Thursday, 8 May 2008

Eng Choon's Clan House

This is the Eng Choon's (a sub-dialect of Fujian) Clan house found on Heeren Street in Melaka. This clan house was newly restored and renovated. It has been turned into another interesting tourist site along this street.

Heeren Street is well-known for the old buildings which were inherited since the old Dutch colonial days in Melaka. This goes back to the mid-1600's till late 1800's. During the Dutch rule, shophouses built were subjected to comprehensive building & planning regulations, which dictated the building lines, usage of tiles and sizes of bricks strictly. Houses along this street are important to the architectural history of Malaysia.

As you can see, the length of this building is very long (may be over 100 feet). This is because houses were subjected to tax which was calculated based on the width of the house. In order to ensure that the tax paid was low, houses were built narrowly and mileage were gained through the length of the house. In order to improve on the lighting and ventilation of such long house, an airwell would be built in the centre court.

It is great that conservation work & effort on such heritage building like this Eng Choon Clan House is been done. My hope is that more buildings along Heeren Street will be conserved through government or private funds as part of our national heritage.

1 comment:

USelaine said...

Thanks for explaining the history of this. It's a beautiful building.

"Use your first smile, your first form of generosity, of love, of kindness—use it at home; start at home. And if there is something left over—if … your plate is just full of abundance of patience and goodness and smiles and joy, then by all means, you should go … and offer that to others. But we must begin at home." by Dr Robin Smith