advice much of the historical information that we have collected over the years would have been lost to the world. As it is we have collected, researched and recorded a large database of local images and facts that are available to students worldwide via the Internet. The database continues to grow daily. Much of this information which covers the ever-disappearing heritage and social history of our area is ignored by the present education system. We therefore fill the gap in our young people’s knowledge of the past and their roots, with information not readily available elsewhere. To continually fund organisations that always run at a loss, simply because he maintained the belief that heritage, social history and the arts were important ingredients in education and, at the same time, would make Ipoh a better place to live, demonstrates his determination to succeed where others had failed. He will be sorely missed. May he rest in peace.

Ian Anderson

The photograph, courtesy of the Lim family shows Dato KK with his wife Datin Stella and one of his grandsons, Tan Zen Ferng.

Schooling in Ipoh – Episode 2

By |2011-08-26T08:26:12+08:00January 24th, 2011|Categories: childhood, ipoh, Memories, People|Tags: , , , |

Here’s the 2nd Episode from UV-Valiant Knight.


 Episode 2


The Central Mental Hospital, TR. This picture was taken in 1952; the Writer’s mother is seated next to the Matron (an English Lady). 


Aerial view of the ACS School, Ipoh


Transferring to another location is usually traumatic for some people.  I had to leave Tanjung Rambutan when my mother retired (optional) and we moved to Ipoh.  I had to attend ACS Ipoh, the main school.  This place was large!  One block of this school was already many times the size of my TR Branch school!  Luckily for me, I have three older brothers already in this school.  However, I was the only one left in the primary school as the others were already in the secondary school.
 My eldest brother drove to school and we all packed into the Austin A40 my parents allowed him to drive!  It was our family car, but since my mother was retired and my father away from home (he works with the Home Guards in Batu Gajah at that time), my eldest brother being able to have a driving license, used the car.  We all piled inside every school going day and went to school together.
 Joining a class in Standard Three in the New Year (1954) was not easy for me.  Although I had 3 brothers in school, they were already in the higher classes.  I reported to Mrs. Grace Thong, the Primary Section Supervisor and the first thing she did was to give me a ‘medical’ examination.  One has to unbutton one’s shorts and she would check one’s stomach for worms (to see if one has a bloated stomach) and at the same time make sure you are a boy attending a boy school (Lots of Laugh)!  Then she sent me to my class and the teacher was Mr. Samuel Welch, a young handsome man whose first interest was flying.
 I always remember him telling stories of flying aircrafts using his hands to simulate a flying aeroplane and the most dramatic stories he would narrate were how planes do dogfights and land on aircraft carriers.  He started my interest in aeroplanes and my burning desire to be a pilot when I finish school.  This did not materialize as I had to wear spectacles when I reached Form Five.  However, my interest in aeroplanes, especially war aeroplanes never waned.  I started collect model war aeroplanes (Airfix and other brands) from young and had a very large collection of them.  They were displayed in my room and when I ran out of space on tables, shelves and bureau tops, I strung them up on fishing guts from the ceiling.

 Mr. Samuel Welch later joined the newly formed Royal Malaysian Air Force and became a very high ranking officer before retiring.  He married a woman police officer, Blossom Wong, who became famous when she was the bodyguard of Queen Elizabeth II when she visited Malaysia.

 I remembered the time when Mr. Welch was teaching us English and we were reading from the reader a story about Red Riding Hood and he wanted to dramatize the story.  He got some of us to act out the various parts.  Unfortunately, I was given the role of Red Riding Hood and had a handkerchief for a headscarf and rosy cheeks plastered on by using a red chalk!  From that day, my classmates always teased me and being new and quiet, I was nicknamed a sissy!  I only managed to rid myself of this ‘title’ in Standard Four when I took on the class bully in a fist fight!

 This class bully was much taller and of a bigger size than most of us and he would pick a fight with anyone at any time.  I decided to put a stop to this and decided that the only way to get him out of my back was to fight back.  Fist fight was common in boys schools then.  Disputes would be settled with a fist fight that eventually would end up as a wrestling match.  Usually the weaker boys would be beaten up, have their shirt and pants dirtied or torn, sometimes they would end up with  a black eye or two black eyes, a bloodied nose and swollen cauliflower ears.  I was lucky to end up with a dirtied shirt and had to answer to my parents as to why it was so. 

 Fights in school were not tolerated and if we were to be caught, we could be caned by the Supervisor or the Discipline Teacher.  Mr. Aw Boon Jin was the Junior Primary Supervisor (as he was called then) and he has a thin cane that would land smack on your open palm.  It was a real sting and one would carry the cane mark for at least a day.  One has to hide this from one’s parents or else one would get another caning at home!

 I was saved by the bell that ended our recess (a short break for pupils to ease themselves and have a bite to eat).  Pupils in primary schools usually bring along some packed food from home with a bottle of drink.  Most students then would use a tomato sauce bottle that would contain a pint (we were using the British Measuring System then) of drink.  I love coffee and this was the drink of the family.  Real black coffee from ground fresh coffee beans would go into the brewing of the drink.  I suppose that’s how Ipoh White Coffee became so famous today.  Most Ipoh folks were great drinkers of coffee.  We never had Tupperware then and we make do with containers made of metal that once contained sweets or biscuits.  They were of all shapes and sizes and displayed colourful pictures of people or scenery.

 Big bullies would demand a share of one’s food or drink.  Many pupils would rush to the canteen (also known as the ‘tuckshop’ in ACS Ipoh) to buy some food and a drink.  One could easily get a bowl or plate of noodles/rice for ten cents and a drink for five cents.  In ACS Ipoh then, we had to line up to exchange our coins for tokens (made of metal) and use these tokens to buy food from the various hawkers.  The ‘contractor’ (one who runs the cateen) was the late Mrs. Ng Ah Fook, the wife of a teacher in the school.  Mr. Ng Ah Fook later became the Headmaster of the ACS Primary School.

 There were various stalls in the canteen.  Since recess was short and there were hundreds of us from each session (Lower Primary would have their recess first, followed by Junior Primary and then Lower Secondary and Upper Secondary), the bowls and plates of food would all be dished out and neatly arranged on the counter of each stall and all we had to do was take one and pay with our metal token and go to the side for the soup to be added if it is a soup noodle bowl we took.  There were hardly any changes in menu!  Day in and day out we ate the same stuff.  Next we would queue up for a drink and this was when we had to be very careful not to spill our drinks.  If it should spill on someone, a fight may result there and then and we would not get to eat or drink that day.  Worse still, we would be hauled up for caning.

 To avoid all the hazels, most meek and mild pupils will bring their own food.  After all, home cooked food is always the best and you can sit anywhere to eat.  There was no rules to say one has to go to the canteen to eat.  One could bring any kind of food, too.  There was no such thing as ‘halal’ or ‘haram’ food.

 Most pupils will also use the interval time to ease themselves.  ACS was and still is, notorious for poor toilet facilities.  At my time, there was only a toilet way behind next to the Horley Hall (hostel for outstation pupils) and it was so far away that one had to run there and back if one wanted to eat as well during the break.  Then, it was so small that not all can use it at once and a long queue would result.  Inside was an open system where all the boys would line up on two sides of the building and pee into a drain that runs the length of the building.  Sporadically, water would sprinkle from a lead pipe that runs about 4 feet from the floor and if you are unlucky, water might splash onto your shoes or pants while you are peeing!  The stench was overwhelming.  If you have to do the ‘big one’ you have to wait even longer for your turn and you wouldn’t want to eat after you have finished.  The flush system would not work so regularly for each user!  So the excreta of the previous user would remain while you add yours and so forth.

Yes, life in the Primary School has lots of interesting events.  These are common, I suppose in all schools during the early Fifties.  We only had a few teachers and they taught us various subjects.  Specialization was not common.  Our class teacher would normally teach us the important subjects like English, Mathematics, Geography and History.  For Art we would have a different teacher as this subject needed talent on the teacher’s part.  During my time, there was this old teacher, Mr. Wong Hean Lin who would remain in his Art Room and we would all move to his room to learn drawing and painting.

 Most of the time he would give us a topic for imaginative composition and we spend about two periods producing something on a large piece of art paper.  We had to bring our own pencils, water colour, brushes and water containers (usually a small glass bottle [Brands Essence of Chicken bottles were the first choice then].  After each lesson we had to wash our brushes, palettes and containers and this would be the time for some bullies or cheeky characters to flick their brushes still wet with colours on someone’s shirt or pants.  Here again a fight would start!

 Serious fights might at times occur.  If such a fight was scheduled, it would usually be arranged for the fighters to meet after school behind the famous gymnasium of ACS Ipoh.  This way out corner of the school was selected because it was secluded and out of the way from the school’s office and Principal’s house.  All those with news of the fight would gather and it would be a real show then.  Very often, it would only be stopped when one of the fighters plea for mercy!  It could be rather bloody at times, being fought with bare fists!





50, Gopeng Road, Ipoh

By |2011-01-19T09:59:46+08:00January 19th, 2011|Categories: Identify Photographs, ipoh, Memories|Tags: , , |

Some of you might remember this bungalow – at No.50, Gopeng Road (also known as Midhurst). The bungalow belonged to J A S Jennings (Editor of the Times of Malaya).

These pictures (below) were sent to us by Jennings’ grandson Nicholas. We were told that this bungalow was built in the late 1920s. After Jennings’ death, it was sold to the Perak State Government in 1937. It used to be the residence of the State Secretary of Perak, and the land behind it was the Istana (Perak Sultan’s Palace).

The driveway leading to the house.

Jennings outside his home.

We thank Nicholas for the pictures and the little details.

Cheers to the Cubs!

By |2011-01-17T09:12:52+08:00January 17th, 2011|Categories: Identify Photographs, ipoh, Memories, People|Tags: , , , |

The Cubs from NTPS, 1960

We thank SK Ong for the above picture. Perhaps some of you out there are in this picture; looking smart in your Cubs uniform and cap 😉 I remember being part of the Red Crescent Society – it took me a while to learn the RIGHT WAY to tie an arm sling! But learning some basic First Aid was quite fun.

Speaking of school clubs, which club/society did YOU join?

Schooling in Ipoh – Episode 1

By |2011-01-14T12:34:35+08:00January 14th, 2011|Categories: childhood, Memories, People|Tags: , , , |

We have here a contribution by one of our readers – UV -ValiantKnightHe would like to share with us his childhood memories, especially from his schooling days at the Primary branch of ACS (in Ulu Kinta).  Below is his story, together with a couple of pictures. Happy reading!

S.K. Methodist, Tanjong Rambutan

T.R. Methodist Church


Schooling in Ipoh

Episode 1

 Would you believe it if I told you that I started schooling in ACS Ipoh’s branch primary school in Tanjung Rambutan (Ulu Kinta)?  Yes, there is such a place as ACS Ipoh’s branch primacy school then in the early 50s.  This school is now a full fledge primary school.  However, back then, it was only a branch school housed in a church building (TR’s Methodist Church (Chinese) but used by all congregations – Chinese, Tamil and English).

 I went to that school because my mother was a nurse (the first Mental Trained Nurse certified by the Registrar of Nursing, England) in Central Mental Hospital, Tanjung Rambutan (now renamed Hospital Bahagia Ulu Kinta).  Yes, my siblings and their school going friends were object of teasing and ridicule when they were dropped at their respective schools in Ipoh by the CMH bus!  However, many from this unsavoury place associated with mental disease became famous Malaysians.

 I never had the experience of travelling to Ipoh by this bus.  I was registered in the ACS Ipoh Branch Primary School and my father who was a temporary teacher there took me to school on his bicycle every morning until he left to join the Home Guards during the height of the Emergency.  From that time on, I had to walk about 2 Km from my mother’s nursing quarters to school and I usually take a short cut along the railway track that ran from just behind my house to the front of the school.

 It was safe then to let a 6+ walk alone along a railway track then.  If this happened today, I would not be here to write about it.  I would be joined by a young friend who was the brother of a famous radio announcer later in life.

 There were not too many pupils in the school and there were only 3 classes, Primary One, Primary Two and Standard One (that was how classes were graded then,  it later became Standard One to Standard Six and now it is Year One to Year Six.

 What I remembered about this school most was its horrible toilet!  It was a small outhouse away from the main building and a huge jar (I could barely pee into it being rather short then) where all the boys had to urinate into (to be used by vegetable farmers).  The stench was horrible and flies were in the hundreds.  I refused to go (if possible) and so cultivated the ability to hold on with my bladder full until I reached home each day.  One day, I could not and wet myself and that was a day to remember!  I think my classmates also cannot forget that day to my peril.  However, it taught me a lesson in life.

 When I became a teacher and should a pupil ask me for permission to go to the levorotary I would never deny him or her!  It also taught me that one cannot be in full control all the time and that nature has its way to let us know that it is in control.  A few years later, a friend in class did something worse; he could not hold back ‘the big one’.  I was sitting next to him and one could imagine the stench!  I helped clean up the chair and floor because I was next to him and also I remembered what happened to me a few years before that day.  Of course everyone nicknamed him “Lai See Poh” (a lady that dirtied her pants with excreta)  from that day onwards, but he was OK in life despite that name!

 I am sure many of you did experience this when in school, either as the one performing these acts or had friends in class doing them.  Care to share?

Recognise this school?

By |2011-01-12T10:29:50+08:00January 12th, 2011|Categories: Identify Photographs, ipoh, Memories, Natural Heritage|Tags: , |

Familiar? For those of you who are stumped, this is the Raja Perempuan School (RPS) – which is along Chung Thye Phin Road (opposite Main Convent Primary School).

We’d like you to have a guess at the date of this picture (we don’t know ourselves!). Maybe if anyone of you know the history of the building, you could share with the rest of us? 🙂

What’s Happened to the Milano Tailor?

By |2011-01-10T09:33:49+08:00January 10th, 2011|Categories: Identify Photographs, ipoh, Ipoh Town, Memories|Tags: , |

I’m sure the Ipoh-ites out there are grinning at this picture (courtesy of Jeffrey Liew) – especially those who frequently travelled along Club Road (Jalan Panglima Bukit Gantang)!

Remember the Milano Tailor? I wonder where he is now…..since this building is no longer around (so much for ‘development’). Yes 🙁 sadly this is now an empty lot which houses abandoned/wrecked cars.

Anyone care to fill us in with MORE information?

Heritage Trail Map (1st Map)

By |2020-01-13T09:25:05+08:00January 7th, 2011|Categories: ipoh, Ipoh Town, Natural Heritage, Uncategorized|Tags: , , |

Here’s a copy of the 1st Heritage Trail Map. This trail covers Old Town and is held every Saturday morning at 8am, starting at the Ipoh Railway Station.

A full size printable copy of this map is now available on our database athttp://db.ipohworld.org/view/id/3875 in PDF format.


The Teachers of ACS

By |2011-01-05T09:45:43+08:00January 5th, 2011|Categories: Identify Photographs, ipoh, Memories, People|Tags: , , |

This is the staff of the Anglo-Chinese School (ACS), Ipoh.

Could anyone tell us the year (a rough guess would do too)? And, perhaps if you can remember these teachers – we’d love to hear from you 🙂

I’m sure some of you ACS-alumni out there are already searching your ‘database’!

We thank Joshua Anantham for sending us this photograph.

Have you seen this dredge?

By |2011-01-03T13:13:46+08:00January 3rd, 2011|Categories: Identify Photographs, Natural Heritage|Tags: , , |

We have here a picture of a dredge in Pengkalan. This picture was taken quite some time ago, when it sank and rested neatly on the bottom of the pool, hence it probably looks different today.

I do wonder what’s become of this dredge: were there plans to save it, like the TT5? Or, if not maintained…it might just capsize, for they do turn over sometimes and then they are lost. (ref. to our website here).

If anyone out there could provide us with more details, we’d be glad to hear from you!

Go to Top