Hong Kong's Bronze Age Finds

Annette Bingham looks into the archaeological findings of Hong Kong's Bronze Age.

Protracted negotiations with China over Hong Kong's political future have not stalled ambitious plans to reshape the territory's infrastructure. The harbour is shrinking fast as new land is claimed from the sea and ten huge projects centred on a new airport on Lantau Island have turned the Pearl River approaches into a vast land formation site.

Working one step ahead of the developers, Hong Kong's archaeologists are salvaging evidence of the early history of the islands and the Kowloon peninsula which make up modern Hong Kong. They are finding intriguing signs of early permanent habitation, some spectacular artefacts and indications that prehistoric settlers included people of skill and rank.

Chiu Sui-tsan, curator at the Hong Kong government's Antiques & Monuments Office explains. 'Hong Kong is very rich in archaeology: but site protection is difficult. The announcement that the new airport was to be built on the Lantau site gave us a nightmare – but after painstaking discussion we managed to negotiate time for excavation'.

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