3rd October 2023 – (Hong Kong) After undergoing extensive exhibition enhancement work, the Hong Kong Railway Museum (HKRM) will reopen its doors to the public today, offering free admission and an exciting new addition to its collection: Diesel Electric Engine No. 60, also known as “Peter Quick” (L60).
L60, which began its operation in 1974, was part of the final fleet of diesel-electric engines introduced for the Kowloon-Canton Railway. It served on the East Rail Line and played a vital role during the golden era of railway freight services between Hong Kong and the Mainland. Following the full electrification of the Kowloon-Canton Railway in 1983, L60 was taken out of passenger service and used primarily for hauling freight and maintenance trains. The locomotive was named after Mr Peter Quick, the second Managing Director of the Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation (KCRC), and held the distinction of being the last locomotive in Hong Kong to be named after a person. After nearly fifty years of service, L60 was retired in 2021 and subsequently handed over to the HKRM’s permanent collection by the MTR Corporation Limited (MTRC), with conservation supervised by the Conservation Office of the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD).
During the handover ceremony held yesterday, Mr Vincent Liu, the Director of Leisure and Cultural Services, expressed his delight at the addition of this significant railway artefact to the HKRM’s collection. He stated that the inclusion of L60, following the acquisition of Historical Coach No. 313 in 2020, would further ignite public interest in the historical development of the local railway.
The ceremony was attended by esteemed guests, including Ms Jeny Yeung, Managing Director – Hong Kong Transport Services of the MTRC; Dr Tony Lee, Operations and Innovation Director of the MTRC; Mr C L Wong, Company Secretary of the KCRC; and Mr Brian Lam, Museum Director of the Hong Kong Heritage Museum.
Due to its exposure to outdoor environments throughout its service life, L60’s metal components suffered from corrosion and deterioration of its protective coating. In preparation for its relocation to the HKRM, conservators from the Conservation Office conducted extensive preservation work and applied a protective coating to the locomotive at the MTR Lo Wu Locomotive Running Shed. This meticulous conservation effort aimed to slow down the rate of deterioration and ensure the locomotive’s suitability for outdoor display.
To enhance the visitor experience and provide in-depth information about the new exhibit, the HKRM has integrated multimedia content into the LCSD’s “iM Guide” mobile app. This feature will offer visitors a more immersive and engaging experience while exploring the L60 locomotive.
This year also marks the 110th anniversary of the construction of the Old Tai Po Market Railway Station, the current location of the HKRM. To commemorate this milestone, the HKRM is hosting the “Stories Behind Built Heritage: Old Tai Po Market Railway Station Celebrates 110 Years” exhibition. The exhibition showcases the history and development of the station, along with its close ties to the Tai Po community, through a collection of historical photographs from various sources. Visitors will have the opportunity to reminisce about their past train journeys through these captivating images. For further details about the exhibitions, please visit the HKRM website at hk.heritage.museum/en/web/hm/museums/railway.html or contact 2653 3455 for enquiries.
In addition to the new L60 exhibit, the museum offers a multitude of special displays, including the first diesel-electric engine in Hong Kong, No. 51, a narrow gauge steam locomotive that once operated on the Sha Tau Kok Branch Line, and various historical coaches from different eras. Railway enthusiasts and visitors alike should not miss the chance to explore these remarkable pieces. The HKRM is conveniently located at 13 Shung Tak Street, Tai Po Market, Tai Po, Hong Kong.