Havelock Road



Havelock Road is a street located in the Central Region of Singapore.1 It starts where Kim Seng Road meets Outram Road, goes down along and almost parallel to the Singapore River, and stretches until Eu Tong Sen Street before it opens into Upper Pickering Street.2 Havelock Road was named by the Municipal Commissioners at a meeting on 8 March 1858 in honour of General Sir Henry Havelock, one of the commanders and heroes of the 1857 Indian Mutiny.3 In the minutes of the meeting, the road was described as “the road from the stone bridge over Dalhousie canal to the police station on the River Valley road”.4 In the early days, Havelock Road was reputed to have been the centre of arrack manufacturing when an arrack distillery was located there.5

Key landmarks
In June 1886, the Chinese Protectorate moved from Boat Quay to its own building located at the junction of New Bridge Road and Havelock Road. The building was demolished in 1930,6 and on this site stood the Department of Social Welfare Building, which later became the Ministry of Labour Building in 1955.7 Since 1990, the building, has been utilised by the Judiciary, with the Family Justice Courts being housed there.8


The Geok Hong Tian temple is another building of historical significance located on Havelock Road. One of the oldest Chinese temples in Singapore, it was built in 1887 by Cheang Hong Lim, a prominent merchant who built several houses in the area.9

Variant names10
Chinese names:
(1) In Hokkien, kong chioh-a means “stone-breaking”, or kong chioh koi meaning “break-stone street”. Stones for paving the roads used to be broken near the police station located there.
(2) Another Hokkien name, hong lim pa-sat means "Hong Lim Market", referring to the location near the police station where Cheang Hong Lim built a market, years ago.
(3) Also in Hokkien, chiu-long lai, and in Cantonese, chau-long noi, which mean "within the spirit-depot district".
(4) In Hokkien, chiu long lo which means "spirits-shed street" as arrack or “moonshine” was concocted there.
(5) In Cantonese, Pak-khi-lin chik kai which means "Pickering Strait street" or the “street in the same line as the Chinese Protectorate”.
Indian name: In Tamil, masak arak sadakku which means "arrack distilling street".
Malay name: Jalan masak arak which means  "arrack distilling street".



Author

Vernon Cornelius



References
1. Urban Redevelopment Authority. (2015). Master plan 2014. Retrieved 2016, September 22 from Urban Redevelopment Authority website: https://www.ura.gov.sg/maps/?service=MP
2. Savage, V. R., & Yeoh, B. S. A. (2013). Singapore street names: A study of toponymics. Singapore: Marshall Cavendish Editions, p. 146. (Call no.: RSING 915.9570014 SAV-[TRA])
3. Raja Singam, S. D. (1939). Malayan street names: What they mean and whom they commemorate. Ipoh: Mercantile Press, p. 108. (Call no.: RING 959.5 RAJ); Municipal Commissioners. (1858, April 1). The Singapore Free Press and Mercantile Advertiser (1835–1869), p. 6. Retrieved from NewspaperSG; Encyclopaedia Britannica. (2016). Sir Henry Havelock. Retrieved 2016, September 22 from Encyclopaedia Britannica website: https://global.britannica.com/biography/Henry-Havelock
4. Municipal Commissioners. (1858, April 1). The Singapore Free Press and Mercantile Advertiser (1835–1869), p. 6. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
5. Sagittarius. (1934, June 6). “Some Singapore street names”. The Singapore Free Press and Mercantile Advertiser (1884–1942), p. 8. Retrieved from NewspaperSG; Savage, V. R., & Yeoh, B. S. A. (2013). Singapore street names: A study of toponymics. Singapore: Marshall Cavendish Editions, p. 145. (Call no.: RSING 915.9570014 SAV-[TRA])
6. Chinese affairs in Malaya. (1931, May 15). The Straits Times, p. 15; Tyres, R. (1973, July 20). Pickering’s progress. New Nation, p. 9. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
7. Ramachandra, S. (1961). Singapore landmarks, past and present. Singapore: Eastern Universities Press, p. 14. (Call no.: RCLOS 959.57 RAM); Edwards, N., & Keys, P. (1988). Singapore: A guide to buildings, streets, places. Singapore: Times Books International, p. 400. (Call no.: RSING 959.57 EDW-[TRA]); National Heritage Board. (2015, June 26). Former Ministry of Labour Building (now Family Justice Courts). Retrieved 2016, September 22 from Roots website: https://roots.sg/Content/Places/national-monuments/former-ministry-of-labour-building-now-family-justice-courts
8. National Heritage Board. (2015, June 26). Former Ministry of Labour Building (now Family Justice Courts). Retrieved 2016, September 22 from Roots website: https://roots.sg/Content/Places/national-monuments/former-ministry-of-labour-building-now-family-justice-courts
9. Savage, V. R., & Yeoh, B. S. A. (2013). Singapore street names: A study of toponymics. Singapore: Marshall Cavendish Editions, p. 146. (Call no.: RSING 915.9570014 SAV-[TRA]); Streetdirectory. (2016). Giok Hong Tien Temple: Oldest Chinese temples in Singapore. Retrieved 2016, October 20 from Streetdirectory website: http://www.streetdirectory.com/travel_guide/singapore/travel/65/giok_hong_tien_temple__oldest_chinese_temples_in_singapore.php
10. Savage, V. R., & Yeoh, B. S. A. (2013). Singapore street names: A study of toponymics. Singapore: Marshall Cavendish Editions, pp. 145–146. (Call no.: RSING 915.9570014 SAV-[TRA]); Firmstone, H. W. (1905, February). Chinese names of streets and places in Singapore and the Malay Peninsula. Journal of the Straits Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, 42, 90–91. (Call no.: RQUIK 959.5 JMBRAS)



The information in this article is valid as at 1999 and correct as far as we are able to ascertain from our sources. It is not intended to be an exhaustive or complete history of the subject. Please contact the Library for further reading materials on the topic.

Subject
Street names--Singapore
Historic buildings
Architecture and Landscape>>Building Types>>Historic Buildings
Arts>>Architecture>>Public and commercial buildings
Streets and Places
Historic sites--Singapore
Architecture and Landscape>>Streets and Places

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