Tai O Cultural Workshop, a private museum founded in 2001 to showcase the unique culture and history of Tai O, will close in July as the landlord wants to redevelop the property, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported.
Founder Wong Wai-king, who is also deputy chairwoman of Tai O Rural Committee, said many of the exhibits have been donated by local residents and that they represent the history of the remote island just off Lantau Island where fishermen have traditionally lived.
Instead of blaming the property owner, a person surnamed Man, for taking it back, Wong said she is thankful for the support that he has given over the past 15 years.
The museum has seen its rent go up only to HK$6,000 from HK$2,000 over the period, she noted.
She admitted that reconstruction of the building is necessary as it has been seriously eroded by termites.
The building once took a heavy hit from a typhoon in the last decade but donations from kind citizens made it possible for the museum to continue to operate, Wong said.
Looking back over the past 15 years, Wong said it is her persistence that kept the museum going despite a lot of challenges.
She noted that the facility attracted tourists from the UK and France due to books she wrote about Tai O.
Wong hopes the exhibits can now be temporarily stored at the local Wing Chor School before a new location is found for the museum so that the legacy of Tai O can be passed down forever.
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