Thursday, June 12, 2008

The Sibu Tudor House

A Tudor House,Furness Abbey,South England.

The Smoke House in Cameron Highlands,Malaysia which is very inviting and a great family holiday place which provides coolness and romance of 19th century outstation ambience. Make it one of your future vacations.

The Royal Selangor Club House has always been one of the most beautiful buildings in Malaysia. A real treasure to behold by both Malaysians and foreign tourists.

Having seen so many Tudor houses outside Sibu, we actually have our very own. the black and white photo shows a good well constructed Tudor house which should still be a government property, although I remember that it was a supermarket for a while. I have not visited it for some time so I am not sure what it is now but it should still be in very good condition. Many of my relatives still remember that there were two canons placed in front of the building to signify the importance of the building. The Rajahs used canons to symbolise authority during the 100 years of their rule in Sarawak.

Built in Tudor style, unmistakenly,it is actually a beautiful building worth a lot of historical value,and is constructed of good belian wood and concrete. It could have been built in 1928 or later, after the Big Sibu Fire.

Originally it was the Police Station and many cases were known to be solved. The accused were "pulled" to the station for questioning and a few were put in remand by the Colonial magistrates. Some were even executed. The Japanese also occupied it during the Second World War.

During the Colonial days, it was the Police Headquarters.

Later, after 1963, the Immigration and Customs, the National Registration of Births and Deaths were housed in this building. Perhaps there were other government offices.

In 1979, at the height of the Vietnamese Boat People incidences, my husband had to register my second daughter's birth. To my dismay, one of the questions asked by the clerk was, "How sure are we that the child you are registering is not a Vietnamese child?"

I considered it a joke and let the matter pass.

On another occasion, another "joke" incident happened. It was early one after and there were a few people in the Registrar's office.

I was renewing my passport and witnessed this little but very revealing matter. An old Kayan man need to make his passport. He was wearing a big Kayan hat and was poorly dressed.

The two officers apparently were very friendly with him and got him to have his thumb print made, after a few tries. He had no need of a translator because he spoke perfect Malay.

He asked whether they needed his other finger prints.

They officers jokingly said that they needed his toe print. Sportingly he got up and wanted to stand on a chair, when , in all seriousness, the officer realised that they had pulled a fast one too far.

The joke ended there. But it left a very bitter taste in my mouth. I can still see the incident playing in front of me.

However I feel very strongly that this building should be upgraded into a lovely tea house or even an interesting boutique hotel with heritage recognition by SEDC. It would be a waste if we do not make full use of such a valueable government property.

2 memories:

Gaharuman said...


just came back from China. Missed your blog. Is the building still around?

I have written two blogs again. Please give your comment on


Green spot

Sarawakiana said...

Welcome back to Sarawak.

The Tudor building is still there. I tinkle with the idea that it should be upgraded by SEDC. :) :)


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