The school in the jungle off Kheam Hock Road (Chin Chung Public School)

I have long known that there was a school that existed near Bukit Brown since its mentioned back when there was an exhibition about Bukit Brown (Bukit Brown: Documenting New Horizons of Knowledge 2014). The name of the school was called Chin Chung Public School (振中学校) and it's address was No 25, Jalan Berahi, off Kheam Hock Road, Singapore 11 (The postal code was only 2 digits !). The interest came back recently when Soh Ah Beng, a friend and fellow explorer showed me his school report card and that spurred me to ask this question, where is the original location of the school and is it still there?  Today's discovery was a very exciting one because we manage to find out the foundations of Chin Chung Public School was very much still intact and the road that led to the school was still intact as well !

Chin Chung Public School Report Card of Soh Ah Beng 


Chin Chung Public School no longer exist but the foundation and the steps leading to the school from Jalan Berahi is still intact and i am able to map it to the old photos i found to better visualise how this place looked like in the past. To me, the most touching moment is when Ah Beng recounted from his memories the school and how daunting and high the steps to the school was when he was just a little boy back then. He studied in Chin Chung Public School as a Primary 1 student in 1971 and after he graduated in Primary 6, he never stepped back to the school again. The school of course is gone when in 1984, the government announced that the residents living along the biggest spread of cemeteries from Kheam Hock and Jalan Halwa need to vacate for development, with notices of eviction send to them. It's residents were given 4 to 5 years to vacate. The jungle has since reclaimed the place but memories and evidence that we found today of a village and school that once existed remains. 

Soh Ah Beng and Chin Chung Public School
Soh Ah Beng sharing from memory of school at the steps leading to it 

Fortunately, i am able to find the school photo with the very steps that Ah Beng stood and able to see how big the school looked like back then. The retaining walls and steps are very obvious from the pictures below compared to what i see today). 

Chin Chung School (1971)

Retaining Wall viewed from the steps 
 
Retaining Wall (from the expunged Jalan Berahi)

The Steps with view of the foundation of the former buildings on the lower ground



The expunged Jalan Berahi 

How did Chin Chung Public School looked like in 1971?

I am very fortunate to be able to find old rare pictures of the school in 1971. But this is not the end of this story, because the school existed very much before 1971, but you will have to wait a bit longer for me to share about that story in the next blog post. I really do hope you will enjoy the pictures below and the memories it may bring to you if you were once a student of this school and for those who are not students or teachers (or even children of this teachers), the photos bring a bit more insight of the past communities that use to call this jungle off Kheam Hock Road home. I am sure Soh Ah Beng will appreciate this post and may be able to sing the school anthem once again !

The layout of the buildings (The canteen location is exactly as Ah Beng described to me )

Chin Chung Public School Crest and Anthem 

The school and its surrounding areas 

Chin Chung Public School and its surrounding 

The school students helping in the furniture for their new school 

The students

Location of Chin Chung Public School (振中学校)

I have indicated on the 1958 Master Plan: Town Map Sheet 1/169 the location of the school in correlation to Kheam Hock Road and Bukit Brown Cemetery. While searching for Chin Chung Public School, i found the foundation structure of former houses nearby as well. Look for part 2 of my blog post about this school in the future. 
 
The location of Chin Chung Public School 


 

Comments

  1. The bigger or smaller orange highlight?

    ReplyDelete
  2. I am amazing to find old photos of this school. Thank you for showing this. May I link your posts on mine?

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sorry the previous comment does not show who I am. You may delete that one.

    I am amazing to find old photos of this school. Thank you for showing this. May I link your posts on mine?

    ReplyDelete

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