午炮炮手

NOON DAY GUNNER


Johnny

​Causeway Bay (銅鑼灣)

08:00-13:00 (5 hours)

“Have you noticed the sound of a gun going off every day in the city at noon? I’m the guy firing it! I was part of the Royal Hong Kong Regiment back in the Nineties, so I know a thing or two about artillery. My day job was quite different - I worked in IT for many years. After I retired in 2008, I took on this very unique job of firing the Noon Day Gun. I get in early and raise the flags at 9am, polish the gun and prepare for firing. At 11:30am, I will change into my smart uniform and make some final preparations, before firing the gun at 12 noon - sharp! We have tourists and locals alike visiting the site and taking pictures of the gun every day. I’m proud to be doing this job - it is such a quintessential part of Hong Kong.”



「你有冇留意過每日中午呢個城市都會有一下炮響?放炮嘅人就係我!我喺90年代嘅時候入過皇家香港軍團,所以對大炮有少少認識咁。我日頭嘅職業都幾唔同,我係做電腦行業嘅,做咗好多年。2008年退休嗰陣,我接咗呢份好特別嘅工作,負責放午炮。我每日嘅流程都幾有趣㗎。我會一早返到,九點鐘升旗,抹乾淨枝炮,檢查機械。到十一點半,我會換好套醒目嘅制服,喺放炮之前做最後檢查,搭正十二點,就要放炮!呢度每日都有遊客同香港人嚟影相打卡。我好自豪可以做呢份工作㗎,佢係香港嘅特色旅遊景點呀。」

“Did you know that firing of the Noon Day Gun has been going on for over a hundred and fifty years in Hong Kong? The story goes something like this. The gun used to be fired every time our tai-pan was seen to be approaching from sea - not just to salute and welcome him, but also to alert people that the boss is back! One time, a British naval officer got offended by the loud noise, as the practice was normally only reserved for army or government officials, not tai-pans. As a result, Jardines was given a penalty to fire the gun every day at noon, in perpetuity - and so the tradition carried on!”


“We fire the gun rain or shine, even in the middle of a typhoon - as long as it is safe to do so. I have many fond memories from my army days. We would do ambush and surveillance training out in the mountains - in Sai Kung, Hoi Ha, Pat Sin Leng. I remember so clearly the first time I got to go on a helicopter - the cabin door was not fully shut and I was so terrified that I would fall out! We would also catch smugglers at the border with Mainland China. My day to day life is a lot more relaxed and low-key these days. I like to go to Ap Liu Street Market in Sham Shui Po to look at second hand goods, and generally take things easy. I love my job and I want to be carrying out this duty for as long as I can!”

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「你知唔知香港嘅午炮已經放咗超過150年喇?聽講背後係有段故嘅。以前當有人見到大班埋岸就會放炮,唔止係為咗歡迎同埋向佢敬禮,仲係提醒啲人,老細返嚟喇﹗有一次,有個英國軍官不滿啲炮聲太大聲,因為禮炮本身應該只係用嚟向海軍或者政府人員致敬,大班係冇份。就係咁,怡和洋行被罰每日中午放炮,一路放到而家!」


「我哋無論好天落雨都會放炮,就算係打風,只要係安全都會照做。我當兵嘅日子有好多美好回憶呀。我哋會喺山頭度埋伏同埋監視訓練,喺西貢、海下、八仙嶺嗰頭。我仲幾記得第一次坐直升機,度門冇閂實,幾驚我會跌落去呀。我哋仲會喺大陸邊境堵截偷渡客。而家我嘅日子輕鬆平淡好多囉。我鍾意去深水埗鴨寮街睇二手嘢,好多嘢都冇乜所謂。我鍾意自己嘅工作,希望可以有幾耐做幾耐啦!」

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