Sunday, July 14, 2013

Happy Valley Racecourse Ghost Stories

The Happy Valley Racecourse is located in Wan Chai District, Hong Kong. It was formerly a swampland and since the first race in 1846, the racecourse has become the 1st racecourse of Hong Kong. Do you also know that this racecourse is also a very haunted place?


Well, on 26 February 1918, there was a fire and at least 590 people died. It was caused by the collapse of a temporary grandstand, which knocked over food stalls and set bamboo matting ablaze. It is a fire with one of the highest casualties in Hong Kong history.


Legend has it that soon after the mishap; people frequently witness burning human struggling in grandstand. Racing horses went amuck during races. The racecourse management thought those were the doing of ghosts and many religious ceremonies were being performed to pacify the spirits of the victims.


Having said so… there are still some stories of strange happenings being pass down now and then by the racecourse staffs. For example there were sightings of people jogging horses in the middle of the night; mah-jong sound came out from the supposed empty VIP room etc.


There was a story I heard that a jockey, Mr. A saw many ghostly figures on the grandstand one night when he returned to the racecourse to get his stuff for next day’s race. The following morning, another jockey has fallen from his race horse and died. Not long later, Mr. A also died in similar horse related incident.


Opposite the Happy Valley Racecourse is the Hong Kong Cemetery dedicated to the rich and famous and foreigners. Some folks also believe that due to the congregation of Yin energy between the cemetery and the areas around the racecourse, naturally there are more and more ghosts like to gather there.


Another interesting ghost story was about two old banyan trees on Tai Yuk Road in Yuan Long. Story has it that the racecourse management wanted to widen the racecourse, so both of the old banyan trees will need to be chopped down. But when the worker started the motorized saw, blood splashed onto the worker’s face and he ran off in panic. People attributed the incident to the working of tree spirits.


Since the racecourse management failed to remove both of the banyan trees immediately, they spent 3 years to “forcefully remove” the trees by cutting the tree roots and fabricated two steel ‘flower pots’ to move the trees to Wong Nai Chung Road.


If you happen to be around, why not pay the ‘old folks’ a visit and see if you are lucky enough to meet with some of the ghosts?


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