Tang Chan Yui Kuen Ancestral Hall is located at the northeast edge of Shui Tau Tsuen facing west. Also known as Mau King Tong 茂荊堂 [Hall of Luxuriant Blossom of Bauhinia], the building was founded by Tang Man Wai 鄧文蔚, a focal patriarch of the 23rd generation, to commemorate the 16th generation principal ancestors, Tang Chan 鄧鎮, Tang Yui 鄧銳 and Tang Kuen 鄧鋗 during the Kangxi era (1662-1723) in the Qing Dynasty.
The ritual of Dim Dang 點燈 [lantern lighting ceremony] will be performed in the hall on the 15th of the first lunar month every year. A learge lighting lantern representing the continuity of the lineage would be hung in the main hall. The family of the new born son would prepare feast and porridge, known as “Ding chuk” 丁粥 [Porridge of newborn boys] of clan members. On that day, the name of the newborn son would be added into the genealogy to be rightfully recognized him as a member of the lineage.
Although the original timber Chinese roof was already replaced with concrete structures, the remaining fabrics are still able to give us a glance of the immense scale of the building. At the side bay are raised platforms known as the drum platform. Passing through the entrance porch is an entrance doorway set in granite surround in the middle bay. The bases of the gable wall and entrance wall are originally made of red sandstone that was considered as a delicate building material for its rarity in Hong Kong. These designs and choice of building material add a sense of grandeur to the building, and help to demonstrate the importance of the building.
The main ridge is finely decorated with delicate plastered relief of auspicious animals, scrolled foliage, bird and sprays of flowers in the panels.
Source: Heritage in Kam Tin iPhone App