Grading: Declared Monument
Completed in 1849, St John’s Cathedral is the oldest Anglican church building in the city. Under the laws of Hong Kong, all landowners can only be granted ownership of lands for a fixed period of time. St John’s Cathedral is, however, an exception. Situated on the “Government Hill” — the centre of power of the colonial administration — the land on which the cathedral stands was the only one in Hong Kong that was granted freehold with perpetual ownership. The building was hit by bombs in the Second World War. Fortunately, no extensive damage was done. During the occupation period that followed, the cathedral was requisitioned by the Japanese as a social club.
Due to the technology and materials available at the time, the cathedral has a simpler design than other Gothic architectures, but still includes some important Gothic features, such as spires, lancet windows, and stained glass windows. A window of the north transept of the cathedral is painted with Eastern sailboats and fishermen as well as Western vessels and sailors, showing the uniqueness of Hong Kong as a multicultural city inhabited by Chinese and Westerners.
The project is supported by Lord Wilson Heritage Trust.
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