Views along the tram line in the 1950s | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

Views along the tram line in the 1950s

In chapter 9 of Martin Booth's book, he describes a tram ride from Kennedy Town to Shau Kei Wan.

Here are the photos we've been sent that show the views he'd have seen along that route.

Many thanks to the people who have shared their photographs with us.

(You can click any of the photos below to see other readers' comments, and / or leave your own.)

Wanchai trams.

Des Voeux Road West

1950s Junction of Morrison St & Des Voeux Rd Central

1950s Des Voeux Road Central, Sheung Wan

Des Voeux Road. Central. 1950's

De Voeux Road - Soldier of Fortune

Central Street 1950.

De Voeux Road - Soldier of Fortune

1950s DVRC between Morrisson and Cleverly Streets

1950s Des Voeux Rd C, looking east towards Wing On

1950s Wing On Dept Store, Des Voeux Rd C.

1956 View south along Jubilee Street

1950s Des Voeux Road Central

1950s Des Voeux Road Central

1950s Des Voeux Road Central, near Fire Station

Hong Kong postcard from 1955

Des Voeux Road-Central.

1950s Des Voeux Road Central

Des Voeux Road, Central

1953 Des Voeux Rd Central

1956 Des Voeux Road Central

Des Voeux Road

1953 Des Voeux Road Central

Gloucester Building

1953 Des Voeux Road Central

1950s Des Voeux Road Central near GPO

Second mystery photo HK 1954

1959 View from HSBC

1950s Des Voeux Road Central near Ice House Street

1950s Des Voeux Road Central

1950s Des Voeux Road Central near Banks

Alexandra House, Queens Road, Hong Kong - 1950's

Alexandra House 1950's

Central, Banks from Cricket Ground

C. 1952 Central Des Voeux Rd

1950s Court & Cricket Club

1959 Supreme Court.jpg

Hong Kong banks 1952.

Hong Kong Central.

Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank

1950s Queen's Road Central & Garden Rd


1950s Statue Square and temporary government buildings

1950s Queensway

Buildings around the cricket pitch

Bank of China Monday 30 June 58.

1950s Fred Evans' photos, View from Cheero Club

1950s Fred Evans' photos, Cheero Club, taken from tram

Central, Cricket ground from Cheero Club

1950s Cricket Club

1950s Hong Kong Cricket Club

1950s Queensway

street-scenes-victoria tram.

HMS Tamar

c.1950 Arsenal Street

1950s Hennessy Rd / Queens Road East Junction

1950s Junction of Hennessy Road and Arsenal Street

1950s Junction of Arsenal St and Hennessy Rd

1958 Junction of Hennessy Road and Arsenal Street

1953 Rediffusion Building

Hennessy Road junction with Arsenal Street

1955 Johnston Road

1950s Hennessy & Johnston Roads (Western End)

Rialto Theatre

1957 Li Chit Street

1950s Chinese Methodist Church

1950s Western junction of Hennessy & Johnston Roads

Junction of Hennessy and Johnston Roads

1953 Wanchai streetscene

1950s Western junction of Hennessy & Johnston Roads

1950s Wanchai Rickshaws.jpg

1950s Johnston Road

1950s Johnston Rd & Southorn Playground

tram ride- at junction of Johnston and Lugard Road.

1950s Johnston Road, Wanchai

1953 Johnston Road

1950s Johnston Rd

1950s Johnston Road

1950s Junction of Johnston Rd, Wanchai Rd, and Fleming Rd

1950s Wanchai Road

Street view from Victoria Tram 1957.

HK Tram chasing cyclist

1950s Johnston Road, looking West

1950s Eastern junction of Hennessy & Johnston Roads

Policeman on point duty

1950s Wanchai

1950s Hennessy Road

1950s Junction of Hennessy Road and Canal Road East

1950s Hennessy Rd near Canal Rd

1950s Percival Street & New York Cinema

1954 Hennessy Road

1950s Hennessy Road

Wanchai b

1950s Hennessy Road

1956 New York Theatre

Hennesy Road, 1953

1956 Hennessy Road

1950 Yee Wo Street

1950s Corner of Yee Wo St & Jardine's Bazaar

Causeway Bay.

1950s Hoover Theatre

Causeway Bay

1950s Causeway Bay Roundabout

HK Hoover Cinema.

1950s Roxy, Causeway Bay

1950s Roxy Theatre

HK The Roxy.

1950s Causeway Bay Tram

Waldorf Hotel, Causeway Road

View towards Waldorf Hotel, North Point?

1950s Causeway Road & Typhoon Shelter

Causeway Bay North Point

Causeway Road, waiting for the gharry.

Causeway Bay

1953 King's Road near Ngan Mok Street

1955 King's Road

1951 King's Road, North Point

1950s King's Road

1953 King's Road, North Point

1950s Camel Paint Factory

1950s Stanley Terrace

1950s King's rd Taikoo dockyard

Sai Wan Ho to Taikoo docks.


Do you have any photos from the 1950s that show sections of the tram lines that we've missed above? If you are willing to share, it's easy to add them in.

Just create a new image,  and fill in:

  • Title:
  • Image:
  • Tags: type in the word tram
  • Date picture taken...: Type in the date, or type 1950-01-01 if you're not sure.
  • Places shown...: Choose at least one place that appears in the photo

Then once you save the new image it will automatically appear in the right place on this page. Let us know if you need any help.

This page relies on several of the features we've talked about lately.

If you had a big box of photos of Hong Kong, and I wanted you to make a display like this, I'd ask for something like:

  • Give me all photos that show trams,
  • and that were taken in the 1950s,
  • then lay them out in the order you would see them if you were sitting on an eastbound tram.

"all photos that show trams" - this uses tags. We tell the computer to search for all images that have the tag 'tram'.

"that were taken in the 1950s" - that's easy, we tell the computer to further limit its search to images with a 'date picture taken' between 1950 and 1959.

"lay them out in order" - here we use the 'places shown' . Luckily the tram line runs almost exactly West to East, so we can tell the computer to sort the images by 'ascending longitude'.

Filling in tags, dates, and places takes a bit more time and effort when we create the image. But I think it's worth it, as then it lets us search and view them in more interesting ways.

You've done a fabulous job on this.  It makes me think how wonderful it would be if the govt. had turned Tamar site into a nice big green park.  It also made me think of my recent Guangzhou trip - it's true that bits of current Guangzhou look like 1950's des voeux road - so visit and photograph it while you can!

Glad you enjoyed it - and it's been a few years since I've been to Guangzhou, so yes, a visit is overdue!

Hey guys, I am a random person.  This dutchman got some cool videos here: 

Just want to share them with you.   Enjoy!

Tremendous work everyone.

New life for old Hong Kong!

Love to see a similar walkthrough for Queens Road East at different periods in time.

Still so much to see and ponder on around there, especially as you wander up the hill at Star Street (near the original burial ground), or the eerie Ship Street.

Nam Koo terrace, and the tiled footprints of demolished mansions, stairways and paths, and further up the hill what I imagine might have been old dairy sheds...

Still time to catch it, before Sir Gordon buries it all under concrete at some point in the future.

Love to be pointed at some early ordinance survey or other historical maps of that area, and try and rebuild an image of what it all looked like in the past.

Many thanks again to all the contributors and David in particular for sterling research work and commitment.

Best regards

Julian, Singapore

Hi Julian,

Glad to hear you're enjoying the site.

I look forward to seeing what you find out about Wanchai. A good start is "Wanchai. In search of an identity" by Carl T. Smith in the book "Hong Kong. A reader in social history". It covers that area in a lot of detail.

regards, David

Thanks for the tip David.

I will be up in HK for the dreaded 'sevens' from next wednesday, and will certainly take the opportunity to have a look for Cart T Smith book.

Also the various governement map publications recommended elsewhere on the site sound like a 'must have...' for any reader of HK history.

Take care.



Dear all,

A random question got popped at me about trams.  Yesterday my 3-year-old asked whether trams go on bridges, and it got me thinking. 

The tramway system today doesn't seem to have any bridges.  The only one that I can think of is the 'Gooseneck bridge' that went over Bowrington, but it's not here anymore. In any case, what were the exact years that a tram line ran on Gooseneck?

Can anyone enlight me with more instances of trams going across bridges or flyovers down the ages?


Hi Breskvar,

I think we've just found Gwulo's youngest member! Your 3-year-old will probably be interested to see this photo.

Regards, David

The latest photo that 80sKid put up is part of a series that include views along the line from approximately Hennessy Road right down to Shau Kei Wan terminus.  If we follow this link

we will see from photos 15 to 34 the photographer got on a tram and snapped many pictures.  In photos 35 and 36 we can see the boats harboured in Aldrich Bay, which would be just by the side of the tram terminus.

David, my son was very amused when I showed him the Gooseneck Bridge photo with the trams.  Thanks for giving me the link.


Breskvar, thanks for the link to those extra tram photos, and glad to hear your son enjoyed the photo.

Regards, David

Absolutely brilliant. And awesome to see what a huge change in just one lifetime - amazing!

Great website.

Thanks Maj, glad you enjoyed it.

Regards, David

Found this film about a tram ride from Central to Shau Kei Wan, dated July 1979.

Hong Kong Trams - July 1979 - YouTube

Gives many impressions of interior and passengers, and the Shau Kei Wan Tram Terminus.