in Hong Kong - New Territories
The Hau Ku Shek Ancestral Hall in Ho Sheung Heung was built in the late Ming Dynasty (1368 – 1644). According to the genealogy of the Hau clan, the Ancestral Hall was constructed by Hau Ku Shek, the 17th generation ancestor of the Hau clan. The date inscribed on the name board hanging over the main entrance suggests that the Ancestral Hall underwent renovation around the 27th year of the Qianlong reign (1762) during the Qing Dynasty (1644 – 1911).
The layout of the Ancestral Hall is of the traditional three-hall-two-courtyard style. There are side chambers at both sides of the front courtyard, while an alter is erected in the middle hall for housing ancestral tablets. The two-storey rear hall was used as a village school, with the ground floor providing accommodation for teachers and the upper floor being classrooms. The school was closed during the Second World War. Nowadays, the Hau Ku Shek Ancestral Hall is still used by the clansmen for worshipping ancestors and holding traditional ceremonies. It is also a gathering and meeting place for the locals.
The drum-platforms and doorframe at the facade of the Hau Ku Shek Ancestral Hall are constructed of red sandstone, traditionally a precious building material for important buildings. Its roof ridges are richly embellished. The camel’s humps, eaves boards and tie beam of the Ancestral Hall are also decorated with exquisite carvings of auspicious motifs.
The Hau Ku Shek Ancestral Hall was declared a monument on 19 December 2003 and is protected under the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance.
Hau Ku Shek Ancestral Hall, Ho Sheung Heung, Sheung Shui