Saturday, March 21, 2009

old tampines sand quarry pond

bedok reservoir park viewed from the highest point

scenes of the tampines sand quarry pond

i was at bedok reservoir to familiarise myself with the schools' national cross-country route - to be held on 25 march - when my friend suggested that we cross the road and check out the old tampines sand quarry pond. always game to explore any new place, i readily agreed.

from car-park b, we crossed the road and we were soon looking for a path that would lead us to the pond. although i did not meet anyone with a fishing rod that day, there was enough evidence around to show that fishing is one of the main activities (illegally?)carried out at this quarry pond.

i remember the tampines of old, with lorries loaded with sand trundling along some of the tracks and then go speeding along the narrow tampines road. there were quite a number of sand quarries in operation in those days when we were spending our time waiting for the tilapas and grass carps in the ponds to take our bait.

those fishing days @ tampines pond

tampines road started from upper serangoon and joined up with changi road. whenever we preferred the rustic countryside scene, we would take this route when making our way to changi point. of course, we had to be wary of the lorries loaded with sand but the traffic was usually lighter than if you were to take the city route.

according to the records, most of the sand quarries were located at the present tampines avenue 10 and at loyang. my friend, who lives in tampines, told me that the tampines polytechnic's site used to be a sand quarry.


peter said...

I am more familiar with Loyang area, so I can point to you "exactly where".

If you remember Old Tampines Road near Jalan Batalong, there were ponds immediately after Flora Road. The present Loyang Flyover, Pasir Ris Singhealth Outpatient Clinic, Loyang Primary School, Azalea Park were the sites of the former fresh water ponds.

At one time I was stationed @Jalan Loyang Besar and we used to walk around the area to the beach. There was at one-time the SIA Holiday Chalet there and a futuristic coral shell museum called "Dari Laut" along Jalan Loyang Besar. The remnant of Jalan Loyang Besar is what is left at Costa Sands Resort.

The biggest sand pits is now the open ground @Pasir Ris Drive 8.

peter said...

The only remnant of fresh water ponds is the one opposite White Sands Shopping Center.

I got some photos of a big entertainment complex cum fresh water pond resort in what is now the Pasir Ris Flyover @Tampines Ave 12. It was called Golden Palace @Jalan Ang Siang Kong. There was a smaller fresh water pond on what is now Blk 123 and Sungei Tampines.

peter said...

If u refer to the old pond @Tampines, then it would be now at this place SBSTransit Depot @Bedok North Ave 4. Up to 1974, this pond existed because it was next to the Sungei Bedok (now Bedok Canal).

The present Bedok Reservoir was not a pond but a hill which was excavated for land reclamation project. We did our NS training @the bottom of this reservoir in 1974 when they were placing boulders on the floor-bed. If u refer to Chun See's blog, I put up a photo of Bedok Reservoir in its ealry days.

nah said...

The black n white photo is worth a thousand words. It brings back a lot of fond memories of the 70s. The man in dark glasses was the ‘king’ in pond fishing. The place was Singapore fishing pond, his favourite pond. It was surrounded by Tampines, Yeo Choon and Seng Choon fishing ponds. His fishing rods were ‘ABU 281, 282, with Mitchell reels. The fishing stands were made of pure stainless steel, and were made by him. The bait he used to catch those grassies, was not tapioca, not ‘kuay khng’ which was used to feed the chickens, but cockroaches which were bought at 2cents/piece. The wooden chair that you sat on and those used at the pond were chairs discarded from the turf club. His favourite fishing days were Tuesdays to Thursdays, because from Tuesday, the fish which were released into the pond on Sunday, would have been acclimatized to the pond and would begin to eat. After Thursday, most of the fish in the pond would have been landed. His biggest catch was a 35-lb ‘song’ caught using part of the banana which he was eating.

yg said...

mr nah, don't just reminisce about the good, old fishing days; you can replay those days - there is a fishing pond at pasir ris farmway where you can catch quite big ones.

yg said...

peter, you are referring to the fresh water fishing ponds, not the quarry ponds?

peter said...

Yes I refer to fresh water pond of those days (1960s/mid70s) as those a) man-made by farmers to keep a second livelihood and b) abandoned sand quarry. The one opposite White Sands was from a pre-war sand quarry. I am not sure about present ponds today but Bedok Reservoir was definitely not a sand quarry pond but a hill which was excavated.

The photo of the tree trunk with "tumour-looking" feature, what is that? Hive? Nest?

Victor said...

Nah, from the way you've described it, the man in dark glasses in the photo must be you, am I right?

Icemoon said...

Victor, could the one sitting down be yg?

yg said...

peter, i was hoping someone would be able to throw some light on it. we were also puzzled at what we saw. nest or hive?

victor, that's not nah; it is another former colleague of ours. his name is wong h c. nah may praise himself in small company, but not publicly on the internet.

icemoon, yes, that's me sitting down.

nah said...

Thanks, yg, for satisfying victor’s curiosity. That man, whose nickname was ‘Bozo’, was my fishing kaki. Those days, we were so fanatical about fishing; we would fish until almost midnight, to catch the last bus no.80/81 home. Even on CNY eve, when fire crackers were let off, we were still at the pond, until the caretaker ‘Ah Ang’ had to remind us about our family reunion dinner.
He gave me a wedding card and on it he composed this poem:

This is no ode to the groom
Who must not take it with gloom.
It’s just sound advice from a good friend
Whom you must not blame nor take offence.
Now that you have worn the Engagement Ring
That is followed by a Wedding Ring.
Do not wear a ‘Third Ring’ i.e. Suffer Ring
By not having your regular scheduled Fishing.

dashing hongeng said...

Bedok Reservoir was actually on the ridge of a hill. Before the resettlement of the area, it was Rose Garden selling cultivated rose and other ornamental plants. After resettling the residents there, the HDB took over to turn it into a sand quarry - hot on heels of the announcement of the ban on sale of sand to Singapore by the Malaysian government. The sand was stockpiled behind the viaduct at Bedok North. Rain and stormwater collected from the estates at Bedok North poured into the huge sand quarry turning it into a reservoir.

yg said...

dashing hongeng, bedok reservoir was a sand quarry that was flooded? wasn't it a planned reservoir?

dashing hongeng said...

I am not very sure whether it was a planned reservoir or not. So far as I knew, there was a huge body of water on the left side of the bridge after the Bedok Canal. There were many sand quarries around the surrounding areas. Then the land was acquired by the Ministry of National Development. The HDB's quarry was the biggest. Its sandmine obliterated most of the other mines in the area and deeper too. Today the body of water after the Bedok Canal was gone as the reservoir is deeper than that area.

Rookies DJ said...

I try looking into the old Tampines sand quarry on the internet, but seem to had no much about the quarry history, did you maybe know anything?

Anonymous said...

I remember visiting my brother in the Tampines Camp in Jalan Ang Siang Kong, in 1973. Does anyone know what stands on the site of that camp now? For memory sake. As my brither's camp mate Willie Yeong passed away very suddenly on 7 June 2017, a week after he fell in a bus when it was making a turning.Thank you