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Land Court , 1900

1900 Jan 01

Land Court , 1900

Since the issue of Chinese Notice in 1899 by the Governor, Henry Blake, informing all land owners in New Territories and Outlying Islands to claim land ownerships, Colonial Government received great amount of land claim disputes, amounting to 69,253 cases, as reported by Stewart Lockhart in his report to Government in 1902.

(參閱 : Ching Dynasty New Territories and outlying islands Land Tenure, before 1898)

Colonial Government enacted the No 18th Ordinance in Hong Kong, the Land Court Ordinance to establish Land Court to handle all theses claim disputes.

Mr. H E Pollock was appointed President, Mr. Gompertz was appointed member, and Mr. Kemp appointed as Registrar.

“ First sitting of  Land Court did not take place till 20th February 1901 on Ma Wan Island, then frequent intervals to Cheung Chau and Ping Chau.

Mr. Pollock and me also went to Liyumoon to sit in Chinese Temple for hearing, and Cha Kwo Lang to sit in vacant shop for hearing.”  remarked by H H J Gompertz as President of Land Court in report to Colonial Government dated 15th March 1902.

(參閱 : British Colonial Government Policy on land administration in New Territories, 1899)

In 1905, Land Court member J R Wood submitted his report to Colonial Government and listed out the chief problems for settlement :

“Many large tracts of land are now claimed by persons who have never paid Crown Rent on them, who never reported their occupation, such as it was to the authorities, and whose claims have never in any way recognised by the Chinese Government.

Very many persons have been paying under the name of tax annual sums to families who professed to be giving an account of these sum to District Treasury but who as a matter of fact very often did nothing of the kind and who in many cases had no real title to more than a very small fraction of the territory over which they collected this rent. “

J R Wood went on to comment “ The claims to large tracts have for the most part on investigation proved untenable, while the Tax-collecting families or Taxlords, as we have called them., have , where they can show documents in support of  their income of any part of  it, been provided for in ways appropriate to each case on recommendations of the Court.”

汪太爺

Wong Wai Tsak Tong Clan’s book land title record

布政司

Wong Wai Tsak Tong clan’s book land title record

高太爺

Wong Wai Tsak Tong clan’s book land title record

Wong Wai Tsak Tong Clan's Book

Wong Wai Tsak Tong Clan’s Book

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Last edited by Cheung Chau Magazine on 2013 Oct 21

Published by under Cheung Chau History

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Land ownership chaos in New Territories, 1898

1898 Jan 01

Land ownership chaos in New Territories, 1898

After Britian took over New Territories and outlying Islands in 1898, Stewart Lockhart,  Colonial Secretary, wrote in 1900 report to government there was too much chaos in Land ownerships in New Territories.

He reported that there were cases involving ill-informed tenants wrongly refusing to pay rent to their Landlords because the lands are in New Territories, and others are to pay rents to the Government.

“Lawless characters also took forcible possession of land and tried to deceive the authority by misrepresentations. Tenants have also endeavoured to usurp the rights of landlords.”

On 20th Oct 1898 , Stewart Lockhart issued a special notice in Chinese  to emphasize all landlords and tenants ought to submit land right  information to authority.

“Ill-behaved persons will most certainly be severely punished according to law and no leniency will be shown to them.  Tremble and obey”

Hong Kong Government Colonial  Secretary , STEWART LOCKHART,香港政府輔政司,史超活·駱克

Stewart Lockhart

Colonial Secretary,1900

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Last edited by Cheung Chau Magazine on 2016 May 20

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Land Survey in New Territories, 1900

1900 Jan 01

Land Survey in New Territories, 1900

Stewart Lockhart, mentioned in his report on New Territories dated 8th Oct 1898, that there was urgent need to survey all land in New Territories. It was approved by the Governor.

Mr. Tate and Mr. Newland were put in charge of a team of surveyors and survey collies hired from India, along  together with local collies.

In his 1900 January report, Mr. P Tate mentioned land surveying is experiencing no problem in New Territories, mainly as a result of employment of  local collies.

But Stewart Lockhart, emphasised in his 1900 report to Governor that it has lot to do with issue of Government Notice in Chinese.

“In fact land surveying also made land owners more positive in registering land titles with Colonial Government in view of the determination shown by the authority in land administration in New Territories.”  Stewart Lockhart.

H K MAP IN 1898

Hong Kong Map in 1898

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Last edited by Cheung Chau Magazine on 2013 Oct 21

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