At that time of writing, photographs of the old community centres were extremely difficult to come by. Fortunately, in the past year, the National Archive of Singapore had begun to periodically release old records, maps and documents for public access. This has resulted in more pictures of our old estate being available for viewing.
I have collated some pictures in relation to the old (3rd) community centre for easy viewing here.
If you were in PEE sometime between 1963 to the 1980s, you would have known this building which was the focus of all social events at our estate then.
The first set of pictures is of the laying of the foundation stone by the then Prime Minister, Mr Lee Kuan Yew on 5th May 1963. This was done during his constituency visit around Singapore in relation to the referendum of merger with the Federation of Malaya.
This is followed by some pictures of the official opening of the community centre by Haji Ya'acob Mohd, the Parliamentary Secretary to the PM's Office, on 11 September 1963.
Finally, a few photos of the 8th Anniversary Celebration of the Community Centre on 24th June 1972. This last set of pictures has special significance for myself as my father and sister are featured in some of them!
1. Laying the foundation Stone - 5th May 1963
|On the right of this photo, you can see the mangosteen trees, remnants of what used to be the small orchard that surrounded 2 badminton courts upon which the new CC was built.|
The block in the rear is Blk 17 Prince Charles Rise.
2. Official Opening by Parliamentary Secretary, Mr Ya'acob bin Mohd on 11th Sep 1963.
Mr Chua Tong Nee, Quah Baba, Mr Koh Keng Kwee, Mrs Michael Wong, ?, ?, ?, Mr Ya'acob Mohd, ?, Dr Rajah, Mr Lee Teck Hup, ? ? ? ? ? ?.
It is interesting to note that during the early years of the community centre, the management and running of the place were all done by unpaid resident volunteers. Only the Organising Secretary, Mr Ronald Lim, who was also a resident of PEE, was employed by the newly established People's Association.
3. The CC 8th Anniversary Celebration Dinner on 24th June 1972.
The old Princess Elizabeth Estate Community Centre.
If you are able to identify anyone else in the above photos, perhaps your parents, uncles, aunts or even yourself!, please drop me a comment below.
Photo source: National Archive of Singapore.