Monday, February 22, 2010

Kuala Lipis Previously The Capital Of the State Pahang

Kuala Lipis is situated right at the middle of the peninsula Malaysia, located at the confluence of the Sungai Lipis and Sungai Jelai. It is about 200 kilometers from Kuala Lumpur and about 250 km from Kuantan, the capital of the state of Pahang. The district of Kuala Lipis has a population of about 100,000. Due to its past strategic position, Kuala Lipis was made as the capital of Pahang by the British. It was an influential trading and business center producing minerals such as tin and gold, and products from the surrounding forests.

Kuala Lipis was the administrative capital of Pahang for 57 years from 1898 until 27th August 1955, when Kuantan was picked as the new capital. Here, as the state capital during the times of the British colonial era, it was the main residential location for British administrators and other British trade and business men in Pahang.

Most People do not know...That, based on old history books, the center of Peninsular Malaysia is in the district of Kuala Lipis? Some town folks say the center is located in the middle of town. Well, I took a walk in the center of the town and found a milestone lettered with a "0" on it. This is actually the center of the town but whether it is the actual center of Peninsula Malaysia, I have yet to ascertain.

The "0" milestone near the post office in Kuala Lipis is actually a distance marker used by the old, pre-independence British administration for sending letters and telegrams to other districts and locations in Malaya.

If you were to walk around around the town, you would be able to find a number of legacies left by the Colonial British, a surviving reminder marking of their occupation of the country. You will notice the architecture of the past in some of the old buildings there. Surprisingly, majority of the architecture represent the Moorish or Islamic buildings. Right on top of the hill, you have the resident house, used by the resident. It was then made into a hostel for the Clifford Students. It was the first concrete building built in the town by the British in 1867. It was in fact once the official residence for the British envoys who had been sent to administer the State. The famous British state administrator, Sir Hugh Clifford, who was the second British Resident of Pahang, once stayed there.Today, this building now functions as the Kuala Lipis Rest House. At the "Sudut Budaya" (cultural corner) of this Rest House, you can see displays of weapons of the past, such as the Malay spears, daggers and keris.

Another building that has historical significance in Kuala Lipis is the Clifford School, formerly known as the Anglo-Chinese School. This school, which was built during the British administration period in 1913 and was the school that had educated many state royalties and past leaders, not only from Pahang but from the other states in Malaysia.

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