Life is a journey (About this blog)

Life is certainly a journey that all of us take. We are richer from the experiences that we have had, the people that we have met, and the places that we have visited. This blog navigates through the long and winding road taken in the journey that is my life, pausing at experiences, events, places and people that have shaped my view of life and of the world;  that have made me who I am; and that I have lasting impressions and memories of …

The Long and Winding Road has been named as the Best Photography Blog at the Singapore Blog Awards for two years in succession in 2011 and 2012. 

Feedback, comments, suggestions or just a hello would be most welcomed. I am also a licensed tourist guide. Should you wish to drop me a note, I am contactable via email.

Stopovers along life’s long and winding road include:

More recently:

Distant journeys:

About the author:

Once told that it was his destiny to wander through life, the Wondering Wanderer takes a wide eyed view of life’s wanderings through the eyes of the child that he was and blogs about the many things that has captured his imagination through life’s journey.


ANZA Magazine Jul-Aug 2022
“Local heritage enthusiast Jerome Lim documents the unseen, unheard and unappreciated parts of Singapore. He talks to ANZA about history, storytelling, and the time an Australian Prime Minister popped to his HDB for tea.”


ST 9 March 2021
Clara Lock

On the trail of secret spots – an interview with Clara Lock of The Straits Times on ‘Secret Singapore’. The book is a travel guide to Singapore sites with little ‘secrets’ to share that I co-authored with Heidi Sarna, an American living in Singapore.

Seeing the old anew – Justin Zhuang for
Skyline (URA):

“Buildings come alive when people know about history and the stories connected with them,” says Jerome who is also currently a member of URA’s Heritage and Identity Partnership. Together with 18 other individuals from diverse backgrounds and specialists, he has been sharing his views on how to better shape and promote Singapore’s built heritage and identity.”


SG Magazine 5 July 2018
Amanda Chai

Meet the 53-year-old heritage enthusiast who’s licensed to take you on a literal walk down memory lane – From Changi Hospital to former naval bases and beyond

Blogger, Jerome Lim by Kurt Ganapathy for
I-S Magazine:

‘The writer behind the blog The Long and Winding Road talks to Kurt Ganapathy about cataloguing the fading past of Singapore’.

Going Places (no longer online):

‘he has meticulously documented his delightful personal memories and experiences of Singapore’s evolving physical landscape in his award-winning blog …’

Work in print:

Jul 2011: Singapore River Reminisces (FOM Passage)

Jul 2011: Photographs in article Draw of the Railway (URA Skyline)

Sep 2011: The Last Dragons of Jurong (South West CDC Bridge)

Jan 2012: Photographs for article Dragons in Singapore (FOM Passage)

Jan 2012: Photograph in article Standing the Test of Time (FOM Passage)

Jul 2012: Tanjong Pagar Railway Station (FOM Passage)

Jul 2012: Photographs in article From Botanic Gardens to … (NLB BiblioAsia)

Nov 2012: Preserving the Memory of the Rail Corridor (FOM Passage)

Nov 2012: Foreword for We Love Toa Payoh (Epigram Books)

Sep 2013: Kampong Wak Hassan: Memories of Times Past (FOM Passage)

May 2014: Keramat Bukit Kasita (FOM Passage)

May 2014: Photographs in AAS’ Living in Singapore [13th Ed.]

Dec 2014: Photograph in The Catholic News [Vol. 6, No, 25]

Aug 2015: Photographs in the Law Society of Singapore’s Law Gazette (pages 34-37)

Jun 2016: Article for Hotelier Maldives

Mar 2017: Introduction written for Great Lengths : Singapore’s Swimming Pools

May 2017: Bencoolen Street has become more walkable (Going Places)

Jul 2017: The Death Knell for the Thieves of Sungei Road (FOM Passage)

Jul 2019: A Last Look at Pearl Bank Apartments (FOM Passage)

Jul 2019: Going, going, gone – The Tiger Balm Building (FOM Passage)

Jul 2019: Photograph of kayaker in Sungei Khatib Bongsu (Jetstar Australia Inflight Magazine)

Aug 2020: Uncommon Ground: The Places You Know, The Stories You Don’t(Singapore Land Authority publication) 

Apr 2021: Secret Singapore – co-author (Jonglez Publishing) 

Exhibited Works:

Sep 2012: First Journeys, Last Goodbyes (in support of NHB’s Motoring Heritage Weekend at Tanjong Pagar Railway Station)

Mar – Jun 2013: Corridors of Trade (in support of NHB’s Trading Stories exhibition at the National Museum of Singapore) [see also: NHB Media Release]

Aug 2013: Celebrating Orchard (in support of NHB / Ngee Ann City National Day Celebrations at the Ngee Ann City Civic Plaza)


Sep 2012: First Journeys, Last Goodbyes (in support of NHB’s Motoring Heritage Weekend at Tanjong Pagar Railway Station)

Aug 2013: Celebrating Orchard (in support of NHB / Ngee Ann City National Day Celebrations at the Ngee Ann City Civic Plaza)

Jun 2017: The Italian Connection, a celebration of the Italian Community’s connections with the Fullerton Building for its 89th Anniversary (The Fullerton Heritage)


May 2022: Singapore Heritage Festival – Home Away from Home, a tour of Kinloss House (National Heritage Board)

May 2022: An Aviation Journey, a Talk cum Virtual Tour of Old Kallang Airport (National Heritage Board)

Feb to Apr 2022: The Non-Season, Jerome Lim’s Orchard Road Historical Tours (Design Orchard / Hyphen Projects) 

Feb/Mar 2022: Battle for Singapore – WW2 Dempsey Hill Tour (with National Heritage Board)

Feb 2022: Battle for Singapore – WW2 Changi Hospital Walking Tours (with Changi Chapel and Museum)

May 2021: Changi Chapel and Museum Reopening – Content and Appearance for Reopening Video

Feb/Mar 2021: Battle for Singapore – WW2 Changi Walking Tours (with the National Heritage Board)

Ongoing since Nov 2020: STB for AirBnb Experiences Hidden in Plain Site

Nov 2020: Global Communities Day 2020 – Colonial Changi Virtual Tour (with Temasek Polytechnic)

Nov 2020: Curation of Victoria Clock Tower Climb (Victoria Theatre and Victoria Concert Hall) 

Jun 2020: Singapore Heritage Festival Digital Edition 2020 (with the National Heritage Board)

Feb 2020: Battle for Singapore – Former Densen Byoin Tours (with the National Heritage Board)

Nov 2019: Curation of Heritage Tour for Barracks Hotel (Sentosa) 

Jun to Sep 2019: Discovering Singapore’s Best Kept Secrets (third) series of State Property Visits (with the Singapore Land Authority)

30 Jun 2019: Curation of Heritage Trail for Sembawang GRC Bicentennial Commemoration

Mar to Apr 2019: Down The Middle for the Singapore Heritage Festival (with the National Heritage Board)

Mar 2019: Three sets of State Property Visits for the Singapore Heritage Festival (with the National Heritage Board and Singapore Land Authority)

Jun to Dec 2018: Discovering Singapore’s Best Kept Secrets (second) series of State Property Visits (with the Singapore Land Authority)

May 2018: Three sets of State Property Visits for the Singapore Heritage Festival (with the National Heritage Board and Singapore Land Authority)

Jul to Nov 2017: Discovering Singapore’s Best Kept Secrets series of State Property Visits (with the Singapore Land Authority)

14 Aug 2016: Emily Hill Walking Tour (with the Emily Hill / Concerts on the Hill)

27 Mar 2011: Sembawang Beyond the Slumber (with the Sembawang Community Library)

26 Feb 2011: One Hundred Steps to Heaven (with the Central Public Library)

20 Nov 2010: A Journey through Time (with the Toa Payoh Community Library)

Opening of The Italian Connection on 8 June 2017 (Photo courtesy of The Fullerton Heritage)

In the media:

[See also: The Straits Times: On The Trail of Secret Spots]

ST 20201110

[See also: Men’s Folio IN PRINT: Clicking Through]

Exploring a couple of

Exploring a couple of “Secret Singapore” sites with Y.E.S. 93.3FM DJ Lim Peifen for Channel 5.

With Daphne Lim on

With Daphne Lim on “The Good Life”, 938 Live on Sunday 6 October 2013.

ST 20160619 A1 ST 20160619 A6


The Sunday Times, 27 May 2018.

The Economist (2 Jun 2018 edition).

In transit through the Miraflores Lock on the Panama Canal during a pause in my journey through life

The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, Oct 2011.

The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, Oct 2011.


73 responses

21 01 2010

Hi Jerome, this is Glenn. The Asian Civilisations Museum would like to invite you to a sneak peek of an upcoming blockbuster exhibition on the treasures of the Mughal Empire of India. Would I be able to get your email address so i can mail you the invite?

26 03 2010
greg LIM

Do you know there was an Outram Prison opposite the Spore GH ??
Any old photos, history or developments in the surrounding areas ??

28 03 2010
The wondering wanderer

Greg, thanks again for your comments. Yes, I did hear about Outram Prison, although it was pulled down by the time I arrived … in its place, the Outram Park Complex was erected, which had a very popular department store, Chancellor, in the 1970s. Outram Park complex has since been torn down as well … I suppose I should prepare a post on the area as well … I have some memories of SGH – my aunt was a nurse there and lived in the nurses’ quarters.

8 12 2010

In front of Outram prison was Outram Sec Sch, to the right a bit back, was Outram Pr Schl, was the home to CNB until it was pulled down in recent years. Outram MRT Stn was part of the primary schl ground. The traffic light in front crossing over SGH was there, since the 1960’s. Across that traffic lights was the old subordinate court, with a clock tower, if anyone could remember and to the right was the mortuary. Police Force Cantonement Complex was then known as Sepoy Lines, guess that where SGH is called ‘se bai por’ in the past.

8 12 2010
The wondering wanderer

Thanks for your input! Much appreciated! 🙂

13 04 2010
David Leong Seng Chen

Quote:- Life is a journey

True enough – and I do have an enquiry if you don’t mind at all – what/who am I that is aware all the world in the life-jouney. To be exact – what is wondering… & what or who is the so called wanderer? Smile & Cheers Always ~~~ Hahaha… :-))

13 04 2010
The wondering wanderer

David, thanks again for your comments! I wonder myself sometimes! Anyway, wondering and wandering is what I guess makes me who I am. The impressions and memories that I have are a result of my wondering – I am often deep in thought – as my parents and friends have observed, looking at the world around me from within, observing what goes on around me as a superimposition of what the world really is and how I see the world to be. When I was young, I was told that it was my destiny to wander – I suppose that is true in a sense that I enjoy the freedom that exploring, not just the world, but what goes on around me, gives me. I have been and still am a wanderer – wandering through time and space as I journey through life’s long and winding road. I guess that makes me the wondering wanderer. 🙂

10 05 2010
Jack Hunter

Great website,I have spent a few wonderful hours surfing your website.A very fascinating journey through life.Cheers from Oz

11 05 2010
The wondering wanderer

Thanks Jack for the kind comments! Very much appreciate them! Cheers! 🙂

14 05 2010
Equally Old

Hi Jerome,

Found your blog by chance, nice job.
I am probably 1 or 2 yrs older than you and went to Catholic High for 10 yrs.
Many of your posts and pictures brought back fond memories. I spent many yrs playing football and softball on the SJI’s field and it was really sad, angry in fact, that the SMU was built on it.
Even though there were some fights with some SJI boys(haha, bond to happen between 2 boy schools next to each other), I became good friends with many of them when we all went to CJC.
And hey, what about that Mee Siam store in your tuckshop, that is my favorite mee siam and I aways slip into your canteen thru the side door to eat.

14 05 2010
The wondering wanderer

Hi Equally Old, thanks for your kind comments. Guess you would have known Peter Hill the National Squash player then, he was with Catholic High before “defecting” to SJI when he was in Sec 3 I think. The field certainly holds many memories … it was certainly a shame to see it go. Bust ups I guess were pretty common, but I don’t remember many incidents involving boys from your school – the ones that seemed to matter were those that involved the ACS boys! And as you mention – all is usually forgotten when we meet later be it in JC or during NS …. Yes, The Mee Siam was fabulous, wasn’t it? The Mee Siam man did quite a roaring trade through the side door of the tuck shop. 🙂

14 05 2010
Equally Old

Yes, me same yr as Peter Hill. Heard he’s settled in HK now.
Keep up the good work and I will be checking in regularly.

8 07 2010

Hello, I just saw your article on Toa payoh smells…
I also grew up there at lorong 8 and as a child walk pass this playground…

Also took some photos of a old bread shop off balestier road.. I think they will be gone real soon.

9 07 2010
The wondering wanderer

Oh gosh, I remember those stone animals – had them in the playground at the foot of Block 53 where I lived as well! Thanks taiwoon! :). Love the old bread shops! I guess you are right that they will soon go – which is sad!

3 02 2017
Kuan Victor

Hi, I am currently looking into Balestier Market and your photos might be useful for my research, may I request you to send me a link so I can take a look at them.

8 07 2010

Oh, and I think ur blog rocks… I love the stories!!!

9 07 2010
The wondering wanderer

Thanks for the feedback taiwoon! Appreciate it very much! 🙂

25 07 2010
John Ayres

I can’t thanl you enough for all the hard work you have done in making this blog a treasure keep and enjoy.

Please stay in touch.

25 07 2010
The wondering wanderer

Thanks for your feedback John – it is very much appreciated! Glad that you enjoy reading the blog! 🙂

18 08 2010

Dear Wondering Wanderer,

Fantastic blog! My life has been very similar to yours. 🙂 Same age, same schools (SMS/SJI) and being away from home from the mid 80s until the early 90s.

I’ve always wanted to do something like this but could never get around to it.

I remember every single thing you mentioned. We might have likely known each other in some way back in school…even the McNair school experiences, loafing aroung Plaza Singapura (Yaohan). There wasn’t even a Centrepoint then. Just the old Cold Storage and an ice cream parlour next to it. And yes Mr Tan Cheow Seng scared the crap out of most us.

Saturdays was my favourite day of the week. I’d have saved my pocket money all week, volunteer for the weekly flag day sale with a buddy of mine – we would sell flags and literarily “paint the town red” with the $5 I had saved!




18 08 2010
The wondering wanderer

Hi Naren,

Glad to touch base with you! Thanks for your feedback! And thanks for sharing your memories! It’s always nice to know that I have good company for my walk down memory lane!

I think I have a letter holder from my days at McNair somewhere … Plaza Singapura seemed a lot quieter then – Doremi was a popular hang out for some. The old Cold Storage was a lot of fun and I can still smell the aroma that came out of the Magnolia Bar you mentioned! There was also a flower shop across the streets where we would get our supply of stink bombs …not sure if you remember that! Mr Tan Cheow Seng was certainly somewhat of a legend – and some of the old boys still talk about him!

Flag days were always something to look forward to … my favourite spot was the overhead bridge across Orchard Road where the Thai Embassy is … and it was always nice to be able to wander around town after we returned the cans! The teacher in charge was Mr Tan Hock Kee if I remember correctly …



The Wondering Wanderer

26 08 2010

Hi, I just found a picture of some SJI boys (Pre-U2 Arts from the year 1969). I would like to send the picture to you. Please send me your email address. I myself was an SJI boy from 1975 till 1978 (St. Michael’s before that). So I don’t know any of the guys in the photo personally. I found this photo in an old history book (printed in 1964!) I think the original owner of the book must be one of the boys and used the photo as a bookmark or to try and flatten the photo (quite a thick hard cover history book)


26 08 2010
The wondering wanderer

Thanks Rameish, we certainly would have crossed paths at some time … you can click on this link to email me. 🙂

23 10 2010

Hi Wondering Wanderer

It was great to read & follow the many many interesting posts, years of history and growth. I wasn’t able to relate to all of them since I was born in a later era, nevertheless, I was able to relate to the changes and lost in history for some (or many of) landmarks and areas.

Would take time to read your blog posts and find out more about the history and growth of Singapore!

Thanks for sharing your stories and photographs! Priceless!


24 10 2010
The wondering wanderer

Hi JH, thanks for visiting and for the kind feedback! Much appreciated! 🙂

10 01 2011

Hi, I stumbled upon your blog while googling Chong Pang. It is great to have your site up and running. A while back in December, I was in Penang with my family and one of deepest impressions I have had was my dad’s wistful reminiscence of the old Singapore, the street side food which we used to have. His tone of voice made me so sad and regretful that the Singapore he knew and I have faint memories of is fast becoming dust. I love your site. Thank you so much for sharing this with the younger generation of Singaporeans who have missed out so much. All I wish to say is if only old sites filled with heritage value are not demolished or removed to make way for the clones of neighbourhoods we see so frequently today…

13 01 2011
The wondering wanderer

Thanks for your kind feedback Caitlin! 🙂 Incidentally (or coincidentally), it was during a stint I had in Penang that I started this blog, prompted by the many memories that came flooding back to me from walking down the streets, some of which were reminiscent of those of my days growing up in Singapore. It is good to know that I am not alone in believing that many of the fast disappearing old sites should be conserved … it is good to know that there is an increasing interest in conservation on the island … lets hope we see more of what’s left of the old preserved and kept for our future generations! 🙂

14 02 2011
Happy Wanderer

Hi, I stumbled upon your blog when googling for Jalan Benaan Kapal and Tanjong Rhu. Made a quick read of your blog and found a few coincidences and names which cropped up. (1) I am also a mariner – but I only sailed for 2 contracts. Peter Hill – met in Hong Kong where I was working – very briefly, I don’t know him actually, just passed him something (tennis stuff) from a friend in Singapore. Small world.
Anyway, thanks for these pictures : bring back a lot of memories…keep it up!!

14 02 2011
The wondering wanderer

Hi Happy, thanks for the feedback! 🙂 Guess you would have spent time at the shipyards at Jln Benaan Kapal and Tg Rhu! When did you graduate? It is really a small world as you put it! Have a group where we can share our memories and experiences – you might like to check this link out. 🙂

15 02 2011
Happy Wanderer

Spent time there as part of industrial attached for the Marine Diploma. Attached to Weng Chan, Vosper and Singapore Slipway….graduated in about you?

15 02 2011
The wondering wanderer

My batch was the one that graduated in 1985. I had attachments at Overseas Shipyard at Jalan Benaan Kapal and Sembawang Shipyard … were you by any chance attached to the Drawing Office in Vosper?

15 02 2011
Happy Wanderer

Yes, the drawing office was the easiest. Not least because my cousin was the head of the department….. I did a fair bit of work at Vopser – pulling cables and tracing pipe-lines etc. Even went for anchorage work with the contractors – welded a mast on a MV….am glad they trusted us, unlike the local local shipyards.

15 02 2011
The wondering wanderer

Perhaps you might have known some people that I’d worked with who worked in the Vosper Drawing Office in the 1980s …

16 02 2011
Happy Wanderer

My cousin is HOD – Mr. Chua Ba. I vaguely recall the team then : one was very good in detail drawings, the rest – we spent a lot of time chatting, draw a few lines, coffee break, draw a few lines, chat a bit, lunch break was boring except for the “old birds” teaching us kid some tricks and telling their stories…………

16 02 2011
The wondering wanderer

I have some names: Dennis, Yang Fa, Kam Hoong, Charles Yap … Any ring a bell?

14 02 2011

I love the photos of my old SAC (St. Anthony’s Convent in Middle Road). I spent my growing years there from the Primary section to the giggly, riotous Secondary school days. You have no idea the antics girls can get up to in an all girls environment! It was hilarious fun!!

Would be lovely if you could get hold of some shots of the school interior?

But thanks so much for the photos!

14 02 2011
The wondering wanderer

Hi Jasmine, thanks for dropping by … I can imagine what you might have been up to coming from an all boys environment myself … you might want to check this out: 🙂

15 02 2011

Hi Jerome,

Wonderful blog. I’ve always enjoyed learning more about Singapore’s past and history in our ever changing society. As an aspiring architect, its sometimes sad to see places with much historical significance being torn down to make way for new development. Your blog serves as a gentle reminder and documentation for all and especially the younger generations about how Singapore used to be like back in the good old days. Can you keep me posted if there’s any future historical trip or trips of such nature? I would love to be part of it Thanks! = )

17 02 2011
The wondering wanderer

Hi Aaron, thanks for your feedback! There are actually lots of groups including the Preservation of Monuments Board, the Singapore Heritage Society, and the National Library Board, the Nature Society of Singapore, etc, that organise such visits. I also post links to such events on Twitter, if you have an account. 🙂

13 03 2011

Hey, Jerome – Like many others, i’ve always wanted to document some history of my childhood days for my kids, but put it on the back-burner as i’m too busy with my reno blog… until I chanced on yr blog!

Well done, you inspired me to put it on my To-Do list again. Sadly, my early childhood abode – a kampong attap hut in Lor Ah Soo beside a big n wide clayey drain where crocs bred, and later Kim Chuan Rd – had all been obliterated into history, leaving only Toa Payoh now. We were relocated to TP Bllk 200 in 1973 as our KCR house & land was acquired by the govt for a pig abattoir.
So it is wonderful to read yr blog and see those lovely photos!!!

14 03 2011
The wondering wanderer

Hi GreenCoal, thanks for the generous feedback! 🙂 It would be nice to read about your childhood days … will look forward to seeing it soon – do keep me posted 🙂

14 03 2011
Happy Wanderer

I am looking for pictures of Kangkar – the fishing village at the end of Upper Serangoon Road…I am away for some years now and when I was back recently, I could not find it anymore….it has been developed into housing estate.

14 03 2011
The wondering wanderer

Hi Happy Wanderer, you might like to look at these, as well as try other searches on the National Archives PICAS website.

14 03 2011
Happy Wanderer

Thanks….this brings back a lot of memories……Kudos!!

14 03 2011
The wondering wanderer

You’re welcome! Did you live in the area?

14 03 2011
Happy Wanderer

I lived in Upper Serangoon but my school (Montfort) was near to Kangkar – there is the bus terminal and shops there…..spend quite a bit of time hanging out there : Punggol Seventeenth Avenue, Track 22, in the swamps and stuff…..

14 03 2011
Happy Wanderer

Off Upper Serangoon Road, the lane called “Jalan Perisai” is totally out of the map! That’s where I lived before : now it is a large field and housing estates! (from Google earth). I could not find anything in the archive too…..gone forever!!

14 03 2011
The wondering wanderer

That and Kangkar is an area I did not venture to, being brought there on maybe a handful of occasions by my parents. My mum would be more familiar with it, having lived around the 6th mile and all I can remember were the shops on the other side of the road. I have been to Punggol Seventeenth Avenue perhaps on two occasions – there was a retreat house there and what I could remember is taking a walk out of the fenced compound and by the sea … and nothing much more … 🙂

15 03 2011
The wondering wanderer

Good food seemed to be everywhere you looked! 🙂

21 03 2014
Retro man

Hi! I lived since I was born and our rented house is just next to the small wooden plank walled community center. Well too poor to own a camera in those days..Not too sure if you still remember the 2 black bird pillars?

14 03 2011
Happy Wanderer

I think your mum would be Teochew or at least would speak Teochew as that is the dialect spoken there. I grew up around that area – from 6 to 6.5 miles Upp Serangoon Road. Punggol 17th Avenue was also called “Father’s Place” because of the Seminary there. We use to camp by the sea-side there and “borrowed” water from the landed properties…borrowed means we took water from their garden tap – the owners knew but they didn’t chase us away – we were just kids after all…..plenty of shell fish and crabs, even prawns if you know where to get them.

15 03 2011
The wondering wanderer

Mum isn’t Teochew … nor did she really speak it … it was for a few years in her childhood when the family was putting up with a friend. Those were the days when life was slower and the playground was everything around … had a similar experience around Mata Ikan, Changi and Sembawang as well … shell fish, gong-gong, crabs, and yes … even prawns and catfish … 🙂

29 05 2011
Jay Tee

Hi Jerome. I think your blogs are great! I chanced upon it when I googled the Tank Road train station and I really appreciated your blog! I couldn’t stop reading and went through a number of your other posts.
I definately learnt something new! Like you I went on the Tanjong Pagar station tour where I learnt that there was a station at Tank Road.
Keep up the great work. I find it so fascinating to learn about Singapore’s past and how things have changed so much in just such a short span of time. All this is new to me, not having grown up here. I’ll be sure to continue visiting to read.

2 06 2011
Jerome Lim, The Wondering Wanderer

Hi Jay, thanks for dropping by and thanks especially for the kind feedback! 🙂 Very much appreciated! May I ask where you were originally from?

13 06 2011
msia news

the star newspaper (m’sia), letter section

Monday June 13, 2011
Call off June 30 last KTM rail ride party

I REFER to the report “Party plans on track for last train ride to Tanjung Pagar” (The Star, June 9).

The initiators of the so-called party on the last train to Tanjung Pagar, on June 30 should abandon their plan because that day is not a joyous affair but a heartbreaking episode in the history of KTM (Keretapi Tanah Melayu) in Singapore.

In 1918, the British colonial authorities sold, in perpetuity, to the Government of the Federated Malay States the properties and estates previously owned by Singapore Railway, renamed the Federated Malay States Railway, and finally the KTM as a corporate entity.

The KTM would have no cause to close down Tanjung Pagar or relocate its terminus in Singapore had it not been for a series of unfortunate steps which began in 1990 with a lopsided agreement between Malaysia and Singapore called the Points of Agreement (POA), and culminating in the 2010 deal for KTM to relocate from Tanjung Pagar to Woodlands on June 30.

The move by KTM to Woodlands will signal the beginning of the transfer to Singapore not only of the historic station building in Tanjung Pagar but also some 175.7ha of railway land which may be worth billions of dollars, in exchange for joint development of six small pieces of land in Marina South and Ophir-Rocher in the southern part of Singapore island whose value is not known.

The Woodlands checkpoint is not a railway station in the normal sense but a Customs, Immigration and Quarantine station belonging to Singapore.

It is difficult to imagine how KTM can effectively use the Woodlands checkpoint as it new terminus in Singapore.

It does look like KTM will be forced to pull back to Johor Baru, sooner rather than later.

When that happens, a glorious chapter in the history of KTM operations in Singapore would finally be closed.

That is why June 30 is a very sad day indeed, certainly not an occasion to celebrate.

Kuala Lumpur.

29 01 2012
Alex Chia

Thank you for this wbsite you have created with love of the past.
It brings back fond memories for me of the time I was growing up in the 50’s.
My parents moved from house to house during my younger days; from Sennette Estate through to Opera Estate and ended at Bedok.
As for myself and my own family, we were last residing at Bedok Avenue 3 till we moved to Sydney in 1980.
i was in SJI and my final year was 1965. Brother Justinian was our principal then and my form teacher was Mr. Frank James.
Brother Parick (malam) was the one going around with a cane. Those were the days indeed, i miss them. But we have to move on i guess.
Times are so different now!
Thank you for your blog, will keep reading and updating myself.

23 06 2012

Just seen your write up on Howard Cashins ” pier House ” many a time I spent there at fabulous parties and picnics on the boats, they also had a fantastic garden, with butterflys,and bred Rhodisian ridgebacks, fearsome creatures !! what has happened to his wife, so sad to see the decay setting in on a piece of History, can it not be done up and preserved ?


7 07 2012

Hi Jerome,
I’m not sure should I ask you this in email, but let me write here first..

I see all your images in instagram, and they are all very well shot. Do you have any tips on getting nice and clear photos out of phone cameras? (Instagram photos were all from phone cameras ya?)

Also, I can never get a nice and clear photo on my iPhone for night shoots. They usually turn out too grainy. Any tips on Night Photography on camera phones?

My only camera now is my iPhone 4 (not 4s). I know it cannot compare to DSLRs, but I do not own one, so I would like to seek your professional tips 🙂

I’m not shooting to win awards or anything, I just want to capture moments and memories for my Project 52×5 (something like Project 365 and 52, but I’m doing 5 shots a week) – you can read about it at my blog if you want

Thanks mate!

7 07 2012

The trick is to hold your camera steady. Instagram is just a layer over the picture. iPhone is not really a great device for night shoots. It’s small sensor size is gonna give you blotchy results. Photography is about lighting and looking for that angle and then the moment. I’m not a great or even good photographer but have worked in the industry (advertising). Suggest you get a happy snappy 2nd hand camera like the Panasonic Lumix LX3 or Canon S95. Learn the basics of aperture, shutter speed and lighting (side light, back light, etc).

9 07 2012

Thanks mate for your valuable advice.

Yes, I don’t expect to get award winning results from my iPhone.

The moment is very important, and I guess you’re right.. lighting, angle, steady hands as well as a well composed shot is equally important too.

Moments and memories sometimes cannot be replaced and it might occur only at “that instant”

It’ll be a pity if I see “that moment”, but do not have the right tool to capture a crisp sharp image.. which brings me to wonder, why is everyone degrading their nice shots with vintage filters and decolorisation ..

I put an image thru some filters, and immediately it looks good (nostalgic)

Okok. Sorry for the chatter Jerome (in case you’re reading this)

Maybe we should bring the discussion to a forum and not choke up the comments bandwidth here.

Btw guys, I just completed week 3 of my “Project 52”. The theme for the week was “clouds”. Do take a look at my blog and give me some valuable comments.

I don’t think I should place links here, so do find my post from my blog link in my name.

Thanks guys

20 07 2012
Jerome Lim, The Wondering Wanderer

Agree with rameish. Holding the phone steady (which isn’t always easy) does help a great deal. Knowing how to manage exposure and focus and using light is also important. Phone cameras have improved tremendously but they still do have their limitations and best to carry at least a compact around with you to capture the moments you want to. Low light (night) photography which involves high ISOs and longer exposures would turn out grainy and often blur … best to get a tripod if you intend to do that with any camera.

18 06 2013
A L Bungar

Hi, Jerome:
This is the first time I’m reading your blog. It brought tears to my eyes when I saw a shot of you as a child with your father and sibling.
It reminded me of my childhood with my siblings and my long deceased father in the 70s. He used to take us to the Van Kleef Aquarium, the original Esplanade to see a band performance or to play “catching” at the Padang. A time when life was simpler and you did not need to have lots of money to have a good time.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for what you are doing.

30 07 2014

Hi, we are doing a documentary about Namly Ave and I’m looking for the relatives of Arumugam Annamalai Pillai. You wrote something about Matthew Supramaniam, I believe that he is a descendant of Arumugam. Is it possible to get his contact info? His email add please. Thank you.

14 04 2015

Hey! Just wanted to say that i really like your blog!!

12 08 2015

Nice blog Jerome Lin. Nice writeup about the aftermath of the UBomb and the rally for peace. Not surprisingly public memory is rather short.

27 11 2015

I’ve been reading your blog for sometime, and always wanted to ask you, if you have any pictures of a old mansion at 3 Mount Emily Road (family couldn’t afford a camera then). Thank you for sharing vast history information of places and pics. Certainly brought lots of tears, laughter, memories to share with younger generation.

30 11 2015
Jerome Lim, The Wondering Wanderer

Hi Lucky, unfortunately I have not come across many of the mansion that was at 3 Mount Emily Road. Thanks for reading the blog and for the generous feedback – I am happy to know that the blog helps to bring tears, laughter and memories 🙂

7 12 2015
Alysa Lowder

Again, wonderful work!

18 09 2016
ibrahim a. hamid

love your fond memories in late 50s 60s and 70s, I really into this thing
there a place call wing loong (I don’t know it’s right spelling)where the late David Marshall residence was, my parent normally brought us over the weekend because my great grand uncle use to be his driver. The house was situated overlooking the beach.

19 09 2016
Jerome Lim, The Wondering Wanderer

Thanks for dropping by Ibrahim :). Wow! You have been to the house! I would always look out for it on the numerous drives father made up Wing Loong Road and have mentioned it in this post: Once Tanah Merah. There is also a little video clip available online in which you can see part of the house :

27 01 2021
Tim Rice

We lived in the house next door to David Marshall, although I was only 4/5 years old. We rented a house with a pagoda in the garden, and I have been trawling the posts to try and identify it. Thank you for your posts.

7 09 2018
Pauline Fear

I lived in Singapore 1954-1956, at the age of 2. My family lived at 31F Rimau which I am told was either at Singapore Naval base or at Sembawang, can anyone help with which naval base it was on?

7 09 2018
Jerome Lim, The Wondering Wanderer

It was in the Singapore Naval Base, which was at Sembawang. Rimau Estate would have been in the area off Admiralty Road West around where Woodlands Avenue 4 is today.

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