Sunday, June 24, 2012

Heritage Sabah move to Wordpress

Heritage Sabah Blog in blogspot started more than a year ago. Exactly, on 15th September 2010. It is important as the main source for all the Save our Heritage Atkinson Clock Tower effort to protest the 16 storey building next to it.

Time has passed and more have we learned on the process of making sure the historical significant of this city preserved and protected. There are many new challenges ahead for this group or so we may now proudly known as the Heritage Sabah Society that officially registered under Register of Society Sabah on 17th of April 2012.

The reason to move this blog to wordpress is not easy, but this up step to the society need a more formal and professional appearance to be able to meet the future demand of providing information about the society work and effort.

With that a wordpress is the next new platform to host this new phase of this movement. Please do click the address below to go to the new site.

There are still lots of things to do on the new site. Hope you all bare with us of the unexpected changes on layout and others. We will try to make it less obvious for your convenience.


Saturday, June 23, 2012

Colonial Townships in Sabah: West Coast

Colonial Townships in Sabah: West Coast is a coffetable book about the early towns of Sabah located on the West Coast Division. The 266-page book covers several towns - from Weston to Jesselton, following the historical railroad started by British North Borneo Chartered Company - as well as other well-known towns such as Menggatal, Tuaran, Tamparuli and Tenghilan.

Old photos from various sources have been compiled into one book that tells the story of how the early townships on West Coast of Sabah originated.

Ever wonder what is the origin of the name 'Menggatal' and other towns in Sabah? Did you know that 'Weston' township was named after Arthur J. West? Did you know that Beaufort township was once known as 'the Venice of Sabah'? The book contains stories of how these different townships got their names as well as some of the interesting history of the various towns.

If you are a Sabahan and wished that you knew more about the history of your hometown, this book Colonial Townships in Sabah: West Coast will be an interesting read - and who knows - you may discover links to your own family memories from the old photos contained inside this book.

Colonial Townships in Sabah: West Coast is a useful source of reference for tourist guides, history buffs, students as well as all members of society who appreciate and want to learn more about Sabah's early history. When we understand our history only then can we understand our modern society today.

It will also make a fine present for our elder parents, guests to Sabah as well as anyone who would appreciate the history of Sabah.

Colonial Townships in Sabah: West Coast is written by Richard Nelson Sokial, Heritage Sabah's very own founder as part of a book project sponsored by Colourcoil Industries Sdn. Bhd, City Top Entreprise Sdn, Bhd and coordinated by PAM Sabah Chapter.

The book is selling for RM140.00 (only on booth sale) on event organized by Heritage Sabah and RM150.00 (pos laju delivery within Sabah) RM170 (pos laju delivery to Peninsular and Sarawak) per copy. It can be ordered by email your bank transaction receipt and address detail.

UPDATE: Due to unforeseen charges in Pos Laju, additional RM20 was added for delivery to Sarawak and Peninsular. 

Each book sold and ordered here will be personally signed by Richard Nelson.

For Postal Order, please do deposit your money to the account below, scan the transaction receipt and sent it to for proof of payment included your postal address. Make sure the address is accurate and we will courier post it to you in two working days.

Bank Transaction Number is: CIMB 10020049958528

NOTE: Online and booth selling will only available for three month till end of august 2012. After that, you need to go to the book store to get it. Get it now during this time and get Richard Nelson to personally sign the book.


Monday, June 11, 2012

Ulu Papar Talk at Muzium Sabah

Heritage Sabah attended the Ulu Papar Cultural Heritage Sites Talk this morning at Muzium Sabah, Kota Kinabalu. The talk was organized by the Community Researchers of Ulu Papar under the coordination of Global Diversity Foundation and was attended by various Sabah NGOs groups such as Heritage Sabah, North Borneo History Enthusiasts (NBHE) and Borneo Youth Revolution.

It was a very interesting talk divided into sections – Kakakapan Id Gayo Ngaran (Pilgrimage to the Sacred Mountain) presented by Remmy Alfie – and Ulu Papar Historical Sites presented by Jenny Sanem and Raymond Simpanis.

‘Kakapan Id Gayo Ngaran’ discusses the Sabah Park’s initiative to allow the indigenous villagers of Bundu Tuhan a chance to reconnect with their spiritual mountain after decades of being denied entry when Mt. Kinabalu was gazetted in 1964.

Re-instated was the Monolob Ceremony – which was traditionally performed before climbing to gain blessings from the spirits and ancestors who were believed to have come home to rest on the sacred mountain.

‘Ulu Papar Historical Sites’ explained to the invited guests about the indigenous community of Ulu Papar, the culture and livelihood of the Ulu Papar folks. We learnt many new things, for instance, the existence of a female leader known as Gayatas who lead an army of female warriors in the area of Ulu Papar.

It gave the invited guests insight to the lives of the Ulu Papar village folk, their cultural heritage – and how they would lose everything, their heritage and future if the proposed Kaiduan Dam were to became a reality. Hundreds of acres of ancestral land and burial grounds would be destroyed.

Heritage Sabah and the other NGOs have pledged to help the Ulu Papar community to raise public awareness about their plight. As a token of thanks, the Community Researchers gave the Director and staff of Muzium Sabah the gift of their hill rice as a token of appreciation, as did the invited guests NGOs.

Pn. Joanna later took the guests and speakers to view Muzium Sabah’s new galleries.

The day ended with Director of Muzium Sabah, Pn. Joanna Kitingan taking both the community researchers and guests for lunch at the Muzium’s canteen.

Heritage Sabah would like to thank the Community Researchers & Coordinators and Muzium Sabah for inviting our participation to this event.


Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Atkinson Clock Tower to be repaired, restored.


Wednesday, 16th May 2012 Kota Kinabalu - The Sabah State Museum has begun a major renovation and repair work of the Atkinson Clock Tower respondingto a public request to fix the clock tower’s faulty light and time keeping accuracy.

Director of Sabah State Museum Joanna Kitingan commented in social network Facebook, “We all agreed that it's time to give the ACT a new face lift, repairs and new coat of paint and change some of the gears that's slowing down the clock timing”.

Datuk Haji Masidi Manjun, Sabah Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment along with the Director of Kota Kinabalu City Hall (DBKK) also echoed the need for this old clock tower to be maintained and repaired.

Heritage advocate Richard Nelson Sokial welcomed the museum’s decision to initiate the clock tower’s repairs and said “It's astonishing how very few people know that the Atkinson Clock Tower still works even after 107 years. It's a living heritage of Kota Kinabalu, the oldest city landmark since 1905. It deserves respect and protection.”

He also hoped that the repair works would keep with the current fa├žade of the clock tower. The Atkinson Clock Tower has been renovated several times over the last 107 years to improve its appearance and upkeep.

The preliminary repair works on the illumination of the clock’s double faces has been completed, while subsequent repairs on the structure wall and the clock mechanism will be progressing within the upcoming few weeks.

Appointed contractors stated that they in the process of evaluating the condition of the clock tower’s timber structure to decide if it needs an overhaul. The clock mechanism is currently supervised by Mr. Tommy from Yick Ming Watch Dealer – a task taken over from his father since 1946, which involves winding up the clock’s antiquated cogs and dials.

The Atkinson Clock Tower remains as the oldest and most popular landmark of Kota Kinabalu with a history that goes back to the establishment of early Kota Kinabalu (then known as Jesselton) in 1899. Surviving the allied bombing of Jesselton during WWII, the clock tower was built as remembrance for the late Francis George Atkinson, Jesselton’s first district officer who died of Malaria or ‘Borneo Fever’ at the age of 28 on December 1902.


Sunday, February 12, 2012

Atkinson Clock Tower Exhibition pulls crowds, extended 13th – 14th February 2012


The Atkinson Clock Tower exhibition at Hotel Sixty3, Gaya Street in conjunction with the recent ‘Bonding With Gaya Street’ event held on 10th-12th February 2012 has proven to be such a hit among locals and tourists that the exhibition has been extended until 14th February 2012 to give visitors a better chance to come to the exhibition. The exhibition venue is located at the hotel’s 1st floor Atrium, situated just opposite of the Sabah Tourism Board building.

Among the highlights of the exhibition is a 48-foot long graphic mural of the Atkinson Clock Tower, sponsored by Hotel Sixty3 as well as numerous images and information of Kota Kinabalu’s oldest and most popular city landmark.

According to Richard Nelson Sokial, a local heritage advocator involved with the exhibition, “the public response to the Atkinson Clock Tower exhibition has been very, very good…and by popular demand, the hotel’s management has kindly extended their goodwill and hospitality to host the exhibition for another two more days”.

Curious members of the public have come steadily since Saturday to view the exhibition, which is one of the activities organized by the North Borneo History Enthusiasts (NBHE) for the recent ‘Bonding With Gaya Street’ event. The exhibition was put together by members of the Heritage Sabah group with the help of NBHE volunteers and the cooperation of Sabah Museum, Sabah State Archives, Jabatan Penerangan Sabah, town planning studies by AIA Consortium as well as photo contributions from private individuals.

Besides displaying of rare photos showcasing the importance of the Atkinson Clock Tower as a city marker for more than 100 years, the exhibit features a 100-year old original railway sleeper used by the North Borneo Railways (now known as Sabah Railways), courtesy of Cap Kuda Coffee Company.

A visual multimedia display by various supporters of Heritage Sabah group’s Save Our Heritage Atkinson Clock Tower campaign is also on display which shows the younger generations appreciation of the clock tower as a legacy for their own generation in Sabah.

“Many members of the public are not even aware that the clock tower built in 1905, still works in 2012 – and still emits chimes from its bell tower – despite its melodious sound being drowned by the busy traffic on Jalan Balai Polis”, Sokial said.

He added that, “members of the public should definitely come to see this exhibit, as a way of learning more about the heritage value of the Atkinson Clock Tower and why it is so important to preserve it in a pristine site. It is a chance to learn about KK city’s history and how this clock tower continues to contribute to the enrichment of Kota Kinabalu’s local community in these modern times”.


Friday, February 10, 2012

Hotel Sixty3 to unveil Sabah’s biggest graphic mural of historical Clock Tower for KK city day celebrations.


The newly-opened Hotel Sixty3 on Gaya Street, Kota Kinabalu will be unveiling a Sabah’s biggest graphic mural of the Atkinson Clock Tower for a 2-day exhibition to be held in conjunction with the “Bonding with Gaya Street” event on the 11th & 12th February 2012.

The 8’ x 48’ graphic mural, depicting KK city’s oldest landmark, the Atkinson Clock Tower will be the highlight of the exhibition that will be placed in the atrium of the hotel. The mural will be an artwork collage of various old photographs of Jesselton township combined to create an image of the clock tower. It will be the largest graphic bunting ever produced of the 107-year-old historical clock tower that has now become the most important historical marker for the city of Kota Kinabalu.

The Atkinson Clock Tower (ACT) exhibition will showcase the importance of the Atkinson Clock Tower as KK city’s historic landmark with old photos taken over the past 107 years of its existence by the past and present residents of Kota Kinabalu (then known as Jesselton).

Richard Nelson Sokial, a local heritage advocate who is assisting in curating the ACT exhibition together with Sabah Museum praised the hotel management for its interest and support in promoting the event. Sokial is also a member of the “Bonding with Gaya Street” organizing committee under the North Borneo History Enthusiasts (NBHE) group that is aiming to bring the local community together in rediscovering the history of KK city’s early town centered around the activities of Gaya Street - then known as Bond Street.

“The graphic mural of the Atkinson Clock Tower is a huge and generous gesture by Hotel Sixty3 in support of promoting our local history”, he said. Sokial is confident that with ongoing efforts to create awareness of the importance to preserve heritage in the city, more and more local business establishments are seeing the potential of heritage as a branding and tourism product by supporting the preservation of existing historical structures and their immediate surroundings.

Lisa Sabrina Ambrose, General Manager of Hotel Sixty3 said that “ the hotel is excited to be involved with a project that is so close to the heart of the Gaya Street community. We hope that this exhibition will encourage the public to learn more about the city, so that when they walk along Gaya Street they can retrace the history of Kota Kinabalu”.

Formerly known as Nosmal Court, the premise of Hotel Sixty3 was renovated and completed early last year and is one of the few examples of architectural readaptation projects in Kota Kinabalu that have mostly kept the character of the original building’s Modernist architecture from the early 1960s.

Apart from rare old photos and information about the Atkinson Clock Tower and heritage preservation efforts, a multimedia presentation will also be shown about the Atkinson Clock Tower as an effort by Sabah’s younger generation to preserve their local history. In support of the Atkinson Clock Tower exhibition, Hotel Sixty3 will also display its own private collection of old photos taken during North Borneo’s colonial era along its hotel’s corridors.

The Atkinson Clock Tower exhibition will be held at the 1st floor atrium of Hotel Sixty3, located in front of the Sabah Tourism Corporation building on Gaya Street. The 2-day exhibition will be open from 8.30am – 6.30pm as part of the “Bonding with Gaya Street” event organized by NBHE and DBKK.

Early birds visiting the “Atkinson Clock Tower” exhibition will also be able to redeem free cups of coffee sponsored by Cap Kuda Coffee Company at the 1st floor atrium. The coupons will be distributed along Gaya Street during the 2-day event.

A coffee table book titled “Colonial Towns in Sabah: West Coast” by PAM Sabah Chapter will also be on sale at the exhibition featuring 12 colonial townships in Sabah’s West Coast.